Right now we have 2 boys trying to decide what it is that they want to study. Life choices. Large ones, in some ways. These adult choices are the ones that will define the years of their adult life.
Or do they really?
As a 17 year old, there were very few classes in high school that interested me. I enjoyed studying design and law…two opposite subjects. There wasn’t much else. In fact, I took one of my last semesters off to go to Finland and study the bible for 13 weeks. Being in high school was a waste of my time, so I thought. Better to be there as little as possible. While in Finland I realized that I still loved design, and decided to see what would come of that interest on returning to Canada. I still had one semester of high school left. Sitting beside me on the plane was a very interesting character. He was a designer, on his way back from Saudi Arabia…just having finished decorating a palace. Obviously, this was a God thing, right? During our 8 hour flight he convinced me that my passion in design would never do me any good. There was no money in it…”designers are a dime a dozen”, he says…”I wouldn’t recommend it as a career”. Well, there went my dreams. I believed him.
I then did an aptitude test that told me that I should become a lawyer or judge. (other things on that list were foster mother ??, and flight attendant) So, off to the guidance counselors’ office I went. What would it take to become a lawyer? What? 7 years of university? I didn’t even like school! Forget that! (At this point in my life it would have been good to have someone there to guide me along. I was an independent girl, and taking care of myself…so I thought I knew what was best for me! 🙂 )
Well, maybe then there is a career available in being a flight attendant? I enjoy travel, and I know someone in the business. The bonus is that I don’t have to go to school for it! Well, the next 17 years went by in a flash. I was in a career that I both loved and hated. Seeing that airports are my favorite place to be…what could be better? But, on the flip side, I am an introvert…and being nice to hundreds of people every day was torture. Real torture! I now know that it probably wasn’t the best career choice, but there have been some real blessing that has come out of it as well.
Through it all I have noticed that time goes quickly, and yet there is enough time to change your mind quite a few times throughout your life. We don’t have to be stuck with the career choices we made as an 18 year old. (There are some other choices we make that we can’t get out of!) We can make new choices over and over again.
I have found it so inspiring to see women in their 40’s, 50’s and even 60’s forging a new path for themselves. I know that I have mentioned this before…but sometimes repetition is good for the soul. I know that this is something I need to learn over and over again. It’s not too late! I became a missionary (and blogger) in my mid-fourties. Who’s to know what else is coming?
If you are struggling with making career choices…try to relax!!! What do you love to do? Is there a school that teaches you to do it better? Then try it out? Is there a small niggling feeling in your soul that wants to go into ministry? Then go for it! Find out what it takes! Take the risks. The reward of success, or failure, becomes your life story. Either way, you learn. If you don’t learn what you set out for…at least you learned something you don’t want to do, or something about yourself.
We shouldn’t measure our life as something we push through until retirement. It should be measured as something we LIVE, LOVE, EXPERIENCE, and LEARN from until our last breath!!!