December 27, 2014

A Note From Moriah

Dearest followers of my mother's blog,

I just got a notice that the domain name for this blog will be expiring soon, and I didn't want those of you who follow my mother here but nowhere else to be left in the dark.

My mom passed away on November 22, while in the hospital. As you saw from her last few posts, her spirits were not broken, the last thing she "said" to me came through nonverbal communication. She winked and gave me a thumbs up, just moments before she passed. She was a fighter. She inspired me to no end, and I can't wait to see her again in Heaven one day.

November 22, 2014

Top Notch Nurses

This post is dedicated to my nurses this morning. Amanda, you are so amazing that words don't come close to describing how wonderful you have been to me, served me, loved me, encouraged me. I'm humbled and so deeply appreciative of your selfless care. Thank you.
NellieGrace, you are a little dynamo and your vibrant personality brings me up every time I see you. You keep telling me you don't want to see me the next time and it makes me you.
Shayla, you've been my night time nurse for many days and last night you dropped in just to check on me as you had to work another part of the hospital. That meant so much. You have such an angelic face and a precious spirit. I love you, girl.
The ladies on this floor that have cared for me have been SO phenomenal. Each of you are where you are supposed to be - your gifts are being used in mighty ways. Your job is one of the most difficult yet you do it with grace and love.
As I lay here watching you tend to so many people, I'll be your prayer support. You can count on me.

November 20, 2014

Thursday Night Hospital Update

Had a difficult night last night but made it through! Echocardiogram shows no change in fluid around heart -- at least it's not getting worse. Keep praying. Clot still there in peripheral lungs and being treated carefully.
Tonight we had a little scare with low oxygen and rapid heart rate. I felt like trash and it scared me. Pleading God's promises for strength and deliverance. Know He is able and with me at all times.
My wonderful neighbor, Gail, paid me a visit and it was such a shot in the arm. Best neighbor ever!!
Then tonight my sweet daughter and her precious friend, Jese, (our adopted daughter) came through and brought laughter and encouragement to my soul. And to top that off, two other gorgeous girls dropped by but the above mentioned scare was in progress so I didn't get to see them --- but that will come and I'm so grateful for them caring. Please do come back!!!!
Tonight hubby is camping out on the floor of my room - how I love that guy....he's been my rock!!! (Some of the nurses have even said that if he wasn't married, they'd take him! ha ha....I love it because they are getting to see that there ARE men out there like him and to hold out for the right one.) My hubby has been such an example of servanthood....
Thank you for praying and doing "this" with me...your notes of encouragement, your visits, your love, and most importantly your prayers are what gets me through each minute. Love you all!!

November 19, 2014

Wednesday Hospital Update

First thing this morning had PICC line inserted into upper arm to make giving blood, taking meds, etc. so much easier on me physically and emotionally. If only I had been given that option when I was admitted. Not knowing what to expect, I was concerned but it went so well - less than a few minutes and I left smiling. Praise God. Haven't been tapped all day - what a relief.
Hubby brought me a wonderful breakfast after the procedure, with coffee from home!  Then I had 6 visitors in a row - what a shot in the arm -- exhausted afterwards but it did me a world of good. Lots of laughter and group prayer.
Had my third Echocardiogram this afternoon. Will get results tomorrow. Praying for some improvement with fluid on heart.
It has been a busy day but a good day. Emotions better. Posted Scripture verses around my room - and have gotten so many positive comments about them.
My husband has been such a servant, with a gentle patient spirit during this entire time....God has used him (and our relationship) to encourage these precious young nurses. So thankful for him and how God is using this.
I'll most likely be here through the weekend - maybe into next week. Please keep praying for improvement, for the fluid to empty around my heart and for this blood clot in my lung to completely dissolve. I'm not out of the woods yet.
Thanks so much. God is working.

November 17, 2014

Monday Illness/Hospital Update


I was given a zanax last night to help anxiety and to sleep. Wow....knocked me out so much I was still loopy at 11 am this morning. Too strong, but I did get sleep. Me and drugs don't go together.
Had several visitors today -- people I hadn't seen in years. What a shot in the arm. Police Dept. chaplains checking on me regularly, with sweet smiles and a strong belief in me hope. Our dept. is awesome. Chief and his daughter visited yesterday, along with another police buddy and his gorgeous wife....brought dinner and company. So great.
Daughter made a gorgeous lemon pound cake - gluten free - to bring over for dinner impressed with her skills. So great to have a family that loves each other and is working together....brings joy to my heart. Hubby shaved my legs today for me - so hilarious - and yesterday washed my hair. What a servant - with such love in his eyes. I am so blessed....God knew what he was doing when He gave me him 25 yrs ago.
Feeling a tad stronger. Encouraged. Going to post God's promises around my hospital room on little cards tonight....His Word is powerful.
Praise God.

November 16, 2014

In ICU for illness - and blown away

Unable to get out of my chair after breakfast Friday morning, I took a ride via ambulance and was admitted to the ICU Friday morning for a blood clot in my lungs and fluid on the right side of my heart.  Scared.  
I've been here since then (it's Sunday night) and will be here until I can function independently.  Scared? Oh my, yes.  Just typing this is majorly overwhelming.  I can't even describe it.
We prayed Sunday as a family that God would heal me and this is where He took me.  We also prayed that God would use us, individually and as a family, and again, this is where He took us.  Not what I had in mind, to be completely honest.
I'm swollen from being pumped with steroids, my legs are holding serious fluid which is so very painful, my body is screaming from within, feeling like it is burning from the inside out and I've been used as a pin cushion over 20 times already.  I've had it.  Seriously had it.  I break into tears every hour.
God is holding His end of the bargain - I'm still not sure how well I can hold up mine.  But here is what's happening on the 5th floor of ICU, Room 501.

