Writer Wednesday – What I Wanted to be When I Grew Up


We’re back for the May edition of Writer Wednesday. This month we’re talking about what we wanted to be when we grew up. Usually the reality of adulthood doesn’t bear any resemblance to what we envisioned as children. When I was a kid, I wanted to be either a school teacher or a concert pianist.grand-piano-illustration-1210722

I started taking piano lessons when I was ten years old and practiced hundreds of hours every year, but the closest I ever came to being a concert pianist was playing a piano concerto with the Lakeland Symphony Orchestra my senior year of high school. A year and a half later, I met my husband, and very soon, the topic of conversation turned to music. When I said I played the piano, he said he’d seen me play somewhere.  I mentioned the Young Artists Concert with the Lakeland Symphony Orchestra, and he said, “That’s it. You played Mendelssohn’s Piano Concert in G Minor.” I thought I had a stalker. As it turned out, he was playing French horn in the orchestra at the time and accompanied me at that performance.

math-teacher-1474675As far as my dream of being a school teacher, it didn’t take me very many weeks of teaching Sunday school to decide that maybe I wasn’t cut out for spending my life working with children. Many years ago, the church I belonged to had a bus ministry where we picked up kids and teens in the neighborhood and did a program for them on Wednesday nights. This was a pretty rough neighborhood, and some of the teens we picked up were gang members. I taught the seventh grade class. Each week, that was the longest hour of my life. Those kids used to regularly invade my dreams, and it wasn’t in a pleasant way. That was probably a pretty good indication that teaching children, at least troubled children, was not one of my spiritual gifts.



So I never became a school teacher or a concert pianist. But maybe my dreams weren’t so far off base. I’m not a concert pianist, but I’ve been church pianist since I was 16. (I’m not going to tell you how many years that is!) My husband and I have enjoyed singing and playing together, leading worship at church, for our entire 35 years of marriage.

SpeakerAnd though I never became a school teacher for pay, I home schooled my two daughters for ten years and loved every minute of it. And now I do public speaking and present workshops on writing. So maybe I am a teacher at heart.

What about you? What did you want to be when you grew up? Was that dream at all similar to the career you eventually chose?

Click the links below to see what my writer friends have to say.

Tamra Baumann – Priscilla Oliveras – Kay Hudson – Tosha (TL) Sumner

Join us next month when we’ll each tell about our favorite vacation.




15 thoughts on “Writer Wednesday – What I Wanted to be When I Grew Up

  1. I was going to be a paleontologist, but by the time I got to college age, I thought I’d be a special education teacher. It didn’t take me long to realize I didn’t have the patience for that and switch to journalism

    1. Thanks for commenting, Jean. I wouldn’t have the patience to be a special ed teacher, either. I have a couple of friends who did that before they retired and loved it. I admire people with that kind of patience!

  2. Carol, I love that you and your husband perform together at your church. What a wonderful experience to share!

    Funny, I wanted to be an English teacher when I was a kid. I did major in English in college, but never earned my teaching credential. I did, however, go on to homeschool our three girls, volunteer with our church Sunday school, and earn my MFA so I now I teach an online writing course. It’s not my full-time job, but teaching, helping and working with others is a passion of mine. Sounds like it’s one of yours as well. 🙂


  3. Thanks for commenting, Priscilla. It sounds like we have a lot in common–homeschooling, volunteering at church and teaching writing classes. Teaching and helping others is always rewarding.

  4. What a lovely thought that music brought you and your husband together before you actually met! Just goes to show you were meant to get together.

    1. Thanks, Kay. I agree! We are very well-matched – passionate about the same things. I am blessed.

  5. I think it’s interesting how many of us posting today had thought about teaching for a career. I too, taught Sunday school and confirmation when my kids were young, and while I enjoyed it, I’m glad I didn’t go down that route for a living either. I’m glad you are still enjoying all the things you’d dreamed of doing when you were young. (And what a great story about your husband accompanying you during your concert!)

    1. I think that’s interesting, too, Tammy. It’s funny how many of us taught Sunday school.

  6. I laughed out loud at your questioning yourself about being a teacher. I come from a family of teachers and college professors and when it was my turn to choose, I decided to rebel. So I became a librarian. And the funny part is I totally thought this was a rebellion and that my family would be furious. Then I started graduate school and the first class I had to take was Intro to Teaching Basics.
    Clearly I don’t know how to rebel!

    1. That’s hilarious, Sharon! Librarian is too closely connected to education. To truly rebel, you would have had to be a truck driver…or a movie star!

  7. I have absolutely no musical ability, whatsoever, so I always admire that ability in others. That’s so cool about playing music with your husband. You know how they say, the couple that plays together stays together. 🙂

  8. Thanks for commenting, Tosha. You have no musical ability, and I have no athletic ability! I smiled at your last sentence. So true. Music has always been an important part of ours lives.

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