Six years ago, I auditioned for Listen To Your Mother Madison. I had never auditioned for anything before, and even the word 'audition' gave me a hollow feel in my stomach. But I knew that the open call to come tell your story about motherhood wouldn't leave my mind.
I had a story to tell. It wasn't about my mother, but it was about motherhood. I sat in front of the computer, fingers over the keyboard, and had to keep telling one side of my brain to let the other side of my brain write. Who was it, who thought, they could tell me I had to be experienced to tell my story? Where had they seen "professionals" only? It was up to me to believe I had something to share, to follow that instinct that led me to seek connection.
I kept working on my audition piece, and I made an appointment to try for the Madison show. I drove 90 minutes and held my pages of written story before the Listen To Your Mother production team. Brave enough for my voice not to shake but not yet brave enough to look up from my papers.
But on that overcast February morning, I was there, I had shown up with belief in myself enough to audition, and that moment of empowerment clicked something on in me. My life was switched to a different track. It didn't matter to me if I made the cast, the real change that occurred was in how I began to think of myself that morning at auditions.
Since then, I have become a live storyteller, a writer, a blogger, a humorist, published author, columnist, public radio essayist, and now, a co-producer of Listen To Your Mother Milwaukee.
All because of that day in auditions, when I listened to the voice inside me that pushed me to share my story and seek that connection.
You, too, can answer that call and listen to the advice of my mother, "Never tell yourself you can't."
Our LTYM shows are now in 41 cities, and they are transforming: not just for the reader, but for the audience, too. We find ourselves in each other's stories, and we show up for each other, by witnessing in this share. Find a show near you, audition for a show near you. Give this a listen, and then, write down your Listen To Your Mother Story.
Here's some footage of me getting passionate, geeky, fire in my eyes, about the Listen To Your Mother Show process:
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