Anger… finally?

As I write this, we are in the time of the full moon in Pisces and emotions are high… It’s been a productive, yet extremely frustrating day and I find myself again skirting an emotion I can barely control.

I. Am. Angry… 

Perhaps it’s more accurate to say I am finally angry.It’s been almost nine months and I still think of him every single day, repeatedly asking the ceiling in my home office or bedroom why he left and why he did the things he did.

Alcoholic, they said.  Having not seen him in three decades, I had no idea.  And though I knew he drank both by his schedule and the prominent “beer belly,” when we finally met face to face, it was his heart that received most of my focus.  Knowing too well the stressors of his job, a heart attack is what I feared more than anything else, with complete organ failure never once entering my mind.  Scanning his energy, his heart wasn’t “clean” but it was strong and the energy I felt at the time, gave me no real cause for concern. 

Naive…? 
Probably. 
I know full well not to read for family or trust the energy/emotion cocktail we can experience from those with whom we have the strongest connections, and ours…? 

The Twin Flame connection is generally acknowledged as one of the strongest soul connections in the Universe.  So there’s that.

How many things could have been different had we’d known there would be only the one time for us to be face to face?  How many more questions could have been asked and answered?  How much more open might we have been, knowing this was our only opportunity to connect and learn from each other this way?

“I’ll never leave you again” he said, just months before he died.  And though I endlessly wish he would have chosen to stay here on the Earth plane, I know he is still with me.

“You can’t say that.” I replied.
“Why not?”
“Because neither of us knows what’s going to happen.” 

Why did I say that??  Could I have known a shift was coming?  I get it, I’m a psychic and all but, remember that old saying, “physician, heal thyself.”

Did I know he was going to leave? 
Not that I remember, though knowing the runner/chaser dynamic so common with Twin Flames, I was concerned the joy of finally being face to face would eventually devolve back into our previous pattern of overwhelm, frustration and silence. 

As happy as he was to spend real time, communicating face to face and trying to understand all that had happened between us in the past, he made it clear he was fearful of understanding or using energy as a tool between us. 

The first day we met, I’d asked him to take us to a place with mature trees because I know how amazing tree energy can be, and that it would (hopefully) help us both to stay more grounded.  At one point during our walk around the beautiful park he chose, he looked at me, suddenly panic stricken by the intensity of our connection and the gravity of the situation.  We hadn’t seen each other since we were teenagers and now here we were, finally face to face after more than thirty years.  All the emotion, all the things we wanted to say, and all the things we’d shared seemed to come flooding into his consciousness, as it if were finally real; as if I were finally real. 

All our communication as adults, up until this day, had been via text, email or phone.  This day, and after other attempts to meet through the years had failed, we were finally face to face, and for a minute I thought he might actually pass out.  I shared with him how to diffuse the intensity of the energy.  I showed him how to ground himself and release energy that was not his, or that did not serve his highest good, back to the ground and back to Mother Earth. 
It worked. 

He felt better.  I felt better, and for a moment I had hope that perhaps he’d be open to learning more. 
He wasn’t.  He couldn’t get past the fear.  The thought of manipulating energy terrified him. 

The great irony here is that he was a physicist.  His job was literally figuring out how to manipulate energy on a daily basis but, but he was unable to connect to the concept, as something he himself could learn to do outside of the lab and away from his instruments.  In the end it was all too much for him, and our communication faltered as I knew it would, as it had time and again over the past half dozen years. 

When someone we love transitions to the next world, allowing ourselves to reach the point of anger can be difficult, to say the least. We love them, we want them back and it feels like sadness waits for us around every corner, to remind us they are gone.

And there is anger.  Though so often, we’re quite quick to push those feelings away, as if we are wrong to feel them.  We can’t be angry at our loved ones who’ve passed, that’s insane!  We only want to remember the good things, right?  So when anger does come, it can be just as overwhelming as sadness. 

In my work, I teach that grief comes in waves.  Sometimes the waves are smaller, surprising us with moments of sadness, a memory brought to mind.  And sometimes the waves can knock you down, drag you under and pull you along the rocks, before you’re able to make your way back to the surface.

And so it went with this full moon in Pisces, as it’s powerful energy, deeply rooted in asking us to forgive, came in like a tidal wave and scraped me across the rocks deep below the surface…

HOW COULD YOU DO THIS??  HOW COULD YOU LEAVE YOUR FAMILY… YOUR CHILDREN…
Me…

To intentionally destroy your body with alcohol (or drugs) raises an anger in me I cannot define.  And yet there is immense compassion as well.  Addiction is a disease that touches so many families.  It has touched mine as well.  And when you know, when you can understand the situation, there remains the possibility that you can do something, say something, or somehow stand in that gap.  But, when a life is lost to an addiction hidden so well, the shock can be even more jarring. 

What if I had known?  Could I have made a difference some how? 
Likely not.

The second afternoon we were together, I asked about his health again, and listened as he spoke of counting the days until he retired.  I knew full well his job was an endless stream of stress that had only gotten worse in recent years.  His response to me; “any damage has already been done.”  And though one of his siblings described him as a raging alcoholic, they also shared that he had quit drinking the day he retired.  It just wasn’t soon enough.  He was right, the damage had already been done and six weeks later he was gone.

So, there is anger, there is frustration and rage, all exacerbated by the powerful energy of this full moon.  Thankfully, as that window closed, the anger subsided.  No longer serving my highest good, much of it was released back to Mother Earth, because I know how to do that and the benefits it brings.

In the end, one of the things he said that day stays with me and gives me hope.

“I can’t promise we will be what we were but I can promise you that I won’t disappear.”
I hold on to that and each time a certain light blinks in my office, or my hands fill will energy, I am reminded he is near.

Love In The Time Of Cholera, I Mean Corona…

My kids are home from college!!  I’m pretty sure I’m not the only parent who’s not completely enamored of the whole empty nest thing.  Though I understand that’s usually a smaller group compared to those  celebrating this milestone, and having the house to themselves again.

I work at home and my spouse travels for his work so, I’ve often had the house to myself.  And, even when they were “home,” my boys weren’t often here, they were busy.  They had soccer practices, extra training, jobs, etc… so, for me, it wasn’t a matter of getting used to the quiet. I missed being able to just chat with them and see their faces.

When Eli was still dating his former girlfriend, he’d often call and chat with me on the drive back from her school to his, since she was about 90 minutes away.  I loved those conversations, we would literally talk about everything. Dylan worked as a valet and would get home around 11:30pm, to tell us about all the funny or weird stuff that happened at the hotel that night.  Suffice to say, tourists do some strange things.

And now, thanks to the current Corona Crisis, they’re back home again.  Aside from the exponential rise in my grocery bill, I am delighted!  What can I say, I actually like my kids.  At the same time, my heart breaks for all that’s been taken from them due to this virus (and the complete failure of our federal government to take appropriate action, instead of burying their collective heads in the sand, but I digress…)

Eli is a college senior and will complete his education where it started, at my kitchen table.  While there is nothing in the world wrong with that, the 72 hours his university gave him to vacate his apartment (while he was still in Florida on Spring Break), robbed him of those last days with his college buddies; the celebrating together, drinking (mama’s not blind), the bonding and reminiscing you do during those last days before graduation.  They are a group of five or six really great kids, who are all about to go their separate ways and the sentimentalist in me is sad for them to have lost this time, poorly made up for with a short evening of pizza and conversation at the hotel before Eli and Rob left Saint Louis for the last time, bringing him and all his stuff back here.

