In kindergarten, I wanted to be a gypsy when I grew up.
Well, every Halloween I did. But my older sister had the gypsy costume and I, I had the witch costume. She was all bangles and billowy skirts while I wore an old black sweater of my mother’s and carried a broom. Gypsies were romantic and mysterious and lived in exotic lands. They never needed an excuse to over accessorize.
As a witch, however, I did have a pointy cardboard and black crepe paper hat.
Then I wanted to be a truck driver. Ages ago there was a television series called “BJ and the Bear” about a truck driver who owned a chimpanzee. Both BJ and Bear experienced all sorts of adventures on the road. It really was a silly premise for a series but it made me want to get my class 3 and haul goods all over the country. I lived in my blue jeans then and was a tomboy extraordinaire. A life on the road seemed to me, to be the life I wanted to live.
A few years later President Reagan got shot. I kept every newspaper and magazine article I could find on the assassination attempt in a manilla folder. I was going to be a secret service agent. It seemed heroic and exciting and covert. Things you never experienced in small town Alberta.
In high school I took drama courses. We performed at elementary schools and at the local college auditorium. During rehearsals, one of my jobs was to sit in the balcony seats and yell to the director whenever I couldn’t hear the performers onstage. I remember sitting, chin resting on my arms that were draped over the railing thinking “I love the theater”. I was going to be an actress.
I went to university and majored in Political Science and English. I was going to be a journalist. I wrote for the college newspaper. I was going to research and enlighten and expose the truth.
When you’re young anything seems possible. No dream seems ridiculous. No dream seems out of the realm of possibility. We find fulfillment in imagination. We find fulfillment in what “could be”. When we get older we try to find a sense of purpose in what “is”. And most often we do find purpose in our present reality but sometimes our imagination isn’t strong enough to compensate for practicality.
So we read, or go to movies, or get sucked into the void of oblivion called online gaming. Which is fine.
when we do this we’re delving into the dreams and creations of someone else and we’re not taking the time to figure out our own.
As it turns out I haven’t become a gypsy, truck driver, secret service agent, actress or journalist… but that’s not to say I won’t do so when I”grow up”.