Look up the word PASSION in the dictionary and you’ll find a definition somewhere along these lines:
This morning, as I sit on the 2nd floor of Jimmy’s on Gerrard, sipping an americano misto and slowly picking at my blueberry bran muffin… with remnants of henna on my wrist leftover from our Open House at One King West last week…. I’m completely overcome with passion.
I can’t decide what’s more responsible for my uncontrollable heart rate and spinning head – the two shots of espresso in my drink or the fact that I know, to my very core, that I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing in my life. The shortness of breath, the beating heart, the spinning mind and the sheer sense of elation that’s come seemingly out of nowhere – maybe it’s caffeine. Maybe it’s passion.
You can’t fake passion.
You can’t pretend to be excited about something when you’re not.
You can’t force yourself to stay up all hours of the night, answer thousands of emails a week, work harder than you’ve ever worked before on anything that doesn’t get you high. The only way we’ll ever fight against all odds for something is if that very thing that makes us crazy is the same thing that gets us high. For some it’s a business. For some it’s a baby. For some, it’s love.
Last night we began reviewing submissions for the Indie88 Wedding Contest. Not sure what all the #Indie88Wedding excitement is about? Well, we’re about to change two lives….
What makes this even more surreal? How very real it became when I saw the faces, stories, and heard the voices attached to these submissions. I’m asked often what’s made me passionate about planning weddings all these years. These days, I realize my passion rests more in embracing the love that couples have for one another than they do for oversized centerpieces and laser-cut escort cards.
The couples applying for the Indie88 wedding giveaway have a different sort of love. They’re not identifying with planning a wedding – they want to get married. That’s passion. These stories have left my eyes welled up with tears, my heart racing, and my skin covered in goosebumps from head to toe. That’s passion.
“And I get to be a part of this.”
I get to be a part of something bigger than myself.
I have the distinct privilege of changing lives (not just the two lives of our couple but the lives of everyone nearest and dearest to their hearts).
And in between the incredible question responses and the heart-gripping video entries, I was carrying on a conversation with a friend of mine currently displaced 15,000 km away in Malaysia. His first journey alone. His first travel to Southeast Asia. His first time experiencing the life-changing transformations that happen, entirely without intent, when you remove yourself from a world you’ve always known and inject yourself into the biggest culture shock of your life.
In hearing about his latest discoveries about the world and about himself, in listening to his tales of adventure to date and in seeing the snaps he sent along of this world otherwise unknown, my passion for my work within the WG brand was multiplied to the exponent of the passion burning inside of me to keep making things happen; things bigger than myself, bigger than the couples I plan for, bigger than the team I work with.
I found myself saying to him….
“Passion isn’t a choice. Passion is what happens when you successfully align outward actions with your inner purpose.” – and then, so surprised by how real this felt coming out of my fingers, I turned it into a quote…. so that I could read and re-read it over and over to remind myself of its truth.
I mean.. how can you willingly hurl yourself into a terrifying abyss unless you’re passionate about the idea of something you’ll find inside? It’s entirely counter-intuitive. It’s highly contradictory to the basic human instinct to survive. It’s…. ‘crazy’? But then again, ‘crazy’ is how I feel about people having babies… but just because it’s not right for me doesn’t mean that it can’t be precisely what someone else aspires toward, dreams for, wants.
Passion is subjective.
Our Indie88 couples are chosen to be passionate about a mutual life together.
Nick in Malaysia is passionate about changing his life.
And me? …
That’s when, in sitting back on this moderately uncomfortable bench and leaning away from the stylishly urban hipster harvest table I’m working on, I realize -
I’m swimming in passion; from every side, from every angle, against all the obstacles and odds and difficulties that come with what I do, I continue to be passionate about all of it.
Even though I may not have any of the answers.
Even though I may not have any idea of where I’m headed, why I’m headed there, or who I’m headed there with.
Even though I may be terrified every single moment of the day….
But I’ve always professed being passionate about leaning into the discomfort – and I am.
In a couple of days, the WeddingGirl brand will be celebrating her 6th birthday. It’s crazy how time has flown. This adventure has created and re-created me a half-dozen times over. As a self-admitted addict to growth and change, I’m finding passion in the creation and re-creation of who I am, of the events I plan, of the team I work with, and of the people I inspire to transform themselves.
It’s about doing that thing which you think you cannot do. It’s about never giving up on the thing you can’t go a day without thinking about. It’s about doing what scares you, and then showing others how they can do the same.
Those whose submissions I’m reviewing for the Indie88 contest.
My friend Nick in a secluded mountain village in Malaysia.
The beautiful caterpillars-turned-butterflies of the WeddingGirl-multiplied team.
And the chameleon-girl inside of me who gets excited about shedding her skin and changing her colours with every failure, every lesson, every criticism.
And, how lucky am I to be the lightning rod that attracts and disperses it?
Because that’s what life is about….
In the (paraphrased) words of Stars…. You need to hold on when you get (passion) and let go when you give it.
Oh… and did I mention that Stars retweeted me the other day?!? Pretty passionate about that moment too. Yay!