• Ananya Ganesh

When I grow up, I want to be a Princess-Astronaut-Basketballer...

As a kid, I'd always loved the idea of growing up. Adults seemed so important as they walked around with hundreds of emails to respond to and an office to run back and forth to. They got to decide whether they could eat a donut or drink a carrot smoothie, and whether they wanted to go to work or not (well, most of the time). Being an adult seemed like fun stuff. Let me tell you, I was pretty naïve back then. But soon, of course, the question arose. When I became an adult, what would I be? And obviously, when I asked myself these questions, no white-collar or desk jobs came to mind, so after much thought and careful consideration, I settled upon a princess-astronaut-basketballer-teacher-dancer. Oh, and a part-time author-baker on the side too.

Gradually, I began to rule out some of the things like being a princess (although I would one day love to be book royalty :)) and an astronaut after watching Gravity (that one scarred me for life). But I still wanted to do so much and it amazed me how most adults did only one thing for years, sometimes even their whole lives. It infuriated me whenever I told someone that I would be a basketballer-teacher-dancer-author-baker and they shook their head and smiled (which happened basically all the time). I'll never forget that moment when I realised that I wouldn't be able to do all of that without being driven to the point of insanity, it felt like I grew up all in that one second of realisation.

Pretty soon, I shook off that dream that had a 0.00001% chance of actually coming true and moved on to wanting to be a teacher (and a part-time author-baker of course). But how does anyone get anyplace in life if we don't believe in those 0.00001% chance dreams? When you tell a kid they can't do something, most of them go 'Oh, you have no idea what you just did.' We just dare to believe and hope, and we dare to dream.

So, here are some of my favourite books about kids who like to dream big or are still discovering their dreams, whether it's saving someone special or becoming a celebrity chef!

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