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Your Soul is Calling-Answer It!

Happy New Year!  It’s been a while since I’ve written this blog because I have been busy with–get this–my NEW YEARS RESOLUTION!  It’s kind of funny to me because there’s a lot of hype around New Year’s Resolutions which I don’t buy.  I actually believe that at any moment, any time, any day, we can decide to change–each moment we are alive we have an opportunity to make a new resolution.  We don’t have to wait for New Years.  And since we are all human and make mistakes and fall off wagons, I don’t want to have to wait for another new year to try again to change something about myself.

This is precisely why the practice of writing in a journal is so powerful: When we write, we are in a conversation with our deepest selves whereby we are in continual reflection.  When we see our reflections on a regular basis, we are better able to see where we are headed in Life and where we want to head.  When we write, we reveal the truth of ourselves.  We get to a point where we can’t hide, we can’t wait, and we can’t lie–our lives stand starkly before us and demand to be listened to.  Because of this, we are moved to grow and evolve.  Just as a plant cannot help but grow toward the sun, the same is true for us humans.

Since the day I read Ramona and Beezus by Beverly Cleary and I walked upstairs to where my parents sat at the kitchen table and announced I was going to Be A Writer someday, I have known this is my destiny.  How do I know?  I don’t know how I know. I just do.  It’s in my blood.  It’s in my soul.  It whispers to me when I’m standing in the checkout line at the grocery store and when I’m driving and listening to loud music and when I hear the “chink” sound when I drop my .50 into the cup for a refill of coffee.  It is there.  All.  Of.  The.  Time.  And I feel damn lucky for it.

You are what your deep driving desire is; As your deep driving desire is, so is your will; As your will is so is your deed; As your deed is so is your destiny.

-The Upanishads

To clarify: While I have finally accepted that I am a writer, (I figured that out a couple of years ago when I was actually in the midst of writing “I want to be a writer”  for the 1000th time.  I had been writing for 20 years before it dawned on me.) I have revised the declaration of my dream to be: I want to write books for kids that make them feel the way reading Ramona and Beezus books for the first time made me feel.

This is what I’ve always wanted.  It’s been 30 years since I realized this is what I wanted.  So the questions begs of itself, why haven’t I yet?

Fear.  Insecurity.  Because really smart people write books.  Because I don’t know how.  Because I don’t read Important Books.  Because I’m too busy.  Because I’m in school.  Because I just had a baby.  And another.  Because I’m writing my thesis.  Because I have to do this first.  Because, because, because.  Blah.  Blah.  Blah.

I do believe things happen when they are meant to happen.  That we can decide what we want, but we’re not necessarily in charge of how or when it will come to be.  That a tomato plant can only bear fruit when it is good and ready.

But if we do not apply action and effort to our dreams and desires, we can wish until we’re blue in the face and nothing will happen.

I’ve been writing a young adult novel for four years now.  Well, off and on for four years.  After wasting days crying and whining to Paul about not having time to achieve my dream, after getting crabby with my family because I was actually crabby with myself, I realized that unless I make a commitment to myself to sit down and write it to completion, whatever and whenever and however that may be, it will not get done.

“…then the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”  -Anaïs Nin

So this new year, 2010, for better or worse, I resolved to get my tired butt out of bed in the dark of the early morning, before everyone is awake, grind the beans and pour the water into the coffee maker, and write.  I will repeat this process until the day I fall off my chair with the realization that it is finished.

Again, I have no idea when or how this will happen.  All I can do is make a commitment to at least show up to the page and try.

“Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.” –Martin Luther King

Writing Exercise: 1)What is your deep, driving desire?  2)What is keeping you from that desire? 3)What can you do right now, today, to begin the journey toward that which makes your soul sing?

I ask you, if not now, then when?  Don’t fool yourself into thinking that a huge reservoir of time will magically appear.  It won’t.  Rest assured, life will continue to flow and fill in the spaces until you decide you are ready to answer your soul’s calling.  Answer it!

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