Monday, September 15, 2014

Doing your own thing


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I'm so proud of this lady!

Each of us have a part to play and something to pay forward in this movement.  This lady felt the draw to get her yoga teacher training and open classes for women like us!  And, she's doing it!

If you live near Murray, UT go to her free class tonight (Tues, Sept 16 @6:30) and tell her Scabs sent you!

And, as always, if you live near Lindon, UT sign up for ADDO's free yoga classes here.

I've said it before and I'll say it again, yoga has been a pillar in my healing.  You don't have to be bendy or have a third-eye, you just have to want to be whole again.









Friday, September 12, 2014

behind the scene

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Why is it that kids get squirrely when it's time for bed?  And why are they suddenly hit with a bout of the most intense, potentially deadly thirst?  Can anyone answer these questions for me?

Finally, they are quiet and I'm taking a moment to open my laptop, review my Camp Scabs budget, pay a few camp bills, review the registration list.  My camp partner is on hiatus and I miss her.  I miss her for a lot of reasons but one of those little reasons is that she has amazing organizational skills. The kind of skills that make spreadsheets and stuff.  I use sticky notes.

One of the most amazing bits about camp is all the people (especially compassionate men) who have donated, time, talents, extra hours at work and cold hard cash to the Camp Scabs cause;  thousands of dollars and hours upon hours of time.  The Camp Scabs Scholarship Fund has been especially cool to watch. These men are buying airline tickets and paying baggage fees and sending gas money and renting suburbans to help ladies travel from all over North America to Camp Scabs cities.  I'm humbled.

Never were these men asked to donate.  They are just kind and generous.  They reached out to create this opportunity for you.  They work behind the scenes.

I was curious, so I filtered through my sticky notes.  There are now 105 Camp Scabs Alumni.  Out of these alum 48 received scholarships!  I think this is remarkable.


Thursday, September 11, 2014

Monday, September 1, 2014

Get un-stuck


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The first time I discovered Mr. Scabs and porn feels like a million years ago, our now, tween daughter, was still growing in my belly.  I knew in my gut that the porn and lying and anger were poison to the small family we were about to become.  There are so many reasons why I chose to ignore that feeling and justify the porn streaming into my newlywed livingroom.  I felt stuck.

So much has changed since then.

As terrible and enormous as the problem of porn and sex addiction is, there's an equally healing and enormous amount of help, resources and recovery!  The wave of dark is no longer encompassing and engulfing. This is PHENOMENAL!  A phenomenal amount of hope!

I believe if you're an addict or a spouse in today's world, you are the luckiest addict/spouse in the history of the time.  Never have there been so many caring, compassionate, successful people with research and knowledge, armed with tools and pathways to light the way to healthy sexuality and relationships.  There is no reason we can't be whole.  That wave of dark is met with a more powerful wave of light.  We are so lucky!

We want better lives, fuller relationships, deeper intimacy but don't always know how to cross the bridge into action, the ADDO team can show us how to do this.  I know most of the ADDO team personally.  I trust them.  In fact, I just talked to Amy Parks on the phone, you will love her!!  She has her own story and understands the deep confusion and pain as well as the freedom of healing and how to get there.  I hope you reach out and get un-stuck.

Sign up for ADDO's  2-day therapy intensive for individuals and couples in Lindon, Utah.  

There are 2 sessions:

9/26/2014 - 9/27/2014 & 11/7/2014 - 11/8/2014




Establishing Hope Workshop from Addo Recovery on Vimeo.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

The Notebook Syndrome

Camp Scabs Scholarship Applicants: By this evening, Friday 22nd, you will receive an email with our random pick for this September's Camp.  If you applied you should have received a reply email from me just letting you know you're on the list.  If you didn't get this reply please resend your email to campscabs {at} gmail {dot} com

xoxo,
     Scabs

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You know how in The Notebook the main character, the guy, I forgot his name, works his ass off every day trying to get his wife to come back to him.  I told Mr. Scabs, "this is what I call The Notebook Syndrome".

