Time and Talents

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Worship in the Overflow 

“What am I doing?”, was my thought this morning. Sitting down with some coffee, I pulled up my WordPress site to read some Blogs I follow. I chose “Minimalist Grandma.” first.

The woman behind the Blog is named Jill. We met on WordPress, and have a lot in common. My best friend during childhood was named Jill. She is not that Jill, but it’s easy to remember her name, which is usually a challenge for me. Jill and I have simplified our lives to the point that we now have time, along with  passion, and purpose to pour into others.

In Jill’s Blog, she dove right into the subject by saying, “I am now making decisions about my time and talents. What do I keep? What do I discard?” This is letting go at it’s finest!

Time and talents. Walking through a Breast Cancer Journey last year proved time is precious. It should not be wasted, because an unlimited amount is not promised. On talents…we are all given at least one gift. With practice, that one gift will cause an offspring of other gifts. Jill’s Blog revealed a new twist on something I have always believed to be true.

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I have always given from my overflow, but Jill writes, “It seems like we should be giving out of our abundance, but I find that I give best and most from my lack.” BOOM!

A friend of mine just posted on Facebook, “The more love you give away, the more love you will have.” My favorite thing to do is give love away, but there are mornings I wake up running low on love. Maybe I give too much away, and don’t save enough for myself? Too much time spent giving of our gifts, and talents, without balance, leaves me depleted.

Maybe that is why I have free time from giving it away.

If what we give, is what we receive, then I want to find out what I lack, so I can give that. Looking over my life there is no obvious lack, so today I will ‘dig deeper.’ What do I lack?

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If it’s already in ‘lack mode’, it shouldn’t be given away at this time. There needs to be time spent nurturing it, so it will grow. Someone once told me I lack commitment. Two years later, I let the man go who told me that, so maybe it’s true. Being in three serious realtionships over the past 30 years, I have been the one who leaves. Do I lack commitment?

You can read Jill’s complete post by clicking here. Thank you Minimalist Grandma for making me think. That is something there is no lack of, but I’m on a jouney to see what is.

A Year

I went to see my Breast Surgeon this morning for a follow up visit. She said, “You look great! You cannot even tell you’ve been through an all out war!” All I could say was, “God is good.”

She always hands me a list of my next steps. She wants me to wait a few weeks, and have a mammogram, but let my breast heal from the radiation. She said, “If you wait one month, you will have your mammogram exactly a year from when you had that first one.”

The journey began around March 7, 2016. You can read about it here.

 

I had to stop Googling first thing. That will scare the crap outta ya. Instead, I found Blogs written by women walking a similar path. This one woman was ahead of me on the Cancer path, and she was a comfort. She gave an in-depth description of the Chemo I would be receiving fondly known as The Red Devil. She is a truth-teller, and that is all I needed.

The last Cancer post I read, was written by a woman that was nearing the end of her journey. She was looking forward to it being over and feeling that sense of elation. I thought I would feel that too, knowing that the worst is behind me. It has been different for me.

It’s like everything in my life is more vividly colored, more intense. I notice things now, that I had missed before. I am more in-tune to my heart, and listen to my body, and soul.

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There is no rush, but I don’t want to miss a thing. It’s like, I was on this darkened path, but then gradually it became less dark, until I stepped out of the damp, darkness, into the light.

I have a myriad of feelings, but elation, “Whew! That’s over!”, hasn’t been one of them. This quote sums it up, “New Year, New Feels, New Chances, Same Dreams, Fresh Starts.

When I have my next mammogram, it will show nothing, which is better than something.

It’s been a year.

meBarbara is a Writer, a Mom to her 17-year-old daughter, a recent Breast Cancer survivor, and she loves God. When she started this Blog in 2014 Letitgocoach was the name that stuck. She enjoys helping people Let Go of what is holding them back from having a beautiful life. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

People Mean Well

My daughter and I live in a very small town. We found out recently, that people ride by and look to see if our vehicles are here. They know when we’re home, and when we’re not home. I’m sure they mean well, but in today’s world, that could be considered ‘stalking.’

There is a man who lives in this little town that seems to know everybody’s bizness. He knew when I was going through Chemo, when I had my surgery, and he knows I’m going through Radiation. He didn’t hear it from me, but somehow he knows these things. I wonder how?

