Mommy: “So what are you going to do? What’s your major gonna be, I mean,” she asks and says to me.
Me: “Well, I’m really into all of those crime shows and how they figure everything out and go after the bad guys…I think Criminal Justice sounds good.”
Mommy: “Oh, no you’re not! That’s not feminine at all. You’re not gonna do some man’s job. You can forget about that, Cherie. Forget it!!!”
Me: “Okay, mommy. I’ll be a teacher instead.”
Mommy: (murmuring under her breath, but loud enough for me to hear and she knows it) “What is she thinking!? Trying to do some man’s job. Ugh! Who does she think she is? I wish she would try to do some criminal justice!! I should’ve had a boy. Pleeeease. And she’s soooo clumsy. Not graceful at all–how’s she gonna be a cop?”
Okay, so if my mommy hadn’t have been cremated, and were instead lying in a grave, she’d roll over now. And then again, and again to make it more dramatic and get her point across. She was hell bent on me not doing anything that was “men’s only.” I even had to play the flute instead of the drums in 5th grade because she deemed the drums too masculine. So when it was time to select a major in college, there was no way and no how any daughter of hers was going to be working in the criminal justice field. So what did I just do two weeks ago? That’s right my friends, I applied and got accepted to the Criminal Justice Technology program at my local community college.
A few people in my life were a bit taken aback by this decision, similar to how my mother would have reacted. And some who really know me thought nothing could be a more perfect fit. It wasn’t coming out of left field; I should have picked this field fourteen years ago–I could have saved myself years spent first as an education major, then an English major, then in and out of retail jobs because there was nothing to do with my major. I didn’t want to be an English teacher then and I most certainly didn’t want to become a grocery store manager now. But what else was I going to do? My doctor told me no more grocery store work (thanks to my back injury this summer), so that left looking for work as an office manager at best or an administrative assistant in some Acme Widgets company staring straight at a dead end again. After searching online for jobs a few weeks ago, and trying to feign excitement at the prospect of working as a receptionist at a tire company in my town, the 17-year-old Cherie inside me said, “Enough is enough!! You wanted to do it then but you played the good little daughter instead. Look where it got you! Now is the time. Do it. Go back to school, get your degree in CJ and stay the hell away from retail and tires, would you??!!!”
So I listened to my old self. I start school in January. Can I be a cop? I don’t know–yet. The recruits from Police Academy come to mind…lol. I don’t want to be like that! But I think I could do it…..