Saturday, April 23, 2016

My Brave Girl Adventure

As mentioned in yesterday's post, I recently spent 12 days in Idaho for some amazing Brave Girl training. Beautiful location, beautiful women, beautiful souls.

I honestly don't have the words to convey all that I received from my time in the mountains. Unconditional love, for sure. But so much more. Women supporting and encouraging one another. No comparisons. No judgment. No gossip. No complaints. Just lovely women openly sharing their talents, their knowledge, their hearts, their stories. What a precious gift.

The Brave Girl University (BGU) Teacher Retreat took place first. I was rather intimidated going in because these women are already well known for their work and have existing classes and websites. But it didn't take very long for me to be able to put away my "less than" feelings. Serendipitous moments. Kind comments spoken just when I needed them. Offers to help me where I'm struggling. And then there's Melody and Kathy and each member of the Brave Girl team. I know that my life would be very different if I hadn't found them back in July 2012. I am forever grateful.

I'm now working on a BGU class that I would never have thought to do if I hadn't been at this retreat. Lynette listened to my story and immediately said I should prepare a class on it. Of course, I pushed back - but she didn't budge. She recognized that I'm willing to do things for others that I won't do for myself and used that insight to convince me that there are others out there who need to hear this and learn that they are not alone in their struggles. So I will share my little secret and work alongside my students as we each climb our mountain.

While the retreat had a more laid-back schedule, the Soul Restoration Certification Training was very intense. So much really important material to get through, so we started early and finished up late each day.  This course has already changed so many lives and I'm honored to be entrusted to teach it. I'm not sure yet how or where I'll be sharing this course ... whether in women's or teen shelters, a 6-week long weekly class or at a retreat. Lots to figure out with business licenses and insurance and possible venues. Not to mention coming up with a name for my business. I'm working on it and believe that the answers will come.

On that final evening at the lodge in McCall, after all of the hard work had been completed, we stepped outside to view the night sky in all its glory. So breathtakingly beautiful. Countless stars in the dark night. And then we found ourselves in a circle in the middle of the road, embracing one another and softly singing "this little light of mine".  No photo could have captured the exquisite beauty, peace and sisterhood of that precious moment that will forever remain in my heart.

Would you like to learn more about all things Brave Girls? Just ask me and I'd love to share - or click on the links below:

  • Brave Girl Symposium?  Click HERE
  • Brave Girl University (BGU)?   Click HERE
  • 30-day FREE trial for BGU?  Click HERE & use my coupon code:  diannewest
  • Sign up for Daily Truth emails?  Click HERE

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Brave Girl Symposium July 6-8

I recently spent 12 days in McCall, Idaho for the Brave Girl University teacher retreat, followed by their Soul Restoration certification training session.  I cannot emphasize enough how amazing it was to be in the company of all those Brave Girls.  Powerful. Life-Affirming. Supportive.

Can you just imagine what it will be like to be surrounded by HUNDREDS of Brave Girls? Wow!

You don't need to imagine it ... you can live it ... July 6-8 ... by attending the very first Brave Girl Symposium in Boise, Idaho.  I'll be there - and I'd sure love to have you join me.

Click  HERE  to see the preliminary Symposium schedule and all the details. Hope I'll see you there.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

You need a death certificate for that? Really?!?

I donate blood regularly. I have for many years, but I especially understand the importance after the many, many, many times my Vern needed transfusions to stay alive. So I headed off to Sunset Station this morning for my scheduled appointment and was in and out within the hour.

They were giving a free breakfast or lunch buffet coupon if you donated, so I took my voucher over to the Rewards Center to get the actual coupon to use sometime this month. Easy, right?  You would think.

I handed the voucher to the nice gentleman along with my driver's license and mentioned that I didn't have my reward card with me. He said that wasn't a problem and proceeded to pull my info up on the computer. He verified my birth date and printed out a new card and handed it to me, along with the buffet coupon.  The name on the card was Vern West.  Ummm ... "That's my husband." ... "Oh, your card is printing out now."  "He died."  "Oh dear, I am sorry."  "It's been 5 years."  "That's ok, just bring in his death certificate and we can remove him from your account."

What????  Are you kidding me???  For a casino reward card?  Ack!!!! There aren't even any points on the card.  (No - I didn't say any of that out loud. My experience this past weekend with the delayed/cancelled flights and seeing how badly others behaved is still fresh in my memory, so I'm practicing kindness these days.)

So Vern will be staying on my Sunset Station rewards account. He's still on the Verizon cell phone and DirecTV accounts and our gas and electric utility bills. They're all paperless and paid automatically from my checking account, so seeing his name on monthly bills isn't an issue. And it's not because I'm procrastinating about doing this (I do have a rather long list of THOSE things). It's because having to pull out that stinkin' death certificate is hard. Even at 5 years. Trust me, I know he's dead. I'm living with that. Every day.  But I can choose to not have to handle that piece of paper that authenticates the death of my forever love just to have his name removed from an account. It's a choice I can make quite easily, thank you.

And in case you didn't know, my young widowed friends are required to carry their spouse's death certificate with them whenever they travel out of the country with their children. That just makes no sense at all. It should be noted on their passports so that awful document isn't needed.

I also received a t-shirt for my blood donation today.  If you're able, I hope you'll consider being a regular blood donor. It's so important to have a blood supply available for those who need it. Trust me ... I know that, too.