The blue in his college colors is close enough to the blue of his high school,  I’m thinking of using his blue cap and gown from high school graduation, just to take the pictures while we “enjoy” his virtual graduation online (sniff…)  Eli, being an introvert, thinks most of this is great and is already planning to have his buddies all come down here for a post-graduation celebration, after this crisis is over.

Dylan, on the other hand, is not an introvert. and being locked in the house without his gaggle of girl friends (“there’s nothing going on, so stop asking!”), and being kept off the soccer field, is (his words) “pissing the shit out” of him!  He had a tough integration to college life and spent the start of his first semester mostly being angry and surly.  But then he found his groove, he found his “people” and was really enjoying the rest of his freshman year.  He’d just returned from a great Spring Break and had a week of classes before it was all shut down.  He packed up his dorm room and came home, leaving all his plans for the spring soccer season behind him, only to be locked in his house.  So yeah, he’s rightfully pissed.

All in all though, I have to say they’re handling this remarkably well.  Dylan has shifted his room around to make it more conducive to being here until August, while Eli doesn’t want to get too comfy so he can get a job and leave as soon as he graduates and is allowed to do so.  Neither of these scenarios surprises me in the slightest, but what has surprised me, is the kindness and support they’re showing to each other.  Sibling rivalry has been modeled for them since day one, most especially by my father and the sibling shenanigans that, to this day are emblematic of my dad’s relationship with his brothers.  So generally, there’s a litany of curse words and insults flying around that part of the house and I regularly find myself telling them to stop being mean to each other.  Except now, there’s laughter, kindness and cohesion as they play video games together, discuss college and call bullshit on many aspects of their current life situation.

They know this sucks.  Though they tell me, being locked in here is (for the most part) better than being locked in at school.  For one, I don’t care if they drink.  I mean really, where are they going??  Besides, here they have a pool, their own dogs, bigger beds and way better food so, at least there’s that.   And, they’ve come together in the way I’d always hoped they would, but never really had, until now.  The shift in their friendship and the “we’ll get through this together” mentality they’ve adopted, is creating a bond I know will last the rest of their lives.  And for that, I am endlessly grateful.

I know we’re in a global crisis.  This whole thing totally sucks and is incredibly scary.  At the same time, there ARE blessings in it, IF we allow ourselves to see them.  For me, I’ve never been more relieved to have my boys at home, knowing they are safe and protected and finally… really… becoming friends.

P.S. The dogs are exhausted…

Running With The Shadows

shadow walking

You know that saying, when the Universe closes a door, it opens a window somewhere else in your life?  I’ve always liked that idea, and I have tried to lean in to it.
Then there’s that other one, “God won’t give you more than you can handle.”
I fucking hate that one!  It’ makes me want to scream, “What the hell made you think I could handle this??”

Door after door had closed, I just wasn’t convinced windows were actually opening and I was starting to feel like I might suffocate.  The door to Twin closed and it almost killed me.  The door to Vampire closed.  And while I knew that was definitely for my highest good, the damage he did on the way out made the whole thing exponentially worse, and sent me spiraling back into the darkness.  Even though he’d meant to harm me, that encounter would ultimately lead to many blessings and set me on my path to the light.  But first, I had to survive the journey.

Facing our shadow self, doing battle in the depths of the mind, can be a harrowing experience.  It can change us for the better and bring us closer to the light, as we move through that dark night of the soul.  Or, it can root us to where we stand, refusing to see what we really are, and resisting the changes that must inevitably come when we finally face our truest self.

There were a lot of things I did not know were buried in there, things I had never allowed myself to see.  And, I was completely unprepared for the tangibility of this new reality, until it plowed into me like a Mack truck.

OMG, I was a runner.  I was THE runner…  It had been me all along…  Had I pushed them all away?  Had I done this to myself??

In an unbalanced twin flame dynamic, which most of them are, one person is generally a runner and one is a chaser.  My whole life I believed I was a chaser.  People came in and out of our lives and I’d always chosen not to let (important) people go so easily.  I didn’t abandon friendships for no reason and I worked hard to keep in touch.  It’s one of the things I’ve always valued about my Mary Kay business, it gave me a reason to stay in contact with people, especially the ones I cared about.  Other people leave.  Not me.     How could I possibly be a runner??  I’m clearly more like the chaser, right?

Except, it was all just a lie I’d let myself believe.  In reality, I was a runner and I’d been one all my life.  The truth of this realization hit me at a soccer game and sent me in to such a tailspin, I could barely breathe.  I couldn’t see and I surely couldn’t drive.  I remember just sitting in the car at Dylan’s game, crying.  I cried for the whole game, and for many days after as well.
How could this be?  How could I be a runner??  I wasn’t the one who’d been doing all the leaving!!

To accept the truth of this revelation, I would need to re-examine the end of every serious relationship I’d ever known but, I had to know…  Could it really be true?  Or, was it possible for a person to be both?  A runner AND a chaser?

I ended the relationship with my high school boyfriend because I was leaving for college…  in Upstate New York…  from Florida.  We’d been together for about two years and he was a wonderful boyfriend.  He was also a year behind me in school, and though I really loved him, for all intents and purposes, I was moving to New York!  So okay, I wasn’t running there. Whew!

I ended the relationship with my college boyfriend when I was living in Portland, Maine.  He was also a wonderful boyfriend and we’d been together for two and a half years.  He lived in Boston, which was just under two hours away, without snow.  That’s long distance, right?  I loved him but, I was never fully comfortable with his deeply Italian family. They were very kind to me but, we wanted different things, especially when it came to kids and stuff.  I know I didn’t handle it very well, I should have been more upfront with him.  Instead I “got busy” and kind of slipped away, and started dating an actor in one of the shows running at the theater where I worked.  

So yeah, I guess I was the runner in this one.  Damn.

Of course the actor lived in New York and went back there when the show was over, making this one and even “longer” distance relationship.  But he was the one who left, not me, so I’m good!

Except, the truth was that he’d asked me to come with him back to New York, to move in and make a life together.  I adored him but I didn’t want the life he had and I knew I didn’t want to live in the City.  So, we ended.  And though we’d only see each other face to face a few times, we remain dear friends for almost 30 years.  Did this count as running?  I wasn’t really sure.

And then there was that time at the Sizzler… One night, when my husband and I were still dating, I wanted to end it.  I felt like I was suffocating in the relationship but when we met for dinner, I couldn’t bring myself to say the words.  To this day, he won’t set foot in a Sizzler, though these days, there are different reasons for that.  Not too long after the “failed break up dinner,” I finally mustered the strength to ask him to move out.  And when he actually did, I was furious!  He left, I couldn’t believe it!  Except I knew I was the one who pushed him away; runner…  Thankfully,  I had the sense to go get him back!

And then there was Twin…  though we’d known each other since junior high school, we hadn’t stayed in touch or even seen each other in close to thirty years.  In the beginning, before we understood our connection, there were emails here and there but that was all.  Once the link between us had been established, the intensity was such that our relationship lasted less than a year before it exploded.  Those were some of the happiest days of my life and, though we still lived  more than a thousand miles apart, most days I literally felt like he was right next to me.

