Rites of Passage for People with Passion


Brené Brown wasn’t lying when she said, “When you love something so much, you are willing to eat the shit sandwich that comes with it.”

Basically, she was saying that every profession has a shitty side. If you are truly passionate about whatever it is that you pursue, then you are more than willing to eat the shit sandwich that no one else will. They just aren’t as committed. It’s a dreadful thing for them, but an opportunity to jump at for you.

In lay terms, it’s being happy to be Paris Hilton’s rug that she walks all over –in hopes that Kim Kardashian will be a household name 10 years down the line.

My journey to my dream has been a 10-year shit sandwich in the making.  A triple-decker, overstuffed sandwich that I’ve been all too happy to eat.

They aren’t lying when they say it takes 10 years to master something, from being a celebrity to being a therapist.

This, is my passion.

I have a long way to go still, but I am just now beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. And even though it’s like a grain of salt in the night, being able to see my goals manifesting into reality is so, so rewarding.

I got my first taste of surreal-ness when I was sitting in a Starbucks using the Wi-Fi to apply for graduate school in social work.

I was like, “I’m here. Am I actually doing this?” The fact that I was even going to be seriously considered as a graduate candidate tasted so delicious to me.

And I’m having that same feeling right now. I’ve been so caught up with keeping up –mid-terms, finals, breathing –that I didn’t have a chance to sit back and see what I have become.

All this pressure and I haven’t combusted, so that must mean I’m making diamonds…right?

Today, I realize I am becoming the woman I aspired to be when I was 13-years-old. Today, I am manifesting into the passionate, strong, independent, justice-seeking leader that I looked up to so much.

I looked at my peers around me in my adolescence –Channing, LaRayia and others –and wondered why I was so infatuated with them. I mean, I love women, yes, and these people are beautiful, but there was something more entrancing than that going on. They were inspiring, they were the souls my soul aimed to elevate to (and beyond).

It just never felt right before. When is my time?

I would say to myself, “Amber, you want this so bad but you’re not acting on it, you’re still being shy.”

My body told me that when my time had come it would fall into place so easily.

Graduate school was the lubrication that transitioned me from contemplating to acting.

Now, in the busiest month of February, as I am writing scripts for LGBT awareness events that I’m hosting, pulling together vendors for Domestic Violence workshops and advocating for what I believe in –online, offline, in school, protesting in the streets –I realize…. I am my own inspiration now.

I’m not fully at my goal yet, but I look at me and I make me proud.