Sweet Sixteen

The year I was sixteen, I spent away from home, going to school. I remember it well, almost all of it, meaning I remember what I did and what happened during that year … even the first the train ride down south to there.

I remember being a little homesick in the beginning … homesick for my friends, but that quickly dissolved as I adjusted and made new friends. We were twelve girls, from all parts of the country, living in the same building, adjacent to the school, and we all had our own room.

Being away from home and my mother at that young age was, of course, marvellous at first, but after a while it became normal as everything else. We had a certain surveillance, where we lived … we had to be in and accounted for a certain time of night — different on weekends, I can’t remember the time. After 9 o’clock at night all visitors had to be out, and they checked our rooms.

vasterasIn general, I remember this year as a good time and the second semester we had all adjusted so well, so we didn’t want it to end. A friend of mine had found out about a course one could take afterwards, in the same city. It was provided by a big corporation … something similar to General Electric in the States, perhaps [in Sweden called ASEA at the time, nowadays ABB]. Anyway, we would have spent two more years there, been paid during the course and guaranteed a job when we were finished.

She and I talked about opting for that … finding ourselves a little apartment to share … but then there was my mother! She put the kibosh on that! It wasn’t gonna happen, I was going back home and that was it! Important here is that my mum was a woman of great will power, and that power certainly included me! I was kind of ‘weak’ also … and I knew going against her would have meant breaking off with her. That’s a big decision at that age!

So I went back, and she even had a job interview arranged for me. Got the job and kept it for twelve years.

Looking back at this phase of my life, forty some years later … what I find most odd about all of it, is all the things I can’t remember! For the life of me, I can’t remember my own thoughts and dreams! What did I want out of life? What were my goals? I have no idea! It seems as if I lived so much in the present that I didn’t pay any attention at all to the future. Often, I read and hear about young girls, whose only dream in life if getting married and have kids. That, I can say for sure, wasn’t one of mine. If there is anything at all, that sticks out in my mind, it would be that I wanted a place of my own … my own home, but that would take a few years.

glcOne could always ponder what my life would have looked like if I’d stood up to my mother, but that’s impossible and a total waste of time. We make our choices in life and they are just that … choices. There isn’t any right or wrong here, but I still find it odd that I didn’t have any dreams or goals. I don’t regret going back, those following, twelve years, were probably the best ever, in my working life. Here I am … five years later!

The other girl, who I planned sharing an apartment with, she got married shortly afterwards, became a nurse, and got five kids! I have her on Facebook πŸ™‚

30 Replies to “Sweet Sixteen”

  1. Its hard to stand up against a mother or in my case a grandmother. But you are right, its just a chocie and you cant regret, its no meaning.

  2. I must think…but I cannot remember what my dreams were either. And, as you were so young, the choice is almost given – trust your mum! What life would have been otherwise is, as you say, no use thinking about.

    1. No, there’s no use thinking about it, but in hindsight it’s kind of interesting to see how that particular decision probably altered my life’s story.. πŸ™‚

      1. Well good morning! Your readers connect with you much more with a photo – look at my ugly balding head through the site. Gaahhh!!

  3. Honestly, I couldnt stand up against my parents in that age. But I knew what I wanted with my life at that time-at least which education I wanted. Many years later I had to admit to myself, that the choise hasnt been the best. But thats life, and I had many good times and learned a lot.
    But I ask myself today: Why am I here, whats the purpose?
    Its very nice to hear about your life, Very nice picture of you.

    1. I don’t think we’ll find out about our purpose while we’re here. I’ll just go on doing the best I can … that’s the best I can do LOL. IF I regret anything at all, it’s that I didn’t realise the importance of a good education..

      Yeah, I was young here … 22 perhaps … but not so innocent πŸ™‚

      1. Life is backwards that way. For most of us, by the time you really know what you want to do, your “education” years are over. Of course, you can go back to school but you are not granted the same time and hours to spend.

  4. At 16 all I wanted to do was go to law school and be a lawyer. Primarily because my mom said I couldn’t and I was determined to prove her wrong. I only saw the reverse psychology in that after it was too late πŸ™‚ It’s interesting to think about the influences of decisions and how we all get where we are.

  5. Very nice post!! And great picture of you! πŸ™‚

    I’ve had different dreams in my younger years, but around my 16th year I were going through some tough times ( as I have told you about before… ) And at that time all I wanted was to get well again! So I can remember both my thoughts and dreams from way back then.

