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The Lifegiver Podcast for Military & First Responder Marriages
Season 5

The Lifegiver Podcast for Service Marriages is hosted by Corie Weathers, a Clinical Military and First Responder Consultant. Corie started off her career as a licensed professional counselor serving families behind confidential doors.  After a few years of working with service families, she found common themes that she wanted to address on a much bigger scale.  The Lifegiver Podcast was launched as a way to start a much broader conversation.  Each episode tackles a topic or interview that relates to the military and/or first responder lifestyle as well as marriage enrichment. 

Lifegiver Season 5

S5 E21: S5 E21 A CURE to the Habit Cough: The Weinberger Method

What if I told you I found the cure for the common cough?  Well, it actually wasn’t me, but after our son fought an “Asthmatic cough” for four years we finally came across Dr. Weinberger and the “Habit Cough”.  Joining me for this episode is Dennis Buettner, a Cough Research Director for Dr. Miles Weinberger, MD. and a veteran that works with NASA. Dennis’s daughter Bethany went through the same thing our son did- coughing up to 5,000 times a day with no answers. Like many of you out there who are trying to find answers, both of our families went through endless doctors, diagnoses, and medications before doctors finally threw up their hands with nothing left to offer.  Dennis finally stumbled on some research about a pulmonologist who found the cure for the cough through suggestive therapy- teaching kids to be attentive to their bodies and stopping the cough in as little as 10 minutes! Bethany was able to stop her cough, so was our son, and now Dennis is spreading the word about how if you or someone you know can answer one question of his- you can stop the cough too. Seriously, Dr Weinberger has changed our lives. More importantly, he gave my son back his. For more on Dr. Weinberger and the Habit Cough: https://www.habitcough.com/ Find resources for your service marriage at www.life-giver.org Interested in joining the Lifegiver Facebook group to discuss this episode and more? Click here. Music by Rudy Vaughn

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5 E20 The Fear of Transition: Derek Abbey Pt 2

Derek Abbey, PhD joins me again!  I enjoyed my last conversation so much with Derek, I invited him back to share his research on transitioning into the veteran space. Derek says that there are important stages we should all go through in order to help us mature as well-functioning adults. The military sets the perfect conditions by providing almost everything we need as adults. It provides community, a way to progress through rank and accomplishment, and makes many of our decisions for us.  Although the military “saved his life”, Derek shares what he has learned from helping veterans take the next big step in their lives in higher education and helping veterans take the next big step in their lives. The result was a fascinating conversation on what we all need to do to evolve to a better version of ourselves.  Derek Abbey, PhD is a retired Marine and CEO of  Project Recover. Find resources for your service marriage at www.life-giver.org Interested in joining the Lifegiver Facebook group to discuss this episode and more? Click here. Interested in giving back?  Donate a couple of dollars to the podcast at Patreon. Music by Rudy Vaughn  

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5 EP19 & E20 with Derek Abbey, PhD

S5 E19 Legacy with Derek Abbey, Project Recover Derek Abbey, PhD is a retired Marine and CEO of Project Recover joins me for a fascinating interview where we talk about the importance of leaving a legacy and how Project Recover is healing families’ stories.  Project Recover, an international nonprofit that uses the latest in science, technology and archival research, with a mission to find and repatriate the remains of fallen American troops. Derek Abbey says there are 82,000 Americans in uniform missing in the world today. Around 7,000 of those are from the Korean War, with another 1,600 missing from Vietnam and Southeast Asia. A staggering 72,000 are missing from World War II, a conflict in which sixteen million Americans served or about 12% of the population.   Here is a little of what we cover:  How his 23 years of military service, including his deployments to Iraq and the Far East as a fighter pilot, saved his own life and have influenced him to support the mission of finding and returning fallen service members home. Derek holds more combat hours than hours in peaceful skies, and also served with the Marine Raiders in Afghanistan. How families can be impacted by loss for generations after a war has ended Examples of how Project Recover leverages technology and partnerships with University of Delaware and Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California San Diego in an attempt to find MIA soldiers How Derek’s values centered approach guides his professional and personal life Find resources for your service marriage at www.life-giver.org Interested in joining the Lifegiver Facebook group to discuss this episode and more? Click here. Interested in giving back?  Donate a couple of dollars to the podcast at Patreon. Music by Rudy Vaughn 11/9 S5 E20 The Fear of Transition: Derek Abbey Pt 2 Derek Abbey, PhD joins me again!  I enjoyed my last conversation so much with Derek, I invited him back to share his research on transitioning into the veteran space. Derek says that there are important stages we should all go through in order to help us mature as well-functioning adults. The military sets the perfect conditions by providing almost everything we need as adults. It provides community, a way to progress through rank and accomplishment, and makes many of our decisions for us.  Although the military “saved his life”, Derek shares what he has learned from helping veterans take the next big step in their lives in higher education and helping veterans take the next big step in their lives. The result was a fascinating conversation on what we all need to do to evolve to a better version of ourselves.  Derek Abbey, PhD is a retired Marine and CEO of  Project Recover. Find resources for your service marriage at www.life-giver.org Interested in joining the Lifegiver Facebook group to discuss this episode and more? Click here. Interested in giving back?  Donate a couple of dollars to the podcast at Patreon. Music by Rudy Vaughn