God kept me up last night, flat on my back, in my little ICU room and began to peel back layers of my heart....revealing to me in an intimate and loving way where I needed work. Pride, selfishness, and so much more became clear to me. And here I thought God and I were on really good terms....I sobbed for 4 hours, talking to Him - and often wondered if the nurse's station was secretly listening in -- but didn't care.
With no voice left and eyes swollen, I gave it over to Him, asking for help. My first mission was to apologize to my physician whom I had offended the day prior. To my amazement, he revealed that the Lord had pricked his heart last night and that he needed to apologize to me. We held hands today, tears both in our eyes, and made amends -- I was so humbled. So floored.
Then a sweet dear friend showed up with flowers, starbucks and amazing deep tissue massaging skills and I knew she was my next mission. I had hurt her heart, unintentionally of course, but nevertheless, the Lord revealed this had to be straightened out. I love you, girl.
And tonight, as I kicked my husband and daughter out the door so they could go home and rest, I noticed my new night shift nurse lingering, waiting for me to Skype with mom and dad. This, too, was of God as my parents breathed life and encouragement into her heart (and mine) from 9 hrs away without realizing it. She left my room with the biggest smile on her face and a verbal "thank you" for touching her heart tonight.
Lord, when I prayed on Sunday for complete healing, I asked you to use me - I didn't know what You had in mind. But since I've been in this hospital, we have gotten some serious alone time together - and You have used me to love people and be a light for You. I am blown away. I'm tired. My speech is seriously slurred, my eyes are swollen, my legs have serious edema and my body feels like total trash....and yes, it scares me.
But I trust You. 100 % trust You for the outcome. And what I'm seeing already is mind boggling.
So if you're joining me in prayer, thank you. God is using this illness. So please continue to pray for strength, courage, healing and to be used by Him.

November 5, 2014

Day 4 of Thankfulness - Neighbors

Our phone rang a few days ago, informing us that our neighbor, "Mr. Bill" had gone to be with Jesus. His daughter was so sweet to let us know.  She said that he talked about us often.  They lived right behind us and were the very best neighbors!!

When we moved into our house in 1999, we soon learned that our neighbors were something special.  This elderly couple were anchors in this neighborhood, having built the house they were living in.  They had been around!

I met "Mr. Bill" at the fence one day as we both were working in our respective yards.  He had the most beautiful head of perfectly white hair.  As we got to talking, we soon found out that we were both MKs (missionary kids) and both born on the mission field.  He was born in India, where I was born in Africa.  This common ground brought about many a conversation over the course of the last 14 years or so.

It didn't take long to figure out that his ultimate desire in life was to bring people to Jesus.  He shared this openly and frequently - how he was praying for certain neighbors -  how we all could meet the needs of our neighborhood by pitching in to help.  He loved people to Jesus.

When his wife had hip replacement surgery some years back, he asked if I would come and sit in on the initial meeting with the Home Health Nurse so he wouldn't forget what was said.  You can be assured I was there -- taking notes.  What an honor to be asked.

When my husband was working in Iraq, I got a knock on the door on Valentine's Day and he and his wife were standing there, flowers, chocolate and card in hand, to wish me a Happy Valentine's Day in his absence.  Is that something special or what?!  I was floored.  They had us over for dinner on several occasions too and were always checking in with us.

Repeatedly I have told my husband that "Mr. Bill" reminded me of my dad.  A tender spirit.  Giving.  Loving.  Nurturing.  And passionate about the Lord.  He agrees as does my daughter.  They had much in common.

He and his wife had 60 plus years together.  She is wheelchair bound but doing well, we're told.  Praise God.

As he entered the Gates of Heaven, I know one thing for sure  - he was told:

"Well done, good and faithful servant!"

November 3, 2014

Day 3 of Thankfulness - Friendship

This "shout out" of Thankfulness goes to my dear friend, Elise!

Last night she dropped by and just seeing her beautiful face brought me such joy.  This woman is one gorgeous and amazing woman, let me tell you.  She radiates with joy, love and has such a sweet spirit -- you can't help but love her!!

I don't know many people like her, to be honest.  People that when you glance at them, you see a sweetness, a compassion, an inner peace and joy.  This is my friend.

And quite frankly, this is how we, as believers and followers of Jesus, are supposed to be.  We're to be   Light and Salt to the world -- to offer hope, to love people, to bring peace and compassion.

Elise is all that and more!!  I love you, my dear!!  Thank you for reaching out to me!

November 2, 2014

Day 2 of Thankfulness - My Husband

Yesterday morning I awoke to a most wonderful surprise - the smell of homemade pancakes.  My husband had gotten up, cleaned up the kitchen and started on making pancakes from scratch for the three of us - the smell filled the house and was amazing!  I was so touched.  (In fact, I had a dream about waking up and making them myself. Ha!)

They were so delicious with the organic maple syrup we just recently purchased.  Wow!!  And he made enough for leftovers for the next few mornings....he is so good.

My husband is something seriously special.  On December 30th, we will have been married 25 years. Hard to believe that much time has passed.  We've learned a lot from each other and know we've been very blessed.

I could write chapters on my husband -- but I won't.

I am a very blessed woman!

November 1, 2014

Day 1 of Thankfulness - My Daughter

As I was laying in bed last night thinking about doing these 30 days of Thankfulness, the first thing that came to mind is my daughter ---


I'll tell everyone how wonderful she is because she IS!

She's a giver.

She's a thinker.

She is intuitive.

She is so very caring.

She loves Jesus with all her heart.

She shares her love for Jesus with people who are needing to hear it.

She has been such a huge help at home - grocery shopping, cleaning, laundry, taking care of me and more in my illness.

She's a hard worker.

She has a tender, sweet spirit.

She's a natural beauty.

And God chose to bless us with her presence in our life.


October 31, 2014

An Awesome Support Team

Starting tomorrow, the first day of November, I will list one thing I'm thankful for each day on my blog.  Being thankful is something Scripture commands us to do....

Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe.  Hebrews 12:28

Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.  Colossians 4:2

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.  Colossians 3:15

- and when you intentionally dwell on positive, uplifting things, it can radically improve your perspective.  I know it will be good for me!!  (If you do it too, let me know - I'd love to read yours!)

At any rate, the title of my post tonight is due to my tough week this past week.  I had a few days where I was home alone for longer periods than usual and that is often discouraging.  Thursday I was sitting at the kitchen table, feeling rather positive, when I experienced something I'd never experienced before.  It was like a cloud of darkness came over me, a wave of discouragement and hopelessness, and I started to sob.  I couldn't shake this desperate feeling.

So I said aloud, "Satan, I rebuke you in Jesus' Name.  You have no power over me.  I belong to Jesus and He has already claimed victory.  Now go!"

Instantly, the cloud of darkness left me.  Can you say AMEN?!!  There is power in Jesus' name.  Tears still came down my face as I realized what had just happened,  that the enemy was doing everything he could to discourage me in my lonely place.  He has been working overtime, let me tell you.

Knowing I needed prayer support right at this time, I texted my sister-in-law, my mom, and my husband.  Each one responded immediately and gave me the strength and encouragement I needed, as well as the human contact.

So let me tell you about this wonderful support team I have --

My sister in law -- she is AWESOME!!  She lives in Illinois and checks in on me every single day, usually about 10 am, and has been my lifeline on so many occasions.  I am so blessed to have her in my life and by my side through this difficult time.  I love her and appreciate her more than words can say!

