And that was all before COVID hit! We learned a lot of crucial lessons during this period and are excited to share them with you.
In this podcast, you’ll learn how we faced these difficulties – poorly at first. But then, with patience, God’s grace, and a whole lot of prayer, we worked on making things right.
What we learned helped us to grow and prepared us for the challenges that came with COVID. Join us to learn how we maintained hope and why we believe we were all born for such a time as this!
Click Here to Read the Transcript - We're Back!
Natural Living Family Podcast, Episode 48 – We’re Back!
The contents of this presentation are for informational purposes only and are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This presentation does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
Mama Z (00:00:00):
Dr. Z (00:00:00):
We’re back. Hi, this is Dr. Z.
Mama Z (00:00:08):
And Mama Z, and welcome to The Natural Living Family Podcast.
Dr. Z (00:00:11):
Each week, we invite you in our home to talk about how you can master the art and science of natural living, and we share the same tips our family uses every day to a joy and abundant life, and you’re going to love today’s talk.
Mama Z (00:00:22):
So, come on in and get comfortable. After all, you’re one of the family, our natural living family. But before we dive into all the fun, we are excited to share a special note about today’s sponsor.
Dr. Z (00:00:40):
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Mama Z (00:00:55):
This is a recipe for a health disaster, and we can personally testify to how polluted air almost devastated our health.
Dr. Z (00:01:03):
Thankfully, our friends at AirDoctor have a solution, their portable air purification system that anyone can afford.
Mama Z (00:01:10):
As a special gift to our natural living family podcast listeners, AirDoctor is giving you $300 off when you buy through our special podcast link.
Dr. Z (00:01:19):
Simply got to NaturalLivingFamilyPodcast.com to find the special link so you could redeem this deal on the show notes from today’s episode.
Dr. Z (00:01:35):
Dr. Z here.
Mama Z (00:01:36):
And Mama Z. And we’re back.
Dr. Z (00:01:41):
And we’re back. I think this is episode 48, if we continue to where we were back in 2019, but I’m considering this episode one of 2020. Everything’s changed, everything’s new in 2020. We’re about to experience something new really soon.
Mama Z (00:01:59):
Dr. Z (00:02:01):
Everyone listening right now, we have a lot to catch up on.
Mama Z (00:02:05):
Yes we do.
Dr. Z (00:02:06):
You all own me a big one. I’ve been hounding Mama Z now for days, days, if not a couple of-
Mama Z (00:02:13):
He would come up to me at 11 o’clock at night, “Yeah, let’s do a podcast,” and me being 40 weeks pregnant saying “No, I need to go to sleep.”
Dr. Z (00:02:25):
This is actually the calm before the storm, and we totally have to do like a birth class. What you’ve done is unbelievable, but for those of you who don’t know, and unless you’re on our daily or weekly newsletter, you don’t know, but we’re about to have a baby, any minute now.
Mama Z (00:02:46):
Well, officially, so people always joke because I’ve always been a large milk producer. I just looked up the gestation period of a cow. Technically, I’m much at the average cow gestational period, so maybe I was a cow because I think by the time I have this baby, I will be an overdue cow, because obviously I have 42 weeks of gestational period, instead of 40.
Dr. Z (00:03:14):
It’s October 6, 2020. When was the due date?
Mama Z (00:03:19):
Well, the first due date was September 26, but the latest due date was September 29th.
Dr. Z (00:03:24):
Okay. What that means is we’re a week past due, and which means-
Mama Z (00:03:28):
Yep, so we’re going into the 42nd week.
Dr. Z (00:03:31):
Yes. Here’s how cool this is. I thought, okay, Sabrina, let’s at least do one episode, our friend, our video and audio extraordinary, Chris, came to our home and helped us set up our little sound studio. Why did we stop even doing podcast last year? We’ll explain that and all of the things-
Mama Z (00:03:51):
Oh yeah. We’ve lots of stories, oh my God.
Dr. Z (00:03:53):
I know. It’s been 10 months since we published one of these. I was like, Sabrina, “Come on.” Then, out of the goodness of your heart, your mom’s on her way right now.
Mama Z (00:04:03):
She is, she should be landing shortly, if not momentarily.
Dr. Z (00:04:07):
Mimi is coming. The kids can’t wait to see. We haven’t seen our family all year because of the COVID and oh, there’s so much to share with y’all, but-
Mama Z (00:04:14):
Well, they came out at the end of January, early February to help plant the garden, went out to California and then everything blew up. So, we haven’t seen …
Dr. Z (00:04:24):
Yeah, because we normally go for what? Easter Resurrection Sunday, we normally go for summer break. Right? We haven’t had any of that.
Mama Z (00:04:31):
Yeah, we have a whole series of times where we might go here or there, or we would at least have seen the family. I would have gone up for Santa school, lots of different things. Everything really changed and we haven’t. Instead of singing, Santa is coming to town this morning to wake up the children, I say-
Dr. Z (00:04:57):
And why that’s even an option, I don’t even know.
Mama Z (00:04:59):
I don’t normally sing that, but I decided to sing, Mimi’s coming to town and they loved it.
Dr. Z (00:05:05):
Well, this is a big thing.
Mama Z (00:05:06):
It’s a big thing.
Dr. Z (00:05:06):
You’re on, so I just want to take advantage of this opportunity and everyone let’s give Mama Z lots of just appreciation, because I think if we look this up, this should be and could be, and by the way, for those people who are into this thing, let’s look up the Guinness book of world records, because Sabrina might be further along her, what? Pregnancy doing a podcast than ever in the history of the world. Seriously, she is like, at this point, nine or 10 days past due doing a podcast …
Mama Z (00:05:36):
Well, you should have seen the guy at the carwash this morning, he looked at me like I was nuts. Like, why are you doing this? I’m like, this car’s got to get clean and it’s not going to get clean on its own.
