Reflections on A February Birthday
Approaching a big birthday in February, I began to wax a bit nostalgic about years past and days ahead. But most of all, I felt blessed because I understood what Mozart and Bach felt in their passion for their work. I truly feel passion for what I do: bringing education news to hundreds upon thousands of readers both in the newspaper and online for the past eleven years. And I feel compelled to continue to do so, no matter what birthday I’m having. Passion is commitment; passion is rising in the morning with a purpose; passion is having a plan and executing it; passion is sublime; passion makes life worth living.
I always try to convey my passion to the young people who intern at our newspaper as well as to my granddaughter, a third-grader. I was not surprised one day when she said, “Grandma, when I’m in high school, I want to help little children in hospitals.” Passion can be taught. Passion can be instilled by parents as well as great teachers. Throughout the pages of Education Update, we always ask in our interviews, “Who were your mentors?” The mentors and teachers who imbued their students with passion are remembered forever.
I’ve just had 32 volumes of Education Update bound as my birthday gift to my three adult children. That is my legacy to them and to their children. It is more than having their mother’s magnum opus on the bookshelves; it represents a life force, a mission, a dedication to something greater than us, the will to accomplish good in the world.
One of my sons is a writer and editor, one is an ophthalmologist and my daughter is a surgeon. They have already gone forth in the world and taken their place, striving to make it better. I can ask for no greater blessing than that.