So often, even in elementary school, whether it was to write an essay or just used as casual chit chat, the question remained, "what do you want to be when you grow up?" A lady I grew up knowing came into my work today with one of her cute little girls and when discussing the loot brought by Santa to the little girl and her older sister, the little girl says in her adorable pre-K voice (that if you didn't strain to pay attention, you would have to depend on the mother to translate), "My sisswa wants tobe a singa (since this older sister got a microphone and guitar, of course) and I don't wanna be nuffin."
When I was a child, I remember what I wanted to be changed quite frequently, and was influenced by many things but mostly what was on TV that day or what one of my friends said they wanted to be. I was quite the "follower" in my younger years. I remember wanting to be a doctor, lawyer, work in a bank, teacher, and veterinarian, each evolving over the years. I played "school" with my brother and cousins which consisted of me being bossy and eventually the boys realizing this wasn't real and they weren't doing it. Since I was the only girl, I was the teacher and gave them all math homework. It was always math. That was as broad as my spectrum got and it was quite overwhelming my freshman year of college because the sky was the limit and I didn't have a list to choose from.
I started out at Barton College majoring in Math. I thought majoring in something in general like Math would leave my options open. I applied to be in the CIA and had planned to be a math teacher if that didn't take off. Well, freshman year, first semester of college, I took statistics. Now I believe I am a rather intelligent person. I am in no way bragging and I know there are TONS of folks smarter than I am. I have book smarts and common sense so I am pretty good at figuring things out and math was just my thing. My best friend Paige was a Junior at Barton and took statistics with me. I was forewarned by my Trigonometry teacher from highschool that I probably shouldnt sign up for statistics right off the bat but I ignored him. I was excited to have a class with Paige, especially when I was taking a course right off the bat that applied to my major. Paige was good in math (seeing as her mom was a math teacher) but I was REALLY good in math. Let's just say there was a problem when Paige was making A's and I was barely making C's in statistics. I just could not get it to save my life! I spent every day in my math professor's office getting extra help and it just wasn't clicking. I think my professor felt sorry for me because for the final exam, he let our class have one thing with as much info we could fit on it to use for our exam....so this chick rolled up in class with a big ass piece of poster board, covered front to back with crap I didn't understand, and had to lay on the floor to take my exam because the poster took up too much room to sit in the seat provided. Needless to say, I escaped statistics with a pity grade of a B (which I GLADLY accepted) and after the final exam, I headed STRAIGHT to my advisor's office to change my major to "undetermined".
The "undetermined" major status really made my chest hurt. I felt like I was taking classes for no reason because I didn't know what I wanted to be and I saw myself wandering aimlessly waiting for God to open a door or give me some huge sign so I knew what to do. I had taken an Intro to the Bible class the next semester and FELL IN LOVE. There were no tests, all of it was writing. I didn't realize until then how much I loved to write. I told my advisor about really enjoying the Religion classes Barton had to offer so we changed my major to "Religion and Philosophy", not really knowing exactly what I wanted to do with it, really just using it as a filler until I determined what I REALLY wanted to major in.
Religion at Barton was different than anything I had been accustomed to. I grew up Baptist/Episcopalean so I thought I was good to go but when I was given a Bible with books of the Bible I had never heard of before, my world was shook. My dad begged me to get out of it because of the added books and my mom kept reminding me there was no money in majoring in Religion. My grandpa got me a book trying to convince me to change my major to law. I couldn't help it, I stuck with my major because it just felt "right". I still didn't have a clue what I wanted to do with it but I knew it was what I was supposed to do and God would take care of the rest.
I ended up transferring to Campbell University where I graduated with a BA in Religion and Philosophy. The deal was since I lost a year transferring and parents really didn't want me to transfer/major in Religion, it was left up to me to pay for the 5th year of college. I believe it was in God's plan for me to transfer (even though I have to remind myself that every month I pay an unGodly amount to College Foundation). I developed my own theology at Barton and was opened to a whole new world but at Campbell, I learned the facts. I was challenged beyond belief at Campbell and am so thankful for that. I left Barton with a 4.0 GPA and graduated Campbell with a 2.75. I learned some tough lessons at Campbell and one was accepting the mediocre grades I earned. I didn't make perfect grades but I learned so so much and had the opportunity to go to Germany the summer before my senior year with one of my proffesors to learn more about the Reformation.
I wish I could answer the question of what I want to be when I grow up but I still don't know. I have a degree in Religion and work as a teller in a local credit union. I have had to learn to "be still" and wait on God. Jesus worked as a carpenter...so I can work as a teller. Until God directs me otherwise, when I grow up, I want to be what God wants me to be!