“Don’t be in such a hurry. Find your balance before you stand up!” said kuya Abe to me after I took yet another face palm into the water. Damnit. Wasn’t I doing everything my surf instructor taught me? Put one foot in front of the other, lift myself up from the surfboard and repeaaaatugh! It’s a lot easier said than done. What was I doing wrong?
“Don’t be in such a hurry.”
If you’re struggling to learn something new it’s hard not to be in a hurry to get it right. Like the surfers around me I wanted to enjoy the wave. I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it. Most of all I wanted to stop landing on my face because it was starting to hurt.
But Lois Yasay, whom I finally met from the WeAreSoleSisters travel blog, said something during our Passionista workshop that weekend which applies to surfing and life in general:
“Conflict proves whether or not it’s worth it.”
Conflict is a disagreement among two or more forces. It can surge from within you or take you down from the outside. Literally. These waves, they can beat and batter you down if you’re not careful. Then the shore you have to swim to afterwards seems so far away.
Yes, it feels like the ocean and I don’t get along sometimes but I try anyway because it’s worth it. That’s what passion is. It’s what makes surfers travel over 6 hours every weekend just to catch the wave that sustains them throughout the working weekdays.
It’s what brought a handful of us down to The Circle Hostel for our Passion Play weekend in La Union. Now I’ve attended and conducted my fair share of passion talks over the years, but what struck me was momentarily forgetting the answer to: What is passion?
Given how much change I’ve gone through lately (moving to Singapore, among many others) I wondered whether I forgot about the passion that got me this far. Does the current bring us further from the shore or closer to the horizon? Is vertigo the distance we need to get through in the middle?
This dialectic tension, conflict of truth, is what a lot of people struggle with, yet it’s what makes discovering or fighting for our passion worth it. It makes us want to catch that wave, whether it’s the first, or the next, but never ever the last. It shapes us to become resilient and stubborn, even more so than the ocean. Just remember what kuya Abe said:
To stand up, find your balance. To find your balance, don’t be in such a hurry. So work towards your passion, one foot at a time. Believe that when you’re ready to stand up, you will.
If you want to join the next Passion Play retreat contact firstname.lastname@example.org or book at the newest Circle Hostel branch in La Union email@example.com
Other photos from the weekend: