I Know What I Want

April 28, 2011
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I was recently asked what I wanted to do with my life. Every time I get asked this question, I don’t get nervous, I don’t hesitate. I just say “I want to help people.” And I always get the same skeptical “Are you kidding me?” kind of look. Ever since I was a kid, I’ve had a passion for helping people. I remember going back to my hometown in Italy when I was 10 and crying to my mom about how there were homeless people on the streets, how there were so many little kids and even infants who were freezing and hungry in the winter. I would get mad and I just couldn’t seem to understand why some had money and others could barely afford a loaf of bread for their family. As I got older, I realized that it’s just how the world is and though it’s unfair, it’s life. But that same sadness, almost anger for the underprivileged still ate at me inside. My uncle told me that I should a Veterinarian, because they make a lot of money. I looked at him and said, “Well it’s not necessarily all about money. It’s about how I can contribute while doing something that I love.” He turned and told me that I should pursue law because I could still contribute yet bring in a lot of money as well and I responded with, “I don’t want to be miserable for the rest of my life. “ I told him that there are only a few things I want out of a career; writing, photography, travelling and helping people. I want to be able to pursue all of my passions in life while making an effort to better humanity, even if I don’t affect many. Every time I tell someone that they try to almost put me down. They tell me that I won’t make enough money or that it would be a tough field to pursue or that it’s just not reasonable. But you know what? So what if it’s not reasonable. So what if it’s a tough field? So what if I won’t live that dumb “American Dream”? I don’t need a BMW, a 4 bedroom home and a seasonal vacation to be happy. I don’t need to be a housewife or to have my nightly shows that I cannot miss. I don’t need two dogs and a big backyard for my children to play in. I don’t need a husband or a kitchen with marble counters to survive. I just need the things that I want in life and the awareness of the difference that I am making in someone’s life. So what if I’m number one in my class? Or that I have a GPA higher than the current gas prices? So what if people think that just because I don’t turn out to be some well-known doctor or a world renowned scientist that I’m throwing away my intelligence and hard work? I am intelligent and I have immaculate grades because that’s what I want. I don’t need to live for anyone else or pursue a career for anyone else. I need to live for myself. Therefore if I want to backpack around the entire world with just a bag and a camera, I will. People are so materialistic, and I’m not saying that I’m not. I’m just saying that life isn’t always about the amount of zeros you see on your paycheck. I will make something of myself, and I will help people. If I make a difference in just one person’s life, then so be it. I was put on this earth to make a difference. My efforts shouldn’t have a quantity placed on them. I’ve got a life to live, and though I may be young, I have a pretty solid idea of what I want to make of it. So to everyone who thinks my aspirations in life are too naïve or too unreasonable; I dare you to watch me achieve them.

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ninjadragon56 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
May 16, 2011 at 6:24 pm
beautiful piece, it was well writen and really gave the reader a look into you. I think that you could expand on it if you wanted to but its great how it is now. Keep Writing! 
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