This week I watched the Gabby Douglas Story on Netflix and was amazed by her passion and drive at such a young age. Watching a child who started out as a poor young girl doing cartwheels in the house to Olympic gold medalist is nothing short of inspiring.
As I watched her story I kept telling myself ‘some people are born to do what they do.’ They may be walking around with a dormant talent waiting to be discovered. And once they get a taste of their innate passion, they become unstoppable.
Growing up I wanted to participate in any and every club I could get my hands on. Odyssey of the Mind, Girl Scouts, geography club, you name it. But once I discovered public speaking and broadcast classes, I knew I had found my place.
I soaked in the nightly news and practiced sounding like the anchors and reporters. Reading stories to my siblings and classmates was never a chore, but a chance to hone my skills.
By the time I got to high school and college, I was well aware of what I wanted to do and looked out for any and every opportunity to get myself closer to my dream. It was nothing short of an obsession. It paid off in a full-ride scholarship and career I’m still enjoying while raising my family.
I can only hope that my children are as passionate about something as they grow up. That intense desire and focus can help keep kids out of trouble, and concentrating on what they really enjoy. But how do you cast a wide enough net without overscheduling everyone?
Lil’ J is currently enrolled in a gymnastics class twice a week as well as a ballet/tap/tumbling and a hip hop class. After months of begging me to try ballet I finally obliged, but then she told me she would like to do a hip hop class after seeing me do mine, and taking family Zumba together. The gymnastics is just a part a mother’s morning out program I desperately need, but she’s really getting into it.
Part of me wonders if I’m going overboard, and another part of me wonders when we’ll notice that spark of passion in her. How long does it take? Should we try a musical instrument next? Or a sport like softball? WHEN WILL SHE TELL ME SHE WANTS TO BE AN OLYMPIAN?
My kids might never have a Netflix documentary about them, but I hope to help document their excitement as they discover what they were born to do.
Do you have a passion? I really curious how common it is. Has your child found theirs?