Wednesday, July 31, 2013

When Is It Ever Easy To Say Good-bye ?-Part 2

I'm sure that God has a plan for everything but it doesn't mean that situations are always easy.   

This photo is taken from my living room looking into the kitchen.   Yep, boxes and mess everywhere!  We've been at it for over a week straight now but that's what we get for hauling everything with us during nearly twenty-nine years of marriage and only two homes.   Yikes!  One thing I will tell you is this:  if you are a sentimental "saver" of everything, get rid of it now!!!  Seriously, this has been one of the most grueling experiences of my life.  Not only is the sorting, giving-away, throwing-away, boxing, etc, difficult physically, but the emotions are raw and running wild as I sort through the details of my life's treasures which create all kinds of memories.    Not to mention that we are significantly "down-sizing" into a two bedroom apartment!   Why oh why did I spend sooo many years collecting "stuff"?!  The great news is that by this weekend we will have all of it boxed and gone.

"What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun."   Ecclesiastes 1:9

Of course I realize that people move every day, in every way.   I've moved churches, professions, families, and more around in the past five years.  I am seriously over it!  All the change!  I'm back to saying that it's never easy to say good-bye.  It's kind of like a death and a new beginning all over again.  To read my original post, "When Is It Ever Easy To Say Good-Bye?"  click here.
  I am thankful for the times I've had here, raising my children and building a family.    Would it have been any easier to move last year or in five or ten more years?  I think not.  I will continue to try and take one day at a time:  enjoy life and thank God for all of my continued blessings and experiences.

Now you know why I haven't been working on my website lately!

I will be back with you for "The Call" on August 15th at 6pm PDT.  Join my husband and I.  Maybe we will have Pastor Bobby back to talk about "Shepard's Grove."  All you need is a phone.   Call in at 6pm PDT sharp.   530-881-1300.  When prompted enter your code:   642848#    

To contact me please email:

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Every Body Needs a Little R & R!

I know, it's been a while and I apologize for going dark on you for a spell!   I wanted to make sure that those who needed to see my last post got a chance to do so thus I left it up for longer than usual in hopes that some found comfort or good feelings.  I also hope it allowed for closure to what was an incredible chapter in the lives of millions of people all over the globe. 

Diamante golf course on the Pacific side.  The sand dunes we used to ATV in!

My site is all about mind, body, soul health so I enjoy the freedom that allows me in talking about any or all of the three areas which make up us amazing humans.  Today I want to focus on the need for respecting yourself and your loved ones enough to know when it's time for a retreat.
 If you know anything about the human side of Jesus you will realize that he regularly took time to be alone, especially after surrounding himself with so many people and performing all of those miracles.  He had great and healthy boundaries.
 If you can't find any time off then maybe your boss is taking advantage of you (you need to learn boundaries) Or maybe it's you telling yourself that you don't need or deserve a vacation until....(fill in the blank)  If you don't work and your husband/wife, or partner won't "allow" you to be alone...well, again, it probably means that you are not very emotionally healthy because you allow yourself to be talked into what others think is best for you.

The main reason that I haven't written in so long is that I needed to take some time away and so my husband and I went on a much-needed vacation right after the 4th of July.  We purposely cut ourselves off from the phone and the emails but had there been an emergency people knew how to find us.  We talked, laughed, golfed, worked-out, sat at the beach,  read,  dreamed new dreams, explored new sights, and enjoyed fantastic yet casual meals.  The highlight of the trip was having our oldest daughter, Angie and her husband, Chris join us for a few days.  *Anytime you can vacation with your loved-ones I encourage you to do so.  It's a fun and a bonding experience.  You get to learn various things about each other that you may not otherwise have the time to discover.  

This was taken in a 'hidden' dinning room I discovered at La Panga Restaurant in San Jose' Del Cabo.

 People will say that they are too busy to get away, still others will say that they just can't afford it.  I can't afford not to!
My recent time away was relaxing but I must admit,  a bit weird feeling because I didn't take my computer and I had no internet for my iphone and no phone service either.  When I say "weird" I mean it made me feel disconnected, out-of-sorts, and very odd to be without all of my technology.  On the other hand it gave me time to realize just how addicted I am when it comes to being wired.  It gave me a chance to work on my boundaries as sometimes I fall into the trap of believing that people just can't get by without me! (or that I just can't get by without my e-devices)

"Personal boundaries are what define your identity. They’re like the property lines around a home. This is my property and that is not my property. This is me — what I value, am good at, believe, need, or feel — and that is not me.
To know yourself and be secure that you are loved is essential to all relationships and activities. The better your boundaries of self-awareness and self-definition are the greater your capacity to offer empathy and love to others. Good boundaries help you to care for others because you have a stable foundation to operate from and are not distracted or depleted by personal insecurities or blind spots. (That’s why it’s not “selfish” or unloving to have boundaries and “take care of yourself.”)source

Okay, so here's the deal:  I know that many of you will doubt this or refuse to do it:   At the very least take a night a week to be alone with your husband or your significant other.  Picnics at the beach or at a park are free.  Make it a surprise.  It will really help your relationship and it will get you out of your rut.  If you are single, do it alone.  Changing your routine will create new opportunities, and who knows, you might even meet someone!

