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Father’s Day: taking care of His kids!

Happy Fathers Day, Abba, Father!

On the Weekend of Father’s Day, and more specifically, Friday and Sunday (June 17 & 19, 2016), a wonderful out-pouring of love, care and much-needed medical attention was provided to Gods kids. Dental, medical, eye/optometry, and pastoral care (provided by two chaplains and a recent graduate of Andrews University Theological seminary (My own Son, Pastor David Ettari)), as well as massage therapy and lifestyle education was provided for two full days – all free to the communities surrounding and including Mansfield, Texas.  This was a pilot program, launched by the Texas Conference of  Seventh-Day Adventists. I happened to be visiting my son, who is presently in school and attending the Mansfield SDA Church, where this “field hospital” was set up requiring every inch of space.

Father's DAY Gift to God!

As I’m a nurse, I was amazed  at the ‘makeshift’ dental hospital, the presence of sophisticated portable eye exam macFather's DAY Gift to God!hines, X-ray and dental equipment, while patients lay in lounge chairs and dentists sat on chairs requiring some difficult maneuvering to reach their patients. Many of the dentists came from Texas A & M University, Baylor College of Dentistry.   I was amazed by the team spirit and the amount of volunteers present as well as the outpouring of hard work by a large group of strangers/medical professionals and volunteers of equal importance (most who call themselves Christians and some reporting no particular faith). They all came because of flyers on cars, announcements in churches, face-book advertisements, local Christian television (Good News TV), local schools and word of mouth – to facilitate a comprehensive goal that could be called, “Project Rescue Gods’ Hurting Kids.” It’s my understanding that all traveled at their own expense and in some cases, quite a distance. IMG_3181

The atmosphere shouted that “We are the family of God!” and His Spirit was evident to all. It was a glimpse of heavens’ mustard seed.

 The next table, lined with equipment, was for those seeking any form of care, ‘the registration table’. Once registered, all were pro-
The Registration Tablevided health screenings. Table after table after table of nurses were busy educating and screening for hypertension, Diabetes and more. Next, the halls were lined with chairs for those waiting for ex ray, dental care, cleaning, medical doctor consults, the eye doctor, and in the annex across the way, massage, life style education and counseling ( by a medical doctor) and pastoral prayer and care were set up.

One medical doctor flew from California, one from Tennessee, one of the many dentists told me he drove four hours. Others flew from distant parts of Texas.

They all came, in any case, sacrificing a relaxing Father’s Day! They came to donate their time and skills in the care of Gods’ kids, many of which were in dire need with no medical insurance. They came, bringing their talents and God-given skills to bless their Heavenly Father and care for HIS children.

I met a Nunurse anesthetistrse-Anesthetist among the rows nurses (RN’s or BSN’s). They were checking blood pressures and blood sugars for hours. One nurse shared that a young man had been found to have high blood pressure. Heart disease is a silent killer and when this young and unaware man learned of his condition, the nurse provided education on changes to his diet, including the importance of minimizing salt as well as the importance of self monitoring and where possible, reporting this to a primary care physician.

But many of the over 500 patients that received medical attention, including teeth cleaning, x-rays, extractions, eye exams leading to new eye glasses,  consults with medical doctors, and important screening for diabetes, Police Chief, Officer and Pastorheart disease and more, do not have medical insurance or the co-pay is cost prohibitive. Also present was the Mansfield Chief of Police and one of his officers pictured here with Pastor Sean Harris of the Mansfield Seventh Day Adventist Church. Dressed in uniform, he provided a sense of additional order to the safe environment of God’ house. His wife is also notable in that she was beaming for joy and expressing gratitude at finding a way to provide service to the Lord on Father’s Day . They are christians from another denomination, but  clearly, they are our brethren.  She explained that she’s a realtor, but dusted off her dental assistant license and was there to pitch in.

Dr. Brice

Dr. E. Bryce

 As I stood by an exit, I noticed a beautiful family; a young husband and wife with a small child in her daddy’s arms.family
I asked if they had any medical care. They smiled and said, “No. We didn’t need anything.” I asked if they were Seventh Day Adventists. They smiled and said, “We are members of the ‘Mansfield Mosque’. We saw the flyers and were curious.” It was my privilege to welcome them to the Seventh Day Adventist church and assure them, that they are more than welcome any time, and invited them to come again.
Just before I left, I met a well dressed man who had dental work and explained that he was living in a near-by shelter and was grateful to be out of pain. Asked if he knew what church this was, he said, ” It’s the Seventh Day Adventist Church”…. And then he said, ” I had no idea they did things like this.”

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To Be or Not To Be

imagesRecently, a dear friend said to me, “Sally! God created you to be a human being, not a human doing. You must slow down and you must focus on ‘being’ … not so much ‘doing’.  I found this so interesting. Self thought: ‘Hmmmmm, but I have so much to do?!?!’

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Wiggle Room

“Yellow-Light foods” and What I’ve learned.