The main character (I know, terrible that I've forgotten his name. Maybe I should google it).....Noah!  Noah and Allie have been married and in love for years when she's diagnosed with Alzheimer's.   They have a great love story filled with passion and fighting and losing each other only to find each other again so she decides to write this story in a notebook because she was losing her mind and doesn't want to forget.  The idea is that if Noah reads the notebook to her each day she will remember who they are and "come back to him".  They will steal a few moments of clarity from the dementia that has taken over her mind.

Every once in awhile, when the conditions were just right, I'd work my ass off all day, talking Mr. Scabs through his life and his addiction.  And by the end of the day he'd come back to me.  He would have clarity and humility and recognition.  He would be like the man I fell in love with. We would steal a few moments from his addiction.   We would dance and hold each other for a minute and be real.  And then, just like in The Notebook, he'd slip away before I'd even noticed. Back into dementia.

This isn't good.  I decided to quit working my ass off.  


Monday, August 18, 2014

the underground railroad




Have you seen Operation Underground Railroad?  This is what porn feeds.

This is what porn feeds.

I am so thankful for brave and compassionate people like Mark.  And, I'm so thankful for the brave and compassionate people in my own city who are abolitionists too, like ISEEUHOPE and TRUST AZ.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Camp Scholarship!

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You know what's fun about being Scabs?  
I get to give away these $500 camp scholarships!!!  I feel so lucky and grateful. 

People (you know who you are), are so kind and generous to donate toward camp.   And this camps scholarships have been flying off the table but I've reserved one more to give away now. This money goes direct from me to you to pay for your camp fee and airfare or travel expenses. 
The dates are Sept 25-27 other camp details are here.

Email me now with your name, where you're from and a quick explanation of why you want to come to Camp Scabs. The winner will be randomly chosen and announced 
Friday Aug 22 via email.

campscabs {at} gmail {dot} com

Just for fun, here's a letter of gratitude from a camp alumni

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Camp Scabs was definitely a life-changing event for me. The connection, the honesty, the love, compassion, understanding, hope (I could go on and on) that came from those women, it was extraordinary. But there was another part of Camp Scabs that made a big impression on me in a way I'll never forget: all the people who helped make camp so amazing. A man who wants to help, so he offers scholarships for women who want to go but can't afford it. A beautiful cabin for a ridiculously inexpensive rate. A gourmet chef who wants us to know we matter, so he prepares a couple of crazy delicious meals. A man who wants to do something, so he donates his time and snowmobiles and takes us to the top of the mountains (incredible, indescribable, awe-inspiring beauty). A yoga instructor who volunteers her time because she wants to help us feel peace and hope. 

I can't explain why, but knowing that these people did so much for us out of the kindness of their hearts, to help strangers feel loved and validated in such a difficult time, it definitely restored my faith in humanity (even men)--something I wasn't looking for in Camp Scabs, but I got anyway, times ten. Thank you so, so, so much for caring, and doing something about it. 

The world needs more people like you.





Tuesday, August 12, 2014

spark of maddness

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We grew up with him.  
He was my Peter Pan, my Captain, that annoying guy on Jumanji,  and our beloved nanny. 

I miss him.

Friday, August 8, 2014

time for camping, scabs style

Credit: a linkless pinterest photo :(

Save the date: Sept, Thursday 25th -Saturday 27th
Camp Scabs Phoenix
(Are you new here?  You're probably wondering what is Camp Scabs? click here)

More details soon and scholarships available.

Please email campscabs {at} gmail {dot} com 
with the word "scholarship" in the subject line.
If I already know you great, if not please tell me why you'd like to come to camp.  

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

life + art

buy me here



I'm sitting here in a pile of post vacation rubble and instead of starting laundry I'm reading through your emails, because I miss you and want to know what's going on in your lives.  Soon I will just leave these piles and hope the night time trolls, Bon Qui-Qui and Billy TuTu decide to take pity on me, snap their fingers and taadaa!  The laundry will be done.  

But, in the meantime, I thought I'd share something.

