What do you want to be when you grow up?

I was babysitting for my neighbor’s kids the other day and as she got home, she asked me if I had picked my major for school. When I told her chemical engineering, her jaw almost dropped. When she finally spoke and asked why, I told her it’s because I’ve always been good with math and science and I’ll get a job easily. She then asked me if I enjoyed it. All of my extracurriculars had involved the things I liked doing (photography, writing, design, leadership) , not what I was known to be best at (math and science). So, what do I really want to be when I grow up?

We all can recall the first time we heard this question. When our teachers asked us this question, our eager 5 and 6-year-old faces lit up as boys shouted president and firefighter and girls exclaimed princess and nurse.

Sadly, I haven’t been asked what I want to do with my life recently. People just assume I will do something in the math and science field or something international (I’ve taken spanish since I was in 5th grade) because these are things I have always been known for excelling at.

In the past 3 years, no one has asked me what I want to do with my life. My aunt and uncle are both engineers, and have instilled the notion that being an engineer is the best thing for me to do because I’m good at math and science and can make a ton of money. One of their friends told their children that they can study whatever they want, after they get an engineering degree. Why? Because engineering makes you the most money.

Why don’t they ask us that when we grow up? Why don’t they ask us what we want to do when we’re choosing our college or university? Why is it, that we’re so obsessed with money and how much we will make? When did making money earn a spot above being happy and enjoying our job?

People tell me what I need to do. I couldn’t decide on a major, so I just said international business so I could put something down on my applications. I never wanted to do business, everyone around me wanted me to. Because I would make money.

Now that I have changed universities, and majors, everyone around me wants me to major in chemical engineering. Why? Because I will be a woman engineer, will get first priority on jobs, and will make money.

Since when did society decide that how much money we make in our lives is more important than how we live our lives? I never wanted to major in business. And I don’t want to major in engineering now. So, what do I do? Do I major in something that makes me happy, maybe never get a job in that field? Or do I live a miserable life of an engineer and have all the money I could ever need?

I’m not too much of a sap but I do believe that we’re here for a reason. We were not born to work 40 hours a week just to be miserable and then go home and be too tired and aggravated with our lives to be happy around our loved ones. Not saying my aunt and uncle aren’t happy. They get ample time off, sabbaticals, and have so much money that they go on multiple cruises every year.

But, why can’t I do that while doing something I love? I don’t want to have kids, hell I might not even get married. I just want it to be my dogs, maybe a goat, and myself. I want a nice house of course, and a nice car, but at the end of the day, when I’m on my deathbed, looking back on my life, am I going to remember the audi and the million dollar house that I had, or am I going to remember my job, where I spent most of my waking hours, my friends and colleagues that I met at that job, and all of the experiences outside of my house?

Shit, I want to do something I love, but the second I said I even considered switching my major to biology and them getting my masters in marine biology, my parents couldn’t have said the words “what about chemical engineering” faster. Why? They just want me to make money and be successful.

When did we define success as how much money you make at the end of the day? Why can’t success be something less materialistic? Why can’t we define success as something worth living for, something great? Something like how many friends I had, how many new places I visited, how much I enjoy my job? Why is success just money and power? When did we all agree that this is what society is going to be, and, why wasn’t I a part of this conversation?

So, what do I want to be when I grow up? Since I’ve started blogging, I have rekindled my love for writing. I love writing, being able to put all of my feelings down on paper, or on the blogosphere. It’s calming and I love seeing how my writing has progressed through time. I love animals. I would love to live on a farm with rehab animals and just help them escape lives of abuse, violence, etc. I would have farm animals, house animals, exotic animals, anything really. I would love, cherish, and care for each and every one of them. I love design. Over the summer. My life is a nonstop HGTV marathon. I love critiquing, agreeing and adding my own opinions on what I would do with each house, room, etc. I love yearbook. My entire highschool career was centered around my school’s yearbook, and although it may have caused me to turn gray early, I loved that class and I can’t imagine my life without it. And, now that I am not active in my school’s yearbook, I miss it. I love the mind. My entire life has been filled with mental illnesses and trying to understand the mind, why can’t I try to help others understand their minds as I have been trying to understand my own?If I could do any one of these things with my life, it would be grand. But, STEM is the way of the future and despite what you want/ like to do with your life, none of it matters if you can’t make money.

Everyone always tells you to never major in journalism, communications, psychology, philosophy. Basically nothing in the school of arts and letters. Major in business, major in STEM. Why? We need people in those fields, or else that major wouldn’t exist. We need biologists, we need therapists, we need writers, we need designers. Why can it be the other person. Why can’t it be me?

So, here we are. I spent countless nights crying myself to sleep because of how stressed I was, how stressed I was because I couldn’t find a major that suited me. And now, here we are, staring blankly at my ceiling wondering why I couldn’t have just picked something I enjoyed all along.

Talk to you all soon,

Alicia

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Beauty School Dropout

Hi all… So before deciding on my school of San Diego State University, I had also applied to 15 other schools. One of those schools was Arizona State University. My aunt lives only 15 minutes away from the Tempe campus so it would have been great for me to live in the dorms freshman year and then live with my aunt for the rest of college. I’d get my own car for driving to and from school, grocery shopping, and possibly working if I get a job out there. That would have been a good option for me however, when I first decided to go to San Diego, it was because I wanted to major in international business, which they are ranked #5 in the whole country for. However, now that I want to switch my major to engineering (and may end up switching again… you never know) and I would rather go to a school with a wide variety of good programs rather than a select few amazing majors.

So, I’m going to make a pro-con list of transferring to ASU. Some feedback on my pro con list would also be loved. Here we go

Pros of transferring to ASU

  1. Get my own car
  2. Live with my aunt
  3. Get free food and board
  4. Switch to engineering major
  5. Be able to switch majors later if I want
  6. get a fresh start
  7. Join a new sorority- the one I initially want to join
  8. Be close to family but still be independent
  9. Be able to get a job off campus
  10. Be able to intern at my aunt’s work
  11. Be able to get a job at my aunt’s work
  12. Make new friends
  13. Won’t have to be an RA (my mom doesn’t want to pay for housing)
  14. be by puppies all the time
  15. I have freedom of what I can do (in my dorm you can’t have coffee makers, smoothie makers, candles, etc
  16. Easier to get things I need- especially with a car. (don’t have to make a day of going to target because of how far it is)
  17. Fam can visit more often and for cheaper
  18. Can explore a completely new city and state
  19. Won’t have to move out of dorm every spring
  20. Going places with my aunt and uncle (they go on cruises a lot)
  21. Pool in my backyard(helps make my knee feel better)

Cons of Transferring to ASU

  1. leave my friends
  2. may be hard to make new friends
  3. Have a lesser sense of independence
  4. leaving San Diego
  5. Possibility all of my credits wont transfer
  6. Leaving my favorite coffee shop
  7. Commuting every day

Honestly, it seems that the right idea is ASU but for some reason I’m still not sure.

Please help in my decision.

Talk to you all soon

Alicia

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