The Playground of Life
I grew up in suburban Milwaukee in the town of Wauwatosa, and my first playground was my house, then my neighborhood, then my school, then my town. These were the places that discovered, enjoyed, and in ever-expanding circles came to master in my own way.
Some kids are the kind of kids who want to stay babies forever. My own son resists each birthday a little bit, saying he loves being “5”, “6” or “7” (he’s now 9 and loves it) and doesn’t want to grow up. He realizes all the responsibilities that come with each passing year and loves being taken care of, having things done for him.
I was the opposite. I was the kind of kid chomping at the bit to grow up, to take on bigger and bigger roles at school, and in life. I got my first real job at 14, bussing tables in our towns fanciest restaurant, and I felt so grown up. I thrived on excitement, chasing goals, and the constant push for bigger, better, more, and action.
When I was in grade school, I longed for middle school. When I was in middle school, I soon longed for high school. When I was in high school I simply could not WAIT for the excitement of College, which I thought was the end-all be-all of all things achievable, because in college you are FREE to do life however you want to, with no one telling you what to do.