Mom, I’m Running Away to Join the Circus
May 13, 2011
My first job as a working adult was not the result of a job search. I was in love with a boy and I ran away to join him in the circus. It is every parent’s worst nightmare. Almost 10 years later in retrospect, I am truly impressed my parents didn’t do anything other than what they did: they let me go. I joined the circus because as far as I was concerned I had nothing else going for me except for love and no sense of direction so I traveled. It was one of the best decisions I have ever made.
No, I wasn’t a trapeze artist. You can’t just join the circus and do that. It takes years of training that usually begins when the performer is a child for best results. I had a choice between working in the wardrobe department or in daycare, neither of which was appealing to me in the least. I heard people complain freely about both but because naptime exists in daycare I chose to work there. I had no patience or understanding how to work with children let alone children who speak multiple languages.
My first job as a working adult was not the result of a job search. I was in love with a boy I couldn’t tear myself away from. Choosing to not be apart from that boy, choosing that path, choosing that job changed my life. It’s a simple overused phrase but it’s the truth. It changed my life. The world was traveling with me, essentially, and because of that it changed my worldview. I learned languages, I tasted new food, I learned dances, I learned new philosophies and work ethic, I learned how to teach, I learned how to be vulnerable, I learned how to love in a whole new way because of those kids. Life issues suddenly came into perspective for me.
It didn’t take long before I loved working with children. I made up educational games, we made up stories, we created art projects and when I really got going with the program I made up a sort of “travel game” so we could learn about different parts of the world by taking a “plane trip” to different countries. It was so exciting! I’m getting excited again just thinking about it! Parents and children spoke about their countries; they taught us words, they taught us numbers and colors, they taught us a lot. It was amazing to see our miniature version of the world living in relative peace and harmony. There were always conflicts and “drama” happening between individuals and departments. There were always issues but it worked.
My stint with the circus taught me a bit about world peace. I’m not suggesting recent graduates should run away and join the circus (parents, I promise! I won’t encourage it) but I can say this: Be open to what life offers you. Listen well. You’ll be surprised, and hopefully blessed, with what the world brings you.
—April is a well-traveled young woman planting her roots in sunny Seattle, or well, just Seattle. Her writing covers whatever piques her interest and curiousity. Check out her blog here.