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5: Ep18 The Insanity Cycle: Matt and Corie

In this webinar Matt and I teach on the Insanity Cycle that happens too often in marriage conflict. It was a two hour event, the first hour public and the second a private Q&A over Zoom with registered participants. This is the first hour where Matt and I walk you through why couples find themselves looping sometimes on the same argument- for years. It is common for couples to get into an unhealthy pattern of triggering each other. Getting out of that pattern is the hard part. Once you start triggering each other, it is hard to get out of that downward spiral we call the Insanity Cycle. Are you ready to change the way you and your spouse fight? Are you ready to end the unhealthy patterns and get back to respecting each other?   Here is some of what we cover in this episode: A walk through the Insanity Cycle and how couples stay stuck in it How a couple tends to include a Pursuer and a Withdrawer How you are both feeling and saying the same thing but not hearing each other How the Pursuer and Withdrawer trigger each other to continue the Insanity Cycle Ways you can stop the Cycle of hurt and destruction in your marriage How you can play the “Maturity Game” speak lifegiving truth to your spouse If you would like to hear Part 2, where we take your questions and dive deeper, you can find it on the LG Shop! This digital download includes Part 1 & 2 Videos as well as a listening guide to help you apply it to your life and marriage.  While you’re there, take a look at some of the other digital downloads as well! Find resources for your service marriage at www.life-giver.org Interested in joining the Lifegiver Facebook group to discuss this episode and more? Click here. Interested in giving back?  Donate a couple of dollars to the podcast at Patreon. Music by Rudy Vaughn

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Lifegiver Season 5

BONUS: Anthony O’Neal, College & COVID

It’s a BONUS episode of The Lifegiver Podcast!  We knew wrapping up the parenting series would not be complete without talking about our youth and college age kids. There is a lot of anxiety on returning to college during COVID season and that is on top of the stress families already have about paying for college! Anthony O’Neal, author, speaker, and Dave Ramsey Personality joins us to talk about how right now could be one of the best times to go back to college debt-free.  Anthony wrote the best-selling book, “Destroy Your Student Loan Debt” and travels the country talking with parents and college students about how they can avoid the mistakes he did. Listen in as he shares his story, tells you how college is way more affordable than you think, and how you can take advantage of this season to make it more affordable. By the way, Anthony also grew up as a military kid with his father in the Army and understands the stressors of military life! Find out more about Anthony O’Neal Here: https://www.anthonyoneal.com/ or listen to his show on Youtube here: https://www.youtube.com/user/aonealministries Find resources for your service marriage at www.life-giver.org Interested in joining the Lifegiver Facebook group to discuss this episode and more? Click here. Interested in giving back?  Donate a couple of dollars to the podcast at Patreon. Music by Rudy Vaughn

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5 E17 Parenting Series: Corie Talks Raising Teens

It is the end of the Parenting Series on the Lifegiver Podcast! There have been so many wonderful guests during this season and Corie wraps it up with an episode about raising teens. Reflecting on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, Corie explains how you can help your child through the difficulty of establishing better routines in the chaos of COVID and school as well as how helping them find their place of belonging can mean everything.         Here is the Awareness Wheel, created by Couples communication that is referenced in this episode.   The Secret of Resilience Find resources for your service marriage at www.life-giver.org Interested in joining the Lifegiver Facebook group to discuss this episode and more? Click here. Interested in giving back?  Donate a couple of dollars to the podcast at Patreon. Music by Rudy Vaughn

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5 Ep16 Parenting Series: Even the Bravest Kids Need a Knight

Sleep issues and separation anxiety are a real thing for so many parents.  With today’s anxiety and fear during COVID and back to school criteria, children’s fears can manifest at night leaving you frustrated, exhausted and hopeless. Without a good night’s sleep, you and your children will struggle to function.  In this episode, I talk with Colleen, a dedicated spouse of a veteran and mom of three boys with a master’s degree in psychology. After years of sleep deprivation and exhaustion with her own son, Colleen was inspired to write her first book about a magical knight- a bear that was determined to protect children from their fears. She wanted to help other moms and young children which led to the creation of Sir William the Brave Knight. Listen in as she shares her story, hope for yours and some ways you can find your own peace and courage to help your children whatever they might be facing. If you would like to find out more or order your own Sir William the Brave Knight: https://magicalorderofbraveknights.com/ If you are interested in strengths coaching, please make an appointment at www.corieweathers.com. Find resources (including the Lifegiver Newsletter) for your service marriage at www.life-giver.org Interested in joining the Lifegiver Facebook group to discuss this episode and more? Click here. Interested in giving back?  Donate a couple of dollars to the podcast at Patreon. Music by Rudy Vaughn

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5 Ep15 Parenting Series: A New Way To Track Your Child’s ‘ESTEEM’

“Few things are as difficult for parents as watching their kids struggle. It’s especially hard not knowing how to help them!”  Now more than ever, mental health and behavioral issues are climbing which can be pretty scary as a parent. Many military and first responder families take the leap to get help from their child only to have to move or start over.  Do you ever feel like you are wasting precious time waiting for all of them to communicate and start making progress? How many times has your child acted out on a weekend and you wish the professional could have seen it themselves but they aren’t open until Monday?  Meet Tommy Black. He’s a clinician that teamed up with some other really cool professionals that made an app to get your child’s wellness back into your hands again. ESTEEM is an app that helps parents track their child’s emotional and behavioral challenges.  Complete with resources, tracking software, and more, you can have complete control of your child’s healthcare at your fingertips.  Receive automated goals that encourage progress. Celebrate small wins that add up to big improvements! ESTEEM also makes it super easy to have teachers, counselors, and any other other professionals share important information about how your child is doing in one place so you can make the best decision for your child. Join us as we talk about why he created the app as well as some really encouraging words about how you can parent through the COVID crisis.  You will love this interview! Download the ESTEEM App today: https://www.chooseesteem.com/ If you are interested in strengths coaching, please make an appointment at www.corieweathers.com. Find resources (including the Lifegiver Newsletter) for your service marriage at www.life-giver.org Interested in joining the Lifegiver Facebook group to discuss this episode and more? Click here. Interested in giving back?  Donate a couple of dollars to the podcast at Patreon. Music by Rudy Vaughn

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5 Ep 14 Parenting Series: COVID & Public School

What kind of relationship do you have with the public school system?  Does it give you anxiety?  Do you feel like you are always trying to advocate for your child- especially if you relocate a lot?  What if we could all work together (better) just a little bit more? What if (like any other relationship) we listened more and built a relationship of understanding? I invited Dr. Keith Mispagel, superintendent of Fort Leavenworth School District 207 to the podcast. He has a doctorate in military child transition and studied what kids need to be resilient and thrive academically.  Even more, his district transitions almost 1,200 new military families every summer for the Command and General Staff College that teaches some of our military’s most competitive officers  To put it plainly, he is a rockstar leading his staff in welcoming and helping children of all ages transition only to do it all again the next year.  I can honestly say it was the best year ever for my kids (who were weary of transition as it was).  He is now teaching other districts how to build better relationships with military parents and kids. Listen in as we talk about the school-parent relationship and what the public schools are going through to make the next year a safer one for our kids.   If you are interested in strengths coaching, please make an appointment at www.corieweathers.com  Find resources (including the Lifegiver Newsletter) for your service marriage at www.life-giver.org Interested in joining the Lifegiver Facebook group to discuss this episode and more?  Click here. Interested in giving back?  Donate a couple of dollars to the podcast at Patreon. Music by Rudy Vaughn  

