Passions and dreams: Are they the same?

Today is my one-week blogger-versary!  I have enjoyed it immensely.  When I’m writing, I get completely lost in it.  It’s like Calgon has truly taken me away.  It’s — it’s… transcendent.  There’s the word!  That’s something else I’ve learned through television.   With the help of the Netflix series, Grace and Frankie, I have learned a lot of new and exciting vocabulary words. Words like transcendent and ubiquitous. Now that latter one is a really cool word, isn’t it?  I was super proud of myself for spelling it correctly when I looked it up online because, of course, I had no freaking idea what it meant.  Did you stop reading this post so you could look up the meaning of it, too?  I have a spiral-bound notebook where I log my newly discovered television words. At this moment, I’m not exactly sure where that notebook is, but I have it here — somewhere.

A dear friend once asked me, “How do you know when you found the right guy?”  My answer to her was, “When you no longer have to ask that question.”  So it is, I’ve learned, with finding your life’s passion.  I’m not talking about romantic passion.  I’m talking about the passion you feel when you’re doing something you really, really enjoy doing…eh, I guess that could mean both kinds of passion.  Let me clarify, when you’re doing something that could be your life’s work, your career.  Umm, well that could be even clearer still.  It’s when you are doing what you are called to do, the greater purpose for your life, be it the job or creative endeavor that truly sparks the joy within your heart.   That’s better.

You would think that finding your life’s passion would be very easy, a no-brainer, that you’d instinctively know the answer to the question, “What is your passion?”  But for some, that is not the case.  It’s apparently such a common subject for our human brains to wrestle with that scads of books have been written on the subject.  I personally have read and/or listened to such books while discovering my passion(s).

Photography is a passion of mine.  I’m continually framing pictures wherever I go and whatever I’m doing.  I’ll think “Oh, that would be a great picture,” as I’m snapping the photo in my brain, sometimes blinking my eyes like Barbara Eden on the 60’s show, I Dream of Jeannie.  “Wish I had my good camera with me,” I’d think to myself.  When I look back through the pictures I’ve taken over the years, and there are literally tens of thousands, maybe even more of them, everything around me fades away.  It’s just me and those precious fleeting moments, captured and frozen in time with the click of a shutter button.  I just had a mental image of me sitting in a zen posture, floating up above the clouds, everything around me is white, and I’m flipping through stacks and stacks of pictures.  What exactly is in this Starbucks vanilla coffee anyway?!

Paraphrasing definitions from the internet:  A dream is a vision or goal that resides in your brain. Passion is doing something you love again and again with ease and without getting tired.  A dream may be pure fantasy, but passion is always real.  I think that the two can sometimes be melded together.  In 1982, the first of two times that I was approached regarding the Amway multi-level marketing plan, the presenter asked me, “What is your dream?”  I said, “I want to live in the country, in a house up on a hill, with bay windows, a long driveway, a pond and a barn full of cats.” Do you know where I live now?   I live in the country with a wonderful husband whom I’ve been with since 2002.  Our house is up on a hill.  We have bay windows. Our driveway is about 600 feet long.  We have a pond between our house and the main road.  I also have nine cats who have a cushy space in our pole barn which I’ve named “the kitty condo.” Don’t tell me that dreams are just in my head.  I’ve lived it. It may have taken me 20 full years, and one hell of a wild ride, but by golly, it sure came true, and with exquisite detail.

I’ve also had the wild dream of having Ellen Degeneres and Chris Tucker teach me to club dance.  My favorite part of Ellen’s talk show is her dance intro and I’ve watched the movie Rush Hour more times than I can count, mostly for the musical scenes where Chris is jamming to tunes in his car and such, but I laugh throughout the movie every single time.  A little voice may occasionally whisper to me saying, “Yeah, right, like that’ll ever happen.  Chris and Ellen teaching you to club dance?   Dream on.”  I simply answer with, “Well..why not?  Did I tell you about where I live?  It can happen!”  Dreams don’t just reside in your brain.  They can and do come true!  I’m passionate about my dream of being a published author, and it’s on its way to being a reality.  See?  The two do go together.

When you’re doing something that is in alignment with your passion, you’ll be thoroughly engrossed in it.  It comes easily and you don’t notice the passage of time.  You may forget to eat.  I always thought, how the heck can someone forget to eat?  Do you just not get hungry?  Well, I can now say that I’ve done it. I have forgotten to eat while I’m writing.  I have a potentially embarassing confession to share with you. I have spent entire weekends sitting at my computer, completely focused on writing my book, barely eating, only leaving the house to feed the cats and chickens, and totally without showering.  Do you know where the bridal bouquet tradition originated? Brides would carry strong smelling flowers, in part, to help mask their body odor. Daily baths were not a common practice way back when.  Hey, at least I didn’t pee in mason jars and line them up against the wall, and since my hubby has a man cave, he did have an escape from my potentially pungent aroma.

I worked on my March 7th blog entry for five hours and it felt like 30 minutes.  Although I spend a crapload of that time reading, rereading and editing what I’ve written, the whole process seems to flow from me quite naturally.  It’s like I’m the instrument for something much larger than me.  That may sound super cheesy and/or flaky, but it’s the best way I can describe how writing makes me feel.  The joy I experience when I’m writing, well, there are no words.  No pun intended.  You know, no words for the words I’m typing.  I know, I’m silly.

Every day I ask, “What will I write about on my blog today?” Every day, I am answered.   It may be a fragmented answer, sometimes it’s a single word, like passion, that pops into my head.  I’ll take it, sit down in front of my computer, and just start typing.  A word here and there. The next paragraph may be just a few sentences followed by a string of equal signs, my cue that I need to fill it in later. I just keep typing, editing, rearranging until I think it will make sense to my readers.  It’s been pretty cool, so far, this whole blogging thing.

Hey, guess what!  While I was searching for something else, I found the spiral-bound notebook which contains my list of vocabulary words!!  Life is good.

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