And as for my mother and father -- I have the very best!  They are always there when I need to hear their voices.  On one occasion, I texted Mom and asked her and dad to sing a song for me on the phone.  Within minutes, they were calling, singing their sweet hearts out, blessing me with the power of the Word.  I know seeing me go through this illness has been very hard on them...but they are doing what is MOST important, bringing me before the Lord each day.  There is no better gift than that.

My husband - well, he is OUTSTANDING!  He was in police block training at that time and responded immediately, calling me and praying with me over the phone.  Later that evening when he was waiting for another part of training, he opted out of going to dinner with the group so he could be alone and pray for me.  Yes, I am richly blessed.  We will be celebrating 25 years of marriage this December.  Exciting.

A powerful support team has been essential for me.  I couldn't get through each day - oftentimes minutes of the day - without knowing these individuals are here for me, ready to bring me through with words of love, support, encouragement and prayer.  Thank you!!!!  Thank you!  Thank you!

I know there will be days when I'll need you again - so I thank you in advance.  You guys rock and I love you something fierce.

October 23, 2014

Friends for Life

Back when we moved to Columbia, I made a friend for life.  I'll call him DJ.  How we met is kinda funny.  My car had broken down at the gym and I needed a ride home.  Being wise, he did some checking with other gym friends to make sure that I was not some girl with bad intentions, and thus gave me that ride home. We became friends for life.  He and my husband have law enforcement in common as well as both serving in Iraq at the same time.

Years later, he became my lifting partner when I was working as a personal trainer at a gym downtown. I always refer to him as my "brother".  Yes, he is an adopted member of our family.

He has been there for our family on many occasion.  He watched our young daughter a number of times when I had to take a class and my husband was unable to watch her.  He also opened up his home when our power went out for two weeks one winter.  Yes, he is family.

So when I send family updates, he is included.  Today he responded with this message that touched the very depths of my heart.  It so encouraged me.  I want to share it with you.
"We would all like to know why, of all people, you were struck with this illness.  I was reading Job the other night and was thinking of you and the trial you are going through.  Even though life has thrown you a curve, there are greater things to come.  Understanding why is not always answered.  Job asked why but God would not answer him.  The surety is that God has not left you for one moment and never will."
This is a true friend, folks.  This is a friend who not only cares, but encourages and uplifts.  Thank you, DJ, for being my adopted brother and for helping me see the bigger picture.

October 18, 2014

Encouragement for the Weekend

God's Word has been my strength these last three years I've been fighting this illness.  Without it, I would have no hope.  When I open my Bible each day, God's love pours out from the pages into my heart and gives me strength and hope to make it through that day.  He is my Lifeline.  My fortress.

When you have an isolating illness such as mine, you begin to understand how many people are in the same situation as you -- confined to their homes, often alone -- and it makes my heart ache.  I know what that is like.  I know how discouraging it can be.

I asked the Lord to allow me to bring Jesus to these discouraged souls.  To bring encouragement, love, hope and friendship.  He will have to touch me miraculously to do so and I have faith He will.  There are so many people in need, and I understand that need so much more than I ever did.

October 9, 2014

Kale and Cauliflower Soup....oh my!

I found a wonderful soup recipe recently and have to share it....we've had it twice now and I'm so in love with this soup!!!

I would imagine that most people haven't made soup with kale -- I had not -- and thought I wouldn't like it or that it would have a bitter taste.  Just the's FAB!!!

Here's the recipe:  (I usually double the ingredients as my philosophy is, "Cook once, eat twice" (usually more in our house).

Kale and Cauliflower Soup

Heat a TB of coconut oil in a deep soup pot.  Add 2 diced onions and cook until the onions are clear.  Add several tablespoons of minced garlic (I always buy the minced garlic instead of having to mince it myself.  Saves me a few steps.) and cook a minute more.

Add 3-4 cups of chicken broth to the pot.  You might have to turn the temperature down a bit on the stove.

Wash and cut up several heads of cauliflower and add to pot.  Cook until soft.  About 10 minutes or so.

Add 3-4 cups of Kale to the pot.  (First time I made this, I bought a head of kale and washed and cut it up.  Next time I bought a bag of pre-washed, pre-cut up kale....far easier!)

Cook until the kale is wilted.  It won't take long.

Remove from stove and ladle into your blender.  Puree until smooth.

Return to pot and add more chicken stock if you'd like.  My family likes a thicker soup so I generally don't add much more to the pot at this time.

Season with salt (himalayan, of course OR sea salt) and pepper, etc.

Serve with shredded Parmesan cheese on top, or crushed red pepper flakes or whatever you'd like.

That's it.

Note: Feel free to add other veggies to the pot -- carrots would be delicious.  My hubby says shredded chicken would be even better.  Each time you make it, you can add new things.

It makes such a beautiful green soup - and it is soooo yummy!  What I like most about it is that it's super good for my liver and body, as kale is the powerhouse of antioxidant veggies!  There's nothing in this soup that isn't good for the body.

My philosophy is this:

Eat for health

This recipe is one of those kinds of recipes.



October 5, 2014

So I haven't posted in a while.....

Honestly, I haven't felt much like blogging lately.  

It has been a rough month.

I've been dealing with a sluggish liver again - and am doing much better, praise God.  But it has been rough.  

At any rate, I thank God for bringing me through the worst of it.

Friday I had a wonderful gift - a dear friend dropped by for a little visit.  (I used to be her personal trainer years ago.)  She is such a good listener and so very encouraging.  It did wonders for my heart.  She brought me some essential oil samples and I tried one called "Breathe" this morning and I believe it really helped!  Thank you, dear friend, for coming over and for caring!

We had a cold snap last night.  I believe it got into the upper 40s.  Typically I sleep really well when the temperatures drop a bit but, unfortunately, I had trouble sleeping.  I'm a side sleeper and my oxygen cannula hurts my ear when I sleep on my wide.  It wakes me up multiple times throughout the night with my ear in pain.  So at 3 am, when I awoke, I decided I'd had enough and just got up. 

An hour later my husband walks into the living room to make sure I'm ok.   He stayed up with me the entire time, and eventually fixed me up on the couch so I could get a few more hours of rest.  He's a keeper!

At any rate, Fall is here.  I'd like to bake, to do some deep house cleaning and get outdoors and enjoy this weather but somehow that's not going to's a real struggle these days.

I continue to believe God for healing - to praise Him for it knowing He is able - and to ask Him to give me the right attitude.  Having the right attitude is often my biggest struggle! 

