Oh goodness, finding what you’re passionate about is hard. It’s especially hard in this day and age when, while some may require more work than others, there is a plausible pathway to most if not all career choices that you could make.
So, I’ve wanted to be a journalist basically since I came out of the womb. I cried in fourth grade when I was sick for the writing TAKS test because I really just wanted to go to school and write all day. My internship this past summer in Savannah, while I had some loneliness issues, the actual getting up every morning and writing was phenomenal and exactly what I wanted for myself.
Now, for some reason I got scared in college. There were so many people that were clueless about what they wanted to do with their lives, and so I thought to myself, “Self, how can you possibly claim to have any idea what you want to do with your life if all of these people are so clueless? Have you really given yourself the opportunity to do something else?” So, this summer I set out to do as something else. I packed up and went to Washington, D.C. to work as a Congressional intern.
That was an experience. I learned so much in DC from the city, the random people and especially the people I was in the office with. One of the most important things I learned, however, was that this is not what I want to do with my life. It was great to be there for a summer and I honestly believe everyone who works on The Hill is admirable, but I just do not think that particular line of work is for me, which is completely fine.
Finding your passion is hard, though. I know so many people countless years older than me that haven’t found it yet. They get up every morning and hate their job and that just sucks. I think I’m blessed, so blessed, to have found something I am so passionate about.
While in DC I had the opportunity to visit the Newseum. (If you’re in DC definitely check it out. It’s worth the entrance fee and one of the best museums in DC if you ask me.) So, while in the Newseum I cried more than once. I cried while looking at exhibits and cried while watching the little videos they have too. Want to know why? Because I love this. I love being in the thick of it. I love hearing people’s stories, from the woman who owns a vegetable stand to the President of the United States. I love being accountable for the people and searching for the truth for them. I just love it.
I strongly believe journalism is a calling. (I know, I know, get off my high horse. Oh well.) It’s a generally thankless job that (most of the time) doesn’t pay very well. So it’s hard to find something to love in a thankless job that works more than 40 hours every week that doesn’t pay very well if you’re not fulfilled by it internally.
However, something I’ve noticed is people don’t burn out easily. The greats like Anderson Cooper and Walter Cronkite and Woodward and Bernstein – they were or are in it forever. If you love it you love it and you want to do it until you die on the news desk (not literally).
I’m so excited to be able to live my passion and I cannot wait to begin work.