I've never known how to answer that question. There has never been a clear answer. There's the 'where I want' to be answer, and then where I actually feel like I'll be. And then there's what really happens. And while it might sound insanely negative, there are no happily ever afters. There's just reality. Whether or not it's your happily ever after is really your choice, or your option to change.
Let's look at how '5 years later' really ends up.
My answer when I was in high school
I see myself either in college, or just graduating college. Looking for a job related to my education. Doing everything I can to make a better future for myself. I'm going to save money, and not end up living like my mother did - low income, living from paycheck to paycheck.
Five years later, I graduated from college. I was certified to be a legal secretary, but I doubted my education. I didn't feel in any way prepared. I worked at Wendy's. I lived in another province, and chose to move back home. I couldn't find any kind of full-time job, and struggled to get by with the help of my grandfather as I lived with a roommate.
My answer when I was in college:
I'd like to say my answer was optimistic - that I was going to find a great job and go on to do great things, but I was terrified. I didn't see everything as working out. I wanted to find an amazing job and live a great life. I was starting to feel like I was just a mess. No guy would ever truly like me. What a sob-fest.
Five years later, I was single after a long relationship, and that was my choice. I didn't have an amazing job, but I had a full-time job that I loved. It was about this time that I moved into an apartment by myself (kind of), and was finally financially stable for the first time in my life. The most unexpected part? I had a little girl, and not long after that, I met an amazing guy. Funny how things work out.
My answer now:
I don't know where I'll be when it comes to my career, but I hope when this job finishes, there's another great job waiting for me. The girls will be 6 and 7. In school. And they had better be doing fantastic. I'll be with the same guy, married or about to be. We may have another child, or it might be in the planning stages. A boy, I'm hoping. And we'll all be rich and successful. And we'll all live happily ever after. I really hope.
Where do you see yourself in five years?