Weekly Writing Challenge: Moved by Music

As a dancer deep down inside, I’ve always felt a wonderful connection to music. It makes me want to move and groove. I’ve always liked to try to pick out different beats in the song and think of how you could mix up the tempo of a dance to fit the different and less obvious beats and rhythms of a song. For this writing challenge though, instead of picking a song I would dance to, I decided to pick one that triggers an emotional memory for me.  Music can be so powerful, especially in relation to memory. Music is perfect for immortalizing the emotions of a moment, which, for those of you who know about the brain, is what really makes a memory stick. The song I’ve chosen is actually a hymn titled Be Still My Soul. I was originally planning on staying away from hymns and religious music for this challenge for various reasons but I just keep coming back to this one (don’t worry, this isn’t going to be an I Love Jesus and God lecture).


Back when I was in high school, my sister-in-law was pregnant. She was the first one of my siblings to be having a baby so it would be the first of my parents grandchildren and my first niece. It was definitely an emotional time for my family. During an ultrasound, the doctors discovered that the baby’s brain wasn’t developing. She would go full-term but likely only live for a few hours. After the initial shock and pain, we accepted this and were looking forward to being able to cherish the few hours we would have with her before she passed away. Then my sister-in-law got sick. The baby passed away before birth and those few precious hours were ripped away from us. For me, still a young girl trying to understand life, this rocked my world and shattered a little part of my heart. She was named Kymberly and we held a small funeral for her. To anyone who has attended a funeral for a child and seen a casket so small, you understand how heartbreaking this is. One of the hymns we sang (only one I remember from that day) was Be Still My Soul. It wasn’t even really singing, more like all of us pleading to ourselves and promising ourselves that it would be all right while tears streamed down our faces and our voices cracked. For a long time afterwards, I couldn’t hear this song without tears coming to my eyes. To me it is a personal comfort, a promise, and a small, intimate memorial to the beautiful niece that never got to see this world.



1) Be still, my soul: The Lord is on thy side;

With patience bear thy cross of grief or pain.
Leave to thy God to order and provide;
In ev’ry change he faithful will remain.
Be still, my soul: Thy best, thy heav’nly Friend
Thru thorny ways leads to a joyful end.

2) Be still, my soul: Thy God doth undertake

To guide the future as he has the past.
Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake;
All now mysterious shall be bright at last.
Be still, my soul: The waves and winds still know
His voice who ruled them while he dwelt below.
3) Be still, my soul: The hour is hast’ning on

When we shall be forever with the Lord,
When disappointment, grief, and fear are gone,
Sorrow forgot, love’s purest joys restored.
Be still, my soul: When change and tears are past,
All safe and blessed we shall meet at last.



Link for the Challenge:




Sara Bareilles!!!!
I only knew one of her songs before (love song) but I recently found out that she is the cousin of choir teacher from elementary school. She is coming out with a new album (the blessed unrest) this year and has released one of the albums songs digitally (Brave). Of course, her relation to my teacher is not why she is now my favorite, it’s just that this revelation led me to check out some of her other songs and I absolutely adore her work.
The elementary school that I went to from Kindergarten all the way through 6th grade is going to close (permanently) at the end of this school (seems unrelated but it isn’t). All the children currently attending have to start school at one of the other schools in the area. It can be a tough transition to go to a new school (especially when it’s for no good reason) so the students were taken on field trips to visit their new schools and check out the campus. My ex-choir teacher, amazing as she is, played Sara Bareilles new song Brave for her students before their field trip, hoping that the song will help them to be brave with all the changes going on and that they won’t be so scared to go to a new school. It has been an emotional time for our community, especially as the school is over 50 years old and some families have had multiple generations attend.

What a wonderfully inspiring music video!


My friend introduced me to this song last week title Bullet by Hollywood Undead.




It’s such a catchy, fun sounding song that easily has been stuck in my head since I heard. The catch is that the song is about committing suicide. I think I’d get some strange looks if I walked down the street singing this song. I think I’ll just have to stick with Mackelmore’s And We Danced. And had a really, really, really good time.