There were 19 forks in my house, 10 clocks and 39 pictures on the wall. I was about eight years old. I could stand on my hands for 14 seconds, my longest hair was six inches long, and my favorite song was "Oh Beautiful." I knew exactly what I wanted to be when I grew up: a nurse.
At the naive age of eight, these questions seemed very important and I took great care in filling out my book by Dr. Seuss entitled My Book About Me. No one cared about my grade point average and SATs seemed light-years away. If you asked me then to sing "Oh Beautiful," I would have belted out my favorite verse, but if you were to ask me today, I'd be a bit apprehensive.
Dr. Seuss wouldn't necessarily care that I am drum major of the marching band, that I am a member of the National Honors Society, or that I have been in the All-State Band. He would be more interested in what I would like for my next birthday.
If you ask me today what I'd like to be when I grow up, which is still light-years away, I'd say that I'm pretty much undecided, but maybe am considering a science-related field. One thing I do know is that nursing is near the bottom of my list. I don't think I'm ready to decide how I'd like to spend the rest of my life, but I know I want to be happy and follow my dreams.
So the next time I'm filling out a college application and they ask me how many mirrors are in my house, I'll be the first one running downstairs to count. -
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.