Here are a few verses I'll share with you that help me:

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.
I Thessalonians 5:18

Praise the LORD. Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.
Psalm 106:1

July 31, 2014

Praising God for what He has done!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow! Thank you, prayer warriors and partners, for praying for us yesterday. Rob's surgery went smoothly - about 2. hrs - and he came home last night. Recovery is going to be slow, we can see that now - but our Lord brought him through miraculously.
He told me last night, amidst tender tears, that as he was in pre-op, he found himself super stressed. He started to pray - and within minutes, an overwhelming peace came over him. He asked the nurse if she had given him something in his IV. No. He then realized that the Lord and his saints were covering him in prayer, giving him perfect peace. He said after that he had no worries. Never before had he experienced something so really got ahold of him. It reminded me of the verse: "You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you." Isaiah 26:3
Isn't our God wonderful?! How I praise Him for what He has done and will continue to do. We serve an awesome God!
Thank you for your love, encouragement and prayers. James 5:16, "Confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working".
We covet your prayers for Rob's continued recovery and healing, as well as the healing of my lungs and body. I find myself singing that well loved little tune, "Keep on believing, God will answer prayer"'s not over yet. God is still at work.

July 29, 2014

Surgery Tomorrow

My precious husband of almost 25 years will be having neck surgery tomorrow (Wednesday, July 30th) at 12:30 pm ET.  Your prayers would greatly be appreciated.

Times like these are never easy.  What's easy is taking our stress out on each other.  We ran into that yesterday and both realized what we were doing.  This is hard.  Very hard.

What we found out is that you learn a lot about each other during such stressful times.  You learn your coping mechanisms.  You learn how MUCH you love each other.   You can either be at odds OR you can join forces and boldly forge down the path together.  We prefer to join forces.

Due to my husband's neck pain, he hasn't been able to sleep in our bed for several weeks.  His new bedroom has been on the couch in our living room.  It hasn't been easy.  Propped up by several pillows, he has figured out a way to find a semi-comfortable position to rest for a few hours at a time. When his pain meds wear off, he wakes up to that pain and has to take another pill.  Not a way to live.

We believe God is in control.  If we didn't, we wouldn't be able to go through another day.  We are praying for skill and wisdom during surgery.  And success and relief from this pain and muscle weakness/numbness.  Would you please pray with us tomorrow?  Thank you.

Through all this, my husband has continued to remain a servant.  He knows what it means to serve his wife regardless of what he's experiencing himself.  His self-less acts have brought me to tears numerous times.  One example is he knew I wanted my toe nails painted.  I was sitting in my usual place on the couch when he comes down the hall with nail polish and towel in hand.  "Time for your pedicure, madam".  He volunteered to paint my toe nails!  The joy I witnessed watching him lovingly and tenderly paint my nails.  Wow.

Newlyweds think they know all about love when they marry.  I think we all believed we did.  But in all honesty, you really don't know what it is to truly 'love' until you've been married over 10 years.  When you've gone through difficult times and pulled through together.  When you've cried tear after tear and still remain strong together - believing God is in control and will see you through this.

I am so blessed to have the husband I do.  Lord, be with him tomorrow in that operating room.  Bring him through this successfully.  I commit him to you and trust you.  You are the Great Physician.  Guide those hands and minds as they work on the man you so lovingly gave me.

July 7, 2014

Another Promise from Scripture

I like what Beth Moore says via Twitter here:

Lord, explode my faith.  Blow me away.  Show me your mighty power.  My faith is unwavering.

June 26, 2014

A Tweet from Beth Moore

I follow Beth Moore on Twitter and she regularly passes on wisdom and encouragement from Scripture.  Twitter only allows so many characters per post so she numbers them so you know she has more to say and what order to read them.

I love what she shared below.  As we pray for something long term, we must watch for every glimmer of God's activity - because He IS working - and praise Him for it.  He is always working on our behalf!!

June 22, 2014

In Case You're Wondering...

For those of you who come across my blog while you're searching for health related information, you may be confused as to why there is so much spiritual stuff on here.  The answer to that is very simple ---  I am nothing without Christ!

My life was radically changed at the tender age of 6 after attending Vacation Bible School.  Yes, I was young but I understood that God loved me and died for my sins on the cross, forgiving me.  That was so easy for me to get.  I also knew more than ever that I wanted Christ to live in me and be my Savior so that day I gave my life to Him.

Over the years, through life's ups and downs, I have clearly seen God's hand at work at in my life.  Clear evidence that God is there and that He cares about me.  Clear answers to prayer, answers so awesome that only God could do them.  Yes, people, He is real and active in our lives.

Though I am far from perfect, Christ has transformed my heart and I long to be like Him every day.  I long to be an encouragement to others.  I long to be used in whatever way He wants to use me.  In my  morning times in God's Word, I regularly ask Him to mold me into His image.  To allow others to see Christ in me.  To bring glory to the Father.

So that's why there is so much spiritual stuff on here.

It's who I am.

It's first and foremost in my life.
I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.   Galations 2:20

June 21, 2014

An Honor to Pray

Last night, I had just gone to bed - it was about 10:30 pm - and my phone lit up for a text message on my night stand.  "Who is texting me at this hour?", I said, grabbing my phone.

It was my daughter's dear friend, Kassie.  She lives in Washington state.   She and my daughter met online years ago and have become very good friends.  They both love Jesus and have been such encouragements to each other.

She and I have never met.  I'm more than twice her age.  But somehow over the course of time, we've made a connection.  I'm so thankful for that.  I want my life to be an encouragement to others, even amidst my own struggles.  That is my prayer.

She was asking me to pray for a specific request.  I was so touched.  It humbled me.  I was honored that she asked ME to pray - to bring her situation before the Throne. brought tears to my eyes.

So while I lay there in bed, I spoke to my Father about her situation.  As always, He listens very well.   He hears my heart even when I don't have the right words.  He knows the very depths of my soul and what I long to convey.  It brought to mind the following verse:
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness.  We do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.     Romans 8:26
When I awoke this morning, my thoughts turned to her and what she was dealing with last night.  I prayed again for her and the situation.  And once again, this overwhelming feeling of gratitude came over me for being able to be a part of bringing this before the Throne.  What an honor to be included!!!

Thank you, Kassie!  Thank you for allowing me to pray for and with you on this.  You really touched my heart by asking me and I am am so honored to take your request before our Heavenly Father.

June 20, 2014

A Psalm of David....

