How Our Passions Can Make Us Who We Are:
MY INTEREST IN BEES IS A NEWFOUND ONE. I never gave them much thought as a kid. I was just always told to stand perfectly still when a bee was buzzing around and to this day I have a sting-free streak! Other than that, bees were really off my radar. Over the past few years, I have been learning more and more about bees. And now . . . I'm stuck on them like honey!!!
It all began one night at a family get together. I was catching up with one of my dad's lifelong friend and asking him about his hobbies. This guy was always up to something cool on his country homestead. I had fond memories of "helping" make maple syrup at his house with my Dad. ( And by helping, I mean repeatedly I stuck my hands in the sap and scooped & slurped up the surgery water when no one was looking.) My mouth watered just thinking about and I wondered what other sweet ventures he was up to out on the homestead.
"Bees" he replied. "I'm keeping bees now!"
He was the first person I ever knew who actually did this. He proceeded to tell me how he got started. How much honey he collects and how delicious it was. Also how rare the risk of a sting is if you take the proper precautions. He told me about watching the colony of bees swarm from one hive to another after their queen had passed away. His passion for bees was palpable. Soon others were listening in on the conversation and chiming in with their own magnificent bee stories. It was all so very interesting. I wanted to learn even more. Perhaps I could even be a beekeeper someday!
Though I am not yet a keeper of bees, but I have added on a few new titles in the past year. An author, an illustrator and a podcaster. Writing and illustrating children's books has been a dream of mine since I was a child. I feel incredibly thankful to be able to dedicate so much of myself to this passion. For a long time, I felt stuck in a job that was not my passion. I often hear from others who feel stuck and unfulfilled with their jobs too. We can often lose that sense of possibility from childhood. That freedom to pursue our passions with reckless abandon. We dreamed big dreams of flying to outer space or pitching in the world series. And yes being an astronaut or a major league baseball player isn't a realistic goal for most people. But we can still find ways to pursue our passions, make them a priority maybe even our legacy. I couldn't tell you what "job" my dad's friend actually does for a living. I just like to think of him as a homesteader, a maker of syrup, a "Bee Keeper."