Let them eat cake

My son has taken a real hankering to bubble baths. I know it may sound weird, but I think it is cute. I used to have to beg, plead and bribe to get him to clean himself. One day, a couple weeks ago, he was smelling a bit….ripe…..and I coerced him into taking a nice warm bubble bath in my big bathtub. He had a nice time, and I enjoyed the sweet smell of him that resulted. He has taken a “soak bath” (as he calls it) almost every day since. My water bill is going to be out of site, but my boy is much cleaner and I can stand to be close enough to tickle him before bed. I say it is worth every penny.

One might say Ben has become ‘passionate’ about bubble baths. Would ‘one’ be right? What exactly does the word “passion” mean? This is a topic that is on my mind today in abundance. Let me back up a bit. When I was a child (mom, stop reading here) I used to get excited about things. Our family would plan a trip or vacation or braces, and I would be all for it! Alot of times, and I don’t blame my parents, things would not work out as we wanted them to. This resulted in what I call ‘disappointment.’ Maybe some of you have experienced this emotion before….maybe not. If not, I hate and yet pity you. As I grew up, I found that life was not perfect, even outside of my happy home. Lo and behold, disappointments lurked behind many corners, doors, and smiling faces. I came to be less and less surprised by these disappointments and even caused a few myself. Life is a road littered with these types of things. The best we can do is try to navigate somewhat safely through them without becoming a drone.

Fast forward to adulthood. Even when I found myself somewhat in ‘control’ of my own life, I still found myself dealing with disappointments. Sure, there were lots of amazing and wonderful things that worked out swimmingly, but due to Darth Vader and the Empire, there is balance in the universe and I could not go too far without finding something that didn’t work out as I had wanted it to.

I think that if we just look at the sad, or disappointing things in life, it would be easy to become a very sad, depressed, cat lady. Instead of that route, and inspite of the fact that I do love cats, I have tried to look at my disappointments as learning experiences. Everything that comes along can build us up or tear us down…good or bad.  I think I have always been known as someone that generally looked on the bright side of things and learned good lessons along the way.

Fast forward to present day. I look at my life now. I am in a beautiful home with most of my kids, sweet kitties, a coveted dog, good health, family close by, and a halfway decent brain in my head. Life is good. I really can’t complain. And yet, in spite of all of these blessings, I have been told that I am  a passionless, cold hearted…no, not bitch, but ….it may have been implied. To this accusation, I must reply…”I know you are but what am I…” no, not really, but it did make me think.

What is passion? I have always considered ‘passion’ to be an extreme desire or emotion towards a given person, activity, hobby….etc. People get passionate about things they love or love to do. Passion is really close to the word “excited” for me.  I know some people may have a different definition or understanding of the word and that is fine with me. Words are like paper towels…use them however you want to. The friend I was talking to considers theirself to be a ‘passionate person.’  What exactly does that mean? I mean at face value you can’t help but think sex. Sorry, but that is what people tend to mean when they say that…at least on the single sites.  This person did not mean that thought. They explained by saying everything they do, they do with passion.   Let’s just stop there and go back to my definition and understanding of passion. Let’s pretend I am taking out the trash.  I do not have excitement, love, longing, extreme desire, or emotion towards taking out the trash. I may really want my kitchen to stop smelling like fish (or worse) but I don’t think it could ever be said that I have passion towards taking out trash. My friend does. Everything they DO they do with passion.

“And when everybody is super, then nobody will be…” Syndrome, Incredibles. Seems to me that if you do everything, down to wiping your hiney, with ‘passion’….you really aren’t doing anything with passion. You are just an emotional wreck of a person. Was that harsh? I’m sorry. I just don’t get it. I can see living your life to it’s fullest and having a desire to be good and of service and do things well…but no, that’s not passion to me.

Skip to the next chapter. As we talked and as I tried (struggled) to understand our different perceptions of ‘passion’….I came to a rather sad realization. I do believe I am dead inside. No Rhea, not like Sally….I mean more like I have turned into some kind of a robot. I think often of the story of Mary and Martha when they had Jesus over for dinner. I can’t remember which was which….I think it’s cuz they both have dark hair, but which ever one it was that kept on working and got a bit ticked that the other sat and listened…that one is me. That is who I am/have become somehow. I’m not sure how it happened excatly, but I have become a person that just gets it done. Not that there is anything wrong with ‘getting things done’….but  I have lost all passion and excitement from my life. I sat and thought for a while today, trying to remember the last time I was REALLY excited or passionate about something. I got really bored watching the home movies in my head and gave up. Okay, yes, I was a titch excited about watching Hunger Games with Rachel at 12:30 am today, but….was I passionate about it? I would have to say no because if Rachel had called up and said….”I’ve decided to weave a rug from Roger’s chest hair instead of go to the movie”….I would probably have just gone to bed and not worried about it.

I fell almost like I have been in a laboratory, like a white rat/mouse. I have been put through several thousand test that : step on – create great excitement/passion in me, and step 2: slap me across the face as soon as I get to the excitement climax. As you can image, the tests were successful in creating the emotionless ice queen you see before you now.

Am I being to harsh? I don’t know. I want to get excited about things….I want to feel passion…..but I don’t think I really do. Not like normal people. I mean, I LOVE to write. I love it even more when people actually READ what I write and leave me nice comments…..but am I passionate about writing? I don’t know. I think I am getting there….I mean, I make time to do it almost every day. I think about it, I feel actual excitement when I see a comment, …maybe I am passionate about writing. Maybe I’m not an actual Ice Queen but rather an Ice Princess in training.

All I know is that it is hard for me to get excited because when ever I start to feel that way….I feel myself getting closer and closer to the end of a plank on a ship. A sky ship…no, a air war ship like on the new three muskateers movie with Orlando Bloom (bad guy? Bad form!!)  sailing out over a turbulant sea at midnight. ‘One’ might therefore understand why said ice princess keeps her feelings in check and attempts to keep a cool head at all cost.

I remember now the last time I was TRULY excited.(passionate)  It was when I was going to meet with my illustrator for the first time. I was so exited on the way over…you may remember the image I had in my head….twitching, urine, doormat….enough said. I think in that case, it would have to be excited and way beyong passion. Although, the fact that I was willing to not only let someone read my story but also draw pictures to go along with it….there must be passion in there somewhere. Somewhere deep down in the cold crevaces and underlying shadows of my hearty….there must be a smidge of passion towards writing. I think I will claim that, take it, and build on it. Who knows, maybe someday I will be passionate about something that will make a difference in the world. Well, something besides my children…I am way more than passionate about them. I’ll need to invent a new word for that one……cause I said so.


2 thoughts on “Let them eat cake

  1. I can really relate to this topic of passion. Maybe as mothers of teenagers, our children have sucked all that passion from us. I am passionate about them, yes. I love them, protect them, nag them, etc. But they seem to take some of the passion for life away from me. I do not have the time or energy to do the things that I may at some point feel passionate about. Thank goodness for reading novels. They take me away to a place that I can remember, a bit, what it feels like to have some passion and adventure in my life.

    Thanks for writing so often. You make me think. Mostly I think you’re terrific!

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