What I want to be when I grow up
Kids bring back some very vibrant childhood memories. The memories which are buried deep down, forgotten and almost lost. Until there is a kid (especially your own) who decides to tread the same path. So here is my recollection of “what I want to be when I grow up” and how it evolved with the evolution of me.
Flashback to the little girl in kinder garden. This is a time when you really don’t know that you have to become someone when you grow up. All the matters during those formative school years is to be able to get your favorite toy when the teachers opens the toy box. The wonderful years where you do not have to worry about anything not even the homework, leave alone thinking about the distant future and career. (Career?? Now what is that??) So when someone asked me what I wanted to be when I grow up, I would invariably say I simply want to grow up.
A little after that came the obsession for candies. Any number of candies you get, any number of candies you eat, but somehow you would never have enough. It was an uphill asking parents, that’s when this exceptional idea first came in mind. If I could somehow get a job in a candy factory, won’t it be wonderful, I would always be surrounded candies and I could eat one as and when I wanted. And so it was decided that when I grow up I wanted to work in candy factory. This ambition stayed for a long time just the factories kept changing with the changing times from Chewing gum to ice cream to chocolate and chips. At a point I just lost track of the item involved, it was always some factory where I wanted to work once I grow up.
This was the time when cable TV had started making inroads in our lives. Before that we only had Doordarshan and Mile Sur Mera Tumhara. I would watch movies and serials - Byomkesh Bakshi was one of my favorite. He was brilliant, he was sharp and he was quick. And he was a detective. So I decided I wanted to become a detective. This is final and no changes after that. The decision was made. Till there were a series of movies and serials where I saw lawyers fighting cases and bringing the bad boys to book. They would tread the unknown paths to get the much wanted proof against the criminals and finally they would save the common man, win all the cases and get appreciation from one and all. Well! Since there is still time to grow, I guess its ok to change your ambition as well. So a lawyer it is, what I wanted to become when I grow. After this decision was taken, each time I saw a lawyer in a movie or a serial, I would imagine myself in that position, going through the hardships to get the breakpoints, listening to the sad man stories and saving the common man from the bad guys. Yes, this was all me. I will stick to this decision. No matter what. I will stand strong for what I believe in.
Teens and End of School
I really forgot I had to grow up. I forgot about the candy, chewing gum, chocolate and chips factories, I even forgot about the lawyer part. All that mattered was studies. Please note it was a forced decision and not a voluntary one. This continued till 9th or 10th standard I guess and it was time for the real decision making. Science, commerce or humanities. It is this decision which would shape the future. I understood that the factories and courts were just fantasies and would never be a reality. But such a huge decision was too much for my young self. And as a good girl I left it to my parents. I was too naiive to take the decision myself. And my father said, you should become an engineer. And the decision was taken. Engineer it is.
I was made to study science. I willingly did. I was told to prepare for the entrance, I did. I was told I should get a good rank in entrance so I get into a good college, I did. I remember the day dad came with me to complete the joining formalities for Electronics and Communication Engineering in one of the prestigious colleges in our place, after all was done he said – “ I have done my part and now it is up to you to decide what you want to become from here”. I was like “what…!!!!”. You decided its science, you decided its engineering, you decided its electronics, and now what am I to decide.
Anyways as the story goes I studied, got placed in a leading MNC, started working, got married, had two beautiful kids and life continues. But that one question still remains “what you want to be” (when you grow can be skipped now. Since I have already grown more than enough). And today for the same question I would say I want to become the child again to dream of the candy, chewing gum, ice cream, chocolate and chips factory again. The vicious circle continues.
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