Supporting Your Child’s Long-Shot Dream Career Choice
One of my boys came home from school one day convinced he’d found his “calling in life” and yes, he actually did refer to it as a calling, although I suspect he’d heard that word from somewhere. Not a problem at all, except to support this calling of his which he is rather fortunate enough to have discovered so early on in his life, he wanted a very expensive camera that runs into the thousands…ouch!
I’m glad I took my time about making the decision — if there was any decision to make at all, because like any parent I know that kids fall in and out of love with a lot what life has to offer and what might have been a passion that burns red hot one day may be a long forgotten memory the very next day. You see it with the different “best friends” they have and also with how they have a favourite toy they play with every day for like three months straight, only for that toy to one day sit somewhere at the bottom of the toy-box to collect the heaviest of the dust particles entering the box.
Taking my time paid off in an affirmative manner to both my pocket and to my son’s desire to get his camera with which to feed his newfound calling, because I realised that since he’d gone to the trouble of researching what the best equipment for him was, that in itself was indicative of the fact that he’s actually quite serious about it. So while I may not be raising the next great photographer over here, at least I can say that I support his dream, whether that’s a temporary dream or otherwise and at the same time my pocket hasn’t suffered too much.
So what I’m getting at is that there are means and ways through which to support your child’s long-shot dream career choices and although I’d hardly call wanting to be a pro photographer a long-shot dream career choice, I know that a lot of parents out there are having to face the prospect of choosing how to go about it.
So my advice is simple — jump in with both feet, but make it a learning exercise for the both of you, which means you can go about it in a manner which won’t make you feel like you’ve wasted your time and money should things not go according to plan.
To be a bit more specific, you can go about it by perhaps encouraging your child to start up their own blog covering that dream career, with your support of course. In my case that’s exactly what we did — we set up a photography blog to which we attached an e-commerce website (well some e-commerce functionality in the form of Amazon’s e-store plug-in).
My son still writes blog posts to this day and although he doesn’t quite feel as if photography is his calling anymore, he has his expensive camera and he got it through the sales made via his blog’s e-commerce store.