**Side note, thanks Nichole for using my suggestion for this weeks topic. Now if I don't write something really good I'm going to look like crap :P **
There is a difference between what a person does for a living and what they do to LIVE. When you do something for a living, it's what you do simply because society demands it. it's something to pay the bills. Were all familiar with the old stereotype of the guy who goes off to a dead end job, hating every moment of it, simply because he's got a family at home depending on him. That is working for a living; doing something you don't WANT to do, but something you HAVE to do. But what you do to live.... that is totally different. If you do something to live... it's what you do to make your soul sing. It's something that if you didn't do it, you wouldn't be a complete person. There would be something so vital missing in your very make up that you aren't YOU.
I do one thing for a living. I don't recommend it to anyone; and by gods if I could get paid the same amount to do something else I'd jump ship so fast that my boss' head would spin. When ever someone asks me if my job is hiring I always ask them if they like humanity and want it to continue. If they answer yes, this job isn't for them. But I do it. I do it because I have a mortgage payment. I do it because I have a stepdaughter that needs a good role model on what it is to be a strong woman who is a productive member of society. (Don't get me started on that one, just ask Nichole) I do it 100% because it pays me, and it pays well, enough to cover my bills, and lets face it, right now that's nothing to sneeze at.
But it's not what I do to live.
The things I do to live are many. And taken as a small piece of the whole, they don't seem like a lot. But to me, they are huge, and important, and if any one of them are missing... I'm not myself. I'm like an anemic copy that looks like me, talks like me, but somehow just isn't the same. Only a few people can tell the difference; my husband, my mother, my sister. But those who can tell, know immediately that something is wrong, that I'm missing something.
These are the things I do to live: I sew. I LOVE to sew. Any day not spent at my sewing machine is a day wasted. Not to toot my own horn, but I create art from something as simple as fabric. (OK, so that's a little horn tooting, I'm alright with that) I practice yoga. Bikram yoga, Hatha yoga, Power yoga, I love them all. Unless I've tried to turn myself into a pretzel at least once a week, something is wrong. I write. I've got one book (children's book, as yet unpublished) under my belt, and I'm working on my second (big kids book, so far unwritten... I'm having plot problems, give me a break). While I might not sit and write every day, no day goes by that I don't sit with my eyes closed and work on the story line. The characters become very real for me, and I have to cultivate my relationship with them just as much as I have to with "real" people. I bake. I make a gingerbread cookie that will make a grown man fall to his knees and cry.
Yes, that list seems at first glance to be me saying how wonderful I am. And it is a little. (hey, somebody has got to stroke my ego, may as well be me) These are the things I'm passionate about. The things I NEED TO DO TO LIVE. I practice them, I do them as often as possible.
Because I need to. To live.