What do you want to be when you get older?

Lately, I’ve been searching for the answer to the question “what do you want to be when you grow up?” Nobody has asked me… the prompt is coming from me. The questions I get from others are more along the lines of “what do you do?” or “Do you like your job?”

For what feels like forever, I feel like I haven’t been fulfilled. I am grateful for my job and I am grateful for the multiple opportunities that have presented themselves to me over time. I truly am. But one thing that keeps coming back in my head is this desire to do more. I have a passion for helping others and that cannot be overlooked when I think about what I want to do or how I spend my time. It warms my heart to do something good for others, for no other reason than to make their lives or day easier, better, happier.

I don’t know what I want to be when I am older in terms of title but I know I want to be someone who positively influences others. Someone who makes the lives of others better by presenting them with opportunities and teaching them skills to be better versions of themselves. Above all, I want to be part of the solutions that eradicate hate and abuse, especially towards women and children.

One thing I struggle with is admitting to myself that I do want to be known! In trying not to be cocky, pompous, or “fouy” as we say in Wolof, I have subdued myself into thinking that it’s a bad thing to want to be known. I don’t want to be known or famous for the sake of popularity. I want to leave a legacy behind so that I can empower people the same way other men and women have empowered me. I want people to know me as someone who was selfless and abundant in all that she gave. My time, money, energy, efforts, and everything in between dedicated to serving the world and its citizens. It probably sounds cheesy but I want to help change the world. And that’s not a small dream or goal, so I have to stop making it small and in turn, making myself small.

I urge all my listeners and readers to ask themselves the question: what do you want to be when you get older? It’s never too late to decide to go on the journey to find that answer. In fact, it’s closely linked to finding out our true calling, our contribution to this world.

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