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His wife has had Breast Cancer, and from what I gather talking with him, she is battling it again. He didn’t go through doctor’s to heal her. He knows people from years ago that cured Cancer naturally. He stopped by my house yesterday, and handed me a bottle of dark liquid.

How do we discern the right path? I believe there are signs along the way.

God has healed me, and He used everything I went through to do so. Will the Cancer return? I don’t know, but will cross that bridge if it appears. I thank God everyday for healing me, and I haven’t asked Him to send backup. In other words, I haven’t prayed this man into my life.

That was the first sign for me. Another sign is, whatever he just handed me is illegal. He told me he could go to jail for giving it to me. That was a big red flag because I don’t do illegal.

I would love to meet his wife one day. To see her, and hear her story. He said she has lost 40 pounds, and is healthy as a horse. Going through Chemo, I lost 20 pounds, and I didn’t feel healthy. I felt very frail, and missed that extra weight. Slowly, I am gaining it back, and 20 pounds kept me in the safe zone. Losing anything more than 20, I would be skin and bones.

As if I hadn’t heard enough, he just had to throw this in. This liquid tastes like death itself. For it to work, I will need to cut out ALL sugar, wheat and pasta. Welp, that did it for me!

I love wheat! My man has taught me how to make our own pasta, and I cannot imagine my life without chocolate. So, he was handing me something illegal that tastes like death, and I may lose 40 pounds because I would have to stop eating! I eat healthy, but love my treats. Everyday just happens to be an occasion to celebrate with a piece of dark chocolate, or two.

When people come into our lives, there is always a reason. I haven’t quite figured out the reason behind this man, but God will show me in time. He is pretty comfortable barging into people’s lives, so maybe no one has told him ‘no’ before. God knows I have learned how to do that too. Whatever the reason behind it, I know it will be for my good, and God’s glory.

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Barbara is a Writer, a Mom to her 17-year-old daughter, and loves God. When she started this Blog in 2014 Letitgocoach was the name that stuck. She enjoys helping people Let Go of what is holding them back from having a beautiful life. She found out in March of 2016 that she had Breast Cancer. She has completed Chemo, and is starting Radiation. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

Don’t Be Angry

I woke up thinking of a lady I saw at Radiation. She was agitated in my presence, and I couldn’t grasp how to comfort her. I thought she was scared, but I found out later, she was angry.

There are 5 stages of grief, and when I found out I had Breast Cancer, I went through them all. Some people get stuck on a certain one, but you need to keep going. Don’t get stuck, and roll around in one. If you do that, you are going to miss out on the point of the journey.

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I stayed in Denial for quite a while. Every doctor I met, told me the same thing, and I just sat there ready to bolt. My daughter would go with me to the appointments, and listen for me. Even though I was sitting right there, I wasn’t actually hearing what they were saying.

Then I got just flat out pissed off. In came the yelling match with God. Have you ever noticed, God doesn’t yell back? He just patiently waits for the fit to subside. All the questions, but the most popular one was, “Why?” I had plans for 2016, but now I was going to spend it killing Cancer? Well, God and Chemo took the anger right out of this girl.

Good ol’ Chemo. That is where I learned the most. I could write a book on that alone.

I was bargaining my way through every chance I got. Let’s face it. I usually get my way, but the doctor’s wouldn’t budge. “Can I take a longer break?” No. “Can we just stop right here?” No. “Do I have to come back and keep doing this?” Yes. They were focused on the cure. They had a plan to kill this lump in my breast, and they succeeded. I’m glad they told me no.

Waves of sorrow would wash over me during Chemo. I wouldn’t say I was depressed, but I definitely felt sorry for myself. I couldn’t do anything about anything! All I could do was open my eyes to a new day. Sometimes it took a few days to become stable enough to shower. I just laid in bed thinking of what I would write, if I had the well being to write it.

Acceptance.

This was the sweetest part of the journey. Once I finally accepted the journey.

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God didn’t do this to me. Being an overthinker, I went through every scenario trying to pinpoint what caused this Cancer. Does it really matter? It wasn’t about the lump. It was about what God was going to do for me, that I couldn’t do myself. When I got to that point, and I had to ask for help from God, and others, I believe God started to smile down on me.

