I'm trying to make that work as a writer, which is my passion and haunts my dreams. There isn't much about writing that I don't love (although I wish the pay was better). Writing fulfills, renews and excites me like nothing else, and that passion seems to increase the more I do it.
Not everyone is lucky enough to discover his passion. I have high hopes for my son, who recently graduated from high school. I know in my soul that when he finds his own passion, he will know no limits. But finding that passion and convincing him to look for it have so far been elusive.
Our oldest girl, on the other hand, has known her passion at least as long as I've known her. When I me her dad, she was about six years old and already crazy about animals. When my husband bought The Animal Store, she was just 10, and she has logged many hours in the shop helping him. Even from afar, she continues to be a valuable contributor, writing the employee handbook, as well as much of the material for our soon-to-be-updated Website.
But it is the animals she truly loves. In high school and college, she participated in internships through the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago. She worked at the Dolphin Research Center in Marathon, FL. She studied marine biology at the University of Miami and received a masters degree in primate conservation from Oxford Brookes University.
Her master's thesis was on a study she did training select individual animals within a large group. She developed the protocol herself and conducted the study on a group of baboons at the Six Flags Wild Safari in New Jersey. That study will soon be published in a scientific journal. Her methods revolved around the concepts of positive reinforcement training, and her depth of understanding and commitment to these concepts are remarkable.
Those who work with animals must do it for love, because it's certainly not for money. As I have mentioned, I'm a reluctant pet owner, but more and more I have come to appreciate other people's devotion to their animals. But Becky's passion goes beyond just loving her pets. She has developed a deep commitment to conservation and ecology, understanding the true ramifications of various efforts toward recycling and new energy technologies. She helps us decipher the sound bites we hear in the news, explaining how some things that sound good on the surface can actually be more hazardous to the environment.
I admire Becky's passion. I know it is deeply felt and affects all the decisions she makes in her life, not just her career choices. Today I learned she is vying for the opportunity to travel with Julie Scardina, the Animal Ambassador for Busch Gardens and SeaWorld. It's an outstanding opportunity to work with one of her idols, learn about Emperor penguins of Antarctica and further her education.
Becky's goal is to make a real impact on how we treat our home planet and all the creatures with which we share it. She believes education and understanding are the way to do that. I hope you will vote to make her dream come true. Just click here to vote for Becky Bearman.
Not all of us are lucky enough to know or recognize our passion from such a young age. Some of us are lucky enough to be inspired by the passion of our children, family or friends. Are you living your passion or does someone else's passion inspire you? If so, let us know in a comment by clicking here.
"Nothing great in the world has been
accomplished without passion."
— Georg Wilhelm