When you were a little kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Pretty much every tyke has some fanciful vision of their adulthood. Maybe you wanted to be a firefighter, princess, astronaut or baseball player! Maybe a doctor, movie star, builder, action hero or train conductor. Perhaps a pirate! At some time, most kids have wanted to be one of these or something similar—something they idealized for whatever reason.
Rarely do any of these dreams come true. Some do! But usually, hopes, dreams, possibilities and plans change as we age. Wanna-be athletes grow up to be mathletes. Wanna-be astronauts discover they hate studying physics. Kids who played Operation—that board game where you poke at a plastic patient’s ailments with tweezers—might grow up squeamish at the sight of blood. Those who idealized train conductors may learn Thomas the Tank Engine isn’t real life.
Countless things change between ages 5 and 30, and no five-year-old can know what their adult life will look like. They can imagine! But real life usually goes differently in ways we can’t predict. Kids can know what’ll probably happen in a rough way over the next two years or so of their life—what grade they’ll be in, what teachers they’ll probably have, how old they’ll be, what milestones they’ll hit. But not much further out. A nine-year-old might expect to end up at the local high school, but what if their parents move? Or another school opens? We have to live life, experience ...