It ended badly.  I was hurt, and I was angry at him for leaving, for leaving in total silence and for leaving me with so much pain.  But when I could finally look back at the last day we communicated, I could see where I had started to push him away.  Later that same night, I’d sent a text saying I couldn’t continue on the same way any more and something needed to change.  It was me.  It was all me.

The next day, there was no response.  I was so used to hearing from him by eleven am each day, so when I didn’t hear from him, I finally sent an email at around 3 o’clock.  He said, “What did you expect?  You said you didn’t want to continue!”  It had never been my intention (I thought) to end our communication but, my words had hurt him, and he was gone.  There was no discussion, and though I tried again and again, to explain I felt we needed to talk and adjust some things, it didn’t matter.  It was over and he was gone.  Eight months later he reappeared for a day or two of exchanging emails and apologies but, it was never the same.

We both knew the relationship, although very real at the soul level, had no future in our human reality.  Neither of us had any desire to cross lines that would put our marriages at risk.  Yet our communication had bulldozed through the doors of my psychic awareness, opening them wider than ever before and, the astral connection was unlike anything I’d ever experienced.  I knew there was more I was supposed to learn from this.  Except I ran…  And the realization that I had done this to myself was a very hard pill to swallow.

Dealing with the shadow-self is never easy and rarely rational.  Depression that so often accompanies the journey, can twist and contort the mind and, it took me a long time to understand why I’d pushed Twin away.  Even longer, to accept it was the right thing for both of us.  Years later we would finally meet face to face.  Thirty years had passed but I would have known him anywhere.  But, perhaps that’s a story for another day.

In the end the question remained…  Am I still running?

I’ve come to accept that, to a certain extent I will always be a runner and maybe that’s not such a bad thing after all.

 

Healing the shattered

broken glass by jilbert-ebrahimiSpiritual Awakening rarely happens gently.  Unless you’ve been raised by spiritually awake people and have “woke” as long as you can remember, it’s much more common for spiritual awakening to feel more like being hit in the head with a two by four.  Something happens that completely shifts your perception of reality and you realize things will never be the same.

For me, it was when Michael died.  Not only did he start connecting with me from the “other side,” he also began manipulating things in my world as well.  For one, he enhanced the communication between Twin (Him) and I so our connection deepened much faster than it would have, had it been allowed to develop more naturally.  But Michael had an agenda, and needed me to wake up fast, so I’d be able to help him connect and share his message with his husband.

In all honesty, I loved this time in my life.  It was new and exciting, interesting and dynamic and, I was hungry to learn anything I could get my hands on.  It was one of the happiest times in my life, and then, in what felt like a mushroom cloud, it exploded, leaving shattered pieces of ‘me’ all over the ground.  Feeling completely clueless on how to process the pain now residing in my heart, or how to begin healing it, I was the perfect target for the energy vampire.

For years afterwards, I wondered how he even knew to reach out to me at that particular moment, when I was just starting to heal from the trauma of my separation from Twin.  And then it finally dawned on me, that because we were “friends” on Facebook, and in some of the same metaphysical type groups, he could see whenever I shared a post or asked a question in one of them.  I had no idea he was even there, lurking in the groups, trolling for vulnerable targets.  What a treat it must have been for him, to watch someone he already knew, reveal herself to be the perfect target.

Empaths like me can be ideal and easy prey for an energy vampire.  Especially if you’re already broken or overwhelmed, they can swoop in as a caring friend and earn trust more quickly than normal.  Empaths can feel the connection to that person and the desire to lean into it can be very compelling.

Having no understanding of the real dynamic between empaths and energy vampires, I couldn’t see that the whole relationship was one giant manipulation to feed his appetite for other people’s energy.   Energy vampires are a lot like drug addicts, always looking for that next score, that next high.  Except, instead of cocaine or heroin, they feed off creating uncertainty and imbalance in the energy of others.   The more uneasy they can make you feel, the easier you are to manipulate or control.  And, the more you bend to their will, the bigger the high for them.  I thought he was a friend; I had no idea what was going on until it was far too late.  By then it was over and he too, had gone in an instant with no explanation or discussion.

I struggled to understand what happened and was left feeling even more shattered than I’d been before he came.  The pieces of me seemed to be everywhere and nowhere at the same time and, it didn’t even register to me that I was supposed to be picking them up.  I continued to tumble back into the darkness I knew so well.  I had no clue how to put myself back together.  I knew I was falling into a much deeper despair than I’d ever before experienced.  The depression was intense, and the self-recrimination was worse.  I felt useless, and stupid for letting this happen, for letting someone get close to me again.  I felt worthless, and clearly unwanted, as now two people I cared about, people I trusted, both chose to disappear without a word.

When you’re down that deep in the darkness, it can feel impossible to remember the light, let alone muster the strength to reach for it.  I was caught between the pull of the pain, the desire to give up and leave this life, and a distant rumble, saying that somehow, I needed to stay; especially for my boys.  I did not want a choice I made to exit this lifetime, to become their story and derail them from their paths.  For months, I teetered on the edge of two worlds until finally, I prayed for a lifeline.  And when it arrived, I thought, “you have got to be kidding me.”  A person I hardly knew, who barely even knew I existed, and who sure as hell didn’t believe in any of the things I held to be true.  This was the lifeline?  This was the person to help me??

I was doomed.  We both were.

Or maybe, just maybe…. we weren’t.

 

photo credit: Jilbert Ebrahimi

 

What’s In A Name?

The sky was a brilliant blue as we drove through Dillon, Colorado to the ice castle. But having arrived, we decided it was more kitch than cool and we’d rather find some place to play in the snow. We were in Denver for a family gathering and decided to take our “Florida boys” up into the mountains. They were both born in LA, but were young when we left and mostly remember people rather than places we went. Eli had relatively mild winters while living in Saint Louis for college and up to this point, I didn’t think either of our boys had ever had a “real” winter or snow experience.

We decided to skip the overpriced, oddly colored ice castle and explore the town instead. A sign for the local amphitheater caught our attention so we went to check it out. Since this was January in the Rocky Mountains, we figured at the very least, it would be a big open space filled with snow. It turned out to be so much more!

The theater sat beside a beautiful lake and I am certain the view is gorgeous in Spring. This day it was frozen solid, and the stark view was simply stunning. We walked, or rather slid down the snow-covered stairs and out to the main area of the performance space where the boys instantly broke into a snowball fight. They were merciless and it was wonderful to see them having so much fun! We made snow angels, well… my younger son and I made snow angels while his brother derided us for being lame. What can you do?

When they were finally finished, we walked out onto the lake. I knew they’d never seen or done anything like that before and, aside from our footsteps and giggles, it was silent and serene. Naturally, they were bored in about five minutes.

Eventually, wet, and frozen, we made our way back to the car. My faux Uggs having little to no traction on the stairs, I slipped and twisted my knee. At the time I figured it was just a strain or pull and put it out of my mind. With enough Motrin, you can ignore anything, right?