Be Brave has become something of a life philosophy here in the Scabs world.  And, I love that about a million of ya'll tagged this print for me on Pinterest!! So, I shared it on Instagram and I'm sharing it here too.  I bought one for me and one for a friend who's struggling, because, ya know, #theundergroundreliefsociety

And of course, I couldn't leave my pile of post vacation rubble without giving a shout out to the artist.  Inspiring artwork Alena Hennessy!  Thank you.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

$66.42

Louie


Girl-cat is eating blueberries out of my bowl.  Is that weird?  Should I google it?  Girl-cat is old and grumpy and eccentric. Seven years ago my cat lady friend rescued a mean-fur-and-bones-pregnant-cat-slut from a burger joint parking lot somewhere in Phoenix.  And, of course, we took her in.

Mr. Scabs found an old hand crank snow cone machine at the goodwill which our daughter has turned into her childhood fortune this summer.  This fortune turned into a bunny, that was carefully selected from the handful of discarded Easter bunnies found on Craigslist.  Originally, the ad was $100 for the bunny and an enclosure, carrier, hay, chew sticks, food, combs, litter and a whole slew of other bunny care items.  Heartbroken because she only had $66.42 to spend, I suggested haggling.  It's Craigslist, right?  And so, $66.42 later, Louie, the sweetest bun was part of our family!

I've never been face to whiskers with a bunny before.  She was beautiful.  We became fascinated with her little nose, her paws, her grooming, the fact that she was litter trained, her endless eating of hay and devouring of broccoli, her sweet little hops and excited hop kicks, her smart awareness.  We all fell in love with Louie but our daughter fell especially hard.

This is my oldest child.  The one who has seen and felt the havoc threatening her family but also has been privy to gentle repairing and forgiveness.  Her heart is gold.

The morning before Louie died, my daughter said, "Mom, I love her so much!"

Some terrible circumstances lead to the loss of Louie.  She'd been in our home for 3 days.  It was a Tuesday night and when I realized what had happened I lost it!  I screamed and cried and yelled and begged God to take us back in time, to change what my eyes were telling me was true.  Mr. Scabs held Louie in his arms as she left us.  I begged like I've never begged before (yes, more than or at least equal to d-day).

And, what do you do when you hand your daughter, who has been through so much in her little life, a small box?

There was nothing to do but grieve.  To hold her as she shook and cried.  To squeeze her tighter as the snivels and tears leaked through my shirt.  To let my tears drop and soak into her hair.  To keep myself from telling her that everything was going to be alright and that we can get a new bunny and from blaming anyone and anything.  To leave her question unanswered when she whimpered, "why?", after all, it wasn't me she wasn't asking.  To sit with her while she tried to walk through her pain.

Under the moonlight, Mr. Scabs dug a hole near the ash tree.  We gave a tear-filled eulogy, dropped flowers, love notes and a carrot for Louie's passing to the other side.  Death is never fair.

A few days ago we went to the mountains for a getaway.  Louie was fresh on my daughters mind as she walked into the woods with her journal, pen and paints to face her hard things.  And when she returned something in her had been nurtured.  I don't know what she's learning from all these hard experiences and this isn't the way I imagined her life.  When she was born, I imagined being able to protect her from things but now I see that all I can do is hold her hand.

I love her forever and am so proud of her.

RIP Louie.






Friday, July 18, 2014

Don't Leave It To Fate


I have a really great friend who I asked to contribute here in scabby-world.  I'd asked her to tell her story because I love personal stories and I value different perspectives.  She thought about it for awhile and came up with the fantastic idea of telling parts and bits of her story through book reviews.  Here's her first review!  Anyone else read this book?

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by Kristen Jenson and Gail Poyner

This book addresses a topic that strikes fear into the heart of many a parent.  If you’re like me and didn’t grow up in a family where open conversations about sex or pornography happened, the thought of having these conversations with our own children is more than intimidating.  I just finished two and a half years of therapy because of my husband’s sex addiction and I can still only barely say the word masturbation out loud.  

