I Sing a Joyful Song

I was asked last night about my passion in life.

It’s funny, in my younger days, I certainly thought a person found their singular passion, pursued it, and lived happily ever after. How naïve of me, yes?

I’ve since learned people may have many passions in life. They can change as our lives and circumstances change. Not for everyone, no. Some people have just the one thing that makes their heart sing. And some people never find their true happiness.

I’ve been blessed in my life, to be certain. I’ve had the joy to discover new passions as my life has twisted and turned. What brought me ultimate joy in my early 20’s is still important to me, but others have taken its place, depending on where my life is at any given moment.

If you had asked me three years ago, I would have told you my writing was my heart’s blood. I lived a mostly solitary life then, without many friends and at odds with most of my family. The characters in my mind’s eye took on a larger importance in my days because they kept me company.

Two years ago, I was still discovering this new love and hurting from a bone-deep loss. Writing was still important but cooking started taking over. The ability to recreate the comfort foods of my youth while also creating new dishes was a balm to my soul.

Last year I was coming to terms with a breakdown. That summer demanded a great deal from me, from the boyfriend, and we were forced to grow up more than we wanted. Our relationship grew stronger but I was left floundering. What was my place in this life?

And then I got sick. First with one diagnosis, then another, and yet another.

The floundering overtook me, I was like a person drowning, flailing arms reaching vainly for a life preserver, gasping for breath. The joys of earlier years could no longer move me.

Stumbling across the Band Back Together Project saved me. Bottom line.

BB2G has given me the tools to manage the depression that was overtaking my life. For me, the key was finding what made me feel useful. Fortunately, that turned out to be working behind the scenes with The Band. Once the dark clouds in my life lifted, I was able to reexamine my priorities.

And I once again found a passion.

Or many passions, as the case may be.

See, now it all brings me joy. Cooking, reading, loving, photography, writing, singing, motherhood, crafting, socializing, working. All of it. They ALL bring me joy, fill my heart with excitement, give me a place. I’m able to dabble in different areas as the mood strikes me rather than burying myself in an activity to escape life.

For the first time in many years, I enjoy my life, all parts of it. I may not live in a mansion with a limitless bank account and a thin, healthy body; but I have a roof over my head, food in my belly, clothes to wear, and the love of my life. I’m able to have a few things that bring me light. My books, camera, crafting tools, friends, love, more time with my son, recipes to play with, nights out, and nights in.

I have joy and passion.

I have life.

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