Learning Through Change…and Patience

There are some new adventures in the Vaughan household these days. Our vacation of Beachy Goodness was just what we needed before the wave of change took place. 

So here’s a mixed-up post to go with my mixed-up life. Forgive my rambling. It’s the state of my brain right now.  

Miranda just graduated from high school

Even though she will be doing the thirteenth year program her first year and going to Greenville Tech, she and her best friend are moving into the apartment above our garage. I’m already regretting the decision to let her do this. I do love Joelle (her BFF) and I hope it will be a good experience for them, but it’s requiring much reorganizing on my part, and I have a feeling I’m inheriting another child’s laundry for next year. 
The day after we returned from Vacation, we purchased a Brightstar franchise. This is an exciting adventure, and we hope to help meet a serious need in our community. But there is so much to learn. David just returned from a week of training in Chicago just full of information. 

During this summer, I’ve taken a few courses on blogging to improve my little niche in space so you’ll enjoy visiting. For all of you who blog, you know the drill. Blogger or WordPress? Which is better? I do love Blogger, but after what I’ve learned, I think WordPress is going to be a better fit for me. So you may see a new look here very soon. We’ll see how it goes. Oh, and I’m excited (I think) to have my blog critiqued by Laura Barnes on her website “Laura B Writer”. Bring on the criticism. I can take it {note to me—reread the prescription verse above}. 
As if that’s not enough to do, I have the privilege of writing a series of twelve articles for Addiction Blog
I’m really excited about this because this is a predominantly educational blog, and they are allowing me to write from a spiritual perspective. I know without a doubt that I would still be in the exact same miserable pit I was in if God had not wrapped me in a blanket of mercy and lifted me to safety. Because of this added writing, I’ll be posting less often on my blog, but don’t worry; I’ll post a link so you can find me wherever I go! 

Last, but not least, I’m still working on THE BOOK. Can you feel the frustration in my fingertips?                       

{This is a great image of what it’s like when I sit to write—something or someone else getting in the way.}
And every time I think my writing is good enough, I learn something new, and feel the need to continue to make it better. Will that feeling ever go away? Probably not. Eventually I’ll have to kick it out of the nest and see if it flies. 

I celebrated (I use that term loosely) my 43rd birthday this week. BTW, I love Facebook birthdays. Who know I would get so excited about so many little notifications! It only takes a second to wish someone a happy birthday on FB, and who knows what joy you may bring someone? All of my birthday wishes made me smile. Okay—getting back on track…

It’s been almost two years since God pulled me out of my pit, healed me, and plopped me here with a purpose. It is my heart’s desire to help others with addiction and depression. I’ve been there and it’s hell—as literally as I can imagine. I’ve been careful not to be too hasty in putting myself out there, as I want to be equipped with the knowledge to counsel with wisdom. I’ve prayerfully and carefully worked with three people with addiction, and one with depression. With each one, God confirms his call on my life. I know I didn’t suffer in vain. Every person I’ve talked to that suffers with addiction issues says the same thing: 

“It’s not terribly helpful to have a professional tell you what you need to do to get better. They can’t understand. Hearing it from someone who has been there personally, understands how you feel, and knows the medical details of addiction makes all the difference in the world.” 

I’ll keep learning, God, and you take me where I need to go. 

 From my heart,

Make-a-change Monday~Just Do It!


Why is it so hard? Why do we resist even when we know it’s for the best? 

In November of 2010, I decided I wanted to write a book. I suppose I could say God called me to write this particular book, since He gave me an overnight miracle and gave me a very specific testimony with a unique perspective as a pharmacist and a patient. If I’d had any idea what I was getting myself into, I never would have attempted it. Now, fifteen months later, I’m so excited about how far I’ve come in the process and how much I’ve learned. If you’d known me just eighteen months ago, you’d be just as amazed as my husband is! 

“Even the greatest of all journey’s begin with the first step.” I have no idea who said it, but I’ve heard it all my life. I didn’t truly understand it until now. 

It’s all about small changes. 

   I joined the ranks of Facebook
   I learned to blog
   I learned to tweet
   I went to a writer’s conference
   I went to a speaker’s conference
   I joined a writer’s group
   I joined an online marketing group for writers
   I submitted articles for publication
   I’ve completed the outline for my book
   I’ve written the first four chapters
   I’ve sent the first chapter to be edited

Those are the things I’ve accomplished in these last fifteen months. Did I just decide to create a blog and sit down and do it one day? No. I had to join Google, join blogger, learn to navigate Word, learn to create links, manipulate photos, document resources, change font, create layers, upload templates, etc. It hasn’t been easy and I’ve probably lost a little hair in the process. But I decided to do it and I did, making one small change at a time. 

I had to make changes to become a writer. Today is about what you want to change. What is something that you’ve wanted or needed to do but haven’t? 

   Reconnect with an estranged person from your past?
   Begin an exercise program? 
   Clean out your closet? Your whole house?
   Cook tastier and healthier meals?
   Make a quilt?
   Paint your bedroom? 

