Passion can be defined as an intense, driving, or overmastering feeling or conviction. The kind of feeling that stays with you from dusk until dawn, constantly running rampant inside your soul. Never ceasing.
Over Thanksgiving break we watched the movie Dead Poets Society. It is one of DW’s favorites. He was shocked to find out that my brothers and sister-in-law had never seen this movie, and was delighted to share it with everyone. He has carried the message of this movie with him since his senior year in high school, a season of life that holds great weight for many people. The beginning of his future. A young man about to set off for college to start building a life long foundation. DW is an engineer. His father is an engineer and his brother is an engineer. A sweaty-faced, blue-eyed and blonde haired little boy grew up envisioning himself as an engineer and nothing else. He made a plan and reached his goal, one of the many things that impress me about his character. He is a man of his word.
As we snuggled into bed that night, DW wrapped his arms around me and continued to talk about the movie he has seen more than a dozen times, awestruck as if he had watched it for the first time.
“I’ve never known passion like that,” he said.
“I disagree,” I responded, ” You were driven to finish school, get a job in a specific field, get married and have a family.”
“That’s not the same. That’s life. That’s what you are supposed to do,” he sighed.
“Some people never get that far,” I said.
“I always wanted to be inspired, like you are with writing.”
It took me a few minutes to digest this comment. Throughout my life, people, places and situations have inspired me to dig deeper, produce written work beyond what I thought I was capable. But, the desire and the passion to want to write has always been inside my heart. I think about it constantly. I look for ideas in every moment, every relationship, every thought or emotion. I feel detached from myself when too many days have gone by without pen to paper. Writing is simply me thinking out loud. Thoughts become visible like breathing outside on a cold winter’s day, my hot heavy breath dancing in front of my face.
I remember sitting in a Bible study lesson where the speaker was talking about the importance of praying unceasingly, a concept that I have truly never been able to grasp. I used to try and talk to God all day, but then I would just fine myself talking to myself all day. My brain would stop praying and start writing in my head. The conversations got so crowded and boistorous that I finally had to start this blog.
DW and I love each other. We are driven daily by a desire to protect and nurture our children. We have an intense desire to support one another and make each of our lives bettter. Life, like writing, takes work and determination. Some days are harder than others, especially if you give everything of yourself. By definition, isn’t that a passionate life?
One of my favorite lines from the movie was said by Robin Williams’ character, John Keating:
“This is a battle, a war, and the casualties could be your hearts and souls.”
I pulled DW’s arms tighter around me, burying myself deeper under the covers.
“Passion and inspiration present themselves throughout our lives, ” I finally said, “and I don’t think it always looks the same for everyone.”