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5 E 13 Parenting Series: Back to school & COVID

Are you struggling with making a decision about whether your kids should go back to school with COVID numbers still climbing?  This is possibly one of the most stressful decisions our culture of parents have ever had to make. If your kids have been in private or public school settings pre-COVID, how do you decide whether they go back when there are reports of children dying?  In this Lifegiver LIVE, we talk about the questions I’m hearing in my sessions as well as questions you’ve submitted.  We talk about  How to talk with your kids about this decision  Their opinions about COVID How schools are shifting standards How to calm your anxiety about this decision If you are interested in strengths coaching, please make an appointment at www.corieweathers.com  Find resources (including the Lifegiver Newsletter) for your service marriage at www.life-giver.org Interested in joining the Lifegiver Facebook group to discuss this episode and more?  Click here. Interested in giving back?  Donate a couple of dollars to the podcast at Patreon. Music by Rudy Vaughn

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5 Ep 12 The PROS & CONS of How The Job Changes Us

I couldn’t be more excited to have Sarah back with me for another episode of the podcast.  Sarah joined me last season for the round table discussion and again on our faith based episode of Where is God in the Dark Places. Sarah is married to a SWAT officer and she shares some of what she wishes she would have known in her early days as a newly married LEO wife. Any job can “change you” and the service profession can definitely have an impact on a person’s way of handling life, kids, other people, and even our marriage.  But in this conversation, Sarah shares how she has learned to embrace some of those changes as strengths and which have become an area she and her husband can work around or talk through if needed. If you are interested in strengths coaching, please make an appointment at www.corieweathers.com Interested in joining the Lifegiver Facebook group to discuss this episode and more?  Click here. Interested in giving back?  Donate a couple of dollars to the podcast at Patreon. Music by Rudy Vaughn

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5E11: Soul Recovery- Brian Flanery from ReBoot

I have been a long time fan of Reboot Recovery– “REBOOT helps people overcome trauma through faith-based programs. Our courses, training and online community are open to anyone connected to military or first responders. If the same old therapy or medication has left you feeling hopeless, you’ve come to the right place. At REBOOT, we’re overcoming trauma together and can’t wait for you to join us.” In this episode, Bryan Flanery a veteran who struggles with TBI, shares his story of trauma, faith, and how the genuine relationships of those behind Reboot changed his life.  You will be changed by this episode.  Contact Reboot for more on how you can get involved, find a small group and get the support you need as a military or first responder couple. Hear more of Bryan’s story here: https://neveralonemilitary.com/stories/view/bryan-flanery Interested in subscribing to the Lifegiver Newsletter? Subscribers get discounts on their first session with Corie and find more information on building a community of Lifegivers. Click here to subscribe. Want to give back?  Send a monthly cup of coffee to keep us going by being a supporter on our patreon page: https://www.patreon.com/lifegiver

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5E10: Tips & Perspective from a NG Spouse (Cierra)

My good friend Cierra joins the podcast to talk about her experiences as a National Guard spouse.  We so often hear about the challenges of National Guard families- that they don’t have access to the programming active duty families have and that living in the civilian community can be isolating. So in this interview, Cierra shares her experience of deployment while living in the civilian community and the challenges National Guard life brings into their marriage.  National Guard and Reserves are now deploying just as much as active duty and Cierra gives fantastic tips on how she has learned to manage the home, school, and work while also building a connected marriage. Interested in subscribing to the Lifegiver Newsletter? Subscribers get discounts on their first session with Corie and find more information on building a community of Lifegivers. Click here to subscribe. Want to give back?  Send a monthly cup of coffee to keep us going by being a supporter on our patreon page: https://www.patreon.com/lifegiver

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5E9: Loss & Love Again with Mary-Anne Rubado Kline