Whatever it is, write it down. Then decide what tiny little step you can make toward your goal and just do it.

   Find the phone number of the person you want to reconnect with
   Go walk for thirty minutes
   Clean out one drawer in your closet
   Find one recipe online that you like and print a copy to take with you to the grocery store
   Create a box to begin collecting scraps for your quilt
   Go by a paint store and look at paint colors; make a list of the items you’ll need.

Goals can seem overwhelming. One small step at a time is within reach. Remember, we can do all things through Christ who gives us strength. He certainly can give us enough strength to clean out one drawer. Begin today with just one small change, then another, and another. Remember the Nike slogan “Just Do It?” You’ll be surprised where you’ll find yourself one year from now. 

What change do you need to make? Will you just do it?

From my heart,


P.S. I’d love for you to briefly comment on my blog and share your small change. It will help keep you accountable and give me some inspiration! My closets are a mess…

“It’s all in your mind.”

Has someone ever said to you, “It’s all in your mind?” It’s a funny and not so funny thing that my dad used to always say those words to me, and now my husband does! It made me crazy then, and it makes me crazy now. HOWEVER (and I promise you these words WILL come back to haunt me), we can train ourselves to think in a way that can change our mind, our hearts, and our world.
How often do you decide you want to change something about yourself? Or start something new? We are always growing and changing as our life progresses, yet we are also creatures of habit. I blogged about this same topic called “Small Beginnings” if you’d like to read that post as well, you can see it here:
I can’t tell you how many times I decided I would change my diet and threw away everything in my pantry; how many times I decided to get in shape and spent 3 hours at the gym, then couldn’t get out of bed the next day; decided to “spring clean” and cleaned out so much stuff at one time I had a bigger mess than when I started! 
In all of these situations, I set myself up for failure. It has taken me a LONG time to learn, but in order to really change, you must take small steps. If you are making a positive change in your life, and you begin to see good in the first small steps, you will eagerly await the next one. 
For example, if you want to diet, the first logical step would be to replace all of your beverages with water for two weeks. After that time is up, water will be a natural choice for you, you may have already lost a little weight, and you’ll be ready to take the next small step…like walking for 30 minutes a day. 
If you want to save money, make a conscious decision to eat at home instead of eating out when you normally would, then put what you would have spent aside and see how much you have saved in two weeks. This will “train” your mind to realize that even small things can make a difference. 
If you want to have the uncluttered home you’ve always coveted, spend 25 minutes a day devoted ONLY to cleaning out clutter. Do not tackle more than you can accomplish in 25 minutes, and then make the commitment to yourself NOT to let that area get cluttered again. Little by little, this will become a way of thinking, and in just 6 months to a year, you might just have that house you always wanted! (oh…and when you declutter, put whatever you are getting rid of in a black trash bag and get it OUT OF THE HOUSE…to go to trash, good will, consignment, wherever, just don’t leave it in the house.)
Now, all of these things are obviously things I’ve done, and am still doing. Each one of these areas of my life gets easier every day. But without the steps I’ve taken every day to get to know my Jesus better, none of these other things would matter. They are all in this life, here and now. We need to be happy here and now, but we also must know that none of these things will matter someday. So while me make little changes to shape our life here, we must also make little changes to shape our life there…in eternity. 
Begin to do small thing each day to get to know Jesus better. Find a good non-fiction book to read to begin teaching you about your Jesus. “The Purpose Driven Life” comes to mind since I’ve blogged about it recently. “Seeing Through the Lies” is a book by Vonda Skelton my bible study is about to start. Another book to begin to change the way you think is “Crazy Love” by Frances Chan. Don’t go to the bookstore and get a Beth Moore bible study right off the bat, or you’ll probably find it sitting alone on your desk next week untouched. They are wonderful, but time consuming. Start small. Just read a book. A little each day.
Maybe make “Fireproof” your Friday night rental. Make WLFJ the station you listen to in your car. Before long, you’ll realize that you are getting to know your Jesus, and you’ll want more of him. You may begin to see and feel changes that surprise you! 
I have not always known Jesus personally, even though I claimed him as my savior. I believe many Christians are in the same boat I’ve been in most of my life. It took seven years of sheer hell…severe depression, migraine headaches, grand mal seizures, and prescription drug addiction…to make me see the light at the end of the tunnel, and that light was Jesus. Plain and simple. I pray that this blog, and the hard lessons I have learned, might help someone else NOT have to learn them the hard way. I’d like to know that the horrid seven years I endured weren’t just for me. I want them to be for you too. 
“It’s all in your mind” is a statement that frustrates. It’s overwhelming. And I think it may be a little sexist since it seems to be men that love to say it! =o/ But if we can begin to do small things, we can begin to change the big things. If we change our habits, we will change our thoughts. If we change our thoughts, we will change our world. 
From my heart,