Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Inquiries about DNRS


I have so many people reach out to me daily about DNRS that I'm  unable to respond to everyone's questions. I wanted to take a minute to tell you that if I don't respond to you, I'm so very sorry! I wish I could respond to each one of you.

I will continue to post content on Instagram (username @SarahJacksonPanther), Youtube, and my blog about DNRS with the hope that it will answer your questions. 

I'm so glad so many of you are looking into the Dynamic Neural Retraining System! It is life-changing. 

Happy Tuesday, friendlies.

I'm cheering for you.


© by scj

Thursday, March 8, 2018

An Update and Prayer Requests

My friends,

I am so thankful to have seen great success with DNRS — I have gotten so much of my life back with it — but I still have healing to do if I am to return to normal. Thus far I have not supplemented DNRS with anything, besides acupuncture and chiropractic, but as my body gains strength, I am ready to consider other healing modalities. I would love your continued prayers as I discern my next steps.

Here are some specific ways you can pray:

1. For wisdom as I look for doctors who can help my brain and body release stored trauma. I continue to be amazed by the impact of physical and emotional trauma on the body and brain, and I believe my body is strong enough to address it in some new ways, in addition to DNRS.

2. For sleep. I am still working to heal my PTSD, and my nightly PTSD dreams are hard on my body. I need calm, restful sleep as I heal.

3. For patience, peace, and hope during flare-ups. As I live more life, I am exposed to more triggers that can cause flare-ups. I am thankful that I do not have flare-ups as much as I did last year, but the flare-ups I do have wear on me physically, mentally, and emotionally. I am ready to be flare-up-free!

4. For a very long period without a flare-up, during which I can begin to recover from the trauma of the last seven years. It is very difficult to process trauma and grief with a body that is still laboring to heal and sensitive to certain triggers. The catch-22 is that processing trauma can cause a flare-up, so I sometimes feel like I am in no man's land: I need to process my trauma to heal, but processing it causes flare-ups that gobble up the mental and emotional energy needed to process trauma. DNRS has helped break this cycle many times, but I would like to break it even more often!

5. For increased capacity to invest in my husband while I heal. He is patient, kind, and gracious; and he has been my best healing partner and advocate, besides the Triune God, and I yearn for the day that he is not affected by my challenges. In the meantime, my body and mind still need a lot of attention, and I need increased capacity to care for both me and my dear husband.

6. For God's perfect love to cast out my fear. Healing is very hard, in all its glory, because exposure to more life can provoke so much fear. This is in large part because of the trauma my body has stored, but it's also because of soul wounds that need healing.

7. For complete and total restoration of my body and heart. This is the goal, and DNRS has helped me believe it is possible!

I am so grateful for your prayers, all you new friends and old friends. Over the years, you have been like the friends of the paralytic, tearing off the roof to lower your friend Sarah before Jesus. It has been such a special gift to experience so much healing with your support, and I look forward to experiencing so much more!

Hopeful, glorious Thursday,


© by scj

Thursday, March 1, 2018

13 Things People With Chronic Invisible Illness Want You to Know

Chronic illness is the Great Censor. It is such a demanding, consuming, grueling battle that the chronically ill person rarely has the bandwidth to debunk common, painful misconceptions about her and her illness.

And oh my, there are so many misconceptions about chronic invisible illness. People think chronic invisible illness is fake — a ruse to get attention or spend "quality" time in bed; they think it's mental; they think Health Warriors are lazy; they think they're prone to exaggerating their challenges, and on and on and on.

It's stunning and crazy-making how often Health Warriors have to navigate these hurtful misconceptions. You guys, there were days when I was in such a dark place that the frequent, painful accusations and pervasive lack of understanding made me want to die. And gosh — I'm hesitant to write that because of the times people have chastised me for claiming my illness could actually be serious enough to make me want to give up. These wounds run so deep.

And here is the other thing: because Health Warriors and their illnesses are so misunderstood — and because they do not have widely familiar labels like "cancer" — they are not getting the help and support they need from their churches and other communities.

Now that I am healing — now that illness is not acting as a Great Censor — I am beginning to share, on behalf of all the Health Warriors, what it is like to lose your life to chronic invisible illness, with the hope that increased understanding will mitigate the suffering of Health Warriors just a bit.

In today's video, I share 13 things people with chronic invisible illness want you to know.

