I wrote my first memoir in 5th grade. Memorably titled “All About Myself,” it was bound in a manila folder decorated in the popular flower power motif of the times. It’s full of scintillating tidbits about my young life, including Girl Scout camping trips, piano lessons and family vacations.
My brother and sister make a brief appearance (“Lewis has very light hair and Lyn has very dark hair”), as do two of the Monkees (Peter and Mickey). Mom has a brief mention, about the rug she made of scraps from trash piles for my room.
The only photo spread features me at various birthdays, wearing the pageboy haircut that, now that I think about it, I’ve kind of returned to.
My favorite page is titled “My Future.”
“I would like to keep taking piano lessons and become very good at it and play in concerts. I would also like to be a stewardess because I like airplanes and would like to serve meals on airplanes because it would help me with balance. Then I would like to be a housewife with many children.”
My teacher noted in red: “very fine ambitions!”
Well, I quit piano lessons a few years later, much to my mother’s chagrin, and never made it to Carnegie Hall. Despite my admirable desire to improve my balance, I never pursued a flight career. I never found a house to marry and I totally forgot to have children.
In sum, I am zero for three regarding my predictions from 1969.
When I entered Wake Forest, I had no idea I’d become an Art History major, no idea that would lead to a job at a museum, no idea that would lead me to Charlotte, no idea that would start me in advertising, which led to producing an event, which propelled me to become an entrepreneur, which led to distress which led to a walk across the Sahara desert, which led to bringing on a partner and growing the business until I got hit by a truck on Christmas Eve which led to deciding to sell my company which led to planning the Democratic National Convention which led to living 6 months in Costa Rica to write a book.
Given my history, I think it’s in my best interest to stop guessing where I’ll end up in 2014. If the past is any indication, I have no idea what’s ahead.
Instead, for this coming year, my resolve is this: live in integrity, and expect magic.
Happy New Year, y’all.