If you think you cannot take the time off for a vacation, please step out in faith and schedule one anyway.   Go online (there's my technology again) and find a three day discounted get-away on one of the many coupon sites.  Leave Friday noon and come back late Sunday.  (By the way, you should be doing this short escape at least every ten to twelve weeks)  Better yet, Google a place where you've always wanted to visit and research the best time of the year to go including the best prices.  Plan an entire week away.  (you should be doing this every six months).
Commit to staying healthy while you're away.  For tips on how to do this my daughter, Christina recently wrote a great blog addressing this challenge and you can read it here.
Remember-not taking care of yourself is a boundary issue.

P.S.  It's summer so make sure you keep your healthy sunscreen on!   Click here to learn more about how important it is to use a non-carcinogenic sunscreen.   These products are amazing!!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Final Closure

  Ramona and Jim Case, long-time Crystal Cathedral members and good friends.   We are standing  on the plaza in front of the visitors center which used to house the bookstore.

After suffering significant loss of any kind, in order to stay healthy in body, mind, and soul, we must allow ourselves to go through the stages of grief   There are a few different theories regarding grief and the model I relate to most is The Five Stages of Grief explained by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross in her book "Death And Dying".
Also known as the 'grief cycle', it is important to bear in mind that Kübler-Ross did not intend this to be a rigid series of sequential or uniformly timed emotions or events but something that flows and changes during various experiences over time.  

The model is perhaps a way of explaining how and why ‘time heals’, or how ‘life goes on’. And as with any aspect of our own or other people’s emotions, when we know more about what is happening, then dealing with it is usually made a little easier.
While Kübler-Ross’ focus was on death and bereavement, the grief cycle model is a useful perspective for understanding our own and other people’s emotional reaction to personal trauma and change, irrespective of cause.  Here are the stages of grief as Kubler-Ross explains them:

1 – Denial Denial is a conscious or unconscious refusal to accept facts, information, reality, etc., relating to the situation concerned. It’s a defense mechanism and perfectly natural. Some people can become locked in this stage when dealing with a traumatic change that can be ignored. Death of course is not particularly easy to avoid or evade indefinitely.
2 – Anger Anger can manifest in different ways. People dealing with emotional upset can be angry with themselves, and/or with others, especially those close to them. Knowing this helps keep detached and non-judgemental when experiencing the anger of someone who is very upset.
3 – Bargaining Traditionally the bargaining stage for people facing death can involve attempting to bargain with whatever God the person believes in. People facing less serious trauma can bargain or seek to negotiate a compromise. For example “Can we still be friends?..” when facing a break-up. Bargaining rarely provides a sustainable solution, especially if it’s a matter of life or death.
4 – Depression Also referred to as preparatory grieving. In a way it’s the dress rehearsal or the practice run for the ‘aftermath’ although this stage means different things depending on whom it involves. It’s a sort of acceptance with emotional attachment. It’s natural to feel sadness and regret, fear, uncertainty, etc. It shows that the person has at least begun to accept the reality.
5 – Acceptance Again this stage definitely varies according to the person’s situation, although broadly it is an indication that there is some emotional detachment and objectivity. People dying can enter this stage a long time before the people they leave behind, who must necessarily pass through their own individual stages of dealing with the grief.   source

Why do I post this on a Monday morning after the last service in the Crystal Cathedral?   Although my husband Robert and I have navigated through our grief over the past five years I realize that there are thousands locally, and even more globally, who have not yet healed.  My hope and my prayer is to provide helpful information so people will find healing.
 An important thing to remember is that grief not dealt with will come out in various ways.  Face it head-on and you can move through it.  Ignore it, sweep it under the carpet, and it can negatively affect your health and your relationships.  
Also, grief is very personal and it has a season of its own.  Don't rush it.  Feel it.  Appreciate it as a season you are moving through.  One thing I did was write.  This blog was started in 2009, only a few months after we left the ministry.  I started it to reach out to all of the church members we were suddenly cut-off from.  Little did I know that the people I came in touch with and the process actually helped me more that I could ever help them.  For this, I will be forever grateful.

Join my Robert and I on July 15 for "The Call" which starts at 6pm PDT.  We will interview a very special guest, Kenneth Lord.  He has produced a movie, "Disciples of The Christ" which was written to be released right after "The Passion of The Christ."  
Join us to see how you can be a part of The Movement. For more information go to: 
This promises to be an amazing evening!
We will also pray together, read scripture, listen to a brief message, and have a time of questions where you get the opportunity to ask anything of  Kenneth, Robert, or myself.   
 To join us all you need is a telephone.   At 6pm sharp (Pacific Time) call:  530-881-1300   When prompted key-in: 642848#  

God is blessing you through all things.   Donna