Dr. Z (00:05:46):
I’ll take whatever I get. Big props to you because again we’re having a baby probably tonight. That’s no joke. When you told me your mom was coming today, I was like, you’re stalling for your mom. I can’t hold that against you. Anyway, we’re about to-
Mama Z (00:06:02):
Well, the kids have all put their votes in. The kids, so one of the kids thinks it’s Thursday, I believe, and then Esther says I’m going to go into labor Thursday night and then have the baby Friday morning, so she has Friday AM. Elijah thinks I’m going to wake up early, go into labor and have the baby sometime in the afternoon or evening on Friday. And Isaiah says Saturday, I think that’s how it played out. But they each have their votes because I always have the baby get each one of the kids a present, obviously it’s from us, but it’s from the baby so that they’ve never felt like left out or anything, because they get to be a part of the process. But there’s an extra present for the one who gets to pick closest to the due date, or God’s perfect birth date for the baby. How exciting. I can’t wait to see what God’s given birth date is for easy Ezekiel.
Dr. Z (00:07:01):
Well, the musings of a pregnant woman, I love it. But we’re not talking about pregnancy today. We are excited to be coming back to our natural living family podcast. It’s been quite eventful.
Mama Z (00:07:16):
Dr. Z (00:07:16):
Really, quite eventful 10 months.
Mama Z (00:07:18):
It really has. We had lots going on at the house, and then shortly after the beginning of the year, a couple of days after we got pregnant with Ezekiel. It’s been lots and lots of fun stuff, lots of crazy things, homeschool, this, that the other thing, and we can relate to a lot of what people are, even currently still doing for their household situation.
Dr. Z (00:07:56):
I’m hoping, I’m hoping, again, I’ll squeeze whatever I can get out of you at this point, because I’m so excited that we could even do this, because I got the bug. I was like, man, we got to start doing this. It’s been way too long, we dealt with the house issues, and again, we’ll explain what that is in just a little bit. I was like, “Sabrina, we got to get back on the podcast.” We’ve had so many people who listen to us regularly, say, “Where’s the podcast? Are you guys okay?” I’m like, “Ah, we’re not really. We’re getting through.” I want to do as many as we can to kind of stockpile up because we have so much to share and I could see a series, what we learned in 2020, the musings of COVID-19. There’s so much that has happened emotionally, spiritually, physically, financially.
Dr. Z (00:08:46):
You’re right, socially, obviously social distancing with everyone’s jobs that our hearts are absolutely full. Last year, quite frankly, last year, it’s not like we ran out of topics, but we hit a point last year, because we did what? 47 episodes or so. I remember saying, “Well, what do you want to talk about next? And you were like, “Well, I don’t know.” I was like, okay. We fulfilled our to-do list essentially. Call it what you may, but right around that same time, the week or two after we had that little discussion, our basement flooded.
Mama Z (00:09:25):
Seriously. We went to Michigan for Thanksgiving, we came home and the next, it was not even that day, it was the next day, and they said that what had happened was we have this massive, what do you call it? Sewage flood that happened underneath the floor and came through and wouldn’t … I get a call and that said, “Hey, have you been downstairs?” I stepped on one of the rugs and it went squash, and it smells like the toilet. I’m like, oh my gosh. We had a soft clog in our P trap that literally had backed up and gone underneath the floor and had come up in lots of different places. It was really gross, and everything that touched it had to go and everything else had to be sanitized and literally put in a traveling storage unit on our driveway.
Dr. Z (00:10:33):
This was right at that point where, in a podcast’s peak, this was right at that point where-
Mama Z (00:10:40):
It was in our podcast studio. That was the squish squash. And these were like the nicest rugs too. I’m like, ooh, can’t we save them? The guy looks at me and he goes, “You’re not going to want to. He’s like, “Do you know what really touched this?” And I’m like, ew, so we had to start over. We literally had to rebuild our basement.
Dr. Z (00:11:05):
Well, our basement was completely flooded completely.
Mama Z (00:11:08):
Dr. Z (00:11:08):
And we have, what? 1500 square foot fully furnished. It’s my office down here, so we have our video studio, our audio studio, we have my office, we have a workout area, now the birthing room, which is kind of cool. We totally have to do like a video series of how to get ready for your birth and for those people who do home birth. That was devastating, and not only was it devastating, but it was right around the holidays. Again, we’re not complaining. I know so many people have gone through so much more, but people have wondered like what happened to y’all? This is what happened to us. We were shut down, and it was arguably the most stressful season of our lives, because this was a huge undertaking.
Dr. Z (00:11:53):
We’re talking new floor, new walls at some point, painting everything. The amount of work, the amount of expenses dealing with the insurance claim, all of this stuff, again …
Mama Z (00:12:04):
It was crazy.
Dr. Z (00:12:05):
It brought out the worst in us and it brought out the best in us, and then it brought out the worst in us again. For Sabrina and I, we handle things very differently.
Mama Z (00:12:16):
I’m really good at these kind of situations because I can put my head down and just plow through and know we might not get somewhere like right now, but we’re making progress, and eventually we’re going to check a lot of items off on the list.
Dr. Z (00:12:31):
Yeah, but it’s dealing with the contractors. See, that’s where you struggled.
Mama Z (00:12:34):
Well, but this is the thing.
Dr. Z (00:12:35):
Because your expectations of your life, Mrs. Georgia, 2019, your expectations, home birth mom of five, your expectations are, quite frankly, unattainable for like 99% of the world. When you’re dealing …
Mama Z (00:12:49):
Well, thank God for [crosstalk 00:12:50].
Dr. Z (00:12:50):
Yeah, when you’re dealing with Podunk contractor guy, who’s just trying to do flooring and wall work, you’re like, “No, that’s not perfect.” And they’re like, “What are you talking about, perfect?” Perfect isn’t even in their vocabulary for most people. And you’re like trying to uphold this perfect. But I will tell you though, how it looks now is so much better than how it looked before. It was so stressful.
Mama Z (00:13:14):
We fast forward a little bit [crosstalk 00:13:16].
Dr. Z (00:13:16):
No, hold on a second. Can I like to the real big point?
Mama Z (00:13:19):
Oh, I’m going to tell exactly what happened when I walked down [crosstalk 00:13:22].
