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I Couldnt Believe My Eyes Essay

I was sitting in a moderately crowded church and realized I could not easily open my eyes. I was finally able to slightly open one eye and looked around at the rest of the attendees. Everyone appeared to be sleeping, some with their heads rolled to the side or resting on the back of the pew. Suddenly everyone opened their eyes and sat up straight as the pastor walked up the aisle to the pulpit.

During the service I deduced what happened. Each Sunday the pastor wanted quiet in the church before ascending the pulpit. The only way he could accomplish that was to drug the congregation with a quick-acting quick-recovery sleep-inducing vapor. What the vapor was, how it was introduced to the congregation and if it were dangerous were the questions still on my mind when I confronted the pastor after the service.

“I refused to be drugged in a church,” I announced to the pastor.

“You are welcome to not be drugged in a church,” replied the pastor, “but not in my church.”

I knew I needed to let others know about this, but I didn’t know how do do so without causing a riot. The first thing I needed to find out was what the drug was and how it was introduced into the air. I also knew I needed an ally.

I assumed that since the pastor was a good man, he would not want to harm anyone, but perhaps he’d not thought about unborn children and the effects of the drug on them. I approached a woman I knew was pregnant and whispered to her what I knew. She became outraged and said she’d meet me in the fellowship hall after talking to the pastor.

I then noticed my son, who was responsible for ringing the tower bell before the service, and asked him what he knew about the vapor. He admitted that he was instructed to push a button just before the bell began to toll. He also told me the name of the drug that was released into the sanctuary when the button was pushed. I wrote it down, planning on Googling it later.

I then began talking to other people in the fellowship hall — many of whom were not in the sanctuary. It seemed many people knew about the drugging and opted, since the pastor was otherwise a good man, just to stay out of the sanctuary on Sunday mornings.

I still needed to know where the vapor entered the sanctuary, so went back into the sanctuary just before a second service was about to begin. That is when I noticed the brass decorations on either end of the pews — what I’d always thought to be speakers. I got close to one and heard a hissing sound. Holding my breath I ran up the aisle to escape being drugged for a second time that morning, of course I couldn’t run very fast and my lungs were bursting. I escaped just in time.

I never saw the pregnant woman again, but talked more to some of the women in the fellowship hall.

Then I woke up.

Like this:



In December 2009, I wrote these four things down in my first notebook at the first ever Making Things Happen in Watercolor. Exactly 30 days later, I wrote down my list again. This time a little bit more clarified.Who knew that shy of 6 months after that January day I would hit my first goal. 11 months later would hit another, 13 months another and last Thursday and Friday night the last one. Who knew that a year and a half, that all of these goals would be met?!? I almost couldn’t believe my eyes when I realized this last Friday.

I am living proof of the Making Things Happen platform. Things are happening in my life because of MTH and God’s blessings.

Want to hear exactly where, what, how, when and why?  Read on.

Since thatfirst MTH, so much has changed. I remember so clearly a phrase I kept repeating that day. ” I want to find me and capitalize on it.” It took a good year for that phrase to fully come to life. You can see that journey in my 2010 Self portraits letter. But, boy I have never been this comfortable in my own skin. I have found Gina. It sounds so weird and oh so “Eat, Love, Prayish” but it’s 100% true.

It  all started at my first two MTH experiences, to getting a phone call from Ms. Lara Casey asking me to go on the November tour with her and Emily Ley. A trip that we would have never have imagined that would begin such amazing growth and change in each of us. I was such a blessing to see the immense growth in each of the attendees in those cities, yet I learned so stinkin’ much about myself and was contiually in awe when we hit each new city that my journals weren’t just a repeat of the city before. I was changing, molding, melting. Melting especially in Hawaii.:)

I will remember this one moment in Hawaii for the rest of my life. Each morning we got up and ran or worked out. One morning there I threw on my suit and walked out to the beach, with Temper Trap blaring Sweet Disposition in my ears. I sprinted through the waves. Water splashing everywhere, saltwater taste in my mouth, a grin the size of texas overtook my face. Seriously friends, I don’t think I had tapped into that childlike happiness or innocense in a decade. In that moment I remember feeling an insurmountable amount of peace. Like God saying to me. “Yes, Gina this is you. You are a child at heart. Laugh, Play it’s OK, Just be you.”

A couple days later I left Hawaii and my two best friends, only to see them again in twenty one days. Here enters Natalie Norton. Natalie and I shared a room at the Watercolor Reunion & Intensive. At the Intensive, Natalie challenged me to be OPEN. To be vulnerable, physically and emotionally. To open up my heart. This my friends has changed my world. Do you find yourself crossing your arms, fiddling or looking downwards when you are starting to tap into unknown, icky or dreaded feelings? Do you use your humor to hop, skip and jump around them? Ding. Ding. Ding. All of the above were true (and still something I work on) for me. Just after a long weekend of working on my physical openness I could feel a LARGE shift in my heart. That weekend was so special to share with beautiful women, moments that I will never forget.

