I am passionate about whatever I set my mind to at the moment. That’s the simplest answer for me. It may not be a satisfying answer to whoever is asking the question and it’s probably not true for everyone, but for me, that’s the best answer. On her deathbed, my mother told my husband, then fiance: “Life will never be dull.” I knew what she meant by that and after fifteen years together, so does Mr. Jackson. I am a freak who totally obsesses on whatever I put my mind to doing. I’m like that all the time. All. The. Time. Yes, it’s very annoying to live with, so you can feel sorry for him.
The thing is “the something” changes all the time. At one point I was obsessed with crocheting baby blankets. I had made some for babies who were being born in our family, so I walked around for a year crocheting everywhere: on the bus, in the car, in doctor’s offices, while I waited for people, during breaks at work, etc. It was insane, and I had a hard time finding cheap ways to feed my crocheting addiction. Do you know how expensive yarn can be for someone who crochets very fast and is obsessed with it? I found a way to get free yarn if I’d donate the finished blankets. I crocheted blankets for a group called Project Linus, which gave blankets to babies in the hospital born with debilitating diseases, such as AIDS, so I did that for a year or two until my yarn “dealer” went out of the business. (She died, which was awful for her.) When I couldn’t get yarn free anymore, I gave up the crocheting obsession cold turkey.
But it’s always like that. At another point in life, I went on a “baking binge”. I baked like I was never going to see tomorrow unless I baked another batch of cookies. This was a terrible thing for us because we are both diabetics. I had PTO left to burn at work, so I took it and baked up a storm. Once again, I found an outlet for my creative baking efforts and baked thirty-five dozen cookies for an organization that supports families living with or dealing with AIDS. (Do you sense a theme here yet?) The Aliveness Project was very glad to be the recipient of my baking insanity, but again, after expending so much energy into baking so many cookies, I swore I wouldn’t do that particular binge again on my own without friends helping me. It just sucked too much life out of me. Baking is extremely hard work.
So I can say that at any given point in time, I have something that I’m either gearing up toward, coming down from the high of having completed a task or I’m currently going bonkers trying to accomplish some goal all related to something I feel passionate about. The thing is what changes. Sometimes it’s genealogy, and sometimes it’s something crafty or artistic or just unusual or crazy. I don’t know when or where inspiration is going to strike.
Right now I’m taking up writing as my thing to be passionate about and so far it’s lasted about nine months, and I fully intend to keep riding the wave. It keeps going, and it’s relatively cheap to do. All it takes is ink and paper or rather a computer and not much else. It’s something I’ve always wanted to pursue so I’m giving it a try, and I don’t think it will stop this time. It just seems to keep going and going and, if anything, getting bigger each day.
Life can be dull if you let it. Every day is going to be what you make of it. I’m trying to make life worth something. It’s just how I’m hard-wired. I think mom was probably right. These things I get caught up in are just ways of keeping life from being dull.