Passion, emotion, sensitivity

What the hell am I supposed to do with any of it?

Actual photo from a thing I did: The JMT. Maybe I’ll write about it someday. Maybe not.

It all started with an overdue reply to a friend’s text message. Passion. Or a desperate and misspelled acknowledgement of my severe lack of it.

I’ve never known passion. Truthfully I don’t feel all that passionate about writing; a fact many people might be surprised by considering the journalism degree, years of newspaper and radio gigs, and this whole quitting-my-job-to-create-content-full-time thing. I decided to pursue journalism on a passing suggestion from my homeroom teacher during my senior year of high school. I guess she was impressed with the creative writing journal I was supposed to be filling out each week but in reality had scribbled frantically the night before it was due. It was a gentle nudge in any old direction. Nothing more. But I, lacking the “passion” I assumed everyone but myself possessed at the ripe age of almost 18, went for it.

Emotion. Now there’s a word I’m familiar with. That I’ve always had plenty of. An abundance, likely. I don’t believe that equates to passion. And I hope it doesn’t because I can’t seem to shake the negative connotation I’ve assigned to emotion as if it’s no more than an illness to be overcome or a weakness to be exploited. Now a decade out from those late high school years, I know better — but I don’t feel any better about it. Not yet.

A good friend throughout college, an eventual roommate, and my birthday twin (Sorry, Ryan.) was on to me early. He told me under my tough exterior he could see a deeply sensitive person. This via another fragile text message conversation in the midst of my very own overdue but no less heart wrenching breakup. You know, the kind where I was planning our children’s names while he wasn’t even bothering to hide his amassing collection of other girls’ numbers in his phone.

Sensitive and emotional but dispassionate. Winning combination. Just exactly where I want to be at this unparalleled time in history. Women all around me (Does that statement count if my only contact with them is digital?) are steamrolling outdated beliefs about feminine emotions in pursuit of equality in roles about which they feel passionate. But I am not like them. How could I be while I subsist on paltry freelancing stabs in the dark, free WiFi, and rumination about what the fuck it is I want to do with this life?

Bonus reading from a woman I consider to be life-ing way better than myself:

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