Thursday, August 12, 2010

If you were four, what would you be?

If you were at the beginning of your life, and you could do it all over again, would you want to change the job that you have? I often think about the work that I do as a school teacher. While there are tons of emotional perks to the job -- influencing children's lives, helping them to learn and grow, watching them grow and mature, having them come back and thank me -- I am often in awe of the community's lack of financial support for teachers. When I think of Tahlia and Asher, I want them to chase their dreams, I want them to pursue that which will fill their souls and allow them to lead rich, full lives. As a pragmatist, I also want them to pursue something that will allow them to have the monitory freedom that will also allow them to do what they want -- for whatever that means. These are my thoughts -- I don't bestow them on the children -- the most they interact with them is when I grow brooding and silent.

Sometimes, however, Tahlia will let us know exactly what she wants to be:

We were driving down the road that leads to our house. It is a long stretch, and, as we headed home, the four of us were quiet, I'd like to think it was in anticipation of being home after a lot of travel -- more likely, though, it was because everyone was too tired to talk, or sing. Tahlia suddenly had a revelation:

"Daddy," she stated, "When I grow up, I want to be a paleontologist."
In my head, I start thinking about what this will mean for her -- jumping far ahead of the personal satisfaction one gains from chasing a dream. What will this mean for her family? Will she travel a lot and be away from her family? How will it pay? Will she be able to do other things she and her family want? Yes -- I know -- it is too far away.
"Oh," inquired Mommy, "You want to study dinosaurs?"
"No," She corrected, "I want to be a paleontologist-princess-mommy."

I guess my worries can wait -- she seems to have everything thought of already.

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