And yet, we of all people know exactly how important it is to have these conversations.  This is a matter of life and death.  We should see this book as equally important as putting your child in a carseat or feeding them fruits and vegetables.  We cannot leave this topic to fate because we already know firsthand the damage and the cost.  We’ve lived the lives that have reaped the awful consequences of that life left to fate.  When it comes to our own children we will not leave it to chance.  Some of our children will still struggle and make poor choices, but educating our children early and often will allow them to make choices that wouldn’t be conscious choices without this education and will open the door to conversations that could save your child’s life.  
I read this book with my 6 year old daughter and 5 year old son and was curious what they would take from it and if they would be able to understand.  I read it a chapter at a time for a day or two and then forgot about it for several weeks until we were in the car and my son said “can we get a treat?  I want some ice-cream.”  I said something about waiting until after dinner and then my daughter responded “that’s your feeling brain that wants ice-cream.  If your thinking brain were in charge you’d be able to wait until after dinner so you don’t get sick.”  Wow!  I was blown away.  I couldn’t believe she had retained that information from weeks earlier and then she showed her brother with her hands (as it demonstrates in the book) how the feeling brain is in the center and then the thinking brain goes over the top and reminded him that keeping your thinking brain in charge is the best way to live.  I was so impressed I nearly stopped and bought ice-cream for everyone right on the spot to celebrate.  

This book breaks down difficult topics for adults to understand and defines them in such a way that even young children can understand and apply the concepts.  Because of this book I feel empowered to have conversations I didn’t really know how to have before with my young and innocent children.  This book not only empowers me as a mother, but it empowers them to think and make their own choices as well.  I will be referring over and over to this book for many years to come and my brothers and sisters and close friends can all expect a copy of this book for Christmas to read with their children.  (Don’t worry, I’ll throw in some toys and candy too just to retain favorite aunt status.)  I strongly recommend this book for anyone with children of any age.  Even if your kids are already teenagers it’s still hard to start these conversations and this book may help you start some of the most important conversations with your child you will ever have.  

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Mr Scabs Mountain

todays view

The work of life is strange.  The work of waking up to your life and your people is strange and unique.  You sit there and look at your life in this sudden technicolor clarity and think, 'what the hell.  not what i imagined.'   But it becomes your like and you work and care and nurture all the people and things in front of you.  To see that work in myself seems natural.  It seems natural because I'm in it every day.  I can see the process.  It just seems normal.

To see that work in someone else, someone close to you, is miraculous.

Watching from the outside the work is slow and frustrating and nothing short of inspiring dramatic divorce plans including sawing the house in half or packing on bag for the cheese making hills of Kentucky.  This whole work of becoming real as a married couple doesn't seem to happen on my timetable.  And sometimes, nothing at all seems to be happening.  nothing.  But at that very same moment, the moment where I'm bursting with frustration and the appearance of nothingness, there is also something very deep and sincere happening.

Here's a glimpse inside Mr Scabs work.

It's a brutal accent: boulders, cactus, lizards, killer bees, sheer drops, blistering 108 degree temps and a deceiving steep one-mile hike to the top of Camelback Mountain.   Each year, hikers get helicopter rescued because of heat stroke, dehydration, getting attacked by bees or injured.  Some even lose their lives on this red rock pushing up from the dusty desert Phoenix floor.  It's especially brutal with the 3 o'clock sun.

I used to think that he was punishing himself, maybe for a long while, he was.  The work of living with such infamously terrible mistakes wasn't working for Mr. Scabs, so he ran up the mountain.  In the name of self-care, he takes this run 2-3 times a week.  

The other evening I asked, "How was you climb?"

"It was great.  I got to the top and just took some time to stop and think."

Screeech!  say what?  stop and think?

{For any of you who know Mr. Scabs, he doesn't stop and think.  Go Go Go Go Go Go and Go is his normal speed.}

It's small.  Almost imperceptible and terribly frustrating with the appearance of nothingness.  But at the same time it's real.




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