Growing up overseas as an MK (missionary kid), we sang a lot of Scripture songs/choruses.  They come back to me on a regular basis, especially after reading a passage of Scripture from whence it came.  Like this one -- "Bless the Lord, O my soul, And all that is within me, bless His holy name" - a short little chorus taken from this passage.

I love these little choruses because I am singing God's Word, which is powerful and life changing.

I had a stranger ask me this week how I liked growing up overseas as an MK.  My response: "I wouldn't change it for the world!"  It made me who I am today and I thank God for that.

Once again, David, the author of this Psalm, reiterates that our Lord is the One who heals -- I am claiming this promise for me today.  You claim it too!

June 18, 2014

Claiming God's Promises

My husband and I pray together before we go to sleep at night.  I love this nighty ritual.  It binds us together on so many levels.  When it comes to my health, I often feel defeated and this ends our day with victory and hope!

Last night I woke up and felt the Holy Spirit saying, "Liz, you need to claim God's promises for yourself each and every day."  So when I awoke this morning, the first thing on my mind was, "Which promise should I claim for my day?"  I was excited.  I know God's Word is powerful and I was eager to find a promise that I could claim for my own healing.

Isaiah 53:5 was the first verse that came to mind.  I know this verse well.  I texted Mom and Dad and asked them if they would claim it with me today for the healing of my body.  I can always count on them to join me in prayer, no matter the request.

Later Mom texted me with another passage to look at.  Matthew 8:14-17.

Isn't this exciting to see God's Word in action?  I sure think so.

I'd love for you to join me in claiming God's promises for my physical healing.  That would mean so much to me.  And if you have a need that I can pray for, please email me.  I will take it to the Throne for sure.

June 14, 2014

The Man at Dunkin' Donuts

Yesterday I managed to get out of the house alone - just me and my O2 backpack - to do a few errands.  I was only gone about an hour but the Lord used this little trip to encourage my heart.

My last stop before returning home was to run by Dunkin' Donuts to pick up a few munchkins.  I haven't been to this establishment in probably 10 years but for some reason I had a hankering for a few glazed donut holes.  (I must admit I am a die-hard Krispy Kreme fan!)

As I was standing in line, this man behind me caught my eye and he asked me,  "Would you mind if I asked why you need oxygen?" glancing over at my backpack.  "No, I don't mind," and explained to him my situation.  "Is it helping?",  he asked.  "Yes, it helps me stay mobile and get around."

He pondered for a minute.

"Would you mind if I asked your name?", he continued.  "I'm Liz," I said.   "Nice to meet you, Liz," he replied.  I could tell he had more to say, but was contemplating the situation.

As we approached the register to place our orders, he asked me, "Would you mind if I prayed for you?"  I was caught off guard.  That has never happened to me before.  "Yes!  I would love if you would pray for me.  I believe in the power of prayer."  He smiled.

We were both standing at the counter, each placing our own orders when I felt his hand on my shoulder.  I looked over and he uttered a short prayer:  "Lord, touch Liz's body.  Heal her."  I was deeply moved, to say the least.

I thanked him and left with my munchkins.

I cannot express adequately how much that moved me.  That short interaction.  Someone willing to step out of his comfort zone and connect with another human being in a powerful way.

Thank you, kind gentleman.  Whoever you are.  Thank you.

May 30, 2014

If there's just one thing I NEED, it's Jesus!

Below is a short video I have to share with you.  If you haven't hard this man sing, oh're seriously missing out.  It touches the very depths of my soul each time --  I use it as worship to my Savior.  Whew....words cannot adequately describe this a cappella piece!!

 Click here if the video fails to show up in your email.  I'm realizing that sometimes it does.  Sorry!

May 26, 2014

Irritable Bowel Syndrome Wisdom You Won't Get From Your Doctor

I've mentioned Dr. Andrew Saul a few times on my blog.  This guy is right on and is loaded with helpful input and wisdom.  Check out his YouTube channel here.

April 30, 2014

Just Follow the Green Line

Throughout my home runs a dark green line -- my oxygen line -- connecting me to a continuous flow of pure oxygen.  I've had this for almost a full week now and even though it is frustrating to be connected to a machine 24 hours a day, it has made a difference in my well being and energy.

You see, I used to only connect to oxygen when I found myself overexerting - such as walking into the next room, doing dishes, vacuuming a small section of the living room.  (Yes, I know -- to you, that's not over-exerting.  But with my condition, it is.)   I was used to feeling winded and "on the edge" and knew when to sit down and "connect".   Little did I know that I needed more help.
Oxygen Concentrator

Upon ordering a pulse oximeter from Amazon, I was quite shocked to find out that my body had been running at super sub-par oxygen levels.  A healthy person's blood oxygen levels should be at 100% - but a doctor will tell you if you're over 95%, they consider you ok.  I thought mine was running in the upper 80s, which isn't good - but no, they were running in the 70s.  No wonder I had no energy and was feeling so badly!!!

After going through far too many travel size oxygen tanks in one month (each one lasts only 30 minutes max),  I placed a call to my oxygen distributor.  I told him what I was experiencing, what my levels were and he told me that I needed continuous oxygen throughout the day and night.  He also told me that if I continued pushing myself with the levels I have without bringing them up with oxygen therapy, I could experience more serious health problems.  Not good.  I don't want that.  No. No. No.

So my very sweet and caring husband drove over to their office and picked up an oxygen concentrator.  This takes the oxygen from the room and purifies and concentrates it and then delivers it to the patient through their oxygen line.  My husband saw a difference in me within the few hours of being hooked up.  The next day I had a little more energy.  The next day, even more....

To say this has been an adjustment for me is putting it mildly.  I have a cannula in my nose all the time, with a long cord running from it throughout the house.  It's not fun.  My nose gets sore at times, my ears as well as the line runs behind the ears to keep it on your face.  I was ready to throw the whole thing out the window yesterday, I was so frustrated.

Sitting here on my couch today, I'm realizing that this is my life.  Yes, most days I find it hard to accept.  My common answer to the question, "How are you doing?" is usually a one word reply: "Surviving!"  That's generally how I feel most days.  A continual inward struggle.

But at least I'm living -- doing life still -- right?  It could be far worse.   It's so easy to feel sorry for yourself.  I think that's our natural place to go when life isn't going the way we want it to go...."Oh, poor me...."

With God's help I'm making a concerted effort to change my thinking.  To look at life with a different perspective.  Lord, help me to stop focusing on what I don't have or cannot do.  But instead focus on You, Lord...your faithfulness, mercy, love and provision.

This is my prayer.

April 28, 2014

Always Learning....