If you are a Health Warrior, I hope this video makes you feel less alone and can be a resource for your communities. I know so many of you hesitate to ask your communities to try to understand your battle because you don't want to rock the boat — to cause any interpersonal tensions. Debunking stubborn misconceptions can be a real boat-rocker, I know. I rarely challenged misconceptions about my illness for this very reason.

And yet, I wish I had. I wish I had posted resources on social media, helping people understand. I wish I had emailed resources to my inner circle. I wish I had asserted myself when others imposed their misconceptions on me. I wish had been my own best advocate.

If this video captures a bit of your experience as a Health Warrior, or if you have other resources that do, I encourage you to share them, to be your own best advocate. If we are going to change painful misconceptions, then we have to be intentional about educating our communities.

If you are not sure how to share helpful resources with your community, perhaps you could share from a place of vulnerability (vulnerability can be so disarming), like this (feel free to copy and paste this):

Here is the thing about chronic invisible illness: it can cause so much shame, so much isolation, so much misunderstanding. I have often wanted to share my experience of chronic illness, but my sense of shame and anxiety about what others might think has prevented me from doing so. However, being understood mitigates some of the suffering of chronic invisible illness, so today I am trying to be courageous, and I am sharing this resource that will give you a peek into chronic invisible illness. Thank you for walking this journey with me!

And now, my friends who do not have health challenges (but who are most certainly fighting other battles): would you watch this? And then, would you be advocates for all the Health Warriors you know — and the ones you don't know? Would you share this video, or other similar resources, in your communities? Trying to understand Health Warriors and their illnesses — and helping others understand — is one of the best ways you can love them. It is salve on their many oozing wounds.

And finally, I want to thank so many of you who have been exactly what I needed in my darkest moments. I had an extraordinary number of people interact with me out of their misconceptions, but I had even more people (YOU!) extend grace, understanding, encouragement, and faithfulness in prayer. You buoyed me under the weight of all the hard stuff, and I love you dearly for it.

Here is the video (click HERE to be rerouted to YouTube):

 Fight on, all you Warriors, those fighting health battles, and those fighting other hard battles.

I'm cheering for you, Home Skillets.


Are we Instagram and Facebook friends yet?! Let's be!

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© by scj

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

DNRS: A Day in My Life


Somehow, I forgot to tell you that I posted another video blog for you DNRS warriors. I continue to have so many of you reach out to me with questions that I decided to show you what a day in my life looks like, including how I integrate the Dynamic Neural Retraining System, exercise, and eat.

Click HERE to be redirected to the video on YouTube, or watch below.

I hope it's helpful to you!

I also post a DNRS training tip on my Instagram every Thursday. I'd love to see you over there -- those of you who are training, and those of you who aren't! It's such a fun way to connect. My username is @SarahJacksonPanther

Hopeful, light-filled Tuesday, my friends.


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© by scj

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Baby Doll

In honor of my darling niece, Aria, I give you a poem, originally written for my littlest brother when I was six years old, and revised for Aria:

Aria my niece is a sweet little girl,

I like to play with her just like a toy [it turns out, this poem's rhyming scheme works better with boy babies, although we wouldn't trade our Aria for a million boys!]

She has brown hair [or, in some cases, blond];

She is so sweet;

And she really, really likes to EAT! 

Have you ever seen anyone sport a wig with so much fabulous charm?!!!

We sure do love our baby-doll girl. 

Happy Thursday, folks.


© by scj

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

A Very Beachy Weekend

My college roommate, Rachel, and her husband, Ryan, came to visit Jay and me this last weekend — our very first overnight guests. We spent three days living the beach life.

We started our weekend at the Laguna Montage Beach, where the waters are especially turquoise-y, the views atop the bluffs are especially breathtaking, and the dunes are especially tempting to my trick-loving husband:

We had grand plans to leave the beach just after sunset so we could get to bed at a decent time. When Rach and I were in college, our idea of a good time was sitting up late into the night eating cake and gabbing; but now we get a kick out of eating grilled vegetables and climbing in bed by 8. This shift happened much faster than we thought it would, but we are embracing it, mostly because our bodies make us.

But alas, our coveted 8 O'clock bedtime was not to be.

The problem: our beach tent would not collapse. For an hour, our husbands pushed, pulled, jiggled, and wiggled its hardware while winking stars perforated the sky. When their efforts were not successful, they sent Rach and me searching for tools. 

We went to a nearby restaurant, the maintenance door of a hotel, and a hotel lobby, before finding two flat-head screwdrivers. Success! Just as I began my tool-finding victory dance in the Montage Hotel lobby, Jay called to inform us that they had collapsed the tent and were ready to head home.

