Sunday, September 30, 2007

Like Father, Like...Daughter?

There are times when I lament that I’ve never had that one specific calling in life. Like my Dad. He knew probably by age 3 that he wanted to fly, so he went to college, joined the Air Force, and then became a pilot. He had a love and passion for his job that most people would envy – including me!

My interests, over my life, have been so varied that I’ve never had that one specific career in mind.

The first answer that my parents remember me voicing to the all important “what-do-you-want-to-be-when-you-grow-up” question was a cook, which I supposedly announced with pride at my pre-school graduation. The reason I gave for that profession was simple yet rational: “because I like to eat!”

Though I still liked to eat (and still do), my interests and ideas for a profession changed throughout my childhood. For a while I wanted to be a librarian, playing for hours in front of the bookcase, pretending to check out books for my “clients” (all the stuffed animals I owned). Then I wanted to be a teacher, and later, a writer.

But, I changed my mind again and decided I wanted to be a newscaster. That potential job stuck the longest, as I eventually chose a college and a major based on that goal. It lasted exactly until my first broadcasting class, which I hated. I promptly changed my major and my career goal, which was a good thing because I can’t imagine myself now as a newscaster.

Even recently, I’ve toyed with new ideas for potential jobs. I'm even considering some of the ideas from my youth. So, one day I might actually be working as a cook or a teacher - or maybe even a writer.

I would often wonder why I wasn’t more like my Dad - someone that dreamed of his future profession at such an early age and fulfilled his goal in said profession.

But after talking to my Dad this weekend, I realize that I am like him. He spoke of a few things he was working on, and none of them were pilot-related.

Though he had one main job (a pilot) throughout his life, his interests were and are just as varied as mine.

In his free time, he creates a variety of artwork. (You only need to walk through my parents’ house to see his efforts hung all over the walls.)

And he likes finances and watching the stock market. I do, too.

Oh – and did I mention the book that he’s working on? He enjoys writing in his free time. I do, too.

And there’s a variety of other interests that he likes. Photography. Music – specifically, the piano. Swimming. Comedy. Business. Reading. Tennis. Cooking. He enjoys them all. I do, too.

From my Dad, I’ve learned that you can love your job - and a variety of hobbies, too. Though I never had that one single calling at a young age, I’ve had the adventure of trying a lot of different things - jobs and otherwise.

Sure, I’ll never be able to answer the “what are you?” question with a single word, like “nurse,” “accountant,” or “baker.” It makes small talk at dinner parties a little trickier, but it sure makes life a lot more fun. And if you don't believe me - just ask my Dad!

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