“What do you want to be when you grow up?” was one of the questions I was asked very many times during my childhood. I loved answering the question for one reason. As a growing child, I could change the answer at whim, and it would still be correct! So, my responses took me from being a doctor, to a genetics engineer, to an entrepreneur, to a lawyer, to a sportsperson, to a police officer, to an artist, to a designer, to a cartoonist, to a global best-selling author, to a private detective, to the show business, to a motivational speaker, to the creator of the first human robot for personal/home use, to an alchemist in the quest to find the elixir for all problems of the world.
Today as an adult, I still love this question. Not to answer myself, but to hear answers from children. Any kid I spend time with, I almost always ask him/her “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Irrespective of their age, the question makes a child think, time-travel to the future and then articulate the response. Their answers never cease to amaze me. Children of today are aware of their interests, self-confident and articulate in their communication, and knowledgeable about numerous career options, possibilities and opportunities.
No prizes for guessing that after I became a mother and my baby started talking, I’ve asked this question a zillion times. For several months, the response I received was “I want to be like you!” That answer always made me swell with maternal pride, and a sense of responsibility. It made me cognisant of the fact that I need to be a live example of what I want her to emulate from me, and that inspires me to try to be better today than I was yesterday!
However, for the past several months her response has been different. “I want to go to office and I want to be a mummy” she says. The first time I heard it, I was pleasantly surprised. In hindsight, both the answers are similar. Just that “being like me” now equates to “being a working mother” in her mind, and rightly so, as that is what I am today.
On one hand, I am happy to hear this. After all, like most mothers–I do want my children to be healthy, happy, well-educated, balanced, independent, financially stable and blossom in life to achieve their full potential.
But on the other hand,…. For Full reading, click-over to Huffingtonpost India