Dr. Z (00:13:22):
Because we finished. Again, it was gruesome. It was gruesome.
Mama Z (00:13:24):
I said this, and I’ve been told that this is a marathon, not a sprint. I said, uh-uh, we’re going to do this in 13.1, not a marathon, because I want this done, we have people over on January 1st. We were all geared up to go. My handyman jumped in on so many different projects and stuff because I wanted it done perfect and he always does a great job. Even his brother helped out for a little bit. We were getting everything ready, December 31st. I have friends over from out of town, close friends, and we’re supposed to be leaving for a birthday party. In fact, Eric already left with some of the kids. I go downstairs in the one room that didn’t get flooded of the two, in the bathroom slash laundry room. I had done a couple of like little kids sleeping bags.
Mama Z (00:14:27):
Because I was like, well, if we’re going to have kids over, I just want to make sure everything’s fresh and blah, blah, blah. The laundry machine empties out the bottom. In the spin cycle, doesn’t leave, it comes out the bottom. I called the handyman really quick. Because he had not left too long before that. He says, “Well, feel the back. Is this wet? Is this wet?” No. He goes, “Ooh, you got a real big problem.” And I’m like, oh man. He said, just finish spinning it out. Turned out we needed to replace … Thank God I have an insurance plan on all of our appliances, because they replaced everything, but the mechanism, which is now a computer in the new ones, and this is an old one, in this washing machine and they did not have to replace the water pump, but they had to replace everything else.
Mama Z (00:15:21):
Our one dry room is now wet. I had to clean up all of that stuff. It was just crazy. A couple days later, so we have our gathering, a couple days later, the insurance adjuster calls me and says, “Hey, we’re about two days before we’re done with everything,” which reminded me, oh yeah, I got to go unlock the door downstairs. Because the plumber had come back, set up our whole house water filtration and all this other stuff. I literally come downstairs and water is pouring out of the ceiling, like pouring out of the ceiling.
Dr. Z (00:16:01):
Now, this is after a gruesome financial ordeal, because we didn’t just, quite frankly, have the cash to pay for the entire thing, nor front the cost of the entire thing to wait for insurance. Thank God we had insurance. It was, for me, as the provider, as the financial guy, the most stressful situation we’ve ever had to deal with financially, because again, kind of bring us back to things we’ve shared before in the podcast. We’ve both been infected by toxic black mold. We both got pneumonia at our old home because of mold. We were starting to be concerned because we had no idea. Thankfully though, there’s no mold. Thankfully, we had all the tests that you needed to have and everything was fine. Here we are kind of freaking out. We got mold here, we got water everywhere. It’s mildewy, I’m literally working, literally working in the bathroom, in our master bathroom, because I have a home office. I got nowhere else to work.
Dr. Z (00:17:02):
I can’t work on the main level because that’s where the family is and the kids are, so I’m doing my work on Sabrina’s vanity. This was when we’re … I’m supposed to be writing our book, oh boy, the book, right? The Essential Oils Apothecary. Bless my publisher’s heart, I was supposed to be writing the book at this time, and we’re just barely in survival mode. This gruesome experience dealing with the contractors, the money, and everyone needs money, and everyone’s hard up for cash, and it’s been so stressful. Here we come to this point where we’re almost done, and we actually have money from the insurance company. We have a plumber who’s doing something completely unrelated.
Mama Z (00:17:42):
Well, not [crosstalk 00:17:43].
Dr. Z (00:17:43):
It was completely unrelated, changing the reverse osmosis in the kitchen, which has nothing to do with the basement, but he screwed up, and not to go into details, but there was a leak in a huge hole in the ceiling, and guess what? Bottom line, everything had to be redone again. So, go back …
Mama Z (00:18:06):
Not only that.
Dr. Z (00:18:07):
Go back to that one and a half month cycle, we had to start all over again.
Mama Z (00:18:12):
But then as soon as they cut a hole in the ceiling, our AirDoctors started turning orange and red. I started having these feelings, and I’m like, there’s mold in there. Of course, people are like, “Well, you can’t have mold in two days.” I’m like, “I don’t know, there’s mold somewhere else.” It just turned out that the other dry room of the entire basement, the sunroom had a perfect storm go on all at the same time, which, because of what happened, it actually revealed that situation to us, and we were able to take care of a problem that could have been a much more worst problem later. Because we use that room for our plants in the winter time, we would have gone into another season where we would have been adding insult to injury because it ended up that we had green and black mold in this little room, and we were able to remediate it and get rid of all of those issues.
Dr. Z (00:19:16):
Yeah, roof leak.
Mama Z (00:19:17):
Yeah. It was a roof leak. We had no gutter in front. That’s where three different downspouts came down. Then the original person that had adapted that room didn’t level it out properly. I remember when I called our tile guy, I remember him saying, “Hey, just so you know, eventually you’re probably going to have to retitle this room because it’s not leveled properly.” That always stuck with me. Well, it literally the water went two thirds to this corner beam and other water was going right in towards a doorframe, and those were the two hotspots, and we had actually replaced the wood on the outside of the house in the same spot, but didn’t see that there was other things going on, on the inside. All of that to say, we now have a basement that is even better than amazing, better than it was before, and we have no problems with anything. We had everything checked out, but quite a lot of time transpired. We actually had … we had homeschool after that, sickness, other things going on.
Dr. Z (00:20:49):
Well, before we dive into that, here’s where … okay, I don’t want to come across right now in 2020, Karen, Karen, everyone’s talking about these women and these men complaining about trivial matters. I don’t want to come across as oh, whoa is us, when people are dying around us and they’re bankrupt and like, well, sorry, your basement flooded a couple times and you had to deal with some inconvenience. Here’s where I want to turn this around. Here’s the learning lesson. This is what I’m very fortunate for. Take it for what it is. You can call me petty, you can call me weak, whatever phrases come to mind about, how can you even complain about this stuff? For me, it was arguably the most challenging three months of our marriage.