Loss can be a terribly difficult thing to talk about- especially when we exist in a lifestyle where it is both a fear and reality. We need to be able to talk about it and learn from those who have gone through it and found happiness again.  In this Memorial Day special, Mary-Ann Rubado Kline joins the podcast to share the loss of her first husband, Charlie, during their first deployment while stationed in Colorado. She is now married to Jeremiah, a veteran and first responder. I ask her tough questions about what it is like to love again, how Jeremiah allows space for the time she lived with Charlie, and more. It is important to hear the stories of those who have gone through great pain. It acknowledges a Sacred Space that they lived through and were changed by. Even though this may be difficult for some of you to hear, I hope you will listen.  There are so many wonderful truths and so much wisdom found in my interview with her. I have no doubt you will be encouraged and inspired to live and love more fully. Thank you Mary-Anne for sharing your heart and being so vulnerable with us!                             Interested in subscribing to the Lifegiver Newsletter? Subscribers get discounts on their first session with Corie and find more information on building a community of Lifegivers. Click here to subscribe. Want to give back?  Send a monthly cup of coffee to keep us going by being a supporter on our patreon page: https://www.patreon.com/lifegiver  

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Kellie Artis
Lifegiver Season 5

S5E8: Kellie Artis with Moving the MILLIE Way

It is PCS (Permanent Change of Station) Season and if you listened to season 4 of Lifegiver, you know I struggle when it is time to uproot!  MILLIE has been growing over the years in their efforts to make it easier for you to transition, and I need a whole lot of that!  In this episode, Kellie Artis joins me to share not only how MILLIE can connect you to other service families in your new location, but how you can be fully prepared in finding housing, handling logistics, and more.  We even talk about the emotional and psychological impact of starting over.  Don’t miss this one! For more on MILLIE: check out their website, Facebook group, and all their toolkits to help you in the process!

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5E7: Becky Porter with MCEC

When you are a parent, you will do anything for your child(ren).  As a military family that moves a lot, a lot of thought and stress goes into making sure your child has everything they need to succeed.  Especially when you volunteered for this lifestyle and they were born into it.  In this episode, I invite Becky Porter, CEO of Military Child Education Coalition to share what they are doing to make all of this easier for military parents and educators. If you are a first responder family, this episode is still for you!  Listen in to the vast resources that MCEC is offering that everyone can benefit from. Interested in subscribing to the Lifegiver Newsletter? Subscribers get discounts on their first session with Corie and find more information on building a community of Lifegivers. Click here to subscribe. Want to give back?  Send a monthly cup of coffee to keep us going by being a supporter on our patreon page: https://www.patreon.com/lifegiver

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Lifegiver Season 5

Bonus: Matt and Corie Join the USO to Answer Your Marriage Questions

The world looks a whole lot different lately.  COVID-19 has the entire world on lockdown (or so it feels).  We are all doing our part to stay at home, some of you have PCS and deployment orders that are delayed.  Regardless of your situation, this has a great impact on your marriage.  You might be spending more time with your spouse than ever before and that can definitely cause tension.  In this episode, Matt and I share our conversation with the USO during their Coffee Connections Live event.  We answered questions about communication, growth in your marriage, holding each other accountable, as well as how to help your spouse open up. If you are looking for more support, check out the USO for not only ways to give back, but for how they are also looking to invest in your overall wellbeing with their programming for spouses! Here are a few of the resources mentioned:   Favorite Resources: https://drive.google.com/file/d/10Kl4WnHjnhUerU1cOc58nb3tHF7Ru8Tm/view?usp=sharing Sacred Spaces: https://www.life-giver.org/sacred-spaces/ Forgiveness: https://www.life-giver.org/forgiveness-in-affair-recovery-gods-design-in-marriage/  

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5E#6: Late-Night Chat with Matt – Mr. Rogers Movie

Corie and her husband Matt, both caregivers, unpack their thoughts on the movie A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, the life story of Mr. Rogers starring Tom Hanks. The intentionality with which Mr. Rogers focused on the person he was with in each moment is an example to us today. Our culture is conditioned to multitask and to constantly think about what else we need to be doing, but Mr. Rogers let all else fade away when he spent time with someone. He set a good example for us as we in the service culture, attempt to be present with our spouses and friends. Interested in subscribing to the Lifegiver Newsletter? Subscribers get discounts on their first session with Corie and find more information on building a community of Lifegivers. Click here to subscribe. Want to give back?  Send a monthly cup of coffee to keep us going by being a supporter on our patreon page: https://www.patreon.com/lifegiver  

