Like many things in life, passions ebb and flow. I have a habit of taking on a lot because I always want to say yes to ALL of my passions, and lately I've been trying to simplify. I've been working on teaching myself that I have to choose which things to concentrate on, and that letting go of things I love doing to concentrate on self care or on other things I love is okay, as long as I'm doing things that make me happy. I tend to worry that if I stop doing something I am giving up on something I shouldn't. I need to give myself permission to focus on what I want to focus on and put other things on the back burner, but for some reason this is something I struggle with.

I've been trying to reduce my commitments outside of work so that I can have a bit more freedom to write if that's what I choose to do, and to spend my tiny bit of evening free time doing whatever I feel like doing instead of having things I HAVE to get done. I stopped ghostwriting articles and blog posts for my dear friend Michele for now, and am not sure when I'll go back to that. I have been reading more and worrying less, and have been able to get back to writing here a bit more often too.

It's no secret to those who know me that writing is my biggest passion. I've been a writer since I was little, and it's something I always do in one form or another. Right now, I love blogging and I am working on a book. Another of my more recently discovered passions is natural birth.

Two and a half years ago, I flew to Texas and attended a workshop to be certified to teach Birth Boot Camp natural childbirth classes. I became passionate about natural birth during the time between having my children and the years after having Danny. I have taught several class series in Bellingham, and loved teaching and connecting with my students.

I had a class scheduled to begin in March, and ended up cancelling it because I only had two couples registered. Between babysitting, space rental, materials, and gas, I just can't afford to teach a class for only two people anymore. The only way to get more students is to keep teaching, but inside I am struggling with what I want to do. I found that this last time, as the class date approached, I wasn't looking forward to it like I have in the past. I was feeling like it was a lot of work, and that I didn't really want to do it. Saturday is my one day a week where we can stay home and do nothing if we want to, the one day a week we have complete freedom.

Here is where my contemplation comes in. I don't know how to tell if I am ready to move on from teaching, or if I just need to give myself a little bit of time. I know that partially I am pressuring myself because I spent a lot of time and money on becoming certified. I know how important this was to me, and how much I have loved being a part of the Birth Boot Camp community. If I stop doing it now, I don't know if it is realistic to think I'll eventually go back.

I can't figure out if that's okay with me. I also know that there are not enough class options, and I think that this is a really good curriculum. I worry that if I stop teaching and choose not to recertify that I am letting myself down, and letting other people down. I am pretty sure that there is a part of me that thinks people will think I am stupid for working so hard for this and then being willing to let it go, that if I stop, I'm being a quitter and totally lame. This seems pretty ridiculous when I think about it outright, but that feeling is still there inside me. I am afraid that if I let go of this I will regret it.

Being involved in the natural birth world and making a positive impact is something that I felt drawn to and called to do. Right now, I'm not feeling that. My life has been crazy and tumultuous the last few years, and it's hard to make a commitment to something I know takes so much time. When I do think about ways that I can spend what little free time I have, right now teaching is not at the top of my list. But, there's that "right now" again. I'm struggling with how to figure out whether this is something I want to let go of, and that I will be okay letting go of. At what point do I make a decision about this? I can't tell if I want to let go or not, and I'm feeling a bit frustrated about it.

It's funny, much in the same way, I have trouble letting people go. I've worked on this a lot, on the idea that it's okay to let go of relationships if they're not really adding positive value to both people's lives. I think this is just another branch of that part of my brain. I don't like letting things go, and feeling that loss, moving on. It's like... I worry that if I let things go it somehow makes me less good, and that if I let things go there will be a hole in my life, or my heart. When the reality is that my heart is overflowing, and will continue to do so.

I want to write. I have also gotten involved in a local community organization that has captured my passion and allowed me to make some really great friends. When I think of where I want to spend my time, those are the things that fill my bucket right now, that bring me joy. I love doing those things. I think that maybe part of the problem here is that I am not clairvoyant, so I can't tell where my passions will lie in six months or a year.