Tuesday, July 20, 2021


Plate Theory© -  by Cynthia Dainsberg, Sparrow Song Health Resources

First, a nod to Christine Miserandino, who came up with the Spoon Theory/Spoonies- to help communicate what it is like to live ‘energy challenged’.

 I’d like to take this table top talk explanation a step further- and explain my Plate Theory.

You’ve heard the old adage of having a lot on our plate- but, I’d like to submit, our ‘plates’ can be of different sizes, and so affect our perception, our view, our abilities, our resources…

Here, I have pictures of some different sized plates, all with the same kind, and number of fruit.

Depending on where you are at in your ‘energy journey’- one of these plates could represent your overall physical plate of energy, as well as your mental plate of energy.

As you can see, when our Energy Plate is small- even a few things will fully occupy our physical energies, and mental energies.  Whereas, someone else, who may have a Larger Plate, may not understand what someone, who has a Small Plate, may be experiencing.

The Larger Plate Person will see the same fruit, relative to their own plate- and often even miss perceiving that the other person’s Plate is Smaller. 

Look at the pictures.

Look from the Largest plate- to the smallest plate- can you not only see how the ‘free space’ on the plates lessen, but also perceive the increased burden of the fruit- the smaller the plate.  The fruit takes up almost all of the small plate.

The Small Plate is weighted; the fruit is in delicate balance, to stay on the plate. The fruit almost completely covers the Small Plate; it would be difficult to even see where any more fruit could be added.

With the Smaller the Plate- the more the person is experiencing the weight, and balance of what is on their plate.  And with this- one’s perspective can hardly allow body and mental space to even entertain anything more that might be placed on the plate- no matter if what is available to the plate is even fun. 

Too much, is too much, for any plate, but particularly for those living with a Small Plate.

What size is your Plate? 

Some of our Plate Sizes remain consistent, some of our Plate Size’s may change throughout the day. 

If you are a Caregiver-  what size is your Plate?  What size Plate is your Care Receiver experiencing. 

Again- The Plate Theory can help us not only explain our present physical capacities, but can be used to explain our present mental capacities as well.


To learn more about how you may communicate how you experience fatigue- I’d be happy to share with you about the Dainsberg Fatigue Scale™ .                                  Visit www.fatiguescale.com   or, email me at:  sparrowsonghealthresources@gmail.com

~ cynthia dainsberg, Sparrow Song Health Resources, Inc   (c)2021

Tuesday, April 13, 2021


Yes, I wear a mask.  

A Vogmask N95*, actually. 

I've worn a mask for years. 

Well before Covid came onto the scene, I have had to wear a mask. 

A part of me thought there would be a little more room for understanding; less getting 'the look'.

Sadly- as Covid rose, so did people's opinions and emotions.  Some going as far as to make wearing/not wearing a mask The Line In The Sand- on which to take a Stand. 

Now, if you know me at all, you know I hold a lot of strong convictions!   I also hope you would find that along with those convictions, I seek to show love through, and above my convictions.  

We never really know the conditions of all those around us, at any one time, in any one place.  We usually go into most circumstances with the lenses of our presuppositions and convictions- aka, logs (Mtt 7:3; Lk 6:41)   

Even if/when we believe we are 'right'- we need to let Love lead us. (1 Cor. 13:1) 

#bekind  #iwearamask #letlovelead

(*I have no agreement with Vogmask; I simply use their product.) 

SSHR 2021 cynthia dainsberg

 Words from the Heart

The last note my mom wrote. 

It is a keepsake. 

She'd suffered a severe stroke, taking much of her speech and motor skills. Still, she worked hard, and recovered a goodly amount of speech, and practiced with her usually weak side, to now use as her strong side. 

One of her assignments was to practice writing.  If she HAD to  put energy into writing- she would make each mark count! 

To whom would she write- A note to her family. 

What would she write- of her love, for her family, and her favorite season- spring. 

Oh the effort in each pen stroke. 

The messages were clear:  her fortitude; her love for her family; she chose to look out her window, beyond her dark room-  and chose enjoy/rejoice in seeing the sun and signs of spring. 

She was looking beyond her circumstances; looking out not just with her eyes, but with her heart and spirit. She saw more. 

What am I looking at today?

Will I choose to look beyond that which I only see with my eyes-  beyond myself, beyond my circumstances?  

Will I let those around me know how much they mean to me?

Will I exercise fortitude?

Will I look out, look forward- look for my own signs  of spring- renewing; refreshing...

LORD, fill us with Strength to not only meet the need of this day, but fill us with anticipation of the future promises You've given to us- when All Things Will Be Made New. Thank You for those you've given to us, in love- may they know today, how valuable they are to us~  Fill us with your peace and joy, according to Your Great Mercy-  amen. 