I iced, I stretched, I took Ibuprofen and even had my husband do healing work on me. It wasn’t enough. I was getting better, though I knew whatever it was, it was not fully mending, and I needed to see the orthopedist. My dad is a DO and I’m no stranger to doctors but at this point in my life, I consider them a last resort. By this time though, practically everyone in my family had been treated by Dr. Matt for something so I guess it was my turn. I wasn’t surprised when he suggested I had a torn meniscus and sent me for an MRI. If he was right, there would be surgery in my future and that prospect did not appeal to me at all.

Weeks passed and I did nothing. I had the MRI and still did nothing. Finally, I had enough and called Matt’s practice to make an appointment. We changed insurance at the start of the year and made sure to pick a plan his office accepted, except now, in the new year, they didn’t. Shit.

I came out of my office on the verge of tears and sat down on the couch. Now I had to find another doctor, one I’d like and trust. Great…

All things work together for good. I remind myself of this every single day. Especially when I hit bumps in my road, I stop and remind myself, “the Universe is working something out for me, be patient.” As much as I hate it when things don’t go the way I want them to, the truth is they usually work out better if I just hush and stay out of the way so, I started asking around for a new doctor.

In less than a day I had a list of doctors who took our insurance, and at the top was a guy from my hometown. He was a little older than me though we knew all the same places and even some of the same people. I liked his background, where he went to school and that his practice was doctor owned. He was my guy, and even better, he could see me that week. During my appointment we talked about where we grew up, sports teams, and my knees. An hour later, I walked out the door, scheduled for surgery the following week. The whole thing could not have been easier or smoother. Thank you Universe!

However, the Universe forgot to tell my new insurance company I was waiting for surgery. Three times I was scheduled for knee surgery and three times I was pushed back because the insurance company hadn’t yet provided the authorization. Bonus: I got three free Covid tests.

Conventional wisdom says that everyone who put off elective surgery in 2020, due to the pandemic, was now rushing forward to get their insurance authorizations, and my provider at least, was completely inundated. While I was frustrated, I also realized that my original dates were during the two weeks preceding Mercury Retrograde, which is largely understood to be a bad time to do anything major; buy a house, get married, have surgery… My bad.

Finally, the day arrived. The insurance was authorized, my (third) Covid test was negative and my amazing girlfriends had loaded me up with a Get Well Soon gift box including grippy socks and The Most fabulous super soft, fluffy blanket to take with me to the surgical center. Because of the pandemic, I had to do this by myself and no one could come in with me. My husband dropped me at the door and until he came back to pick me up, I was on my own.

All through the weeks of waiting, I’d been asking my Twin to be with me. I haven’t had surgery, or really anything medical (gratefully so) since my younger son was born, and he’s twenty now! “Please be with me through this process” I repeated to myself again and again.

Since he’s in spirit now, I didn’t think it was too much to ask. Sitting alone in the waiting room, I listened to music on my phone, music he had recorded for me. I’ll never be able to talk with him again but every day I am grateful to still hear his voice in the music he made, just for me. As I listened, I was genuinely surprised how calm I felt.

“Shari…” a voice called from behind me. A kind looking man with peachy skin stood holding the door. As I walked towards him, he said, “Hi, I’m Joe*. I’ll be taking care of getting you settled in and ready for surgery today.”

“I’m sorry, what did you say?” I asked, dumbstruck.

As I followed him down the hall, I thought, “What are the odds a male nurse, with the same name as my Twin would be the person watching over me today?” Left Brain says the odds are something like 100 to one, while Soul Brain says, “Of course he has the same name. Of course, he looks like him, with similar features and similar energy about him.” Of course… I asked him to be with me, to show me he was there, and there was no doubt in my mind that he was.

Apparently though, he wasn’t done. To make sure I truly believed he was with me, he had one more card to play. I am part of a mediumship mentorship program and once a month we gather (on Zoom) to work together, support each other, and hone our skills. I attended but, since I was still hopped up on drugs, I chose not to work. I was paired with another medium whom I knew to be very qualified.

The instructions were for the sitter (in this case, me) to share a modicum of information about a person in the spirit world and, since we wouldn’t be taking turns, I would be able to share about two people. Of course, I picked Twin. I also picked Michael. Both were important to me and they couldn’t be more different from each other. I shared about Michael first, and though he did come through, it was Twin who came through immediately and, according to the medium doing the reading, “he barged right in to make sure I knew he was there” and shared a wealth of evidential information.

My partner did not know me, did not know anything about me and did a great job of allowing these men who I love, to speak through him and remind me they are here. To say I am grateful doesn’t even begin to cover it.

Our loved ones are with us. The relationship and the reality of the situations has changed, but not the importance, and not the connection. The truth is, the more we open to them, the more they can show us.

*not his real name

For more information about my Twin, check out an earlier blog post entitled “Him.” https://www.sharidworkinsmith.com/single-post/2017/12/19/him

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It’s Been A Year…

Today you’ve been gone a year.  How can it be a year when it still feels like yesterday?  How can it be that I’ve asked the same questions for 365 days?  Why did you leave?  Why didn’t we have more time?  How do I do this without you…

Composite drawing of my Grandmother and Aunt by Spirit Artist Joe Shiel

My heart is still broken for the loss of my Twin Flame and the tears still come, some days more than others. 
Somehow, I have learned to keep breathing and I have gotten *some* answers to my questions.  Though like anyone who’s lost someone important, finding answers to the questions doesn’t alter the pain of the loss, especially when it’s so sudden.  When a friend lost her mother, quite literally in the act of putting on her seatbelt, likely from an aneurism it happened so fast, he reminded me that sudden loss is so very jarring.  Jarring.  The word stuck with me because that is how it feels, like someone’s just shaken me very hard and even now, a full year later, I still find myself asking, “How can you be gone?” as I still struggle to digest this truth.

This same week, I lost another beloved friend, and while his battle was long and hard, in the end the cancer was victorious.  It is heartbreaking and awful to lose a childhood friend though for me, this was a bit less jarring than losing my Twin.  We all knew Stephen was “living” with cancer and his numbers were stable.  Anyone who’s been through or near a cancer journey knows that without a full remission, this is good news on borrowed time.  The numbers were stable until they weren’t and it took less than six months for cancer to win the day.  Not so with my Twin.  He left us all in the space of two weeks and jarring again seems an appropriate word.

As a medium I have no doubt in my mind that the soul continues, that he is still here, that he visits his family on a regular basis.  I have watched as he learned to communicate, and came to me through other mediums.  In workshops and classes, he shared information through people I’d never met before and let me know with full certainty, that he was the communicator.  The things they shared, details of his life I shared with no one, could not possibly have been known to them unless he himself was sharing it.  It was gut wrenching.  I wanted to scream, “why are you here but not here??” as I forced myself to write down every word they said.  I needed to remember, to be able to remind myself later, that he was there and that he could still communicate with me.  And on darker days, those notes have brought glimmers of light and healing as well.

As someone who does this work on a regular basis, I never cease to marvel at the information I am guided to share, information I could not possibly know about the total stranger sitting across from me.  But until he passed, I never fully felt the profundity of it for myself.  Often in workshops, my Nanna is first to come through to other student mediums.  She loves to drop in and say hi to everyone and she comes through so often I’ve learned to expect her.  I love hearing from her and I know she guides and helps me be a better conduit for those on her side of the veil.  And as much as I love her, and know she loves me, she is not the one I ache to hear from.

