I spent the greater part of my adolescence and twenties imagining, in detail, the life I wanted for myself. The fantasies varied and changed, but I always circled around something singular. The cool thing is, if you stay intent on that singularity, it will eventually explode into existence. The funny thing is, as your world forms, random and unexpected things pop up.
Kids like me. I don’t know why. I always saw myself as the boring aunt. But I remember the first time I came home after being away for a while. My nieces and nephews ran to me with their arms open. I was a little mystified. Of course I missed them, but why did they miss me?
I think it’s because of three things. One, I talk to them like they are adults. Two, I’ve never stopped empathizing with them (it’s hard being a kid). And three, the kid version of myself still hangs around, making tisks noises whenever I’m trying too hard to be a grownup.
What’s unexpected is that I never imagined myself working with kids. I always thought my jobs and projects would be for the grownup world. But now that I am working with kids professionally, writing for them creatively, and playing Minecraft with them naively, it makes perfect sense.
They are my people.
I’m visiting home right now. My niece Madi (in the picture above, covered in wing sauce) is always happy to see me. We have plans to play a Minecraft session together while I am here. She is so excited. I am too.
I’ve found my people.