What I want to be when I grow up

Growing up, I had big dreams. At first, I wanted to be a teacher. But in middle school I realized I didn’t like kids/students and actually really loved animals. From that point on, I wanted to be a veterinarian. But not any vet, one who owned her own practice and saved every animal she possibly could. It wasn’t a lavish life, one where maybe I’d have to work hard but I figured all that hard work would pay off. I would own my own business and not have to answer to anyone.

Years later, reality hits. It started in High School when my counselor put in my head that I wasn’t smart enough (i.e. grades not good enough) to get into Veterinary School. This was Freshman year, years before even applying to college let alone vet school. But I was determined. My B-average was just that… B average. I studied hard and even took an Advanced Placement class and test. I had a rocky senior year and had to write the letter of my life to still go to University of Illinois, but they let me attend and 4 years later I walked away with my degree, along with that solid B average GPA.

Guess my counselor was right, not a single veterinary school out of the 5 I applied to even considered me for an interview. Yet I persisted. I moved back home and enrolled in some classes at the local community college in order to try and get my very average 3.0 GPA up a little. And I applied to 13 schools instead of only 5. This time around I was invited to two interviews, and placed on two wait-lists. After not being chosen, I decided to enroll in Grad School to once again hopefully increase my GPA.

Working full-time as a Veterinary Assistant and attending school full-time was very interesting. After years of long days full of sick animals, classes, and creating and writing a thesis, reality hit. I no longer had the same passion and dream to be a veterinarian. So now what?

Over the past 5 years, I’ve dabbled in so many different career fields but they all have a common theme: I love helping others. Whether that’s helping people with their computer, school subject, ACT, SAT, beloved pet, fitness goals, laboratory equipment, gym equipment, or anything else. As long as I’m helping someone else, I’m happy. I didn’t need a Master’s degree to realize this, but it appears like I needed to venture away from my long-time dream to discover just who I want to be when I grow up.

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I want to be a helper. But even more than that, I want to create an asset where I’m in control, helping people and being paid for it. You’re either helping build someone else’s asset or your building your own. While I enjoy what I do, at the end of the day I’m still answering to someone else. I want to be free when I grow up: have financial freedom and be happy in what I do everyday.

What do you want to be when you grow up?