My parents came through this last week for a visit and, as always, my illness is one of the main topics of conversation.  Polymyositis is not a common auto-immune illness as is Lupus, Rheumatoid Arthritis, or Irritable Bowel Syndrome, so it is often difficult to understand.  Even my own physician had never diagnosed anyone with it in his 15 plus years.  So you could say there is a lot of learning to do.

Today I spent some time online learning about the lungs as it relates to my illness.  My research confirmed that the main target of Polymyositis is #1, the lungs,  then the muscles and joints, and thirdly, the skin.   Many often are confused as to why I'm having lung issues and so this helps explain a lot.

One of the biggest mis-diagnoses, my research said, is when this illness hits, it typically starts with the lungs.  And most physicians, unaware of the ins and outs of Polymyositis, diagnose the patient with having pneumonia, when more often than not, most of these patients are experiencing an acute onset of Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD) - which is the beginning phase of Polymyositis.  Wow.

My research also said that when pneumonia is diagnosed - or should I say misdiagnosed - instead of the proper diagnosis of ILD, the physician typically medicates the patient with strong antibiotics.  However, because it is not pneumonia, the antibiotics don't generally work.  This happened to me.  I was given two weeks of very strong antibiotics and my supposed 'pneumonia' wasn't budging.  So once again I was given another round of antibiotics (the Z pack).  Then I awoke one morning and could not move without severe pain.  The only way I was accurately diagnosed was through a series of blood tests which involved one in particular - CPK (Creatine Phosphokinase) - which measures the level of inflammation in the body.

Within the last year, I had an initial consultation with a "natural" practitioner.  After examination, he told me this,
"Liz, had you not been in exceptional cardiovascular and muscular shape like you were, when this illness hit, it would have done you in.  But having worked out hard at the gym for the many years you did, you were able to take this illness on much more successfully than most people.  So be extremely thankful for all the hard work you did, day in and day out."  
You know what -- I AM THANKFUL.  Only God knew that I would need that "prep work" to help me through this major battle!

So here I am a little over two years later since I was diagnosed.  My primary struggle, my lungs, reminds me daily that I am indeed ill.  Prednisone, even at a very low dose, keeps my muscles mobile.  Praise God for that.

Each day is a challenge.  But I'm not giving up!  And I'm not giving in to the enemy who longs to see me 'hang it up'!  No way.  My God tells me that I am "more than a conqueror" and I am claiming His promises each and every day.

April 10, 2014

Green Smoothie, Anyone?

Based on Genesis 2:16, it would appear that God's original design was for us to eat fruits and vegetables.  When you take into consideration the endless amount of antioxidants and nutrients in them, it makes complete sense that God intended for these plants to provide our bodies with exceptional health.

But seriously, how often do we eat vegetables?  Probably not often enough, that's for sure.  Fruits are easier to eat as many of them hold natural sweetness, but in our world of highly processed foods, most of us don't get enough nutrients from these two groups of foods.

The reason I bring up this subject is because I have felt guilty for not eating enough of these disease-fighting foods myself -- and so I've decided to change this.  With my illness of Polymyositis, my inflammation levels are super high and I know that a change in my eating habits will definitely help, not hinder, my body.

Green Smoothies are all over the internet.  Recipes abound.  I've done them before but I used yogurt in mine, which I can no longer do as it upsets my stomach.  But yogurt is not needed for green smoothies.  If a little sweetness is needed, honey or stevia can be used.  However, oftentimes the addition of a banana or other naturally sweetened fruit is all that's needed.

I was standing in line at Sams Club when a sweet woman tapped me on the shoulder.  She pointed to my four containers of fresh spinach and asked, "How do you eat it fast enough without it going bad?"  "I don't," I said.  "I freeze it and use it in my smoothies."   She had never thought of that and was pleased to learn that spinach could be frozen.


Want to join me?  I found this article that gives proof how beneficial green smoothies are.  Check it out here.

April 9, 2014

So you want to breathe, do you?

The answer to that question is YES -- but quite the challenge.  Below is the pollen forecast for my immediate area.  Every inch outdoors is covered in green powder.  When you have lung problems, this kind of thing can bring breathing to a speedy halt.

One day I went through six tanks of oxygen because of this nasty pollen.  Right now I'm averaging two a day.  But you can rest assured I'm not outdoors, even though I'd like to be.  This stuff is a killer for people like me!

Before I got ill, I never thought about what this could do to someone with breathing problems.  Thoughts like that just don't come to mind when you're healthy.  But now I see things quite differently --

Life is not an easy road.

March 28, 2014

6 Weeks of Nasty

About six weeks ago , I attended a social event and paid the price.  The day after the event I caught a cold.  This was no ordinary cold.  At least not for me.  Remember now, my immune system is severely compromised so when most people can fight off a little cold, this can land me in the hospital if I'm not careful.

Because my lungs function at sub-par levels, the slightest congestion can bring my ability to breathe to a slamming halt.  There were a few dicey days where I thought that I might need hospital care.   My lungs were rattling,  talking back at me.  I couldn't sleep much because I couldn't breathe.  My coughing got so severe that I relocated to the living room couch so as not to keep my husband up all night.  And even then, I was propped up with pillows and blankets to assist my breathing.  I went through twice the amount of oxygen that I normally use - and that's probably an understatement.

Well, I'm starting to see the light of day, finally.  I can sleep in the same bed with my husband again.  Whew!  (It's no fun sleeping apart.)  Though I still have some congestion, it is coming up much more easily.  I'm resting well at night.  Praise God.

What helped?  You might be surprised.  If you know me, you know I do a LOT of supplemental reading on health, wellness and related topics.  I started to take 2 grams of Vitamin C every two hours while I was awake.  After doing this for one full day, I began to notice an improvement.  (Vitamin C is water soluble so to reap the benefits from it, you have to take it at regular intervals throughout the day.)  Even my husband noticed a difference.

Then, before my next shipment of Vitamin C arrived, I ran out -- big mistake.  Within 12 hours my health began to decline.  I'm not joking.  Finally, the shipment came but the product was defective so I was still up the creek.  My daughter ran over to the Vitamin store and picked up another bottle.

I'm back on it and staying on it until this thing has fully run its course.  And I'm glad that I didn't resort to the traditional treatment of antibiotics.   Reading pays off, guys!

Below is a five minute video by Dr. Andrew Saul talking about Vitamin C therapy.  It's very good.  Check it out.

