Hit send. We do it for countless text messages and emails every day. It’s a widely accepted form of communication. It’s quick and easy.
Recently the drummer for the band Pearl Jam tested positive for Covid, a Californian teenager who had sent the band his drumming video got a chance to play with the 90’s grunge band. The high school teacher in me can almost see a bunch of guys standing around the school cafeteria goading him on.
“Hey this is a great video.”
“Hey, you’re a good drummer.”
“Why don’t you send the video to Eddie Vedder?” Vedder is Pearl Jam’s singer. I’m not that cool I had to look it up.
“Yah, you met his daughter.
“Yeah, you said you got her number.” The crowd goes ooooh.
“Send it to her. I bet she’ll show him.”
I’ve seen lots of cafeteria conversations go down just like that. We’ll never know whether it was peer pressure or a personal act of confidence. The kid hit send on the message with his video and now he can say he played with Pearl Jam.
It’s exactly what we want young people to do, gain skills and use them. But what about the rest of us?
Too many people shy away from making a bold, brash decisions. Perhaps we don’t realize it’s necessary. As adults our lives are full of accomplishment because we pay the bills, do the laundry and keep the house from falling apart. Its honorable.
Let’s face it. That life lacks passion. It doesn’t matter how old you are, it’s important to strive for something. Passion is different from ambition because ambition expects a return. Passion moves one’s heart and soul. It provides an emotional high.
Passion can lead to a clear sense of purpose which is an element of a happy life. Let’s be clear passion isn’t without effort and work whether you decide to write a novel, paint or play on the local basketball or volleyball team.
Yet so many of us feel the twinge in our hearts for something that would light up our lives but we don’t allow ourselves to take the plunge.
Too often we wistfully sigh, “wouldn’t it be nice if.” We never follow through to make our dreams happen. We never hit send.
Of course, hitting send is no guarantee of reaching your end game, like the Californian teen who got to play the drums with his favorite band.
It isn’t the point. It’s striving for something that sets our souls afire. It creates new friendships and new conversation. It makes life a little less daily. Recently, I took a class in screenwriting. I loved every minute of it but I clearly wasn’t the star of the class. What was important was that my grandchildren knew. The 10 and under crowd had questions from the ‘can we be in your movie?’ and will we get paid? But then they asked how many pages in the script. It’s an eye-popping for a elementary school child who thinks a five-sentence paragraph long to learn that a script is 100 pages.
For this moment in my life, I feel it’s important for my grandchildren to know that I choose to do something hard.
Throughout life our passions and purpose will change. Each change will make us a little bit braver to experience new things.
The alternative is allowing ourselves to live in a monotonous rut. The equivalent to lighting a lamp and putting it under a basket.
Each of us are meant to be a light in this world. We share ourselves by way of our talents and our example.
Turn on the lights. Hit send.