Last year, while at a muti-day training in Fort Myers, Fl, spirit artist and medium Joe Shiel had a wonderful connection with my other grandma, Helen and her sister, my Aunt Dora who is my Gatekeeper and guides me so often.  It was a beautiful experience to watch him work and know they are with me and, the portrait he drew of them now hangs in my reading room as a daily reminder that they are with us, watching and guiding as much as we will allow.

Earlier that same day, Joe asked for a volunteer for an exercise he had not yet explained.  I sat there, in nearly the last row of the room, bewildered as my hand shot into the air and the words “I’ll do it” popped out of my mouth.  It happened so fast and felt like someone had grabbed my wrist and tugged my arm into the air and before I knew what happened, I was walking towards to front of the room.    

During the course of the day, my twin had already come through to two other mediums I had just met, as he was learning to connect.  Those who know me know I do not believe in coincidence.  They asked me to trust them when Joe asked for volunteers and that trust was rewarded (as it always is) with a beautiful connection to my gramma and aunt and a drawing I’ll cherish forever.  (Google him, his work does not come cheap!)

As a medium, and for all that I know that I know, I still find myself filled with grief and with questions?  Even though I’m a medium, and I know that I know what I know, I am also still human.  A human who lost someone unexpectedly, someone, who even though he could infuriate the hell out of me, I loved in a way I didn’t know was possible, and in a way that will last forever. 

Every day, though especially today, on the first anniversary of his passing, I wish we’d had more time and I remain filled with grief and sadness.  I grieve like anyone, asking all the same questions of my ceiling, my God and my guides. And in this year of grief, amidst the madness and uncertainty of 2020, I have learned an important lesson.  It’s ok to not be ok.  More than that, it’s ok to say it aloud and let others know.

“I am not ok.”   But eventually…  one day…  I hope I will be.

Be The Life Raft

We all know there’s a lot going on.  But, whatever happens, we WILL be ok.  We will.  It may take a while to get there and I can pretty much guarantee it won’t look like you think but we will get through this season, this year, this election cycle… 

Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying it’s going to be smooth.  More likely, parts are going to suck, or continue to suck, and there will likely be casualties along the way but in the end, We Will Be Ok.

The truth is “you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem and smarter than you think.”  (Winnie the Pooh) He’s a seriously wise bear and really should have a podcast, don’t you think?

Here’s the thing, during turbulent times we can be forced to choose between panic or peace. 
Where possible, choose peace and choose to be a life raft for those who need one.

Years ago, while still in college, I was selected for a study abroad program in England over an extended winter break.  I left Miami the day before my birthday and took off for what I knew was going to be a grand adventure!  About an hour into the flight, after everyone had settled in for the long flight, there was a thundering boom and the plane lurched violently.  The cabin began to fill with thick black smoke, oxygen masks dropped down and it felt like we were in a free fall, nose first! 

Since it was an overnight flight, most people were already asleep, so it took a minute for them to realize something was VERY wrong and begin to panic. The flight attendants did their best to keep people calm but since they were strapped in like the rest of us, there really wasn’t much they could do. One man though, mercifully seated right in front of me, began to tell anyone who’d listen, that we were going to be ok.  He said he was a pilot, and the standard procedure was to drop altitude as quickly as possible, to a point where the plane could be ventilated, and the smoke could get out.  After that we’d likely level off. 

Every fiber of my being wanted to scream, “What the hell do you know?  You don’t know what that bang was!  We could have been hit by lightning and we’ve clearly lost an engine!!  We can’t go to England on one engine!!” 
But I didn’t.  I could barely breathe, let alone form words.

He went on to explain that the plane had multiple engines and we could in fact make it to England if necessary and, as he spoke, we indeed began to level off.  I began to breathe again, along with everyone else I’m sure. 

We ultimately made an “emergency landing” in the Bahamas.  The airline called it an emergency landing but the truth was, we hit the runway so hard, the plane’s front wheels buckled and we skidded along until veering off into the grass between the airstrips and to keep from falling off the island into the ocean.  But we were alive and that’s what mattered.

The plane’s electrical systems had been damaged in the crash and, after thirty hours (yes, you read that correctly) of no food and barely any water, sitting either on the plane or on the floor outside customs in Grand Bahama, they finally had crew and planes that could take us on to England or back to Miami.  A few dozen people chose to go back and I went with them, making it home in time for a liquor laden New Year’s Eve curled up on the couch with a few friends and my stuffed Snuffleupagus (don’t be judgey)

Quite literally, in a moment of turbulence, the man on the plane chose to be a life raft for the people around him.  He saw an opportunity to step in and help calm the situation.  In explaining that, while right now it was scary (ok terrifying) in the end we were going to be ok, he created a window of calm for people filled with fear.  I have no idea who he was, but he made an enormous difference for the people he could reach and I have always been grateful the Universe chose to seat him right in front of me.  Those of you who know I hate to fly, now you know why.

In moments of turbulence, people react in different ways.  Some may panic and fall to pieces, there was plenty of that on the plane, while others may become paralyzed with fear or anxiety, like me.  And then there are the ones who spring into action, lending a hand in whichever way they can.  Right now, in our nation, we are full up on turbulence, so ask yourself, which person am I? 

I’m certainly not judging or telling anyone how they should feel with the abundance of sh*t going on right now.  In my opinion, No One has the right to tell you how you should feel about anything.  You can tell someone when they’ve got their facts wrong but how they feel is all on them.  What I am saying though, is it’s important to self-assess and see how you’re doing as you deal with whatever turbulence you may be facing.

Whether you’re running through the streets screaming (please wear a mask!) or screaming silently in your head, know it’s ok to ask for help!  While depression and suicide continue to rise, the times we are living in have made a mockery of mental health issues and the desperate need for more training, more readily available treatment, and much needed funding.  If you feel you need help, please ask for it!  Scream it out if you need to or whisper to a trusted friend.  Just ask for what you need.  “I need help with this” is NOT a mark of weakness.  It takes courage, strength, and wisdom.  When you are drowning in darkness, thinking straight or logically can feel like a monumental task so do what you can, to reach out your hand.  

If you are hanging in there and can help calm the turbulence, or help others deal with a situation in a better way, please step in and be a life raft for someone who needs one.  And as you do so, remember that things rarely turn out the way we envision them in our head.  Whether you’re asking for help or offering it, moving forward through these strange days will likely never look how you think it will.  That’s not always a bad thing.

After a string of mentors who crossed lines, ripped apart my heart and left me for dead, what I needed more than anything was a life raft of my own.  I had no idea what that could even look like.  But, in my darkest moments, as I lay curled up either under my bed or in the back of my closet, I asked the Universe through what seemed like endless tears, “Please, please send someone who can help me figure all of this out!” 

I had been through so much and was finally starting to emerge from my dark night of the soul, and I knew I needed help.  My abilities had come flooding back to me like a tidal wave and I was drowning as I tried to process it all by myself.  I had survived the latest round of heartbreak from my Twin*, and I was beginning to better understand my ordeal with the Vampire**, but I needed someone who could guide me, teach me and show me what to do next.  I needed to better understand myself, what I had been through and what it was all for.