Sally Ettari a/k/a Sally Atari, Inspirational Music, Gospel, Christian, Concerts, Public Speaker, Bookings, Christian, OA, GuitarIn my quest to ‘discover’  what foods are driving my eating disorder, in other words, to clarify what foods are leading me back to the cliffs (see Cliff walking), that place where I reach a threshold and binge,  I was asked to make my list of Red-light foods: the foods I know to be binge foods, Green light-foods,  the ones “I’m positive” (Note to self: Really? Are you sure?) I can handle, and my Yellow-light foods, the ones we identify as “I’m not sure they are a problem.” These foods are the ones I have held onto with a vengeance!

That about sums it up. “Get back in there: I can control this, and I’m NOT GIVING IT UP, It’s Mine, Mine Mine!” It wasn’t till I joined a 12 step recovery group that I started to identify ‘what exactly is the problem,’ calling them, “MY” (MINE, MINE, MINE!!!) ‘Red-Light, Green-light and Yellow-light foods.’  After 33 years in this program, I have finally learned, if they are ‘Yellow-light foods’, they are, most likely, ‘red-light’ foods you are holding onto. I had heard this before from one woman, but she said it in such a ‘matter of fact’ way, I dismissed her as being ‘nuts’, ‘wrong’, and gave it the old, “Thanks for the information” (Pg. 39, Anonymous), ‘See ya!’.

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Part 2, Dr. Tiebout; Grandiosity?

 Sally Ettari a/k/a Sally Atari, Singer and Song Writer, Blog, Music, Guitar Twelve Step Recovery, Speaker, Concert Artist, sally.atari@yahoo.com, sallyatari.comRound Two of Harry Tiebout’s Article: Grandiosity!

Dr. Harry Tiebout’s article, “THE ACT OF SURRENDERING TO THE THERAPEUTIC PROCESS” states: “In the compulsive overeater, there are two qualities which are characteristic of their personality:  Defiant Individuality and Grandiosity.This may very well explain the well-known fact the overeater is, among the not-so sick, the most UNREASONABLE and STUBBORN about seeking help or being able to take it even when she seeks it.  Both of these qualities operate in unconscious layers of the mind and the influence of both must be defined as:  That quality which permits the individual who has it to snap her fingers in the face of reality and live on unperturbed.” (Tiebout) 

Defiance and grandiosity, these are the two subconscious elements that drive the food addict and have kept us in the disease. The following are some of the more key and incredibly concise descriptions of the compulsive overeater and what keeps us for so long, in the disease. In the post, The face of defiance, part one of this subject, I learned about the character flaw of defiance that, working with denial, has provided an isolating internal atmosphere of control and power to keep me in the disease despite the pain and mentally compulsive behaviors that have held me prisoner to my self and my decision to stay in the sick mindset I lived in for most of my self-imposed prison with food.

 “Grandiosity, as structured in the psyche of the overeater, springs from the persisting infantile ego. . . grandiosity claims there is nothing it cannot master and control; on the other side, the facts demonstrate, unmistakably, the opposite.” (Tiebout). It’s grandiosity that kept me in the delusion that I could somehow control this disease.

“The dilemma of the overeater is not obvious.  Her unconscious mind rejects, through its capacity for defiance and grandiosity, what its conscious mind perceives.  Hence, realistically, the individual is frightened by her eating and at the same time is prevented from doing anything about it by the unconscious activity which can and does ignore or override the conscious mind.” (Tiebout)

The dilemma is that the world still doesn’t get that we even have an addiction just like alcoholism or a cocaine addiction. It’s 2015 and the world still doesn’t understand that there are three types of eaters… there is the ‘moderate eater’. (BB Pg. 20-21) They are so lucky that they have no interest in food and just eat to sustain their bodies.  Even then, in some cases, they are annoyed that they have to eat at all! Then there are Hard Eaters’ who like to binge on the holidays, on weekends (wings and pizza and ice-cream and more). These people can stop when they get full or when they want to lose a few pounds, they can pull it together! Weight watchers, Jenny Craig, Nutri-system, and a host of other diets will work well. They need some structure,  a plan and group support and they are on their way! But there are people like me who are food addicts! Like alcoholics, we have the allergy of the body and we have the mental ‘twist’, (BB Pg. 23, 24, 33, 35, 37, 42 and 92), the greater aspect of our disease (“the crux of the matter”  as the Big Book calls it on Pg. 35). The dilemma for me is that I didn’t believe me! And then, the world backed up my delusion and denial by saying, ‘It’s not that bad, you just need a diet and some group support.’ And I believed what they said because I wanted it to be true. But it wasn’t true! I have a sick mind and an allergy that led to obesity three times in my life.

One last thing, with regard to this article and then I will drop it! “With submission to a diet, which at best is a superficial yielding, tension still continues:  “There’ll come a day when I lose the weight, then i can eat again…” . . . The tools of phone, a plan of eating, a sponsor, meetings, writing, and reading and even anonymity: these are designed to induce surrender to the fullest degree possible so that defiance and grandiosity actually cease effectively to function. Some programs within OA use tools to help us “surrender” instead of yielding to a diet mentality.