God doesn’t want us to walk through this life on our own. He is with us every moment of everyday, but we tend to only call out to Him when needed. In my anger stage, I told God, “I can’t do this on my own.” He was there every step of the way, and my heart is full of His goodness and grace. Don’t be angry. This wasn’t done ‘to’ you, but God will use it for you.

 

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Barbara is a Writer, a Mom to her 17-year-old daughter, and loves God. When she started this Blog in 2014 Letitgocoach was the name that stuck. She enjoys helping people Let Go of what is holding them back from having a beautiful life. She found out in March of this year that she has Breast Cancer. She has completed Chemo, and is starting Radiation. She is in the midst of writing a book which you can help support with Patreon. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

 

 

 

Look and See

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My favorite part of this Breast Cancer Journey, is the people God has placed in my path. Friends I’ve had for years, and new ones, love on me. I salute all you Beautiful Souls that give us care in the Cancer Centers. You make a difference in peoples lives every single day.

I don’t know where you are in your journey. Mine is nearing the finish line, and God is finishing up with a bang! There is one thing He drilled home quick. “It’s not about me.” I always love hearing that. “This is not about YOU Barbara.” No God. It’s about the journey.

Try not to rush the journey lovely. One day it will be over, and you will want to look back at everything you learned. If you are pushing yourself through, you are missing all the beauty.

You might be wondering, “What beauty?” Oh love, the beauty is YOU.

When your hair starts to fall out, go ahead and shave it off. You don’t need it, and I love feeling the air touch my naked scalp. I tried to hide it in the beginning with scarves, but living in Texas that was too hot and itchy for me. I pulled up my big girl pannies, and walked outside with a bald head. At that point, I stopped worrying what other people think.

I told myself in the beginning, I was wearing the scarf for them. Didn’t want to shock them seeing a bald headed woman in public. Well honey, if you think that will shock them, you aren’t on Goggle enough. There are a lot of things more shocking than a bald head. It’s actually an exhilarating and freeing part of the journey when your eyes aren’t hiding anymore.

This entire journey involves a lot of waiting, and a lot of the unknown. Get good with that.

It would be very stressful to face every stage of the journey, and bulldoze my way through. That would be ME making it happen as quickly as possible, and not giving God a chance to work. Running on the fear of it all, and not resting in His peace. I had to take a lot of my old behaviors, and flush them down the toilet for this. I wasn’t going to rush anyone, including me.

When people asked about my hairless head, I would tell them I didn’t have a choice. It was done for me. This usually opened a door for me to share how extraordinary this has been. This has been an amazing journey, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. My God is doing for me what I cannot do for myself. He will do the same for you, if you look and see.

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Barbara is a Writer, a Mom to her 17-year-old daughter, and loves God. When she started this Blog in 2014 Letitgocoach was the name that stuck. She enjoys helping people Let Go of what is holding them back from having a beautiful life. She found out in March of this year that she has Breast Cancer. She has completed Chemo, and is starting Radiation. She is in the midst of writing a book which you can help support with Patreon. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

Dear Sober Me

It’s been raining this week in Texas. The sun broke through the clouds this morning, beamed through the front windows, and filled my home with light. The air outside was cool, but the warmth of the sun felt fabulous. Now it’s cloudy again, but that is only the weather.

I am grateful every morning I wake up, but even more grateful to wake up sober. Today marks 18 years of sobriety for this chick. So, even though the weather is cloudy, my mind is not, and neither are my eyes. There is a lot on my mind at the moment, but my eyes are shining bright! Asking God for His help 18 years ago, was the best decision I ever made.

I just returned form a very long appointment with a Radiologist. Just to check my level of patience, they had me waiting from the very beginning. I went yesterday, which living in the woods, is a 45 minute drive to see them, one way. They had me scheduled with the wrong doctor, and asked me to come back today. So I did, and there was more waiting.

A nurse came in and asked me lots of questions. Once they were answered, another lady came in that is the doctor’s assistant. She liked to talk, and I sat there listening to her describe every aspect of radiation. By the third time I looked down at my lap and zoned out, she got the message and stopped talking. I just wanted to see the doctor and leave.