March 12, 2014

A Few Facts About My Illness (Polymyositis) That You May Not Know

  • My health problems began over 24 years ago when I started popping that little birth control pill each day for three and a half years. (If you're considering going on birth control, I would advise you not to go this route.  There are other healthy ways.)
  • For over 13 years, I went from doctor to doctor trying to find out why I was experiencing out of control weight gain, hormonal problems, and then liver problems.  No one wanted to listen; instead referring me to one doctor after another.  My own GP (general practitioner) tried to convince me to undergo Gastric Bypass Surgery - and I was only 20 lbs overweight at the time! I've never been back to see him since.
  • When I was most active, I would go to the gym and work out with weights for an hour, then play racquetball for an hour or two.  When I got home, I couldn't keep my eyelids open.  I was so terribly exhausted that I was forced to take a 2-3 hour nap each day.  This was definitely not normal.  I knew something was very wrong.  (I had severe adrenal fatigue.)
  • In 2009, I went to a Naturopathic physician who quickly diagnosed my liver problems.  I was in such severe pain that I had to sit off to the right to take pressure off my liver.  Within 30 minutes of taking supplements to improve the bile flow from my liver, I was pain-free.  I still take these supplements today.
  • In 2012, I went from being able to function normally, so to speak, to having severe pneumonia (per my Dr.'s diagnosis, which most likely was an acute onset of Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD) - common to this illness), lasting 3 weeks.  At the end of that time, my body suddenly shut down and I went from being independent to completely relying on my spouse to care for me.  This is when I was diagnosed with Polymyositis.
Daily Facts About My Illness -

  • Getting a gallon of milk out of the fridge is super hard.  I have to use two hands.  I have no strength whatsoever.
  • I have to ask for assistance to open a cheese stick, a jar, my prescription pill bottle, etc.  
  • My lungs cannot stand any scent.  So if you're wearing perfume, scented deodorant, hair spray, etc., you would have to leave my house as my lungs would constrict and I wouldn't be able to breathe.
  • Going to bed at night is a major struggle.  The change in angle causes my lung congestion to constrict my breathing.  I often have to go to bed sitting up.
  • My blood oxygen levels are far below normal - in the low 80s.  This requires me to use oxygen therapy regularly just to walk from one room to the next.
  • If you're catching a cold or feeling ill, please don't come to my house.  My immune system is severely compromised and exposure could put me in the hospital.
  • To bend over at the waist constricts my lungs - so I try to avoid putting things on the floor.  (My baseboards are needing cleaning something fierce! Know anybody needing to make a few bucks?!)
  • When I drive, I have to lift my legs manually into the car as I have no strength in my hip flexor muscles.
  • My ankles are typically swollen by the end of the day.
  • Prednisone (the only medication I'm on) has ruined my gut flora, causing me to be nauseous throughout the day.  Hence, I eat very little.
  • Prednisone also made my hair go from straight to curly.
  • Never before did I think I'd need a Handicap License Plate -- but I do and it has helped so much, allowing me to be a little independent.
  • Once a "gym rat", now a "home girl" - those days are over for now.  
Perhaps this gives you a little insight into my life.  

Over and Out!

February 18, 2014

A Year Older

I just celebrated another birthday - I turned 47 this past week.

You see, another year is a true gift.  Each day is a gift from our Creator.  When you are ill, you realize that very quickly.  You realize how fragile life is.

My family did a great job of making me feel loved and celebrated.  A homemade, gluten free carrot cake with cream cheese frosting.  My fave!  Books to read.  Gift cards to enjoy.  New clothing.  And even more special than all the gifts are the words written in those sweet and thoughtful cards -- they bring strength and comfort and joy to  my heart.

All day long I received phone calls from family members with voices singing "Happy Birthday to you".  My 3 year old niece nearly brought me to tears with her joyous little voice on the phone.  So very precious.

The people behind these thoughtful tokens of love are the reason to celebrate!  I call them


People that make life worth living.

So I thank you.  Thank you for your love, your encouragement, your prayers, your support, and for being you.  For being a part of me - a part of my life.

January 24, 2014

A Delicious, Wholesome Snack...

With a sensitive digestive system, I often have difficulty finding something to eat that doesn't upset my stomach.  Prednisone has done a number on my gut flora and I'm paying the price.  

However, within the last few days, I found a wholesome bar that is gluten-free that tastes amazing and doesn't make my internals upset.  The KIND bars have many varieties to choose from, but the one I love is Dark Chocolate Chunk (seen below).  

Look for it when you're at your local grocery store - oftentimes you can buy just one to try out before spending money on the box of 4 or 5.  You'll be glad you did!

January 1, 2014

My Verse for the New Year -- What's Yours?

An EAP Creation 2014

God is in the business
of doing
amazing things!    

He delights in pleasing His children, in meeting our needs, in being there in the very meticulous details of our lives.  Nothing is insignificant to Him.  Nothing!

In this new year, what amazing things do you want to see Him do in your life?  Take time to think about it.  Write out a list in your journal.  

Let's consecrate ourselves and be bold in asking Him to really show himself in specific situations.  

Are you excited?  I am!

Happy New Year.

December 29, 2013

Celebrating 24 Years!

Tomorrow is our 24th anniversary.  Wow.  Is that really possible?

It is only possible with Jesus, let me tell you.

Even in the best of relationships, we are still human and thus inherently selfish.  

If there's one single thing I've learned in my 24 years of marriage, it's this:

When I allow my selfish desires to take over, my marriage deteriorates.


When I put Jesus first, my marriage THRIVES.

This is truly the key to a successful and thriving marriage.

It's that simple.  The concept, that is.  Not so simple to do, however.  (smile)

On your wedding day, you think that you couldn't be more in love.  But truly, you have no idea what true love is until you've been through the good times and the bad -- and together, with Jesus, you've come away more in love and committed to the Lord and to each other.

Honey, I love you and am so grateful for your presence in my life.

Happy Anniversary!! 

December 18, 2013

A BIG shout-out to Christine M. and Lynne C. -- THANK YOU!

There is nothing more wonderful than receiving something special in the mail that was totally unexpected.  Around the week of Thanksgiving, I received a beautiful card in the mail from an old friend.  Her name is Christine and she is from my area.  This woman has a huge heart for others!  She's been through rough times herself so she can definitely relate to what I'm going through.
Our cute little Christmas Tree

The card she sent me was SO sweet and encouraging.  Many times I've told my husband, "I'm going to stop blogging.  After all, so few read it anyway."  But Christine's handwritten note motivated me to continue.  I cannot tell you enough, dear friend, how MUCH your note meant to me!  Thank you from the bottom of my heart for taking the time to send such a precious note.

