Passion: Who gets to choose?

Katie - Glenelg, Maryland
Entered on June 13, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
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This I Believe

Passion is Your Choice

“Passion”. What does it mean? According to the dictionary, passion is, “any powerful, compelling emotion or feeling”. Everyone seems to have something they live for, and since I was only a kid I’ve been waiting for mine to come and tap me on the shoulder. Only recently, however, have I realized it’s not going to be that easy. You have to go out looking for your passion. Passion isn’t something you are born with; it is something you have to find in your soul. It stays with you no matter where you go and incorporates itself into everything you do. Anything can be a passion if you believe it is.

I have always thought that everyone inherits a passion at birth. Chosen by fate, the purpose of their lives is to do what they were ‘born’ to do. I figured that I was forgotten. When I was born, no ‘passion’ was handed my way. I was simply destined to be ordinary. When I was four years old, I lived in an apartment building next to a small community recreation center. One day on my way to school, I caught sight of several girls about my age, heading in with large tote bags sporting black and white keyboards and large blue clef signs. My curiosity was instantly sparked. I begged and begged my parents to enroll me, and when they finally did, my enthusiasm was uncontained. I was going to learn to play the piano! The minute I

began, I was hooked. I wanted nothing else but the comfort of quarter notes, and the sound of the keys. However, my four-year-old attention span was easily broken. The minute I began to doubt myself, my mother would tell me, “Winners never quit, Katie!” As clichéd as that may sound now, it has stuck with me my entire life. Eleven years later, when the stress of state competitions or judged evaluations begins to stress me out, those words stick with me.

I have always only thought of my music as a hobby, just as I thought of my horseback riding, and my tennis playing. Me? Have a life passion? I had never considered my motivation that of someone who is passionate, but when I think of the feeling I get singing on stage, or playing the piano, it is obvious. If passion is in fact “any strong or compelling feeling” than it is obvious. Music is what I was meant to do with my life, and music will definitely play a large part of my future. I believe that you can choose your own passion, and I have already chosen mine.