Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Passion of the.... Katie?

Over the course of the past year, I've had a lot of time to think and reflect on what is important to me.  Stepping away from teaching at the end of last year was perhaps one of the best things I ever did for myself because it's given me time to evaluate what's important.  It's given me time to decide what I really want, what I really need, and who I really am.  What do I care about? What motivates me? What moves me? What am I truly passionate about?  Don't get me wrong... the circumstances that surrounded my resignation last year sucked (IE the whole prejudice for leaving after June 1 thing).  But the circumstances that unfolded as a result of stepping away, although difficult, are the best things to have ever happened to me.  While in the midst of everything, I was not able to see how those things were shaping me, molding me, CHANGING me.  But now, sitting a year removed from my decision, and a few days removed from my temporary position, I can honestly say that this decision was amazing. I can see how that one choice set in motion a chain of events that have pushed me to become a better person.  A more honest and genuine person.  This decision made me push myself as an educator.  It forced me to leave my comfort zone and go beyond what I had done before.  It made me evaluate who I was, what I wanted, and what truly motivated me.  It made me realize what I was passionate about. 

The story of the last year of my life is much like a Telenovella.  For those of you who no hablo espanol (el nino is Spanish for... the nino! <---- Chris Farley, google it!) a telenovella is a Spanish soap opera.  And let me tell you, those things are full of drama.  If you think you've got baby mama/daddy drama, think again.  Those things will put you to shame.  Anyway... my life has basically been like a telenovella.  But if there is one piece of advice I can offer, one thing I would love readers of my blog to take away... it's to step back. If you're not certain of your path in life, stop and figure it out.  Don't keep taking turn after turn because before you know it, you'll be hopelessly lost with no chance of finding your way back.  Take time away from things and figure out what makes you tick but do the things that you are PASSIONATE about. 

Last year, I stepped away from teaching because the passion had died.  The same thing started to happen to CrossFit.  But I took time away.  I evaluated, I played with things, I came, I went.  I reflected.  I figured out what made me tick, and what motived me to be who I was.  And at the end of the day, you know what I discovered?  I am truly passionate about only a handful of things.  And that handful of things are the only things I've continued to do. Don't be afraid to step back and evaluate you or your life.  If you're doubting your passion or desire to do something, then a break may be just what you need to sort it all out. 

For a very long time, CrossFit was one of my passions.  I was focused, I was driven, and wow did I really want to change myself and get to the top of the CF pyramid.  I was hungry.  But as time drug on, that passion started to die.  It was dimmed beneath mounds of other stress and mounds of other things going on.  I lost sight of my original reason for doing CrossFit.  But, after stepping away at the end of last summer, and taking time away during this tumultuous year, I can honestly say, that passion is still there. I still have a hunger.  I still have a desire to be healthy and be fit.  I may not be able to attain the same level that I had previously, or get to a much higher level than where I am now, but I know that by slowly getting back into things at the gym, and slowly regaining my eating patterns, I will be able to continue to do CrossFit because it's my passion. 

Someone told me that other day that they were forced to hide my Facebook feeds because I post too many things about the military.  They said it bothered them that I seemed to always be posting something related to Operation Ward 57 or amputees or wounded soldiers.  My question to that person wasn't why do you find that offensive?  My reaction to that person wasn't, why can't you be supportive?  My question to that person was, do you have something that you feel strongly about and support wholeheartedly?  If you did, then you would understand.  I'm passionate about the work I do with Operation Ward 57, and I STRONGLY feel that the wounded warriors coming back from overseas need our love and support.  It saddened me that my friend couldn't support my organization and the work that we do, but it saddened me even more that my friend didn't feel that passionate enough about anything to understand my motivation.  To understand WHY I make those posts, and why I'm constantly trying to get people involved.  If there is one thing I have learned in the last year, it's that doing what you are passionate about will only improve the quality of your life.  It will only give you a sense of fullfillment.  If you do what you love, and if you do what you are passionate about, the rest will fall into place.  It may take time, but it will. 

So, if you find yourself at a crossroads in your life, pause and reflect.  Take the time to figure out where your passion lies.  You will only be happier in the end.  Your passion may mirror mine, and it may not.  But that's ok because this is the passion of the Katie.  What is your passion?

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