And just yesterday our very kind postman delivered a small padded envelope to our front door.  I recognized the handwriting and wondered what it could be.  Upon opening it, I found the most beautiful scarf with a touching note -- "Thought this would go with your beautiful eyes."  My husband was sitting right there and he looked up at me and I had tears in my eyes....this was from my sister-in-law who is going through some hard times herself right now.  Yet she took the time to do something so very kind and unexpected for me.   Lynne, thank you!

Ladies, your thoughtfulness and kindness touched me so deeply.  Thank you for your love and encouragement.  I am ever so grateful!

(PS to Christine - So glad to hear the critters are doing well!)

December 10, 2013

Just a few random thoughts for the day....

It's a little about 5 pm on December 10th, 2013 - the sun is going down here in the Carolinas and the temperatures are dropping.  Homemade potato soap is on the stove and boy does it smell good!  The house is quiet except for the sound of my two dogs romping in the living room.  Hubby is at work keeping the bad guys off the street and my daughter is helping customers with her animal expertise.

My goal was to begin my holiday baking today -- Mocha Frosted Drops.  An old family recipe passed down through the years.  But I have yet to start.  Procrastinating just a little, you could say.

I don't know about you, but the holidays are always hard for me.   For one, being away from extended family is a major downer.  I miss the talks, the laughter, getting together around good food....

However, when you're not feeling well, everything is just a little more difficult.  Getting the motivation to do things when your body is screaming, "Stop".  When your lungs are begging you to sit down and hook up the oxygen.  Sometimes it is hard to find the motivation to get out of bed in the mornings.

It's easy to feel sorry for yourself.  I found myself having a pity party several times this week.  My way of handling these kinds of feelings is to do something nice and unexpected for someone -- after all, my thought is that if I put others first and do something kind for someone, I'll feel better.  That usually helps.

But not this week.


The Lord had to show me a video to give me perspective.  Click here to watch it.  It's worth the 20 minutes.
At the age of 26, Katherine Wolf, a young mother and wife, nearly died of a massive brain stem stroke. Her survival was nothing short of miraculous, and her recovery continues to be a testament to the healing power of hope. (Source:

It tore at my heart strings.  I cried.  And cried.  And when it was over, I sat there -- as if God were speaking directly to me.  Then I cried some more.  Wow.

"Feeling sorry for yourself now, are you?", God was asking.

Then I cried some more.  I cried because I had been very selfish.  It's so easy for it to be all about me.  What I'm going through.  The difficulties I'm having.  How hard it is to get around.  Me. Me. Me.

My Creator was humbling my heart.  And shortly I found myself praising Him.  Praising Him for what I could do.  For being gentle with me.  For loving me and teaching me.  For keeping my heart soft.

I was reminded of a Twitter post that I'd read a week or so ago by Beth Moore.  I had saved it on my laptop.  Here it is:

God is the giver of all good things.   I want to trust Him to do amazing things -- so join me this coming year - 2014.  Join me in trusting God to do "immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us" (Eph. 3:20) -- to do the impossible.   I am believing this and claiming it for myself as well as for many dear ones I know going through major battles.

If you're with me and want to believe God for the impossible in your life, send me a comment below or an email to  Together we will boldly approach the Throne.  Together.

(Special note to Teresa @ Living Natural Today:  Thank you for your comment on my blog today.  It was a huge encouragement to me and motivated me to write the above post.  Blessings!)

November 22, 2013

The Health of Your Lungs

A large part of the auto-immune illness I deal with is impaired lung function.  I never had problems with my lungs before this -- in fact, just the opposite.  As a regular gym go-er, I was known for being able to perform long, intense cardio sessions.  I could play racquetball for several hours at a time.  I had amazing lungs!  "Had" being the key word here.

Perhaps the pneumonia that I battled for several weeks prior to this played a part, I don't know.  But lungs are muscles and with Polymyositis, all muscles suffer with this illness.  My airways are regularly irritated, inflamed and congested.  I am always coughing up 'stuff'.

To simply 'breathe' would be wonderful, if possible.  It started with the smell of perfume.  When anyone around me was wearing perfume or cologne - and it didn't have to be strong -  my airways closed down and I could hardly breathe.  It's quite scary for me because my airways are already challenged -- and all it takes is for me is to get a whiff walking by someone wearing cologne or perfume and I'm done!  My lungs constrict, I start coughing something fierce and then it's like I've lost my ability to breathe.  Bathroom deodorizers, scented candles, plug-in oil room deodorizers, car air fresheners, scented dryer sheets and laundry detergent  -- you name it -- they are toxic to my lungs.

Was this just me or was there something to this?  I started to do my research.  According to Dr. Mercola at, he says this:
A chemical called 1,4-dichlorobenzene, or 1,4-DCB, could harm your lungs.
It is found in air fresheners, toilet deodorizers, and mothballs, and is present in the blood of nearly all Americans. 1,4-DCB is the chemical that gives mothballs their distinctive smell.
The finding came as part of a National Institutes of Health study that looked at 11 household chemicals. All 11 chemicals are emitted as gasses by common household products. 1,4-DCB was the only chemical in the study which was linked to lung damage.
Those who had the highest amounts in the chemical in their blood showed diminished lung function, which could be serious for those with asthma or other lung problems. Reduced lung function is also a risk factor for heart disease, stroke, and lung cancer.  (Source: Air Fresheners May Damage Your Lungs

In another article entitled, Air Fresheners Impact Respiratory Health, we're told:
Air fresheners contain ingredients such as formaldehyde; petroleum distillates, benzene, styrene; terpenes, such as limonene; aldehydes, ketones, esters, and alcohols; phosphates, bleach, and ammonia. Plug-in deodorizers were found to have more than 20 different volatile organic compounds (VOCs) with more than one-third of those VOCs classified as toxic or hazardous. Candles produce soot, lead, organic compounds, and VOCs. The toxicity characteristics of candle emissions match those of diesel emissions, and those emissions are often less than one micron in size, which allows for penetration into the lungs. The use of scented candles may contribute significant quantities of pollutants to the indoor environment, especially soot, benzene, and lead.

So basically here's the bottom line:  All these scented products impact ALL our health --  yes, even your lungs, healthy one!  But for those of us with problematic lungs such as me, it's much more critical to avoid these things altogether.

Hey, when you're going to be in a public place such as the gym, waiting room, theatre, etc., please don't wear cologne or perfume!  Many people are allergic to these scents and oils and some of us simply cannot breathe when you're around.

Thank you for being considerate!

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I am not a medical professional. These are my observations based on my experiences. Yours may vary. Remember, YOU are responsible for your choices and quality of life!!