I sat in the living room with my family as a story about my brother was about to be told. I was interested in what was about to be said because I thought it was going to be something juicy, something I could bug him about. I sat with my ears wide open as the story began.
My brother, about to enter collage, decided to major in business just like Dad. As all dads would be, my dad was as happy as a clown. ‘Father like son’ is what they always say. He went off to a four-year collage wanting to work in the business field and make good money. He realized that he wasn’t happy or interested in his major at all. As a result my brother decided to drop out of college. Following his decision he received a job working at the local bank. He held that job for a long time still realizing that this is not what he wanted to do with his life. That summer he volunteered at a camp named Camp Barnabus. He gave two continuous weeks at this camp, geared specifically towards special needs/special Ed children. He loved working with these kids and found motive to complete collage. He dedicated himself and graduated collage though still obtaining his business degree. My brother truly wanted a job dealing with special Ed kids. He figured one way that he could work directly with them was to teach them, so he went out and received his teaching certificate. My brother, now currently teaching math to special Ed students, eventually wants to work up to coaching P.E. for them. Not only that, but he continues to dedicate three to four weeks of his summer to Camp Barnabus. You can tell he enjoys every minute of it! The other day he made a comment saying that he obviously doesn’t do what he does for the money; he does it because he enjoys it.
That night I lay in my bed replaying the story in my head. That story didn’t give me something to bug him about; it gave me a valuable lesson. It taught me that I should do things in my life because it makes me happy and I enjoy doing it. I shouldn’t do things in life just because it makes someone else happy or it’s what someone else wants. From that day on I always think about that. Whenever I make a decision on what I want to do whether it is at that moment or later on in life, I will always ask myself, ‘Is this really what I want to do? Is this really what I like to do?’
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.