by BERN MORLEY
When I was little, I had a fairly strong idea of what I wanted to be “when I grew up”. Funnily enough never once did I see myself explaining Capital Gains implications to unhappy taxpayers – yet here I am.
No, when I was young I wanted to be either a detective or a journalist. Or Kevin Bacon’s wife. I can thank my adopted dad for the first two career aspirations. I can blame Footloose for the last one.
See, Dad had told me that my maternal and paternal grandfathers were both in these particular fields of work and then (drunkenly) proceed to tell me wild stories about their supposed adventures.
I was hooked and was adamant that my ultimate path would be some ground breaking lady journalist that did her own detective work and caught all the bad guys. And then of course, married Kevin Bacon.
It wasn’t long however, until my innocence was shattered. See, even though my Dad had a Masters Degree, it was in Bullshittery and at around the age 11, he confessed that he didn’t actually know what my grandfathers had done, that in fact, he didn’t even know them all.
This didn’t deter me however and I went on to blitz English all the way through my schooling life. Yet somewhere between growing boobs and discovering boys, my regard for making a living doing something I loved waned and I lost my way a bit.
And I don’t want this to happen to my kids. I don’t want them to get to my age and be in a job they are simply tolerating and not enjoying. Something they “fell into” because they didn’t consider their options. Because I wish someone had sat me down at 16 and said “What do you like doing?
Think hard about this because you’ll be working for a VERY long time so it may as well be at something you love.” And I think at 16 the fundamentals are there. You don’t have to have a precise picture, but you can find out what is your child enjoys doing the most.
Reading, writing, kicking a ball, building structures with Lego, drawing, staring at sharks, debating, swimming, singing, tinkering with cars – WHATEVER it is that interests them.
Except drug taking.
Unless they want to be a professional sportsman.