I believe in the power and importance of mentorship and I am continually grateful and humbled in the positions I hold, which have allowed me to be a caring and capable mentor, primarily for women.  While at the same time, my own mentorship has always seemed to come from men.  So this time, as I asked the Universe again through my tears, to please send me a teacher, a guide, anyone who could help me, I also asked for a woman.
I asked for a woman with knowledge and experience, who could guide me forward on my path and the Universe sent me a life raft.

Not what I had imagined in my mind at all, of course… 
He was older and we barely knew each other.  He didn’t share my views of the Universe, of metaphysics, the continuation of the soul, life after death, none of it.  He literally had no knowledge base from which to guide me.  How the hell was he supposed to help me?  Still, there was something about him, and I was reminded again to trust my guides. 

As it turned out, here was a person who could hold space.  He was a blank slate, capable of listening without judgement.  He was patient, curious and asked intelligent questions, often pushing me to see things in a different way.  And he helped create a space that would be safe for the deep emotional healing I needed. 

I have often said he saved my life.  He was a life raft, willing to step in and help however he was able.  Though I suspect, that even to this day, he will still say he didn’t do anything, he stood in the gap, holding the other end of my rope and holding that space as I struggled with letting go or saving myself. It is one of the most profound gifts I’ve ever received.  

As we continue to navigate the turbulence of 2020, which seems destined to extend to 2021, if you need space, take it.  If you can hold space, do it, and we will get through this together.  Allow yourself to feel all the feels and try to remember, it won’t always be about the turbulence.  We won’t be able to feel the good stuff if we’re still wearing the blinders we put on to keep us from feeling the bad stuff.

The Universe always has a plan… It rarely looks like we expect but it’s always in our best interest.  I couldn’t see it at the time but, they did send a woman to help.  It was me. So if the Universe sends a life raft that looks more like a rubber duck, and you have no idea how it can possibly be of help, reach out and take it anyway.  The person you rescue may just be you.

*https://www.sharidworkinsmith.com/single-post/2017/12/19/him
**https://www.sharidworkinsmith.com/single-post/2018/07/27/enter-the-vampire

Nature, Nurture, Or Does It Matter?

Dylan, Eli & Daisy SleepingIf you follow me at all, there’s a good chance you already know I have two college age boys.  Eli, the older one, graduated college (in the living room) over Mother’s Day Weekend this past May and Dylan is training with the expectation he will be returning to school and soccer, for his sophomore year this fall.

I talk about them a lot.  Anyone who knows me, knows I adore my boys and (other than the inflated grocery bills) having them at home has been the best thing about this pandemic.  And, while it’s certainly not a secret, far fewer people know I have been an egg donor several times, and have other children “out there” somewhere…

When Robert and I decided we were ready to start a family, (well, I decided and he didn’t really seem to object) we were excited and grateful to have gotten pregnant with Eli so quickly.  Silly me, I had no idea what was in store!  For the record, I hated being pregnant, hated everything about it.I  felt ill all the time, completely exhausted all the time, with monstrous mood swings and I could go from sated to ravenous in the blink of an eye!

I could likely do a whole blog post about how these are all the qualities Eli exhibited upon his arrival, and really every day since then as well…  Seriously, that child could sleep!  He was sleeping through the night and eating cereal in less than two months and I swear he came out of the womb looking for a cheeseburger!  The question around dinner time, ever since Eli hit puberty, wasn’t “would you like more?”  Rather he’d ask, “Is there more?” because the answer to the first question was always yes.  Eli’s eating habits aside, it did make me wonder how much of my “pregnancy personality” could be attributed to his personality and his presence in my body.  In the age-old question of nature versus nurture, how much of who a child is, comes from them and how much comes from us?

Even though it felt like an alien was trying to overtake me, we were so thrilled to be expecting his arrival.  And, as would turn out to be the case for pretty much everything Eli, he preferred to do things his own way and really could have cared less how long he’d been in my belly.  He was just not interested in changing locations so, my due-date came and went and we ultimately ended up with a very long, non-productive labor, leading to an emergency C-Section.  (If you missed that whole story, you can catch up with it here, in my blog post called, Meeting Michael.)

It all happened very quickly and frankly, it was kind of terrifying but, in the end, we were both alive, and that was all that mattered.  We had a beautiful baby boy and I was completely in love!
I had gotten pregnant so easily and, aside from the whole scary labor and delivery experience, all was right in our world.  Except, all around us were clusters of friends who had been trying over and over again, to get pregnant and start their families as well.  I felt so lucky, I wished there was something I could do to help.  There had to be some way to say thank you to the Universe for the gifts we had been given, and just maybe put some good karma out there for our friends as well.  I had no idea what that meant, until one day, while reading though yet another parenting magazine, I saw an ad in the back, looking for Egg Donors.  They were specifically looking for Jewish Egg Donors and I thought, “That’s it!”

Perhaps,  in helping another couple have a baby, some of our friends would reap the karmic benefits?  Maybe it sounds ridiculous and probably a bit naive but, that is truly how I thought about it.  I was alive.  My beautiful baby boy was alive and part of me needed to give something back to the Universe.  Which is what I told the psychologist when she called me in for an interview.  There was a psych evaluation, a personality test, a medical history and then a face to face interview, before they would add me to their catalog of donors.  She seemed a little surprised as she shared with me how most people did this sort of thing for the money.  Of course I knew there would be a financial benefit but, I was trying to repay a debt that money couldn’t touch.  Keep in mind also, this was well before the days when blonde, blue eyed co-eds were being paid thousands upon thousands of dollars for their eggs.  I knew my reasons and for me, the money was a perk, not the main reason.  Besides, “newbies” like me didn’t make near as much as donors who had already produced healthy babies.

It didn’t take long for me to be matched, and a seemingly nice couple picked me out just a few weeks later.  They had been abandoned by their previous donor after going through all the motions and now, feeling more protective, they wanted zero contact with me.  The night before the procedure to scoop up all the eggs I’d been producing for them, and after much cajoling by the psychologist, they finally decided to call me.  It was a short conversation and I was glad they finally wanted to “meet” me.  I told them the same story… I was honored to help and wished them well.  That was it.
Nine months later, I heard they had a beautiful set of twin girls and I never heard anything about or from them again.

Around the exact same time, messages started floating in and it seemed like more than half our group of friends, who’d been struggling to conceive, were all becoming pregnant!!  One day someone would call with the news, and then a few days later another friend would call, and over and over it went.  Something inside me wanted to shout to the Universe, “I KNEW YOU COULD DO IT!!”  While at the same time, I wanted to sit down and cry in both gratitude and utter  disbelief.  Even back then, something inside me inherently knew what marvels the Universe could create for us, if only we would bother to ask!

A few years later, just as Rob and I were starting to talk about having baby number two, another couple expressed interested in matching with me.  They were different though.  Having already welcomed a son, with the help of an egg donor and surrogate, they wanted to meet me before deciding I was the donor they wanted.  This was fine with me, except for the fact that they lived on the East Coast and I was living in LA.  Apparently this was not actually an issue for them, as the next week Eli and I found ourselves having brunch in a popular LA eatery, with Leslie* (not her real name) the nicest woman you’d ever want to meet.  Like me, they had learned many lessons during their first go around and wanted to be more involved in the process this time.