Dr. Z (00:21:35):
It was all of, no, two and a half, all of December, all of January, and a good portion of February. It was so hard to manage emotionally, mentally, financially with the kids, with the contractors, with Sabrina. It brought out the worst in us, but you know what? We got through this experience. I remember we went through … we were able to graduate in a sense, and we had a nice trip to Disney where we’d normally go during …
Mama Z (00:22:04):
Well, and remember why. We had to be out of the house for 13 days, because they [crosstalk 00:22:12].
Dr. Z (00:22:12):
Oh, we didn’t mention that. I’m sorry.
Mama Z (00:22:13):
Yeah, we have to move out of our main level of our house.
Dr. Z (00:22:16):
Okay. I’m sorry. Oh yeah, we should mention this. Yeah, again, Karen, Karen complaining about trivial stuff. I’m sorry, this was overwhelming for us because, when the plumber, completely unrelated to the basement, was trying to fix and replace the water filtration system, a reverse osmosis on the main level, we had flooding happened on the hardwood floor. Long story short, the entire main level of our house needed to be unpacked, we’re talking professional movers. Unpacked …
Mama Z (00:22:45):
Yeah, like we’re moving out one whole level of our house besides already have moved out our [crosstalk 00:22:48].
Dr. Z (00:22:47):
The whole house, and had to be sanded, and we had to be out of her home for over a week and a half.
Mama Z (00:22:54):
Yep. I remember it was 13 days
Dr. Z (00:22:57):
They gave us what? 25, remember, they gave us 2,500 bucks, and they’re like, “Hey, this is what you’re supposed to …” the insurance company, “This is what you’re supposed to live on, a family of six, “go find a hotel, and this is your food and this is your allowance and this is everything.” Are you kidding me? So we just said, you know what? 2,500 bucks, we can get an Airbnb at Disney and we’ll bring our own food, so we went to Disney World.
Mama Z (00:23:17):
And we have season tickets.
Dr. Z (00:23:18):
Yeah, so we went to Disney World. Again, Karen, Karen, I keep on thinking that, because this was, again, if you could think of something that was challenging and then there’s so many things [crosstalk 00:23:28].
Mama Z (00:23:28):
Remember, this is like pre … the world’s fricking about COVID.
Dr. Z (00:23:33):
This is why this is important. This is why this is so important, because we went through our world …
Mama Z (00:23:36):
And I was sick at this time.
Dr. Z (00:23:38):
Yes, that’s when she got COVID and I got COVID after that. This was again, the most challenging thing we’ve had to deal with. So, of course, we couldn’t do the podcast, so many things on our business. The book, like the book that was supposed to be done by January 15th, completely not even started. I didn’t start the book until May. All of these things, all these little things, and we got through it, and you know what?
Mama Z (00:24:05):
God was so faithful at every step.
Dr. Z (00:24:05):
Right after that, right after the week after we got home from Disney is when COVID hit. I remember this is where I want to bring this all back to how this is a learning lesson and we’re not here just to complain. I remember thinking, I’m ready for this. I remember thinking, when everyone, family, friends, colleagues were freaking out about COVID, I’m just like, quite frankly, nothing could be worse than what we just went through the last three months. It was three months of hell, and it was three months of me learning how to prepare for crises. Not just a crisis, because if we had one flood, fine, if we had one situation, fine. No, we had …
Mama Z (00:24:49):
And we had like so many other things that like happen during the process of all of that, that it was like, what else is going to happen? It was a crazy experience, but God was so faithful at every turn and everything had gotten replaced, everything had gotten … everything was put back to a step up situation in every level.
Dr. Z (00:25:20):
Yeah, it was unbelievable. When COVID hit, my thought was, it can’t be worse than what we just had just dealt with. Of course, we’ll talk about this, I’m sure, in future episodes. We’re not concerned about the virus at all. Like at all. I’ll just remind you all, I’m a public health researcher. This is what I’m trained to do. I’m trained to look at research, study the studies. We knew, instinctively by the spirit, we knew, just from what the research shared, don’t freak out about the virus. We don’t have to worry, and Sabrina got it, and I got it, and it was bad. It was …
Mama Z (00:26:02):
But we used our protocols, a combination of different protocols.
Dr. Z (00:26:05):
Yeah, it was a really bad flu for us. You still can’t smell, can you?
Mama Z (00:26:09):
No, I can’t.
Dr. Z (00:26:10):
No, no, no, not completely. You know what?
Mama Z (00:26:13):
It’s that …
Dr. Z (00:26:14):
You lost your sense of smell for a couple of weeks.
Mama Z (00:26:16):
Well, I still don’t have where it has to be like a very strong smell, or there’s certain smells that I can smell and then other ones, and I didn’t even realize it until I was like, “Hey, Eric, can you smell this? Does this smell bad?” Food smells, I can’t smell the food smells. I’d ask, “Esther, can you smell this? Is this bad?” When one of the kids peed their pants, it was like, I couldn’t smell that, but I could smell like an ammonia smell, is just so weird. Utilizing, when I had pneumonia, utilizing that protocol with a flu protocol. We didn’t have any like popup rashes or things like that, but other people did. People knew that we had dealt with stuff, so we were able to help other people, our friends, overcome a lot of the different things that had happened in the process of this virus thing that didn’t have a name for a while.
Mama Z (00:27:26):
We were actually blessed, and the kids really went through a minor version of that after the first flood. Again, for us, the only thing that’s ever really depleted our immune system is dust and black mold, and we had a lot of dampness. We had mold going on that we didn’t know about, and we had dust everywhere. The kids had a much more minor version. Literally, while we were gone in a way for that amount of time, we were technically in quarantine. I remember I had a couple really, really bad nights, and I really felt like there was an elephant on my chest.
Dr. Z (00:28:10):
And not knowing you were pregnant at that time. It was right when you found out or?
Mama Z (00:28:14):
Well, yeah. Well, I was sick …
Dr. Z (00:28:16):
Or the day before, or right around that time?
Mama Z (00:28:16):
It was right at the same time. Good thing I knew going to Florida that we were pregnant because that change how you actually have to look at how you handle things. Everything worked out really well, but I remember those few nights where it was like an elephant on my chest. I remember saying, if this doesn’t get any better in the next couple of days, I’m going to have to go into the hospital or something.
