I remember being in high school, even college, thinking I was never going to find anything that I was passionate about. I thought I’d spend my whole life floating around doing different things to pay bills and I was totally content with that, until I felt passion for the first time. It hit me about a year ago in the middle of writing my Senior final in college. Never have I ever started writing a paper more than a month in advance. Never have I ever worried I’d have too much to write. I was supposed to be writing a research paper on the six months I spent as a Community Organizer in the Tenderloin neighborhood of San Francisco and every time I sat down to write this physical feeling of emotion filled my insides (I’m feeling it right now). It feels like the best combination of anxiety, joy, tears, and adrenaline you can imagine. It’s a feeling that when I think about it, it makes me want to be the best possible person I can be. It gives me this satisfaction and confidence that I never felt before working in San Francisco.
I was having a rough day and my boyfriend was consoling me and something he said to me was, “You’re so passionate.”At first I didn’t get the connection, but then it clicked. While my passion lies with the people of the Tenderloin, I carry that passion with me. One can can live their life passionately no matter what it is they’re doing. It’s important to understand what matters most to you and put those things first in everything that you do. For me, compassion and justice are the most important values in my life. Every time I do anything I search for ways to incorporate those two things and it can be very challenging, but it provides purpose and meaning to the most menial tasks.
Passion is such a beautiful emotion that I think for the first time I’m really starting to break down and understand. When I see it in others my heart smiles, my handsome young man discussing policy and politics, my intelligent best friend talking about her student being happy to come to class, my hard-working sister ranting about the helplessness she feels with DAPL. Passion is such a beautiful and transformative thing and I’m eager to fully immerse myself within it.