All these things I feared would bruise him he caught with grace and ease Original Batik by Lisa Kattenbraker

There is a place in my gut, just about 3 inches behind and above my navel, that churns and flutters when I hear a good song. That's the feeling of anxiety that tells me it's been too long since I sat down to write, an envy that burns hot blue and lets me know I need to be doing something other than this survival thing I am doing right now, and I need to listen to my soul's hunger.

That is when I know I have a dream that is waiting to be followed, a drive that peels to be on the open road chasing down its muse.

I sat nursing my babies for four years with that engine revving inside me, wondering if I might ever be able to feed the hunger in my soul. Don't get me wrong, having children has grounded me and filled me with such fullness that I never could've known otherwise, but still, there is a hunger. My dreams won't let me be!

So now when I lie awake at night dreaming of how to accomplish everything I wish for, and wonder why the heck I am so passionate and driven about things that don't have any guarantee of putting food on my family's table, or anything to do with the laundry or the kids, I am very scared. I am scared of taking risks that to conventional wisdom are ridiculous and make no sense because they don't seem to have anything to do with necessity.

And then a voice inside my head/heart says but did you know that music can save your life? Did you know that music can be a weapon? Did you know that a story can be powerful medicine?

" 'Remember only this one thing', said Badger. 'The stories people tell have a way of taking care of them. If stories come to you, care for them. And learn to give them away when they are needed. Sometimes a person needs a story more than food to stay alive. That is why we put these stories in each other's memory. This is how people care for themselves.'" -Barry Lopez, Crow and Weasel.

So I write songs and poems. They wake me up and pull me over to the side of the road. I have to trust that there is a rhyme, if not a reason, for this, and carve out time to do it anyway.

This year I am dreaming big, thanks to a great x-mas present from the comet boy (who has been writing mondo beyondo lists with me for 5 years now, and his includes going to the moon, literally!). And listening to my dreams in a big intentional way.

How about you? What's your do it anyway?