Dr. Z (00:28:53):
This was before anyone was talking about COVID. I want to give huge props to our friend, Wendy Myers, from MyersDETOX, because Wendy, at the time, I remember being in Florida talking to her when I was doing a little bit of work while the kids were at the pool, and she said something that really shocked me, that I’ve never heard anyone say. She’s like, “I’m on corona watch.” I’m like, what are you talking about? Corona watch, what are you talking … I was so blind to what was happening. She lived in LA at the time, and she’s like, “Yeah, there’s like 8,000 people that have just recently come from China, and they’re all quarantining because they might be infected with coronavirus.” She said, “Watch out.” She goes, “Watch out, this is going to be huge really quick.”
Dr. Z (00:29:32):
This was early February. I took her caution seriously. So, I really started diving into this all was. This was before lockdowns, this was before … Again, this was again, the whole political thing. This was before Trump shut down travel from China, this was before Biden was saying whatever he was saying about, oh, you’re xenophobic. There was so much happening at this point that I was immune to. Again, the big issue was the impeachment. Politically, no one was talking about this other stuff. I think Sabrina, we have a lot to share about 2020 as a whole, but I promised to keep it to around a half an hour for you. I want to leave everyone with how our little crisis prepared us for the crisis. I think that’s something that I was very much mentally and emotionally prepared for.
Dr. Z (00:30:29):
When everything got locked down, when everyone was freaking out, when we had to figure out homeschooling on the fly, when there’s so many things, everyone got hit in every way. I felt I was completely ready. I also, at one point, felt fortified.
Mama Z (00:30:48):
Definitely a little refiners fire.
Dr. Z (00:30:50):
Yeah. At one point, and you’re like, well, it can’t be worse than what we just went through, that’s one thought. Another thought is, I’ve been stronger because of what I just went through. And another thought is, well, I’m kind of numb of what I just went through. How many times have you gone through crisis, after crisis, after crisis, and by the fifth or six crisis, you’re like numb, you don’t even feel it anymore? That’s almost like a defense mechanism of God, I believe, because when you hear reports of people that are injured, life-threatening injuries, they don’t experience excruciating pain, like someone their arm gets cut off. Or I remember this story of a man getting mauled by a lion, and his body was numb at the time that his arm was being like eaten by a lion.
Dr. Z (00:31:35):
He looked at the lion and he’s like, just in this weird ethereal moment, thinking myself, I’m getting eaten right now by a lion and there’s no pain. It was just by the grace of God the body just shut down. Sometimes that happens. Sometimes you’d have to shut down. I want to hear from you. Go back to November, December, January, February, our little crisis. What things did you do during that time to get you through? Those very same things that helped push us along, because we have been doing very well through the coronavirus, but before we cover that, a word from our sponsor.
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Dr. Z (00:33:27):
We have been doing very well through the coronavirus, emotionally, mentally, spiritually in every area, because I think, exactly because of what?
Mama Z (00:33:35):
Well, I think the thing is too, is we have to know that we’re in God’s hands, and that I knew that everything would be taken care of. I had a vision in my mind of what everything would look like, be like, and I never lost sight of that, because I kept my eyes on the prize as far as … really, I talked to the Lord every day about what was going on, but I knew in the end what would happen and really making sure that I focused on that, knowing, with all of the stuff, and I know you’ll talk about a grieving period and all of that stuff regarding life at work “normal” in another podcast. But for us, and for me, knowing that we were taken care of by God, that God was going to see us through, that all of the things that were happening were temporary and that the trying of our faith works patience.
Mama Z (00:34:54):
And we want to let patience have its perfect work so that we can be perfect and entire wanting nothing. If we’re wanting nothing, then that means all of our needs are met as well. Knowing that, that was the case, and knowing that we do not have control to check off all the boxes on our to do list every single day, because when you have an unlimited list of things going on and things continuing to happen and life continuing to happen all during that same process, then if you look at the whole big picture, it be too overwhelming, and so just to put your head down and be able to plow through and know that you might not be able to check off things today or tomorrow, or maybe the next day, but eventually you’ll end up checking off a lot of different boxes, and you’re going to be to a place of a new normal, not where you were before, but knowing that will be better and stronger because of it, because we were born for such a time as this.
Mama Z (00:36:07):
Looking at it like that and seeing, what are the different lessons that we’re supposed to learn in the process of what we’re going through, and not necessarily knowing exactly what those were, because in retrospect, you’re going to get different lessons out of the things that you go through, however little or big they could possibly be, and know that we’re not perfect, neither is any of the people working for us or anything like that, and allowing the grace of God that he’s given us really to be extended to the other people and no matter what kind of work that they do or whatever. I really felt empowered through the end of it, especially just being able to be focused, but also for the kids, because the kids see how you go through and respond to situations. They saw all the different stuff that we had gone through.
Mama Z (00:37:17):
They had questions and they wanted to know. I think it also helped to prepare them as well for the things that were to come, and being grateful that we have what we have, we’re able to work at home. Even though our life was completely disrupted, that we were still able to do everything that we needed to do and get all of the things done that we needed to get done for our business, even amongst the situation that was going on.
Dr. Z (00:37:51):
We need to remember, and I’m writing a couple of things down as she was talking, because that was wonderful. I want to ask you another question about, when I say this, think about, if you can remember, because I remember, because you don’t cry a lot, and I remember a couple of times that you just broke down. You’re not an emotional person.
Mama Z (00:38:08):
Dr. Z (00:38:09):
That’s just something that …
Mama Z (00:38:10):
You’re more emotional than me.
Dr. Z (00:38:12):
Well, it’s just who you are. There was a couple of times that you were extremely … you lost it. It became overwhelming. You didn’t have the ability to control the emotion and …. go back to that, and how did you get through it? But think through a moment. But one thing that comes to me, as you’re thinking about that is, we need to realize, regardless of where you’re at right now, because people are going to be listening to this in 2020, 2021, maybe beyond, and this, again, this isn’t … I’m not even talking about COVID. I’m talking about the experience that we dealt with, our own personal health for three months as our whole life was disrupted. It was miserable. It was miserable. I learned, and we need to recognize, and if you’re listening, you are stronger than you think, and this is something that you might need to say right now, even at this moment, I am stronger than I think.
