I do this sometimes...
I stay up too late because I'm feeling motivated and creative. It all started, if I remember correctly, years ago when I realized that writing was my passion. I knew it was my passion because I would sacrifice sleep - sleep the most important thing to me - to write. It was like my creative juices just started flowing at 10:00 pm and didn't stop until 2 or 3 in the morning. I would write and write and write and then go back and read in a matter of minutes what had just taken me an hour to get out on paper. The middle knuckle of my right hand smeared with blue or black ink.
I talked to some wonderful, supportive, kind girls tonight about passion. And my what our jobs do for us and what a difference they make, and why I absolutely can't get up in the morning. My mother told me I was depressed, and that if I didn't feel better by this week, she was making me go back to he doctor and tell him I was feeling so crummy. But, the thing is I've been depressed before - within the last year actually - and this feels very different. Anyway, Tessa, one of those kind supportive girls, said in response to my tired question "It sounds like you just have nothing to look forward to. Nothing getting you out of bed in the morning." A mallet struck a gong in my head at those words. And I turned to JaNae and said " I really need to start working on my project."
I'm here to report for duty on this project. It's the first week of the new year, 2016, and if I start off right it will be easier to stay right. (Oh the train just whistled. I hope with all my heart that I always live close enough to a train to hear that sound. Heavenly) My project is very similar to (and obviously inspired by) Humans of New York. Gosh this is fascinating: Humans of New York Story. Check that out stat. Anyway, the short version is that Brandon Stanton moved to NYC in 2010 because he wanted to take photographs of 10,000 people and plot those pictures on a map of the city. His blog became wildly popular because he managed to capture exactly what people want to see in other people: commonality, humanity, relationship. And it's truly fascinating.
Take that. Add to it my enchantment with people of my grandparents generation and before. With their wisdom, their stories, their unique lives- how they are so different from my life and so identical in the same breath. And finally, splash in the utter heartbreak I feel when I see older people alone and struggling, and voila! My project is born.
I'm going to visit retirement communities and talk with the people there. Interview them about their lives. And post a picture with a small snippet of the story on my instagram. Then link it to my blog here - hellooooo! - with a larger more developed story. Either in interview style or in a narrative.
And that I am passionate about. It's been difficult for me, since my mission, to marry my love of writing (which is an incredibly solitary task of necessity) with my love and adoration of interacting with people (which I had in spades in my youth and then lost with the loudest and ugliest bang you've ever heard somewhere in my early teens. Another story for another time... )
Gosh it feels good to write. It does. And to read. Why do I love it so much? A question, again, for another time. Tonight I am watching the clock tick and thinking about work tomorrow and how I have vowed to be there earlier even though that work - work I am grateful for and work that pays the bills- does decidedly not get me out of bed. I am thinking about the inspiring people there are and feeling grateful for them. I am happy.