I’m a planner. A list maker. A sit back and reflect on my life kind of person. Consistently setting small short term goals. And long term dreams. Constantly planning for the life I want. Creating strategic action plans to kick my butt into motion. I’ve been this way and done these things since I can remember.
Little did I know though that apparently I had my life all planned out at just ten years old.
Ironically, after writing my last post of how much I love hearing what children hope to be when they grow up, how they picture their lives, their hopes and dreams for the future, I found my personal “life plan” written by me at the very ripe age of ten.
Yep, in a big dusty plastic bin labeled Brandi – Junior High & High School, tucked away in the corner of our basement, I stumbled upon a folded up paper. The front saying: My Life. Very descriptive and final sounding I know. The back: Don’t look till 30 years old. Apparently, I wanted my life to be very secretive.
Interesting. Seeing that I am past the thirty year old mark, I figured it was safe to open.
Can we please just talk about this for a moment?
6th Grade the start of a new school affected my gpa to a 3.7. Glad I had the foresight to give myself some leeway due to a major life change. Seriously, I’m 10 why am I not outside playing?
7th Grade straight As, sports and clubs. Look I had all of 6th grade to figure this whole Junior High thing out, now it’s time for serious business.
8th Grade see above, same as 7th I mean why not?
Now that we have covered all the short term stuff, it’s time to think big or go home.
Good old Freshman Year of High School- by this time I should have written a lot of stories. Oh.My.Gosh- this is where Dylan (my five year old) gets it. He wakes up in the morning ready to write stories as if it’s his job. I constantly have to tell him to relax and have fun. There is no deadline.
Sophomore Year- Weigh 110 pounds. (?!?) No this is NOT ok. Not even close to ok. Why am I thinking about how much I should weigh in high school? This honestly makes me sick. Not normal. The only thing I can think of that would even make this cross my mind at such a vulnerable age, is that I was in competitive gymnastics and I think we did weigh ins. Still though?!? On a different note, basketball and tennis is going great J
Junior Year – Same as last year. Again, why not?
Senior Year – So very excited that I applied to Yale University. Ummm this did not happen. Sad to report not even close. I was even too scared to apply to the University of Toledo because I thought it was too big of a campus. I was 100% petrified that if I went to a big school (or even a kind of small to medium sized school) I would never be able to find my classes. So instead of Yale (ha) I am a proud Tiffin University Alum. I believe my graduating class had just over 1000 students. I absolutely loved it there. And yes I still got lost even though at that time there was only 4 classroom buildings. Go Dragons!
Occupation: Attorney Did I want a big fancy office and defend the rich? Nope, I remember I wanted to do pro bono work for the disadvantaged. Defend the rights of single mothers. Be the beckon of hope for the homeless. Fight for equality for the ignored. I remember wanting this so very bad. I’m pretty sure I wrote stories about my life as an attorney. This did not happen. (I did take a lot of Employment Law classes though).
Age Married: 21This is where things go way off course, and slightly out of order ;)
1st Child: 23
2nd Child: 27 As you can see I was very confused on when I thought the 2nd should be here. At 25 Im sure I thought I would be right in the middle of an important court room case, better make it 27.
3rd Child:28 Yes, when I was ten I thought there would be a 3rd. Now I am 34 and I am crossing that line out.
I love that my 10 year old self thought it was necessary to write this. I loved that my thirty something year old self found this. I am happy to report that although my life did not go as I planned it, my life has gone exactly as it should.
XOXO - Brandi
Colton started preschool last week! Yes, my little guy is actually old enough to go to preschool. He was definitely excited though. He calls his school "the big red house" since it is indeed in a big red house, so everyday he asked if it was time to go to the big red house yet.
I actually didn't shed any tears because I was really excited for him! He loves, literally loves, other kids so you could see his excitement when he looked at me and said "Mom, I can't wait to see all of my friends at the big red house!" Keep in mind he actually didn't know any of the kids going, but to him, every kid is his friend.
I can already tell he is going to be just like me...talk, talk, talk, talk. If you went to my gradeschool you would know I got in trouble every.single.day. for talking too much. I just couldn't help it! I always had so much to say and even my mom tells me that at night she would have to cover my mouth with her hand and say we could continue talking tomorrow because I had to go to sleep. Colton is just like that, he talks all day long! He just loves to talk. When we go to the park he will look around and smile and say "I have so many friends here!" everyone is Colton's friend, no matter their age.