Dr. Z (00:39:17):
You can manage more than you think. Maybe you need to say that to yourself. I can manage what I’m going through right now. I can manage this. I’m stronger than I think. I’m strong enough for this. I have the ability to get through this. Then, as Sabrina shared, essentially, if God is for us, who could be against us? And greater is He that is within us than He that is within the world. Then I learned something and it … the revelation became, because a lot of our issues were because of people. I think that’s a big issue right now, right now with people. Our society is up and ends. Cities literally are burning right now. We’re more divided now than we’ve ever been. I heard a report in Australia is I’ve been following Australia closely because we have a lot of friends and fans in Australia, but they’re going through a lot.
Dr. Z (00:40:15):
Some Australia reporters are calling what we’re going through in America, the second civil war. Let that sink in for a minute. This is October, 2020 our cities have been burning for three months now with no end in sight. When you think about what’s going on in our lives, I’m going back to what happened with my little crisis, that this battle is not against flesh and blood, and that’s something that I had to recognize, because we had a lot of issues with our contractors. Again, this is a huge … but just to throw a number out there, it was over $100,000. That’s a lot of money. $100,000 of repairs of restitution, restoration for essentially three different jobs to insurance claims and three different jobs that we had to do, plus all the other personal stuff that we had to manage, and all that, lost income and all that other stuff.
Dr. Z (00:41:24):
When you have problems with people, and we had problems between us, which is kind of exciting because here we are celebrating a COVID baby any day now.
Mama Z (00:41:35):
Well, no, not necessarily. This was long before COVID.
Dr. Z (00:41:39):
Yeah, we’re calm. He’s a COVID baby.
Mama Z (00:41:41):
No, he really isn’t.
Dr. Z (00:41:42):
He’s being born in the middle of COVID.
Mama Z (00:41:43):
Well, he might be born at that time, but he was conceived before that at the time.
Dr. Z (00:41:48):
Mama Z (00:41:49):
I will fight you on that.
Dr. Z (00:41:50):
We’re still fighting?
Mama Z (00:41:51):
Yes, I will.
Dr. Z (00:41:52):
The outbreak started in November.
Mama Z (00:41:54):
No, no, no, no. When you talk about the baby boom generation, this is like the next baby boom. Okay? I will tell you, this baby happened before the baby boom.
Dr. Z (00:42:02):
Okay. You’re always ahead of the curve.
Mama Z (00:42:04):
Dr. Z (00:42:04):
When we were dealing with problems with each other, when we were dealing with problems with contractors, when we were dealing with problems with insurance adjusters, when we were dealing with problems with just people, this is something that I hope will minister to your heart right now, is regardless of who it is that you’re going through an issue, this could be political. This could be against the candidate that you don’t want to win an office, or this could be whatever it might be. Our battle is not against flesh and blood. Our battle is powers and principalities and rulers, essentially the devil and his demons. I’ll encourage you all to go through some of these scriptures, because “Vengeance is mine,” says the Lord, and it’s in our nature to fight back. Again, when I’m looking at all the anger, when I’m looking at all the aggression and the violence that’s happening right now, these are very misguided people that are seeing other human beings as threats, as enemies.
Dr. Z (00:43:02):
But no, our enemy is the devil. Our enemy is Satan himself. That was something that I walked into COVID with. Because again, when you’re battling people, again, people want their money and people want this, and people want that. There’s a lot of issues when it comes to dealing with people. God showed me that. When we went through COVID, I’m not seeing people, I’m not seeing people as the threat. I’m not seeing these governors and these officials and these people that are taking advantage of their power and destroying lives, they’re not in control. That kind of hit me because I saw some pretty demonic behavior out of people, and our instinct is to attack them. But no, we need to pray for them. I’ll end with this, and I’ll let Sabrina share as we wrap up today, is I realized, and this is what took me through a wonderful experience that helped me, I think, a lot through COVID, was I have this uncanny ability to bring the best of the worst out of people in my life. There were many, many times.
Mama Z (00:44:16):
Dr. Z (00:44:16):
Thank you, and so do you, and so does everyone listening. We have the ability to bring the best of the worst. There were times, again, our three months crisis, it was a three month crisis before the crisis. We’re talking the three month personal Zielinski crisis before COVID hit before the world got flipped upside down. This was with our employees, and this affected our family, this affected everything in our lives. I realized there were a couple of things that I needed to be strong in those moments where Sabrina and the contractor and the insurance people and my family were weak. What I realized the perfect storm is, when I’m weak at the same time someone else’s weak, and that just gets ugly. There was a time with one of the main contractors that we were working with that we had to go have a sit-down at Starbucks.
Dr. Z (00:45:11):
I remember him, like he cried. He cried after our little sit-down and thanked me. I was working with him, and I was trying to minister to him and help him through a situation. Because again, these kinds of situations can be challenging when … Quite frankly, we didn’t get our insurance check for the first claim when the second claim hit, and there was a lot of back money, and he had to pay people. I’m like, well, there was a lot to do. There was a lot of … Again, Karen, Karen stress, first-world problems. Well, yes and no. This is people’s livelihood that we’re dealing with, our own included. Instead of fighting and instead of seeing someone as the enemy, I looked at him and I flipped the switch and I saw him as a friend, and I saw him as a brother in Christ, which he is, and I began our meeting with prayer.
Dr. Z (00:46:07):
Things started changing rapidly with us as well, and I started birthing everything more in prayer. I woke up in the morning, like God help me bring the best out of these people, and Lord use me, because for such a time as this. These are my big three takeaways, or how many takeaways I just shared, that we do have what it takes to get through whatever crisis it might be. We do not, and we will talk more in the future, by the way. We have a whole series of podcasts. The rest of the years is going to be like the things we learned, how to manage crises, things to do and things not to do. Substances you need to be careful of, how many people dive into caffeine and drugs and alcohol in the time of need. There’s certain things you do and certain things you don’t do when you’re going through a crisis. We’ll go through all that.