- cynthia 

SSHR 2021

Friday, March 26, 2021


10 Seeds to Grow a Lighter Heart 


                                                        _        Look for something PURE

               _        Look for something HONORABLE  

_        Look for something GOOD

       _        Look for something MIRTHFUL

        _        Look for something BEAUTIFUL

     _        Look for something INSPIRING

          _        Look for something WHOLESOME

        _        Look for something SALUBRIOUS

            _        Look for something CELEBRATORY

                               _        Look for 3 things for which you are GRATEFUL

        Bonus Seeds: 

        _     Practice forgiveness, as necessary

                                           _        SHARE at least three of these with three people- (call, msg, text, write a letter…)

Gardening Basics:

Good soil- a heart open to be lighter.

Plant these seeds-  Make your own list.

Water the seeds- Do them daily.

Let the light in- we don’t ignore the past, but we can choose to not let the past have power over or present.  Be present.  Choices today, will impact your future. 

Find a garden partner- find someone who will also grow their Lighter Heart; agree to check in regularly (put it on your calendar).  Each of you share at least one insight/something most impactful,  that especially Lightened Your Heart. Stay present and engaged in your Garden Partner’s story. Keep present- don’t go over past/old-ground, or opine about possible future… Enjoy this Present-time. Agree to your next time to meet; put the meeting on your calendar.

If you need further direction in identifying the seeds, consider these explanations-

Pure- truth, clarity, innocent, high in quality,

Honorable-upright, dignified, noble, illustrious, worthy,

Good- satisfying, morally excellent; proper, kind, worthy, reliable

Mirthful- joyous, cheerful; merry, amusing; good humored

Beautiful- delights the senses or mind; wonderful, very pleasing, excellent of its kind

Inspiring- exalting influence, ‘takes our breath’, divine influence, fills our senses, stirring, uplifting

Wholesome- conducive to moral/general well-being; beneficial; sound

Salubrious- promotes good health; healthful

Celebratory- praise, exult, commemorate, honor with ceremony/festivity

Gratitude (include forgiveness) – being, and expressing- gratefulness or thankfulness

Forgiveness- disables the power of a wrong done to us (it doesn’t dissolve the wrong, but, it does disable the power of the act upon us)

-cynthia dainsberg Sparrow Song Health Resources, Inc 2021    wwwfatiguescale.com 

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Slices of Lyme Pie

I’ve celebrated five years of treatment for Late-Stage Neuroborreliosis, plus 5 co-Infections! 

People ask, “Are you better now”?  Yes. 

“Are you well now?”  No. 

“Are you still getting treatment?” Yes.

“What are you getting treatment for?”  That answer is a bit trickier.  I do still run rife treatments 2-3 times a week, to feel optimal. Those frequencies mainly set to address borrelia. I take handfuls of supplements and medications to support my body functions throughout the day.  At this point, what I was to recover, I’d likely have recovered; what is broke, is broke- and I need to support those functions.

My resources are limited to try any new more expensive treatments that are coming about~ but, I am so glad to see more effective and expanded options of treatments for Lyme disease now; way more than even five years ago. 

There is still a lot of education to do- to the public, but especially to the general medical practitioners. It is more than frustrating.

This disease is devastating on so many levels.

It can eat you alive.

All of you.

Every part of you.

If you let it.

Resilience is key. As, many struggle through this horrid disease on their own, as it robs them of their friends, and even family.

Within all the darkness and struggle- we hang onto Hope, and Life. Sometimes by a thread, but we hang on~

Over the past five years of treatment (I’d been sick for probably a decade before getting diagnosed), I have also found slices of good things in my Lyme pie.  Things I’ve learned; things I’ve discovered; things I’ve grown to appreciate in depth~ 

1.    Color.   When you are deep into neuro-Lyme, you begin to live in a grey-scale world.  I used to hunger for color.  I’d literally hang pages from a magazine which had paint color swatches on it, next to my bed, to look at- just to add a focus of color. Now that color has come back- I am in awe.  I love looking at it, wearing it, sharing it with others (through flowers, cards, crafts, photos, writings…) Aside- I’ve been reading a book by Phillip Keller, A Shepherd’s Look at the 23rd Psalm- and in it, he talks about Light:  it reflects off His creation, and in what good we do; His Light abides in us, shines ouf to us as we are filled with His spirit. And, I was thinking of Jesus as being our Lamplighter~  He has kept the Lamp lit in my spirit, and lights my way through this dark journey~

2.    Resilience.  This has to come from deep within.

You learn to self-encourage.

To find purpose, even when you are bed-ridden.  (Praying is one of the most powerful purposes I have, in great physical weakness.)

You learn to celebrate the things that healthy people take for granted.

You reach out to others, even if they don’t reach back.