    1. Thank you, Mona!
      Sorry about that! I can’t remember anything … except perhaps that I wanted to get into diplomacy … cocktail parties … embassies all over the world *ROFL* Only kidding, but when I was much younger than 16, I think I had some ideas about becoming a nurse, thanks to some novels I kept reading..

  6. I was expected to go to university, so I did. I was pretty obedient. The rebellion came later. They were not pleased when I announced that I was going to travel around the world. Best thing I ever did. Wish I had rebelled earlier. Still it’s never too late, and I made up for it afterwards. Fancy leaving home at 16 to go to school though! Mine thought university at 18 was dangerous enough!

    1. I was [too] obedient. Never rebelled much, even later. She would never have let me to away at sixteen, had she not been pushed into a corner. She had no choice, if she wanted me to go to school at all. Heh! I think my brother made a point of allowing his daughters to do all the things we were prohibited from. One went to Israel at an early age, and the two others travelled too.

  7. What an thoughtful and insightful post Rebby….very poignant too.
    My Mother also had ‘plans; for me but I was a rebel & would not go along with her plans….she wanted me to become a secretary or an Accountant.,,,,,ah yeah…..NOT!!!!
    I wanted to be a pilot flying supplies up into the north to the Inuit. I wanted to be a piano player. I wanted to work with machines. I want edto be a published author….I wanted to be something far different from my Mother so I left home at 17 1/2. I worked at a resort as a maid & I was good at it but it got ‘old’ quickly….I ended up fixing the toilets there because I had a knack for it…so add Plumber to the list πŸ˜‰
    My next job was as a Punch Press Operator…first woman (18 yrs old) in the factory to do that job AND I trained on the Brake Press also. My Mother was horrified πŸ˜‰
    Then I got back together & married my childhood sweetheart & learned all about the Towing business……my Father was SO-O proud of me; my Mother was furious…..I can say the more I upset her the happier I was….(I feel badly for that now.) I was the FIRST FEMALE Tow Truck Operator in the province & paved the way for other women to go into Towing as a career.
    I did publish some of my poetry & a few short stories. I never did learn how to play piano properly nor did I ever become a pilot…because I have no sense of direction & a fear of heights….lol….
    At least I had my dreams & some came true. I was also a Professional Nanny & then a Nursing Assistant…not dreams as such but I am glad I did train for those careers & that I got to help so many people; guess that made up for not flying supplies up to the Great White North πŸ˜‰
    The dream that lies unfulfilled is to be a published author…I keep saying “Maybe one day..”
    Who knows if that day will ever come….
    Sherri-Ellen xo

    1. Wow … what a varied working life! Secretary … that’s what I did become after that school I wrote about. Still can’t remember any dream I had , except perhaps being in the Diplomacy and travel the world … the embassies … the cocktail parties LOL

  8. Well I never listened to my parents and
    sure wish I had a “do-over” on that. At least I didn’t turn out to be a criminal. Guess maybe what I did want – I got. Lol
    Was wondering – did you ever have desires to be a professional photographer?

    1. However it turned out, I guess we did our best, and as you say … didn’t become a criminal.

      To answer your question: A resounding NO. I only took up photography in 2010, and I’m so far from anything professional … wouldn’t want to, that would take the fun out of it. Imagine wedding photographers!!! I’m sure I’d mess up big time..

      1. You have always been artistic, though. Even in your orbs in 360 days. Remember that vegan comment in days of your eggs? Ha ha too strange.
        In my mind nothing has ever been as FUN as 360 days.

        1. *LOL* Yes! I’d forgotten him until now, but now that you mention him, I even remember his name Maynard. Yesterday I was thinking of our other friend D.

          Now, and nothing ever will be, I think.. but this is really nice too!

  9. I always did what I was told. Most of the time. My parents were like your mom. Strong willed both of them. More than me. It sounds like so much fun, an adventure. I think sometimes if it didn’t happen it wasn’t meant to be. Maybe you can’t remember your dreams because in some way you have achieved them. I remember laying on my bed thinking, there is someone out there just for me, and there was.

    1. Yeah, there actually was someone out there, but that I had truly given up on, and was content with that. Can’t remember ever dreaming about marriage and kids … definitely not kids. That was never a part of the equation.

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