If you have the "holiday blues," below is a heartfelt letter I wrote to my newsletter readers in December 2002. I hope it brings you strength, comfort and encouragement! -  Dominie Bush

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Dear Newsletter Readers,
I wanted to share some thoughts which might be helpful during this busy holiday season, which can be quite stressful--
1.  First, remember the Real Reason for the Season--the birth of our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.  Somehow we have made Christmas into a frenzy of materialism and gift-giving, partying, visiting relatives, etc.   All this can be fun, but it seems that Santa, Rudolph and Frosty have taken over what should be a "holy day" rather than a "holiday."  My husband tells me there are more suicides on Christmas than on any other day of the year.  How awful!!!  If this holiday were really about Jesus, then this would not happen, because we would all be celebrating something that brings GREAT JOY and HOPE, no matter how painful or sorrowful our lives might be at the moment. 
Years ago when I was going through terrible emotional strain and suffering due to an impending (and unwanted) divorce, my pastor preached a message on holiday depression.  I was in the throes of self-pity when he made a comment that I will never forget because it put my focus back on Christ.  He said, "IT'S NOT YOUR BIRTHDAY ANYWAY!!"  So true!!  
I recall how my mother used to point out to me when I was a child, "it's NOT X-mas -- it's CHRIST-mas!"  Today as I was driving around town, I saw a sign on a business that said, "IT'S GOD'S PRESENCE THAT'S IMPORTANT, NOT YOUR PRESENTS!"   Wow!  All these reminders help me focus on what Christmas is about.  Also, last Sunday I sang in my first Christmas cantata!   It was an awesome experience.  The title of the cantata was "CHRISTMAS IS JESUS."  This beautiful uplifting music had been in my heart and mind for many months as we practiced for the program.  Now when I see the Christmas lights in my neighborhood, I think to myself, "Happy Birthday, Jesus!"
2.  On a health note, I have been trying to manage my SUGAR intake wisely during the holidays--sugar is everywhere!!!!  Eating too much of it can cause fibro flares, depression, lower your immune function and cause unwanted weight gain.  UGH...who needs all that?!   If you do eat more sugar than usual, you might want to take a B-complex vitamin and some calcium and magnesium....that's what I do.
3.  Avoid chocolate and nuts, if you are prone to COLD SORES, as I am.  Some people find that taking several Lysine tablets at the first "tingle" helps them avoid cold sores.  I personally find that keeping anti-bacterial hand gel on the cold sore area prevents outbreaks.
4.  I am thinking today of many who will not have a "Currier and Ives" Christmas.  To name just a few--our military personnel overseas, families who have been through a bereavement this year, the newly divorced, people who are terminally ill, people recovering from surgery, those with severe family problems, those who stand by the bedsides of sick family members....and I could go on and on!  I remember them in my prayers.  Even if we find ourselves in difficult, painful or trying circumstances, we can still appreciate the TRUE meaning of Christmas:  that God loves us and sent His Son into our die for our sins so that if we believe in Him, we can live eternally in heaven with Him, where there is no sin, sickness, suffering or tears.....just holiness, righteousness, praise and joy!   That's good news for EVERYBODY.
5.  The immune shake I drink every morning keeps me going strong.  I couldn't function without it.  After living as a semi-invalid for so many years due to immune problems, I am very pleased with the level of my health and stamina now.  My fibro story is at  My chronic fatigue story is at 
6.  I use a natural antibiotic when needed to successfully combat various kinds of infections that might try to start.  (I can't use prescription antibiotics due to intolerable side effects, so I'm thankful for this alternative.)
7.  If you need encouragement today, visit Rest Ministries at  It's a very comforting site.  There are also many FMS/CFIDS message boards online where people with this illness can get support and information.
8.  I put mineral sachets in my drinking water to help make my pH more alkaline. This helps me with my overactive bladder problem when I get too acidic.  Disease thrives in an acid environment.
9.  This may seem sad, but I'm getting to the happy part........I recently played for the funerals of two people who died quite young.  One was a 10 year old boy who fell out of his tree house and accidentally hung himself on some rope swings that were 8 feet below.  The other was for a 49 year old man who died suddenly in his sleep, leaving his wife and two shocked and broken-hearted teenage sons. Yesterday I was asked to play  for yet another funeral....this one for a 42 year old man who died of a cancerous brain tumor. I had just spoken with him a few weeks ago, so it is hard to believe he's gone now, leaving a wife and children.  I am realizing more and more how temporary our lives on earth are!  We're just passing through, but we all have a special work to do for as long as God leaves us here.  Life is short.
The other day I saw a young man at McDonald's with a T-shirt that said: "IT'S NOT THAT LIFE IS SO SHORT, IT'S THAT YOU'RE DEAD FOR SO LONG!"   Wow!  Never thought of it that way......I have pondered this saying for weeks!!!  Back in the "olden days" when people often died in their 20's, 30's and 40's, evangelists preached the gospel with great urgency, knowing that a person's eternal destiny could be just around the corner.  Nowadays, with many people living into their 80's and even 90's, it's easy to forget that this life is just a journey to one of two places--heaven or hell.  We get to choose our final location. 
I was 36 years old when God graciously showed me on May 11, 1988 that I had been "religious but lost!" It came as a shock to me, but I tearfully and gratefully accepted God's wonderful gift of salvation that day.  It was a kind of business transaction--I gave Jesus my sins and He gave me His righteousness.  What an awesome deal!   I had been trying to get to heaven by "being good," but found out we can never be "good enough" to go to heaven.  That's why Jesus came and died for us.  I thank God for opening my eyes to His wonderful GIFT.  "By grace ye are saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the GIFT of God, not of works, lest any man should boast."  Ephesians 2:8,9   Now here's a GIFT we can ALL receive--the GIFT of salvation and having the Lord Jesus Christ in our hearts and matter how good or bad our lives seem to be going for us.   So don't let Jesus remain as just "a stranger in a manger."  The baby whose birth we celebrate today came to give everlasting life to all who will receive Him. 
Wishing you a Merry CHRIST-mas and a Happy New Year.  Remember that no matter what you're facing, God can help you.  Just ask!
Love to all,
Dominie Bush

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DISCLAIMER: I am not a medical doctor. I am a fibromyalgia / chronic fatigue syndrome survivor. The purpose of this website is not to diagnose or cure any disease or malady, but is presented as food for thought.  This information cannot take the place of professional medical advice. Any attempt to diagnose and treat an illness should come under the direction of a physician. No guarantees are made regarding any of the information in this website.