The next morning, Jay and his volleyball partner trained, and we watched. We buried our toes in the sand, snacked, and sunned, while they sprinted, jumped, and rolled through the sand; and when it was all over, we headed to the water.

It's been a bad year for sharks around these parts:

Obviously we are all very concerned about it.

The rest of the weekend rotated around more beaches and good food.

Jay likes to jump in the freezing cold ocean and then try to hug me. See that look on his face? That's his "I'm about to hug you face." I am poised and ready for resistance.

We indulged in French treats at a beach-side French bakery.

We played volleyball.

We watched some killer sunsets:

And we picnicked after church.

Rach and I tried to be athletic and impressive.

We tried very, very hard.

It was more fun than it was successful.

We asked the boys to enact their own balletic photos, but they preferred the ol' chest bump.

And of course we tried to get a group jumping photo.

We tried very, very hard.

It was more fun than it was successful.

Jay and I managed what my mom called a Sand Figure Skating pose:

We are ready for the Olympics.

Boy, did we have fun, you guys.

A weekend with old friends is about as good as it gets.

Happy Tuesday, my friends!

I'm cheering for you, Home Skillets.


P.S. Techy friends, please help: why do my blogs with photos always adopt a wonky mobile phone format? The photos almost always have weird spacing -- sometimes the text does too -- and I can't figure out why! Is this just the bane of Blogger?!!

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© by scj

Thursday, February 8, 2018


When I was a little girl I dreamed of having a spring tea party in the top of a blooming tree. I fancied I could build a table around the sturdiest part of the tree's trunk, and then sip apple juice (because let's be realistic, folks: back then tea was dis.gusting) surrounded by walls of pink blossoms.

But I never found the perfect tree, and my apple juice tea party remained a whimsical figment of my imagination. Eventually, all that imaginative blossom-y magic multiplied and swelled, until it spilled out of my imagination and into my wide ruled notebook in the form of a short story.

In the story, a sly wizard turns a girl, about the age of nine, into a dandelion seed.

The wind blows the girl-turned-dandelion-seed far away to a distant land before the spell is lifted and the seed becomes a girl again, mid-flight. Surprised, but rather unafraid, the girl falls from the sky and lands in a tree laden with blue apples.

Wide-eyed with curiosity, she plucks one of the plump blue apples and takes a juicy bite. It tastes like cotton candy. Minutes later she shimmies down the tree and discovers she is in an orchard of apple trees, each growing apples of a different color and unusual (but tempting) flavor.

Somehow — and I can't remember how — the girl is discovered by fairies who take her to their house, the Babbling Blossom Tree, where they sit and sip tea surrounded by thick walls of pink blossoms.

It's a story that never got finished (I think I was content to have made it to the tea party in the treetop segment), and it's a story Jay must endure every time we encounter a blossoming tree, like we did last week, tucked away in a corner of Fullerton.

I found me a patient man, I tell ya.

Happy almost-spring, my friends!


© by scj

Wednesday, February 7, 2018


The first two years I was in bed, I fixated on the word "humility." Jesus said nobody can enter the Kingdom of Heaven unless they're humble (Matthew 18), and the Apostle Paul showed me that humility is essential for building a flourishing community of friends. Humility seemed important, and I wanted to figure out what it meant, exactly.

Here is what I came up with: humility is "seeing ourselves the way we actually are." It is seeing that we are both BIG and small. Compared to a perfect God, we are small and weak. We make mistakes all the time. We have very little to offer Him. But because God created us in His image — because we are creative, relational, linguistic, rational, and imaginative like He is — we are the Crown of Creation. We are big in God's eyes. We are especially special to Him. We have a lot to offer the world.

Seeing ourselves as we actually are frees us. It frees us from the illusion that we are big enough to control our lives, that we are strong enough to keep our worlds spinning, that we are the reason our lives are full of good things. Once we're freed from the illusion, we can go running back to our Creator — the One we've all run away from at one point or another. We can run to Him because we know we are especially special to Him.

And even though we have little to offer Jesus, there is one thing He wants from His especially special creatures (and oh! how He wants it!): he wants our hearts. He wants our loyalty, and he wants us to say "Yes" when he asks us to do hard, scary things that lead us right to the heart of Abundant Life. He wants us to be His friends, His kiddos, His Best Guys and Gals. He wants to teach us that we are especially special, and he wants to make our lives more good and beautiful than we could ever imagine.

It's good to be both big and small, isn't it?

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© by scj