In my 8th-grade math class was a boy who grew up traveling with the circus. He eventually married one of my friends and introduced her to the circus life before settling down to raise their kids.

Before meeting him, I never thought of the posibility that a kid could actually grow up being a part of the circus! Sure, maybe if your aunt or uncle was a performer they would include you in an act as they passed through your town. But to actually grow up traveling and working with a circus? How amazing it must be! And tiring.

Unlike my friend who joined the circus ,  I ran off with the carnival at 19. It was fascinating to see how many kids traveled with us and where the different parents struck a balance between embrasing the carnie life and making sure their kids grew up with some sense of normalcy.

While looking for articles on what it is like to grow up with a circus, I found a series of three circus kid documentaries:

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