After our initial meeting, Leslie stayed in touch throughout the donation process, even flying back to LA again, in order to personally bring the eggs back to their waiting surrogate.  The weekend before the harvest procedure, Rob and I were house hunting, viewing one we expected to be empty, only to find a half-naked drunk guy, totally passed out on a small couch, the only remaining piece of furniture, save for a small television perched on a milk crate, blaring out whatever the NFL was showing that day.  Fresh marks in the carpet suggested his partner had left quite recently, leaving him (literally) with what we could see and, we were just grateful he never woke up during the time we were there.

Our real estate agent was so mortified, he took us to see another property that wasn’t scheduled to go on the market for a few more days.  Naturally, we fell in love with it at once and made an offer right then and there.  I’ll never forget talking excitedly with Leslie on the phone, my ass cheek on fire, as I pulled myself up the stairs to check out the second floor one more time.  In general, the injections I needed for egg donation were quite small and easily poked into my thigh, though I will confess, that very first one took about 30 minutes before I was able to stick the teeny tiny needle into my leg.  I’m squeamish, what can I say?  The final injection before an egg harvest however, is a Very Different Story.  It has to go into your tush muscle, rather than the hip or thigh and the needle is A Lot Bigger.  Suffice to say, checking out this house was taking my all my energy and, since I knew she was calling to see how I was doing before the procedure the following day, I didn’t want to make her worry by not answering.

Under normal circumstances, there was no way we were going to qualify for this house.  In LA, even a crappy property can create a bidding war, ending somewhere around a half-million, or even more.  Thankfully, the older couple who owned it were eager to sell and get back to retired life, somewhere in the mid-west.  Plus, they liked the idea of selling to a young family and, by the time I woke up from the harvest procedure the next afternoon, the house was ours!  Thank You Drunk Guy and Thank You Universe!!  Nine months later, twin boys were born to Leslie and her husband, who couldn’t have been more delighted.  Six months after that Dylan was born and both families were complete, along with Every Other Couple among our friends group, who had been struggling to conceive!!  My mission had been a total success and the Universe showed up for everyone on my list, including me!

We had Eli.  We had Dylan.  We had a great house and, for sixteen years, often around Thanksgiving, Leslie sent cards and letters and pictures so I could watch their boys grow up!  Each year, at the holidays, my most favorite gift was always a letter from Leslie.  My heart filled with joy each time she remembered, and chose to share her boys with me.  And while I don’t know how much her boys know about me or my family, we all know exactly who they are and many of her pictures sit in frames around my home.

Through the years, it always fascinated me how much her boys, at one time or another, looked so much like Dylan and I often wondered if they shared any traits or had things in common?  If they ever met, would they be friends or have some kind of connection?  In this age of social media, it shouldn’t really be a surprise to hear I’ve found them online and do, on occasion, check out their Facebook or Instagram, just to see what they’re up to.  You can’t imagine my surprise when, just recently I learned that one of the boys is now a student at the University of Rochester, my very own alma mater…

Eli and Dylan seem to have come into this world knowing they were meant to play soccer… Dylan loves all the vinegary things Robert loves, which Eli and I can’t stand…  They love heavy metal music…  Ok, that one may really be nurture and, the discussion of nature vs nurture has always fascinated me.  And it’s things like this that really make me wonder.  I mean honestly, out of all the schools in the nation, what are the odds he’d choose the place I’d chosen for myself?  Perhaps one day I can ask him myself.

Learning A New Language

 

Dictionary imageShalom – Hola – Aloha…  Have you ever tried to talk to someone when you don’t speak the language?

It can be agonizingly frustrating.  We often use hand gestures or speak more loudly, as if somehow this will help.
There can be silence, confusion and even the fear of sending the wrong message, all because we don’t know how to connect.
And then… (hopefully) there comes a breakthrough.  A connection, a sound or smell, perhaps even a few words…

In my life, I know I am blessed for so many reasons.  Not the least of which is, I am not at risk of being murdered if I go out for a run or get stopped by the police.  I’ve also made it to my 50s and, while I have watched many loved ones pass to the world of spirit, gratefully, there have only been a few of whom it could be said, “they left us too soon.”  My grandparents, along with many others in their generation, lived long full lives.  All four danced at my wedding and met my older son, while three of them met both of my boys; their first great grandchildren.  They, and so many others, were a wonderful influence on my life and I am grateful to be part of their legacy.

Among those who left us too soon are two beloved aunts and a dear cousin, all of whom succumbed to cancer, two friends who chose to take their own lives during times of great pain and sadness, and of course, Michael.  My very dear friend who, upon his transition, became intensely involved in my life to ensure I moved onto my current life path.  I am sure there have been others but, this recent loss, the transition of my twin to the world of spirit, has been different from any loss I have ever experienced. 

And I knew connecting with him, if I were able to do it, would also be different from the communication I’ve had with so many others on the other side.  I know he is near, his science mind trying to figure out how it all works, though at times I’d wonder if we’re both simply too close to the dots and can‘t clearly see the full picture (google Georges Seurat’s pointillism paintings and you’ll understand what I mean.)

I am desperate to communicate, to hear from him and know he is okay.  And beyond that, I have so many questions. I ask him to come through to one of the mediums at my development circle, but I know he’s not ready, and perhaps neither am I.  I struggle to heed the advice I share regularly with my own clients and try to be patient as I wait to hear from him but, the silence is almost too much for me to bear.  And then, there is Lindsay… a talented medium, psychotherapist and a dear friend, who’s been keeping an eye on me as I travel this path.  Lindsay understands the pain in my heart and knows how badly I need to hear from him.  One evening over dinner, I share with her that I do want him to come through, just not at our circle, I don’t think I can handle it in such a public place without coming apart.

The next week, after our development circle ended, she quietly told me she’d felt a brief link to him.
“Mention the music, he said, but I already knew about that.” she says.
“Tell me something I don’t know about.”
“Italian restaurant?” she says to me, looking unsure.  “It’s all he said so, I’m not really sure what it means” she admits as a small smile creeps across my face.  Bingo!

The first time he and I met face to face as adults, after more than 30 years apart, he took me to lunch at a little Italian restaurant he liked.  It was a tiny, hole-in-the-wall kind of place, and I can count on one hand the number of people who knew about that, and Lindsay wasn’t one of them.  That was it, that was all she got.  I appreciated her discretion in bringing it to me after the circle had ended because, even as I confirmed the information, tears threatened to escape my eyes.  Thanking her, I gave her a quick hug and dashed for the door.

The following week, the Spiritualist Church (where the development circle is held) was welcoming a guest medium to share messages from spirit during the Sunday service.  I had never been to the Sunday Service.  I just never felt the need.  I’ve always felt strongly connected to my Judaism and enjoy being involved in my synagogue.  I love attending Friday evening Shabbat services (even enjoying the ones currently offered on Zoom) and I find the music to be uplifting and healing so, the Sunday service was never really on my radar.  Plus, I didn’t have a big interest in explaining to my mother why I was going to church.  But this time, I strongly felt I was supposed to be there on Sunday.  I knew my twin was trying to come through.

