As a child, I never really thought about the jobs my parents had. I didn’t understand what my dad did until adulthood, but growing up I would tell my peers and teachers, “My dad sells paint.” Turns out he was a paint distributor of “marine and industrial coatings” and he owned and managed the marine side of the business for some years. As mentioned, I found out much later that this is a little more than just selling paint. My mom was an office assistant for my dad until she decided to stay home to raise us kids. When we moved and were a little older, my mom opened a local restaurant with her sisters and father with the flexibility to work and still take care of us. The restaurant was a success for the next twenty years.
I was never curious about what my parents did as a child. I remember that I love visiting my dad’s warehouse as a child. I thought it was the coolest place because it was just this huge warehouse with shelves of paint (the five gallon kind, because I later realized that you don’t usually see consumer paint in five gallon buckets). There was a forklift and other cool things, but I don’t remember thinking I would actually like working there. As for our family restaurant, I worked there in the summers and later helped out part-time after school and soccer practice. I helped them when we catered events and I enjoyed doing that; waitressing I mean. But I never thought to be a waitress when I got older, though it’s a pretty good skill to have because if you can waitress, you can pretty much work anywhere there are restaurants.
And I could never picture me working in an office, doing office work. I remember when my mom would pick up my brother and me from school and take us to my dad’s office, she would set me up by the typewriter and show me how to type. She’s the one who taught me about the ‘home row keys’ and I just remember sitting there experimenting with typing. I was the only one in my class who could type without looking at the keyboard because of this.
As cool as my parents jobs were, even if it was only where they worked, I never thought to do the jobs they did when I grew up. Yet, I worked as an office assistant for more than ten years, was pretty okay at it, and enjoyed it. And I helped my family out at the restaurant for many years before it closed its doors officially. Currently, I am employed as a Library Assistant and the acting Branch Manager of a public library. As I continue with my education and, hopefully, earn my degree in European History and Sociology who knows what other doors may open up for me.
So, even though I may not have literally thought “I’d love to do this,” I did end up doing some of the things my parents did and glad I knew how to do them because I had great teachers.