3.    Family/friends/food.  Food is a big part of gatherings and celebrations. Since I can no longer eat most of these celebratory foods, and those around me do not care to eat like I have to (who could blame them), I’ve learned the joy of serving them foods they enjoy, making myself ‘my own food’ ahead of time- so I can at least be at the table with them (even make myself a ‘treat’ food); offer to watch a baby/child to allow mommy time to eat uninterrupted. I’ve learned you can enjoy smelling food!  And, that to keep enjoying the time with family/friends- I must keep to my food restrictions; if I cheat, it will ruin the chances of enjoying what time I have with them that day.  



4.    Family/friends.  Yes, I am repeating myself, but on purpose.  For us in the Lyme community- these commodities are rare.  When we have a chance to be with family, or a friend- it is a treasure! We work hard to get there, stay there, prep to be there, and recover. We wish we could give more- but really, most will never know the effort given to just be in the moment with them (a select few will), but the reality is, the biggest gift they give to us/we give to them, is being in the moment; being present.

5.    Life Pace.  Okay, truth:  I do get a twinge of jealously when I see posts by friends of the millionth thing they had done, seen, made, canned, cooked… while I am celebrating having gotten the laundry done, and finished loading the dishwasher without breaking down into tears (which was common the first year of treatment). But, this new, slower-paced life has me seeing things I’d otherwise passed by, not taken in.  Just breathing, is a joy.  Moving without pain, is a joy.  Taking in the scene at I walk to the mailbox- at my pace, I notice things I’d not at my former ‘Point-A to Point-B’ pace. It’s important that I pace myself, as I have the best chances of being able to continue moving forward.


6.    Presence. I am learning to be more present.  When I am able to be with someone, I can more fully give my attention to them. It is a treasure to be here; to be with them. I can rest in that more easily now than I could before.  Also, on a spiritual level- I’ve had more opportunity to sit/rest in His presence. To know His nearness; it is sweet, assuring, peaceful, delightful, refreshing, satisfying~

7.    Life goes on.  All around me. Key words, around me.  It is very fluid, and seems fleeting. There are times I feel like it is all rushing past me.  I feel like a rock, mid a torrent stream- so much flashes by me. But, I am still a part of that stream.  It may seem to pass me by, but I reality, I am still a part of it!  In fact, I’m in the middle of it- and as I come to peace with that, every so often someone will hop out of the torrent to rest a bit with me~ and be refreshed before they have to dive back into the torrent. He is my rock~ and whenever I get to share My Rock, it enthuses me.


These are only a smidgen of slices of Lyme pie I am sharing today.  There are more, and perhaps I will share more another time.  But, it is a rich pie, so serving only number of slices at a time is probably wise. 


Lyme has seemingly given me a very small world in which to live; comparatively so. And yet, in it- I’m finding depth of living.
FYI-  Follow me in Instagram  @lymesurvivorthriver  

Monday, December 7, 2015

What are You Waiting For?

What are You Waiting for? 

Yesterday, I had the great pleasure of fellowshipping with a few young adult ladies.  As we were going around sharing, Mara, shared about a gift the LORD gave her during her devotion time, and prayer. 

In answer to her prayer, the LORD told her to be present, stop waiting to live for Him. Not that she should stop making plans, but more that ‘today is the day’, and really, all we have is the present. He is present, and He calls us to live for Him in the now.  Not after the next semester, or when things are more stable, or after graduation, or after….but now.  Keep alert; He is at work now, and inviting each of us into what He is doing now.

Interesting, each of the other young women in the group had been meditating on a similar theme. To top it off, this morning’s Advent message was about waiting.

This thread of waiting percolated in my own thoughts.  Advent is all about being mindful of anticipation of Christ’s birth, and thinking of all the faithful who, before that time, waited.  We celebrate His coming, and our anticipation is in when He comes again, and when we return to Him.

With this waiting, there is anticipation. Each of these ancient faithful lived in the moment, but those outstanding ones, whose torches burned most bright, knew how to live for Him daily.

In daily life, seasons of life- we are most likely to put God off, into the future; “I’ll live for Him when I get out of school; I’ll live for Him after I get the promotion I want; I’ll live for Him when I’m financially secure; I’ll live for Him when I feel better; I’ll live for Him after I quit using; I’ll live for Him after I get married….”

He waits for us.

Meanwhile, we miss out on all that He is doing in this very moment, all around us; wanting us to join in, if even ‘only’ to enjoy the moment with Him, and give Him thanksgiving.

I think this can be especially true at Christmastime.  Many of us are so concentrated on getting everything ‘just right’; making the children happy; serving the perfect food; having the perfect table setting; best decorations; most fun gatherings…  But, for most of us, there is no such thing as a ‘perfect Christmas’.  We live in a broken world, where there are broken relationships, people get sick, things break, plans change, resources are limited, loved ones are gone, or miles away…

No matter how well we plan, stuff can happen.