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5E5: Dr. Kendra Lowe

Dr. Kendra Lowe knows the challenges service members face as she is a Veteran herself. When she switched to the civilian life Dr. Kendra was surprised to note that she experienced just as much stress as a spouse as she experienced while in the service. “The concepts and perspectives derived from Dr. Lowe’s decade-long research, aims to provide command teams with an operational approach to combat the mission degrading effects of military spouse stress.” There is stress for spouse and it’s significant. We know that. But what now? Her book answers that question. Dr. Kendra has created a resource that walks the reader through 8 weeks of changing their thought processes. Her website states: This comprehensive and invaluable tool will help you accept the unique nature of military life, anticipate and persevere in the face of social-emotional setbacks, practice effective coping strategies, and learn to thrive on to new possibilities. Read more: Resources: Dr. Kendra’s website Her book titled Wake Up, Kick Ass, Repeat: A Guide to Self Perseverance Within the Military Spouse Life Cycle Interested in subscribing to the Lifegiver Newsletter? Subscribers get discounts on their first session with Corie and find more information on building a community of Lifegivers. Click here to subscribe. Want to give back?  Send a monthly cup of coffee to keep us going by being a supporter on our patreon page: https://www.patreon.com/lifegiver

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Coronavirus Bonus Lifegiver LIVE Episodes

Lifegiver Live: Coronavirus Bonus Episode 1 Matt and I do our first live streaming episode where we talk about the impact of the virus on our community.  We specifically talk about how to handle the tension of being quarantined in your home 24/7 with your spouse and children. For our community, couples are often not used to being around each other all the time or as FR families are now facing long hours with an invisible enemy. Listen in for tips to navigate your conversations.  Here are a couple of resources we mention:   Interested in subscribing to the Lifegiver Newsletter? Subscribers get discounts on their first session with Corie and find more information on building a community of Lifegivers. Click here to subscribe. Want to give back?  Send a monthly cup of coffee to keep us going by being a supporter on our patreon page: https://www.patreon.com/lifegiver Bonus: Lifegiver LIVE Matt Interviews Army Chaplains on Sustaining Care & Community March 20, 2020 Matt interviews two US Army Chaplains about how they are creatively sustaining community and care using social media and other platforms.  With the introduction of the Coronavirus, ministry teams and churches are looking to find new ways to care for each other, embrace the newest generations, and connect online rather than face to face. Bonus: Lifegiver LIVE Coronavirus Forcing Families into Homeschool March 20, 2020 To the surprise of, well, everyone… kids who were in public schools are now at home facing a homeschool-like situation.  Parents are now scrambling trying to balance remote work, parenting, quarantines, and now overseeing their child’s education.  If you are feeling overwhelmed, Jennifer Hamrick has words of encouragement for you. You can love your child and be a fantastic parent and still be very unhappy with this new situation.  Listen in as Jennifer shares great tips for how to manage a house full of kids and still have time for you.  

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5E4: Corie Weathers – What’s on the Back Burner?

Join us as we take a moment to assess how we as service families are doing and what we can do to influence the change we need in our own lives. The Blue Star Families survey results were recently released and, not surprisingly, it was noted that we are struggling in several key areas. Listen in as Corie unpacks these and provides tips on how to ask for what you need. If you are a spouse and feel relegated to the back burner, we understand. We know that it’s often where we have to go… mission first. However, you can’t stay there indefinitely. Your marriage can’t stay on the back burner indefinitely. In this episode, Corie talks about what to do if you are struggling with the way things are.

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5E3: Marriage Makes Us All Better

Bree Carroll is an engineer using her skills as an event coordinator and wedding planner. Bree saw some marriages around her fail mostly due to a lack of resources to help them get through the challenges they faced. The resources were too hard to find. As a person of action, she made the leap from spectator to influencer, making it her mission to connect those hurting with those who have the ability to help. One of Bree’s passions is wedding planning, so watching marriages fall apart was counter to her very existence. How Bree communicates: 1.  Through prayer – I’ve seen this change things in my marriage. Go directly to the one who created love in the first place. 2.  With spouse – Keep timing and tact in mind when communicating with your spouse! Spouses are not mind readers. (Celebrate small successes and use that momentum to work on bigger challenges.) What Bree hopes to accomplish with her work: Hearts and Stripes is a Facebook community where people can find a one-stop shop for resources for their marriage. Connection to others who have gone through similar challenges. Support from others while seeking help for your own marriage. Great quotes: We are all a little weird and life’s a little weird, and when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall in mutual weirdness and call it love.”  Dr. Seuss Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope. Maya Angelou Be patient and give grace.” Bree Carroll Bree Carroll’s resources: Hearts and Stripes Podcast Meet Bree Other resources mentioned: Come Home Project  