Dr. Z (00:46:55):
But what a wonderful experience to have that revelation, not just praise God, because from that, and I’ll talk more about this in future episodes, what God birthed through us and how we’ve been able to help so many people this year because of what we went through. With that, sweetheart, where are you, and what do you want to leave folks with?
Mama Z (00:47:16):
There was a few things throughout this process, and we find that we all have our own breaking points, and we have to recognize that, and we have to recognize our strengths and our weaknesses. That’s why, even in business, when you do a SWAT report, strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, you have to recognize what your boundaries and your limits are. But also, in that, you have to recognize who are your people, because whether it was through COVID or this, who are our people? Who are the people that we keep close to us? And recognizing that not all people are perfect, but when I talked to my handyman, he saw one of the breaking point times. We were having our guests over and all this stuff, and he could tell I was super stressed and he’s like, “Don’t worry, we’re going to make it happen, even if I have to come over here tomorrow.”
Mama Z (00:48:28):
He came over December 31st and was like, help sweep the floor and, and hang up stuff and do other stuff. He didn’t need to come over on December 31st, but he did. He said, it’s all about expectations. Once people know our level of expectations, we expect that, and we expect that in all areas of our life, and if we live our life at a certain level of expectation, and that’s what we always want, because that’s what we always give to other people, and recognizing who our people are that fit those expectations, and knowing that we can’t be perfect either, but that brings you to, who’s your team as well, and who are the people that you want on your team?
Mama Z (00:49:20):
Because we ultimately decide who’s on our team, whether it’s our business team or our family team, or the people that we allow in and out of our home and all of that stuff. But the other thing too is allowing emotion out and not to have it totally be trapped because you’re only going to hurt yourself on the inside. I remember at one point, the owner of one of the businesses that made a mistake, and he was really nasty and didn’t want to admit that he was wrong. I wouldn’t let him bully me because he … that was like another point. I had witnesses around me, and he said that I was aggressive, and I was not aggressive, I was firm, but I was a very firm with what I expected, and I was not going to let him get out of not paying for his mistake because he acted like it was just a little mistake when his insurance guy from his … what is it called?
Mama Z (00:50:31):
You know, that kind of stuff. Anyway, his insurance guy came, thought it was just going to be something little, and he looked at me, he goes, “Oh, this is really bad.”
Dr. Z (00:50:38):
Well, thank God he moved on his heart, because if … it was the plumber, and the plumber who made the mistake to cause the flood that flooded the main level and the basement. If he denied that, so I’ll say I praise God because God worked on his heart, but yeah, you shook him in your boots, and I think-
Mama Z (00:50:59):
Well, and the thing was is I wasn’t-
Dr. Z (00:51:01):
You were a bad cop, and I had to be good cup on that one.
Mama Z (00:51:04):
Well, and it’s not usually like that, but he …
Dr. Z (00:51:08):
We would have to take them to court if they would have not admitted fault, because … and that’s the blessing, so praise the Lord. See, God worked on everyone’s heart.
Mama Z (00:51:14):
But, and the cool thing was is I really liked the plumber himself, because he had taken such care in other areas because he was recommended from our original insurance. I watched how he cared about things, and I knew that when he knew what had happened, that he wouldn’t be okay. It was his boss that wasn’t very nice, but when he came to the door, he cried and he asked for forgiveness, and I’m like, “Hey, we all make mistakes.” I’ll never forget it.
Dr. Z (00:51:50):
We prayed with him.
Mama Z (00:51:50):
Dr. Z (00:51:51):
He was broken.
Mama Z (00:51:52):
Yeah, he was.
Dr. Z (00:51:53):
Because he saw the damage. He realized, oh man, I screwed up.
Mama Z (00:51:55):
Yeah. I said, hey, it happens to all of us, and it wasn’t about that. He’s like, “I really thought that you guys would probably beat me up or something today.” This was a totally different experience. I said, “Hey, man, we all make mistakes, and utilizing that point because we can either be used as a tool of the enemy, or we can be used as a tool of the Lord. I really felt that God wanted to show him God’s true forgiveness and all of that stuff. Yes, it was a stressful situation, but after that first situation, having to recreate and do it over again, it was kind of like, hey, we’ve already been through this, we’ve already seen the path and we can do this again, and knowing that we are going to be triumphant in the end. Then just focusing on that really made the rest of the things to come so much easier.
Dr. Z (00:53:03):
Well, I’m glad you mentioned that. I think that’s a great place to end, and essentially what you shared and something we all need to remember is we need to be merciful and to give grace. I forgot that. I’m glad you mentioned. I remember we all prayed and him breaking down, said thank you so much. He actually thanked me privately in the garage, and said, “Thank you so much. Y’all handled this very … You don’t need to be this kind. I wasn’t expecting it.”
Mama Z (00:53:32):
He had other family stuff going on too.
Dr. Z (00:53:36):
Oh yeah, he had some personals, and that’s the other thing too. Oh, thank you for mentioning that. Especially with the people that we had the most problems with, chances are they’re dealing with stuff. All the people that we were working with, they had … I mean, there was death, someone lost a loved one. Someone had other people in the hospitals.
Mama Z (00:53:51):
In the hospitals.
Dr. Z (00:53:52):
People were going through their own crises, let alone us, and we can’t expect everyone to … When you’re walking through life right now, again, this is the crisis of crisis of all humanity, arguably one of the worst things that’s ever happened to humanity in our lifetime, really, in and in the last hundred years. I don’t think the world war can even compare to what’s happened because every country is affected right now, every single country. The economic devastation hasn’t even been felt, hasn’t even been felt right now. We’re going to see in next year the true devastation of all this. Just remember to be merciful, remember to be kind, and here’s the thing, when we [crosstalk 00:54:37].
Mama Z (00:54:37):
And give the measures of grace that you want God to give you when it’s your turn.