The doctor eventually came in and went over the same information as she. It was like they were trying to talk me into it or something, so I said, “What are my next steps, and when do we start?” They said their goodbye’s, and told me to expect a phone call this week, or next, about scheduling a scan of my breast. Two weeks after the scan, they will start treatment.

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It’s a good day to be sober. I cannot imagine following this Breast Cancer Journey hungover.

God took my desire to drink completely away when I asked. I can’t recall a craving in all these years, but the thought of a drink has crossed my mind. Fortunately, I learned very well that a glass of wine, or ten, does not fix anything. The circumstance I was drinking over was waiting on me the next day, along with whatever chaos I caused while drinking.

I was hoping my Breast Cancer Journey would be over by the end of the year. Radiation will begin sometime in December, and be 5 days a week, for six weeks. The journey will fall into the new year. My sponsor would ask me, “Would you like some cheese with that whine?” I have nothing to whine about. We will continue the journey as planned, and stay sober me.

 

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Barbara is a God follower, a Writer, and Mom to her 17-year-old daughter. When she started this Blog in 2014 Letitgocoach was the name that stuck. She enjoys helping people Let Go of what is holding them back from having a beautiful life. Part of her mission is to show people they can start over at 50. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

When Worry Assails

Many of my daily devotionals recently have been about trusting God. It’s not so hard to trust Him, but to lay your life at His feet, and to trust Him completely with the outcome.

I’m still working on that.

Looking back over my life some rather large mountains have been removed. Things happened that I had no control over, and I worried how to get through. Worrying about the future. It’s human nature to visualize ourselves coping badly in those situations. It’s my nature to devise a plan, and fix it, but that is not including God. I’d rather have God lead.

He is the master fixer of my life. My life is very simple today, and I don’t stir things up like I used to. When a situation presents itself, I know it’s going to be an opportunity for God to show up, and show off. I will need to stay out of it, and respond as little as possible. The most recent being my Breast Cancer Journey. Oh, I had plenty of ideas how to handle that.

Sitting here this morning, pondering my appointment with the Radiologist this afternoon, thinking my journey would be over by now. Having the lumpectomy a few weeks ago, and the Cancer being removed, we should be done. Obviously not, or I wouldn’t be sitting here dreading my appointment! This is me worrying about the path ahead, and not including God.

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A dear friend sent me this earlier this week. She knew nothing of my upcoming appointment, so I’m sure it was God prompting her to send it. It brought the whole Breast Cancer Journey back into view. ‘You are living through a major expansion of your faith’, describes this journey perfectly. Yes, I am uncomfortable, but I believe that is okay today.

Isn’t that why we shrink to begin with? The discomfort.

I told everyone that would listen that I didn’t want radiation. In my mind, after the surgery, I was done. It sounded good, but I must keep walking through open doors. When I told my surgeon I didn’t want it, she gasped! In amazement she looked at me and said, “Barbara. How can you come this far, and not finish the journey? This is the last leg of the path!”

Thanks to Chemo, I am not afraid of this path. Chemo could have easily been the worst thing I’ve ever been through, but God was there. Chemo was a dark, and lonely path, but it could have been so much worse than it was. I wasn’t sick during it, and the only side effect I really had was the extreme fatigue. It knocked the wind out of me for at least three days.

I didn’t write much during those dark days, as friends tried their best to encourage me.

They would say, “You’re so brave”, and “You kicked Cancer’s butt”. Oh no darlings. My body was curled up in a fetal position in the middle of my bed, and I was gazing out the bedroom window depending on God to get me through it. He did, and He will continue to do so. Radiation may look like an inconvenience to me, but it’s really an opportunity to be used by God. What I wanted to be complete, is obvious today, that’s it’s only a curve in the path.

 

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Barbara is a God follower, a Writer, and Mom to her 17-year-old daughter. When she started this Blog in 2014 Letitgocoach was the name that stuck. She enjoys helping people Let Go of what is holding them back from having a beautiful life. Part of her mission is to show people they can start over at 50. Her life is beautiful, and an example of Letting Go and Letting God. You may connect with her via email. Letitgocoach@gmail.com