“She senses a serenity, the possession of which frees the individual from the compulsion to eat.  In other words, an act of surrender is an occasion wherein the individual no longer fights life, but accepts it.” (Tiebout) Apparently by seizing the tools of the program, we become surrendered and then serenity (a peaceful state) ensues and leads to a mind-set that makes us willing to stop fighting and follow the ground rules, the guidelines of a program (such as  Sally Ettari a/k/a Sally Atari, Singer and Song Writer, Blog, Music, Guitar Twelve Step Recovery, Speaker, Concert Artist, sally.atari@yahoo.com, sallyatari.comHOW or FAA or ‘Gray Sheeter’s’  ect.)  and instead of submitting to a diet mentality, we are finally at peace with the disease and a plan for behavior modification because that’s what the tools give us, behavior modification.

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The face of Defiance! Part 1, Dr. Tiebout

When defiance comes out to play,

deep from inside of us, the damage can be devastating! The following is an excer Sally Ettari a/k/a Sally Atari, Singer and Song Writer, Blog, Music, Guitar Twelve Step Recovery, Speaker, Concert Artist, sally.atari@yahoo.com, sallyatari.compt from Dr. Harry Tiebouts’ article, “THE ACT OF SURRENDERING TO THE THERAPEUTIC PROCESS”. According to this good doctor, in the compulsive over-eater (or any addict), there are two qualities which are characteristic of their personality:  Defiant Individuality and Grandiosity. Today, I would like to look at defiance because it is one of the last and most dangerous vestiges of my own illness – it still peeks its ugly head out and I’m hoping to decode what is going on and once and for all, lay down this character defect. Perhaps you have seen defiance peek its head out in you as well. If, like me, you have spent years of ‘falling off the wagon’ and landing back in the food, bingeing, you too may have this defect! It’s dangerous and I believe it’s our ‘self-will’ rising up and in many cases, it’s our coping mechanism for the corrosive thread of fear (born of anxiety) that drives so much of what we do and say; ultimately, it’s defiance that has led me back to the edge of the cliff,  back to self-reliance and then, to the food.

I have treated defiance like it was an adorable two-year-old within me.  My own grandson, Luciano, comes to mind. I think of that face he makes when he lowers his chin and raises his eyes in such a way that he appears defiant; he actually looks like a bull in a bull-fight preparing to attack! He does this when he’s scared and angry. As a spectator of Lu, when he makes this Sally Ettari a/k/a Sally Atari, Singer and Song Writer, Blog, Music, Guitar Twelve Step Recovery, Speaker, Concert Artist, sally.atari@yahoo.com, sallyatari.com face, one wonders, ‘Uh-oh, what’s coming?’ Is he going to hit some one? Scream? Get crazy? He looks, suddenly hardened and slightly
‘evil’ if it were possible. But no, he’s playing and it’s short-lived.But as an adult,
my defiance is seasoned and dangerous mostly to me and in how I respond to it when it rears its head! My defiance has led me to the edge of the cliff many times
‘Cliff Walking’ posted December 20, 2014). I knew I was walking on the edge and about to lose my precious abstinence and even, recovery. The food is neutral, it’s not in response to the allergy and it’s not about marbles of thoughts rolling around. It’s me, shooting myself in the foot, creating crises, playing with my disease. I didn’t want to take any drastic measures, I didn’t want to do anything different!

But of course, that’s the definition of insanity! Doing the same thing and expecting different outcomes. Deep inside, I knew, despite all the ego and grandiosity of being a leader to so many others, that I wasn’t being rigorously honest and I was sloppy (albeit with abstinent foods).  Sloppy enough that I was  scared and I knew I was cliff walking. And so, I am so much like my two-year old grandson, self-willed at times. He needs his parents to deal with his defiance which could hurt him and others.  I need the God of my understanding to protect me from my self-will and self-reliance (born of anger and fear) as well! We need strategies to deal with defiance!

“Defiance masquerades as a very real and reliable source of inner strength and self-confidence, since it says in essence, ‘Nothing can happen to me because I can and do defy it.’ . . . It is the main resource of the chin-up and unafraid type of adjustment and, as a temporary measure, it helps people over many rough spots.” (Tiebout).  Doesn’t this sound like self-reliance? (BB Pg. 68). It’s our instinct! Our security instinct is threatened! (See ‘The Herd Instinct.’) Then you get defiant (I have to stand up for myself, to protect myself). This may be true, that it helps people over the rough spots, but for myself, defiance as a tool for overcoming and for garnering bravery (chin-up), it doesn’t work! Merriam-Webster’s dictionary defines defiance this way: it includes a refusal to obey something or someone, the act of challenging. Defiance is Self-will run riot and the fuel for both is ego and there is nothing good that comes from this mind-set.

 Sally Ettari a/k/a Sally Atari, Singer and Song Writer, Blog, Music, Guitar Twelve Step Recovery, Speaker, Concert Artist, sally.atari@yahoo.com, sallyatari.comDefiance and Denial are two sides of the same coin. The root of both defiance and denial are anxiety and fear.  “If you DEFY A FACT AND SAY IT IS NOT SO, and you can succeed in doing so unconsciously, you CAN EAT TO THE DAY OF YOUR DEATH, forever denying the imminence of that fate.  [Defiance] is a trustworthy shield against truth and all its pressures.” (Tiebout)

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