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Lifegiver Season 5

S5E2: Heather Ehle with Project Sanctuary

What we discuss: In this episode, Heather shares her story about being a registered nurse and her introduction to the challenges military families face. Because the stress of the lifestyle affects the whole family, she wanted to find a way to help an organization that was caring for the family unit. When she didn’t find one that was serving whole families, she created one. Project Sanctuary hosts 6-day retreats that focus on overcoming obstacles: financial, communication, family counseling, PTSD, and more. There are 10 different locations and in 2020 there are 32 retreats planned. Two hours a day are spent in therapeutic sessions. There are incredible activities at each location including fishing, white water rafting, horseback riding, ziplining, and snowmobiling. Some of these are once-in-a-lifetime activities while other activities are able to be replicated once the family goes home (hiking or playing board games). Licensed and trained counselors are on-site all week. Breakthroughs on the part of both the veteran and the spouse occur at each retreat! Once a family has been on the retreat they are welcome to return as volunteers. Resources and Links: About Project Sanctuary Apply to attend a retreat PS: Jennifer here… My family was able to attend a Project Sanctuary retreat at Snow Mountain Ranch and I had two personal breakthroughs during the PTSD session. As a chaplain’s wife I figured I’d heard most of the stuff they were going to cover so the fact that I had two major breakthroughs I didn’t know I needed was powerful. One is related to a minor change in my husband after deploying twice. After two tours he started bouncing his leg while sitting and it was incredibly annoying. (Still is, to be honest.) In the PTSD session the speaker mentioned that this is a common side effect of combat trauma. I constantly asked him to stop doing this. The PTSD session mentioned this was a natural and healthy way to release tension and that my asking him to stop was basically me asking him to keep that tension bottled up. The leg bouncing is still irritating, but after that session I rarely ask him to stop. I see it now for what it is. The other breakthrough was having my own deployment traumas validated. I didn’t know that the supporting spouse could have legitimate traumas caused by deployment. I didn’t face war. I didn’t face danger. I didn’t see death. And yet, I was changed, and in some ways, the changes were strange to me. I got mad when my husband mowed the grass. (It was my pet project during the 15-month deployment and he dared to touch it?!) I also didn’t like for him to drive once he got back. I had spent the entire time taxiing the kids around and once he got back I didn’t trust him behind the wheel. I had actual, physical manifestations of fear when he’d drive and he’s a really good driver! Looking back, I can see so clearly that both of these reactions were trauma-based but I had no idea at the time. How much easier reintegration would have been had we both known these things about ourselves and each other. These two breakthroughs were worth the time it took for us to drive from Texas to Colorado for our retreat, but there were many other benefits and experiences that made it spectacular. It was, in a literal and figurative sense, a mountaintop experience.

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Lifegiver Season 5

Season 5 Premier: Timing and Tact

Welcome to Season 5!  I can’t believe we are starting another year of the Lifegiver Podcast. This is the season premier where I update you on all that is happening with Lifegiver- including the new Lifegiver TEAM!  A special welcome to Jennifer Hamrick and Lisa Walters for their help in making the Lifegiver Newsletter an AMAZING resource for all of you. (Hint: Catch my interview with Jennifer in the first season of Lifegiver!).  If you haven’t signed up for the Newsletter, make sure you do!! In this episode we are talking about the importance of timing and tact with our emotions and words, whether we are in conflict with our spouse, in a leadership position, or even being a public advocate. Military spouses especially feel at times like their voice is limited and that any complaining can come across as being a negative spouse. The truth is, we have a right to our feelings and opinions, but have great responsibility in how we express them. Rather than become passive or perhaps worse- aggressive- we can learn to be more assertive in kindness and love. But… also with the right timing and tact. Listen in as I give examples and practical tips on how to be more confident with the amazing influence you have in your marriage, parenting, and in the world.

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