Also, in Wtclr I saw Natalie with this Isagenix stuff. I have tried thousands of dollars of protein shakes, diets, trainers, cleanses and nothing of them had worked. I have never been largely overweight, but I have always wanted to be lean, trim and fit and couldn’t understand why my body would never get there, even after my intense gym routines. So, with an attitude like….tell me about another bottle of “thisstuffdoesn’twork” I asked Natalie about it. Now you have to know that I trust Natalie with my life. Like if she told me to jump off a bridge there is a great chance I would, if she told me it would be worth my while. She thought Isagenix would be a good fit for me. So I went with it. January 11th I played my first round of IsagameON and ended my 11 day game in Tampa our first MTH stop in 2011. This game and product has rocked my world. Not only did I show up 9.5 pds lighter, I was clearer than ever before. I was more me then ever before. I remember Lara, Em, Natalie’s faces who I had seen only a month before. It wasn’t just their comments on my physical appearance, but they all couldn’t get over the lightness that was around me. I felt it too. We finished off our MTH 2011 Jan Tour in a hotel room stranded in NYC. What memories we made making snow angels and hailing cabs in that snowstorm.

During our January tour, I also really found my voice. I was encouraging, coaching, challenging and even writing. All of it came nautrally. I remember a time where I would read Lara, Natalie and Emily’s posts and say why can’t I write like that? And here I was writing, authentically and it was coming out like butter. I had no idea of how deep my passion was to encourage, mentor and challenge others until this point. This is work I want to do the rest of my life. I love it. It fires me up. It’s crazy that this was something that I had written on my 2010  MTH Minneapolis notes and it was accomplished in the very forum I took myself.

February 2011, hits and WPPI was upon us. I was still playing IsaGameON (still am now) and was now down close to 17 pounds. My WPPI experience was such a drastic difference from the year prior for me. Wearing a $5 consignment store dress and surrounded by the best friends a girl could ask for I had the time of my life. I can’t even describe the insurmountable joy I felt on that dance floor, in this new lean body, jamming with my friends and whoever else would drop it low with me. I want to live that authentic every day of my life. I had hit the goal of being healthy all around and loving myself and body.  I was infusing the things that fired me up on a regular basis and let me tell you. It was working.

Yet MTH isn’t a magical forum which you attend and everything is perfect when you leave, which alumni if you are reading this you will know what I mean. Making Things Happen is a space that you have to FIGHT to stay in. Even with the amazing communities built from this workshop, you will lose that immediate high like when you used to come back from summer camp.

You have been given tools, incredibly simple, easy to follow tools. It is our job to do the work! To keep cracking up that notebook and re-evaluating. I am walking example of if you stop the tools things get cluttered. And ladies and gents I help teach this forum. GASP. From late March & April I let the spark fan out by thinking I didn’t need to do the work. I didn’t need to download, I didn’t need to live my ideal day, my old notes got put further and further back and my journal became more of a to-do list than me digging deep and writing authenically.

What I love most about this is for the last two-three months, I have been kicking, crying and screaming getting discouraged and trying to figure out where I went wrong. Frustrated that I have gone backwards, gained weight and lost motivation. I have gotten stuck back in the clutter, letting old habits back. Until I wrote this post in my journal it dawned on me. (I write to myself alot in my journal)

Gina, why would you stop the very train that got you here? Yes, its not feasible that you can go to a MTH workshop every month, but you can open up your notebook and re-do each exercise? You can use the tools that you teach to others. This is work you can do. Can you really dig deep and ask yourself the hard questions….instead of going through the motions??  Why wouldn’t you? This is the platform with the Grace and blessing from God that has helped you accomplish the 5 things that were your biggest dreams in December 2009. That’s only a year and a half a go. It’s time to make more happen. G. Now.

So with this I want to encourage you to push yourself. It’s not easy and no one is perfect, but if you keep pushing and staying in the present moment. Wherever you are right now you can MOVE forward. Sometimes all you need is to dig deep and see what really matters. Last week I hit my last goal to be a fitness instructor. Teaching my own Zumba class last Thursday night and Subbing Water Aerobics friday morning solidifies that this MTH stuff works. It has truly changed my world by putting PEN TO PAPER.

So, here is my personal invitation that if any of my post rung true and pulled on your heart to join us on tour in July. You don’t have be part of the wedding industry, a photographer or self employed to attend Making Things Happen. Join the amazing Lara Casey, Emily Ley and I on our last round of MTH tour for awhile. (as all types of things are happening right now) So grab your spot.

Lara posted a scholarship for anyone who comments about what you want to make happen in 2011 (and which city you would like to attend).  Why do you want this? What is your passion? Get on over there and leave a comment. What do you have to lose? Think you never win anything? That is what I thought too and see where I am now?

If you are still unsure, try The Challenge that just started. Jump on these post and if you really commit to following through they will change your world. Also, throw in your google reader our blog. www.mth2011.tumblr.com for constant inspiration. Next week I will be posting all of the post I have written on here on my blog, get ready for a challenge or two.

Giveaway :: Lastly, since this was such a long post, it’s deserving for a giveaway for those that read it all the way through

I am giving away these amazing business books and a $30 iTunes gift card. To win. Leave a comment here about what you are passionate about, what if anything in my story feels familiar in your life. If you an MTH alumni, I want a mini status update on where you are and a promise that you will flip through your MTH notebook. Also, to get extra entries, get over and post on the scholarship post.


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