Thursday, September 16, 2010

Desperately seeking passion

With “passion” in the title, I suspect you’re looking for something along the lines of “Sex and the Sixties” or a tale of uninteresting foreplay. Sorry. I’m really lamenting the fact that I don’t have a pastime I’m passionate about—something that can keep me occupied if I ever decide to fully retire.

In answer to the question, “What’s your passion?” I’m stumped. I enjoy writing, but I don’t do much with it. (Writing for work counts now, but I am certainly not going to compose articles of interest to natural gas industry employees once I’m not on the job.) I love to read, and I’d be miserable without a few good novels on my nightstand. It’s an interest, but not a passion.

When I was a young housewife/mother, decades ago, I went through the same soul-searching. Before I returned to college for my bachelor’s degree, I tried art—going so far as enrolling in the “Famous Artist’s Home Study Course” and taking continuing ed courses in watercolors, sculpture, and photography. I wasn’t good at any of them, but my worst efforts were created (or occurred) in sculpture class.

Then I got interested in music. I bought an acoustic guitar—at a shop that sold guitars to Segovia!—and started taking lessons. After months, I could strum the chords to accompany my singing. Both were barely acceptable. I tried to learn classical guitar but soon realized this wasn’t my forte.

So I still liked art and music, but knew I wasn’t going anywhere with either of them. Then I went back to school, got my English degree, got hired as part-time editorial assistant, which grew into a full-time career—and here I am, 33 years later, still trying to find myself.

I still love to write, but you’re looking at the output here. Not bad, but not enough. Is sixty-something (and on the higher end of the decade) too late to find passion? I guess it doesn’t just fall into one’s lap or, in today’s terms, pop up on-screen during an unrelated search…although that could happen.

It’s been suggested that I 1) enroll in a Pilates class, 2) take writing courses, 3) learn jewelry making, and 4) just do something; interest follows action (loosely taken from an early Dr. Wayne Dyer book). Except for jewelry making, they’re all good ideas. I plan to take action….soon. Any other suggestions are most welcome—as long as they don’t involve sports.

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