A couple days ago, I was at work-I work as a receptionist, so I'm basically Pam from The Office, which is very exciting and I had some free time. But rather than study for the two exams I have this week or work on my midterm project for film class, I decided to spend my time clicking through an HGTV slideshow called "20 Small Kitchen Makeovers You Won't Believe" (I know we can all relate to this, and if you can't, you need to open your mind to the wonderful creation that is HGTV).
While I was browsing, one kitchen really stood out to me. It had creamy white cabinets, golden light fixtures, and exposed brick walls. I daydreamed for a second, imagining a day in the future when I'd have my own family: my husband and I cooking dinner, our kids running around and laughing, music blasting in the background.
Okay, yes, I know I'm eighteen and haven't even finished a semester of college yet, but hear me out.
In the midst of my daydream, I realized something: I would be totally happy being a stay-at-home mom, not focusing on a career, but focusing on my family.
I know this isn't some groundbreaking revelation or anything, because there are a bunch of stay-at-home moms and dads who totally kick ass. But for the past two months of school, I've spent nearly every day worrying about my future in terms of my career. Do I still want to be a cinematographer? What if I try to become a director? Do I want to minor in theatre? Or what if I forget film altogether and pursue acting? Or public affairs? Or civil engineering? (I once met a civil engineering major at a recycling club meeting and he was very inspiring.)
So this was the first time it really hit me that maybe pursuing a huge career isn't meant to be in my future. For the past couple of years, I've been more than certain about my dream to have a husband and lots of kids and live in a cozy house in the suburbs. And looking at that gorgeous little kitchen in the HGTV slideshow, I realized that I am so certain about that dream that it could take the place of a career entirely and I would be totally happy. One of the things I've learned about myself this school year is that my happiness is majorly fueled by the love I have in my life- for my goofy friends, for my big-hearted family, and for every song by Rex Orange County. Whenever I get unsure of what I'm passionate about (see my cinematography vs. civil engineering debate above), I know that above all else, I will always be passionate about love. So I truly believe that if I were to put all of my energy into love for my family, I'd be happy.
But don't worry, Mom and Dad, I'm not going to drop out of college, because despite all of this, I still want to have everything that comes with a career- the hard work, the milestones, and not to mention the income I'll need to support all this love I'm going to have for my husband and my kids and our cozy house in the suburbs. Still, my happy little HGTV daydream was reassuring. Because now I know that whatever happens over the course of my career, whatever ups and downs I go through, I'll always be able to find joy in the love I have for the people waiting for me at home.