What did you want to be in seventh grade?

When I was in seventh grade at Border Star Elementary School in Kansas City, MO, my teacher had a class project:  we all wrote our autobiographies.   If you’re wondering, “What does a twelve-year-old have to write in an autobiography?” the answer is, not much.  

Nonetheless, we were all excited about this.  We typed one page, single spaced, which were all copied on something purple and, by now, nearly too pale to read.  We put the thirty-six pages together and bound them.  In the end,  we each had a hand-bound book with the story of everyone’s families and pets and vacations.   Believe it or not, many, many years later, I still have this.

The very last section of each autobiography was about our plans for the future.   What did I want to be in seventh grade?  I wrote, “I want to be a ballerina, author, and illustrate my own books, and, in my spare time I will write plays and act in them.”

How close did I come?  I realized very soon that I’d never be a ballerina:  I liked to eat and didn’t like pain,  Besides, I’m not the most graceful of people.  And, as much as I liked to draw, I always had trouble with noses in a frontal view.  This lack of skill left my people with oddly flat faces which left out illustrator.   I also learned that I’m not an actor.   I’m too inhibited to become another person and show their emotion.

However, I did become an author with ten published books and I also wrote an award-winning one-act play in college.   Two out of five–that’s pretty close.  

What did you plan to be in the seventh grade?  How close are you? 

4 thoughts on “What did you want to be in seventh grade?

  1. I totally knew then I wanted to be a writer, though my mother discouraged me because it wasn’t a job that helped people. I took ballet classes, too, but I was way too tall and gawky to be good at it.

    That is so cool you have that booklet still.

  2. And Friday I’m going to use the info again! Isn’t nice that you teach–which DOES help people–and write, which also does. Maybe we can get together sometime and dance.

  3. Seventh grade goals very limited — wanted a horse and wanted a piano. Got both and very happy. Both required a lot of work and a lot of dedication. Tested us for vocational interests in Soph year in High School – should have been a Forest Ranger! Other than choosing Cornell University, almost all my very best career choices and geographical choices I’ve backed into when a great opportunity came up.

  4. All my career and geographical choices came up because of where George was called to serve. I always found something.

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