I loved School, I loved my teachers and the idea of being a teacher really resonated with me. However, I could never actually be a teacher who works in a School. Don't get me wrong, I love children and volunteering at my local primary school and being the Primary President at the Church I go to. I know however that whilst I would love to be a teacher, I am really not cut out to be one.
Secretly, I had another dream. I wanted to be a singer.
I love singing and my time in the West End was a major highlight of my life. I was lucky enough to be friends with other people who were more open about their desire to work in the entertainment industry. I know two of them made it and I know that they were hundreds of times better than I could ever have hoped to be. Which is why it was always kind of a secret that I wanted this in the future, I didn't want to be laughed at for my dream.
As I grew older and realised that I wasn't going to be a Teacher my idea was that I could be a writer, and before you all start jumping to my defence over the next comment, please know that this is a truth that I feel deeply about. I'm not good enough to be a professional fiction writer. Sure I have ideas and I've written a few different short stories, and one children's story that could possibly be something but I know that they aren't great. I know that others could take my ideas and make them better than I ever could. And it makes me a little sad, so I joke and laugh and I write this blog and pretend to myself that I could have made it. That I could still make it; but I know that it's not the truth.
I hadn't really admitted this to anyone other than in prayer and in my diary, until this week when Top Ender and I had an open chat about what she wants in life and I found myself opening up more than I expected to.
In the next month or so Top Ender is going to need to choose her GCSE options and it's a bit stressful for her because she has recently come to the conclusion that the career option she had been focused on isn't now something she wants for herself. Flyfour wanted Top Ender to take "sensible" subjects that could help her in the future, but we're both now supporting her in her choice of Music and working out what other subject choices would be best for her to take.
Music might seem like an odd choice for a future career when Top Ender has no idea what she wants to do, but like me she loves Music. Even if she doesn't do anything within the music industry in the future, it feeds her passion and she is going to need something to look forward to because the workload we are expecting her to have due to her current and expected grades is huge.
I'm finding it hard because, on one hand, I'm like;
She's Thirteen! She shouldn't have to make choices now that will effect her whole life.
And on the other hand, I'm like;
She's Thirteen! She should have an idea of what she wants to do with her life.
I look at Top Ender with her big eyes staring back at me and I think about what I was like at thirteen when I wanted to be a teacher or a singer. When I was just finding my place in the world and working out what kind of person I was going to be. I think about all the stress I put myself under, the fears I had and it scares me that my daughter is going through the exact same thing and I can't do anything to stop it.
Over the last few weeks, as I've been watching Tops, studying her almost, watching how she handles herself and her little quirks and ways, looking at her school work and talking with her teachers and various leaders of different groups she attends I realise something I've not really noticed before.
I've come to realise how Top Ender is just like me.
Not the confident me you see before you now, but thirteen-year-old me.
The one with the same insecurities, the same strengths, the same weaknesses, the same hobbies and interests, the same tastes and ideas, the same problems, the same likes and dislikes, the same sense of humour, the same ideals and almost the same hopes and dreams as Top Ender right now.
It's like someone took my essence and put it in her.
And I'm scared. I had a dream and my dream didn't come true and I don't want that for Top Ender, but there is nothing I can do about it.