If we are waiting to ‘celebrate Christmas’ until everything is just-right- we will likely miss out on many joyous moments. 

So, what are you waiting for?  If you are waiting for an invitation- here it is, “Come.”  Come, let us adore Him. Come, taste and see that the LORD is good.”  Today is the day of salvation.” 

Keep your heart and mind stayed on Him daily, even moment-by-moment, be alert. He is at work now, and He wants you to open your eyes to see what He is doing; He wants you to open your ears to what He is saying to you; He wants you to live for Him, and to be willing to join in on a mission of service, perhaps to someone right next to you- to share that:

He is Hope,

He is Joy,

He is Peace,

He is mercy,

He is grace…

He is here.


Don’t wait!

Matthew 11:28; 14:29; 16:24; 16:27; 18:11; 20:28; Psalm 34:8; John 1:46; 2 Corinthians 6:2

Monday, June 30, 2014

A Psalm for Lyme Fighters

I was reading my Daily Bible passages, and again visited the Psalms- in particular, Psalm 142. 

What a great Psalm for Lyme Fighters. 

Here it is-  

See if you can relate:

Psalm 142  New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Prayer for Help in Trouble.

[a]Maskil of David, when he was [b]in the cave. A Prayer.

142 I cry aloud with my voice to the Lord;
I make supplication with my voice to the Lord.
I pour out my complaint before Him;
I declare my trouble before Him.
When my spirit [c]was overwhelmed within me,
You knew my path.
In the way where I walk
They have hidden a trap for me.
Look to the right and see;
For there is no one who regards me;
[d]There is no escape for me;
No one cares for my soul.
I cried out to You, O Lord;
I said, “You are my refuge,
My portion in the land of the living.
Give heed to my cry,
For I am brought very low;
Deliver me from my persecutors,
For they are too strong for me.
Bring my soul out of prison,
So that I may give thanks to Your name;
The righteous will surround me,
For You will deal bountifully with me.”
Well-  can you? 
I sure can! 
This July marks the ending of three years into treatment for Late-Stage Neuroborreliosis with 5 Co-Infections- and the beginning of my fourth year.. (I expect to battle on for my life-time). 
That first year (if you read back on my blog site)  I spent months in a cave of my own. 
Down in our basement area, I'd spend 5-8 hrs a day, five days a week, using a Rife machine protocol. (along with abx, nutrition, supplements, herbs, etc.)  An all out 'blitz', complete with me in our 'bomb shelter' like basement area. 
I felt SO alone.
Only by the grace of God's presence meeting with me, did I keep going.  I found Him Trustworthy and Sufficient in those days. 
Even though I was held captive by the disease and necessary treatments- in Him, I could be:
have purpose,
have identity,
be heard,
be wanted,
be valued,
be rescued,
...be dealt with bountifully. 
Did I always feel those things?  No.  But, that did not mean those things were not true.  They are truths I hung on to, and continue to hold on to... all wrapped up in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ.   The One Who extends His tender Compassion to us, no matter our state of being, no matter where we are.
Many days I don't feel the 'bounty'- my mortal eyes evaluate my state with mortal standards.  But, as I sit before Him, enjoying His Word, enjoying Him- I am reminded of His amazingly bountiful grace and mercy-- and indeed, if He deals bountifully with me in only those two areas alone- it is more than enough...  And yet, He extends to me well beyond those...  Selah (soak it in; my Hebrew paraphrase) :)
What if I can't do any more than I can do today?  (The silent question we dare to ask.)
Is it enough? 
Yes.  In this moment, it is enough- because He is present with us in it.
This lesson, this 'place', doesn't come easily.  It is borne through months of labor-living in the caves. 
But, it is a valuable lesson.  And brings us to daily living, minute by minute, before Him, in whatever state we are in. 
Our brother, Paul, puts it this way: to be content-  (Paul is another who knew well about 'cave/prison' dwelling, and chronic health challenges):
Philippians 4:10-12 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

God’s Provisions

10 But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned before, but you lacked opportunity. 11 Not that I speak [a]from want, for I have learned to be [b]content in whatever circumstances I am. 12 I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.
To be content, no matter my circumstance.  Know that I am much more cognoscente of the lesson, I practice is more now-  but, it is not something I have down-pat.  I must continue to practice it- by keeping in close communication with the LORD- pouring myself out to Him, and allowing Him to refill me.  It needs to become like breathing.
Are you in a cave today?  Or, is it a day spent outside?... no matter what-  The LORD is drawing near-  draw near to Him, be content in the moment with Him-  and you will enjoy the moment, and be less concerned with 'what will or won't happen' down the road.