Dr. Z (00:54:41):
Yes, and to be quick, because there were many times that we were very much in the flesh and not in the spirit. We weren’t in love or joy or peace. We weren’t kind or good or faithful. Because when you’re looking at the fruit of the spirit versus the fruit of the flesh, there were several times when we lashed out, there were several times we got angry, several times that we said things we regretted, but you know what? I learned to be … and I had to be very quick. I’m talking, these are people that we don’t know. I don’t know what to say. We had to apologize to essentially strangers at times, saying, I’m sorry. I remember telling one guy, “I’m sorry, we’re just really stressed out right now. This is the worst thing that could have happened to us. This is really affecting every aspect of our lives right now.”
Dr. Z (00:55:28):
Here I am again, complaining, but doing all my work in our bathroom. Again, I could have gone to Starbucks, and I did a little bit, and I could have tried to find office space, but it’s like, well, have a home office. It’s what we pay for. It’s what we built.
Mama Z (00:55:42):
Well, I remember, at one point, they even had shut down Starbucks too. You kind of were sequestered in the bathroom with the blow dryer on just to mute out the noise in the background, like a sound spur.
Dr. Z (00:55:57):
Here we are forgiving people because God forgave us, loving people as God loved us, asking for forgiveness when we mess up, and trying our best to give grace and to be merciful, and that’s our challenge to you, and that’s what we want to leave you with. Regardless of what your crisis is right now, regardless of where you’re at, please remember that it is more important and impactful how we respond to something than the actual event that happens.
Mama Z (00:56:30):
We’ve always said, it’s not about how you start the race, it’s how you finish the race and how you respond to those things is what shows your true character.
Dr. Z (00:56:43):
Let us know what you think of this one, let us know your thoughts. If you haven’t, be sure to go to naturallivingfamilypodcast.com, be sure to subscribe to our newsletter, because we’re going to be giving updates on more episodes and great little things. We have a lot of cool stuff happening. We’re at a good place right now. I’m blessed, we went through our own crucible, we went through on fire, and we’ve been able … and there’s more things. Oh, so much more happened.
Mama Z (00:57:10):
Oh, yes, so much-
Dr. Z (00:57:11):
So much more happened. It’s just so much. I’m looking forward in the upcoming weeks to sharing with you, and then hopefully, we’ll have this beautiful celebration of Christmas together as we celebrate the birth of our savior. But I want to end in a word of prayer. Maybe we need to pray every episode. Maybe we need to continue to keep Christ at the forefront, because if it weren’t for God, if it weren’t for our faith in Christ, I know I’d be a wreck, and no way in the world would I have handled what we handled, and then when COVID hit, I would have just … God only knows. God only knows where I’d be right now without Him. So, you want to pray?
Mama Z (00:57:52):
Heavenly father, God, I just thank you and praise you for every person that’s listening, God. We’re all walking through our own battles at different times. I just thank you, God, that you help. You are our help in our time of need God. I just thank you, Lord, that, as people are facing all different kinds of situations, personally, spiritually, emotionally, God, that you meet us where we’re at and you give us that grace. That, Lord, that we’re able to then give grace to the other people around us that need it. We thank you, Lord, over people who could be having problems financially and other areas. God, we ask you Lord to help in this time of trouble. God, we just thank you Lord, over people’s health and safety and security and all of the different things that have changed over this time period.
Mama Z (00:58:54):
God, we just speak to those needs. We know, God, that you’re trying of our faith works patience, and you do want us perfect and entire wanting nothing. I just thank you, God, for not just the wanting of nothing, but also for all those needs to be met, even people with and without jobs, God, that you would help people find their true purpose, because ultimately, we were born for such a time as this and to find out what our exact purpose is within that time is critical and knowing that people have value. God, even with all the different suicide rates going up and all of the different things going around us, God, we just thank you, Lord, that you would use each and every one of us as a light for those around us, for our families and that you would help us in every area, mind, soul, and body, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Dr. Z (01:00:00):
Mama Z (01:00:00):
To wrap up today’s show, a word from our sponsor.
Dr. Z (01:00:09):
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Mama Z (01:00:22):
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Dr. Z (01:00:44):
Well, folks, thank you so much again for listening. I hope you enjoyed the show. As a reminder, you can find all the Natural Living Family Podcast show notes transcripts on NaturalLivingFamilyPodcast.com. While on our website, don’t forget to sign up for our weekly podcast newsletter, which includes a personal invite to join Mama Z and I one-on-one, and you can connect with 5,000 other Natural Living lovers just like you. And don’t forget, please subscribe to our podcast and leave a review. We love hearing what you have to say about our show. Well, as always, this is Dr. Z.
Mama Z (01:01:13):
And Mama Z.
Dr. Z (01:01:15):
Our hope and prayer is that you and your family truly experience the abundant life. God bless you all.
Mama Z (01:01:17):
Dr. Z (01:01:17):
Mama Z (01:01:18):
Natural Living Family Podcast Episode Forty-Eight Highlights: We’re Back!
- Catching up with the Z’s and our family news! (1:35)
- Why we stopped the podcast: floods, floods, and more floods (7:01)
- The next big crisis… (17:02)
- And then there was COVID (23:18)
- What we did to weather our crises (33:27)
- You’re stronger than you think & remember whom you are battling (37:51)
- More lessons from Mama Z (47:16)
- Final thoughts (53:03)
- Closing prayer and episode wrap (57:52)
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Favorite Quotes from Episode 48 – We’re Back!
“It was a crazy experience, but God was so faithful at every turn.” – Mama Z
“We knew that we would be taken care of by God, that He would see us through, that all of the things that were happening were temporary, and that the trying of our faith works patience.” – Mama Z
“You need to recognize that you are stronger than you think. You can manage more than you think. Maybe you need to say that to yourself.” – Dr. Z
“When I’m looking at all the anger, aggression, and violence that’s happening right now comes from very misguided people that are seeing other human beings as enemies. But our real enemy is the devil.” – Dr. Z
“Give the measures of grace to others that you want God to give you.”- Mama Z
“Regardless of what your crisis is right now, remember that it is more important and impactful how we respond to something than the actual event itself.” – Dr. Z