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September 15, 2014
By Jennifer Grigg

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Sept. 15, 2014, Port Severn, Ont. – I live beside a golf course and I’m always amazed by the die-hards out there playing in all kinds of weather. It doesn’t seem to bother them if it’s 32 degrees in the shade with a humidity of 40 degrees or, like yesterday, it’s eight degrees and raining.

Sept. 15, 2014, Port Severn, Ont. – I live beside a golf course and I’m always amazed by the die-hards out there playing in all kinds of weather. It doesn’t seem to bother them if it’s 32 degrees in the shade with a humidity of 40 degrees or, like yesterday, it’s eight degrees and raining.

As I walked my dogs Sunday morning and watched the golfers heading out in their golf carts, dressed in toques and jackets, I thought to myself: “what on earth would posses someone to golf in this weather?” Almost instantly (call it intuition, inner knowing, or me talking to myself-and apparently answering) came the reply: “it’s what they love.” It’s easy to do what you love.

Hmmm. I never thought I’d compare myself to golfers, but in that moment I realized that passion is the reason behind anything and everything that we do, that others may perceive as amazing, unbelievable, courageous, or even crazy. They often say “I could never do that” or “I don’t know how you do that.”

The mothers and fathers who go out of their way to drive their kids all over the place for sports and friends; the single parents who work two or three jobs to make ends meet; the police officers who put their lives on the line every time they are on duty; the paramedics who routinely come in contact with potentially life-changing conditions/patients/situations; the firefighters who enter dangerous and extreme environments and often situations; and even the golfers out on the course in (what I consider) extreme weather.

That is passion. That is love. It’s the pure enjoyment of being lost in the moment of whatever it is you’re doing that makes your heart smile.

Take my friend, Forrest Willett, as an example. He suffered a traumatic brain injury following a car accident in which he was the passenger. After years of battling depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and anxiety, not to mention learning to walk, talk and function normally again, he spends his time inspiring others to overcome their own obstacles and move forward in their lives.

Although we’d been friends for years, he came back into my life just before I returned to work following a stress leave due to my own battle with depression, anxiety and PTSD. We ran into each other outside my doctor’s office and within a few minutes of chatting, we realized we had a lot more to talk about.

Forrest is a living example of passion and purpose, and turning your weaknesses into strengths. He now works with Jack Canfield (you can Google either one or both of these amazing people). He has also written a book, Baseballs Don’t Bounce – Random Thoughts From An Injured Brain, and is working on a second book. He also travels all over the world and speaks to people from all walks of life about following your passions and using your heart to turn your life around.

Love is what makes life worth living. Passion is what you share with everyone that crosses your path. Whether it’s on the golf course, at the hockey rink, or on duty with your fellow officers, paramedics and firefighters, when you’re sharing your time and experience with others or sharing moments and memories with your family, it’s love and passion that’s at the root of it all.

That’s why the golfers were out there on a cold, damp day in September, and that’s why firefighters jump out of bed in the middle of the night to go help someone they’ve never met.

Jennifer Grigg has been a volunteer with the Township of Georgian Bay Fire Department in Ontario since 1997. E-mail her at jhook0312@yahoo.ca and follow her on Twitter at @georgianbayjen


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