I look at the freshly cleaned white board with bold black letters and repeat the simple question in my head. I know that I should know the answer, but I had tried my best to avoid it. I am still young but I am expected to have at least a rough idea of what I want to be when I grow up, which I don't. I feel as though I am the only teenager dreading what's to come.
As a 13-year-old, they think you will give them a cute answer like "veterinarian, because I love animals and want to help them". Children don't think what could go wrong as a veterinarian, and adults know that. I know that animals die no matter what, and even if I was a veterinarian I can't change their fate. Adults aren't the only ones that ask questions about my future.
Whenever I am in class or talking to my friends I dodge questions about my future. Maybe I am scared to grow up, or maybe I sincerely fear destroying my only shot at success. I know that if I put my mind to something I can do it, but I feel like I am not in control of my future.
My palms become sweaty as I repeat the question in my head again, "What do you want to be when you grow up?" I rapidly tap the end of my mechanical pencil on my forehead and shut my eyes tight trying to remember any type of profession that isn't too dull. Doctor? Lawyer? Soldier? Many possible jobs come to mind, but I can't bring myself to lower my pencil and write them down.
I hear the sound I fear, an echoing voice saying my name in the quiet room. All of my peers look to me. I stare into my teachers extremely calm eyes. I think for a solid couple seconds. Everyone is waiting for my answer. I look at my paper in defeat, then back at my teacher. I lower my pencil and look blankly into my teacher's eyes and simply say "I don't know."