At our preschool you get in line and the teachers come out and get your child and then also bring your child out to the car when you pick them up. So Jeff and I naturally get there 10 minutes early so we could be in the front of the line, we were definitely first time picker-uppers. We got there at 11:20am and were the third car in line. Of course the kids are outside playing on the playground and Jeff and I are like leaning over each other to see if we can see our kid in the midst of the other million blondies running around. Then it's like "I see him!" and Jeff yells "where?!" as if we had never been away from our child before! We were definitely those parents.
Anyhow, Colton comes out to the car (we were just happy he was still wearing the same clothes!) and he looks so proud carrying his new backpack with his dirty knees and big smile. He gets in the car and we buckle him and right away we ask "so how was it?!" His smile faded a little and he said "I was not very good in there"... Jeff and I look at each other like oh no, what did he do?! So I ask what he means and why he wasn't good, and he simple says "I took another little boys car... right off the racetrack!" We try not to laugh and he said "don't worry, I gave it back though because then I saw my car, UNDER the racetrack". Phew, sigh of relief that he didn't get punched on the first day of preschool ;) I then asked him what his FAVORITE part of the whole day was and of course he replied "playing with ALL of my friends!". He proceeded to tell us that his teacher, Miss Sara, was so nice and he loved going to the big red house for school. He also informed us that there was another Colton in his class so he would like to be called Colton Robb Harst, lol.
A successful day in the world of preschool. He's been doing great since and I just love picking him up and hearing the funny/ cute way he tells me about his day. He remembers more as the day goes on and I love laughing at his playground stories and how good or bad he thought he was.
Hopefully all of you had a great first week of school and if you don't have kids school age yet, get ready because it happens before you know it!
It’s School Time. And in case I didn’t have my own little guy starting the big K, this time wouldn’t have gone unnoticed by me. Over the past month, my Facebook feed and Instgram account has been plastered by too cute for words hashtag first day pictures. Preschoolers attempting to stand still long enough for moms to snap a pic. Kindergartners with the look of excitement and a dash of nerves. Junior Highers in the hottest trends and a I’m way too cool for this picture look. And the High Schoolers with the I’m almost an adult I can’t believe you are making me do this face. And I have enjoyed and smiled at each and every picture posted.
It seems parents are getting more creative with their first day photo prompts and backdrops. One of my favs and seemingly popular idea is to capture what your child wants to be when they grow up. Holding up chalkboards with their occupational dreams. Jotting it down in super cute artistic font on a dry erase. Printing a poster. The options are endless, the result is the same. Parents are recording their children’s hopes, dreams and aspirations for the future at that particular moment. A snapshot of the life that child dreams about. The world they want to live in.
And can I tell you how much I love seeing what the kiddos hope to be? Love it.
Fireman. Policeman. Doctor. Teacher. Racecar Driver. Wizard. Puppy. Ninja. And for my guy a Scientist.
To hear what a young child wants to become is so insightful. Mainly because most of the time the answer comes from a very honest place. Most five year olds are not thinking about income potential, vacation time, and benefits. Kids are not thinking about the number of years of post higher education required. Labor statistics and future industry growth- nope.
I would imagine the answers come from what they love. What caught their very short attention span. What sounds really cool. Something about this is just so refreshing.
For some children as they get older disclaimers are found in their answers. “I want to be a doctor, but I don’t know if I’m smart enough to get in med school.” “ I really want to be a teacher, but know it will be hard to secure a job.” “I want to be an artist, but my parents want me to major in business.” For some their dreams seem to get beaten down. Reality hits. Job market crashes. Some people throw away what they love to do and start using different criteria to dictate what they hope to be. This can be a good thing. Or this can be a bad thing. Sometimes our goals just change.
I just hope if my five year old’s answer changes it is because his interests changed. Because he was exposed to something that trumps what he wants to be now. Because he learns something about himself that puts him on a different path. And if his answer stays the same? We would definitely welcome a Scientist in the family.
It’s never too late to ask: What do you want to be when you grow up? No matter your age start dreaming of the person you will be one day. Never stop believing in what you can become. Do something every day that gets you closer to who you want to be.
(When I was five, I wanted to be a Candy Store Lady)