The service was lovely and before the visiting medium began to give messages, they took a few moments and played Josh Groban’s rendition of You Lift Me Up.  It’s an absolutely gorgeous piece and I can feel myself get lost in the words, every time I hear it. 

As soon as the music started, I felt him standing behind me, his hands placed gently on my shoulders. I melted in to the sensation and said nothing.  When it was over the medium began.  He gave a lovely message to my friend Lisa, from her mother, and another message for a gentleman sitting near me.  I knew I was next.  He turned to look at me and said, “There’s a man in the spirit world, standing behind you with his hands on your shoulders, do you know that?”   I nodded, still feeling the weight of his hands.

It was not a long message but he did share a few pieces of information I felt were significant and, as I noticed the pressure on my shoulders gently slipping away, the medium shifted to the energy or another spirit and my Nana stepped in.  I knew she had come to open the door for him, and I was filled with gratitude and love for them both.

The next month, during a multi-day workshop for more advanced mediums, he came through again to two of the other students, though the information was still a bit general.  Until finally, quite recently, during a seminar working with other skilled mediums from all over the world, he stepped in on four separate occasions, sharing detailed information about his life, our connection, and several key memories!  To me, the evidence shared to identify him as the communicator, was irrefutable and there was not a doubt in my mind, the medium reading for me, was linked to him.  That is (and should) always be the goal for a good medium.

Twins flames are a mirror to each other, reflecting and teaching so both can move forward along their path.  During his time here on Earth, I felt a strong call to share with my twin, all that I was learning, both to pass on the information and also as a means of comprehending and integrating it better for myself.  Now that he is on the other side, I see it differently and can understand how much he was teaching me as well.   

Most importantly for me, he has been able to answer questions which have plagued me for years and helped me to understand our connection in a new way.  I still want more.  I can’t help it.  Like anyone who has lost a person of significance, I’d rather have him here, even though our relationship through spirit is much more harmonious than has been in a very long time. 

He’s worked hard to learn this new way of communication and it has been fascinating to observe his progress during the now six months he has been gone.  I am endlessly grateful for his efforts and I am curious to see what he will do next.  For the moment, he shows me every day he is indeed still with me, and reminds me he always will be.  It is a gift I cannot fully explain.  It is a gift that has finally allowed my heart to begin to heal.

Who Am I?

 

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If you’ve been following me at all, you likely know that the man who is my twin flame, recently passed to spirit.
It was unexpected, very fast and left me, and his family, completely devastated.

This loss permeated every part of my being, as if grieving the loss of a life partner, yet both he and I knew that was not our path this time around.  It was almost comical, as much as there was a deep and enduring love between us, we both agreed that had we actually married, it most likely would have ended in divorce.  Better that we had married our be’shert (our meant to be) for this life time.

So, if the twin of your soul isn’t the one you’re meant to spend your life with, who is?
That’s where soulmates come in, for me anyway .  While we have only one twin, there can be many soulmates.

Both relationships can have a feeling of deep knowing or connection, as if you’ve known each other all your lives but, a twin relationship can send those levels through the roof.  Just like biological twins, twin flames can have a kind of telepathy, feeling each other’s feelings and calling to each other on a soul level, circling their lives until they are able to connect through what often seems like a series of coincidences.  My twin and I met in junior high and were friends through high school, though we did not understand our connection at that time.  Years later I learned the crush I’d had was mutual but, a four-year age difference can be a big deal in those years, so nothing ever developed. 

Reconnecting as adults, it was fascinating to see how our lives had followed similar geography, regarding where we lived or worked.  While I was living in LA, he was living in Pasadena.  And, when I moved to Orlando, he had just moved to New Jersey for a job that took him to Orlando on a monthly basis, literally two miles from my home.  We came to find there were many synchronous events, often within a year of each other, one of us seeming to follow the other, as our souls tried again and again to align us.  Yet we never once knew the other was there.  Our humans were not ready.

Twin connections, like soulmates, help us learn and grow, and while we have only one twin, it’s not uncommon to have more than one soulmate during a lifetime.  While both relationships can have that feeling of intense closeness twins generally take it to a whole other level, including seeing what the other is seeing (remote viewing) or feeling what the other is feeling.  Human (identical) twins occur when the egg in their mother’s womb, splits into two.  And so it is with the soul when one chooses to incarnate on Earth.  The soul can split in half and the twins can incarnate together or one may choose to stay behind as a guardian or guide.  In either case, our twin is there to help us move forward on our path.  In human form, this relationship is often too intense to endure unless both twins are “woke” and aware of the situation.  Twins can work it out to be together, but it’s not uncommon for them to be unsuccessful in a long-term relationship.

So it was for us as well.  He was not yet awake, and though he loved the depth of our connection, he grappled with fear as his science-based brain struggled to explain it.  There were times when it was so easy, the perfect blending of two parts to the same whole.  While at other times, even when we were not communicating, the connection could be extremely challenging.  Oftentimes, one of us would open a door to the other and we’d have the most wonderful discussions and energetic connection and then, all too quickly it could be overwhelming and one of us would back away,  “Back away” being more of a euphemism for “blow up in some kind of large disagreement, leading to months of total silence, pain and frustration on both sides…” such is the nature of twins in human form.

And now he’s gone, there will be no more deep discussions and while I’m sure there will be a time for us to communicate again in some way, I’m no longer a person who has their Twin Flame with them on the earth plane.
So, now what?

I love Broadway musicals.  I know this seems like an odd segue but, bare with me for a minute.  

Last year, my husband and I went to see the show Come From Away.  It is an amazing production, and if you get the opportunity to see it, you should definitely go.  It’s the story of what happened when more than 30 planes  landed in the tiny town of Gander, Nova Scotia, stranding more than six thousand people in the immediate aftermath of 9/11.  It is a deeply poignant and humorous look at who we are, and during one of the musical numbers, the actress sang, “Who am I, if I am not who I was yesterday?”

It hit me in the heart like a baseball bat and I struggled for a moment, just to catch my breath.  The show continued as I fumbled in my bag for the small journal that is always there, and in the dark of the theater, I scribbled those words on to the first blank page I found.

Who am I if I’m not who I was yesterday…?  Yesterday, he was alive, my twin flame was here on the earth plane and hope still existed there would be another opportunity for us to meet, face to face.  In the whole of our adult lives, after finally connecting and understanding who we were, after thirty years apart, to finally be able to meet face to face, and have the sum total of that time to be a mere six hours, seems like an unbelievable gyp.

At the same time, I am unbelievably grateful it happened at all.  My heart still aches for this loss though at times I’m grateful the pain and frustration of our “real-life” relationship is over.  I know he is with me and I know we will build a new connection.  And as I continue to work through the process of grief, I ask myself that same question again and again – who am I now, if I’m not who I was yesterday…?

I guess I’m still working on the answer.

You Went Far…

Twin Flames share a soulOn Friday the 13th, I sat in the sanctuary of our synagogue as Shabbat services began.  I love attending services as the music is very healing and uplifting to me.  I often receive channeled information from Spirit during the service so, I routinely keep a small journal on my lap rather than a siddur (prayer book).  I listen more closely to the readings because I am not looking at their words on a page, and I sing along to the music while my hand follows its own path across the page.  I’m no stranger to automatic writing and am often profoundly moved by the words waiting for me at the end, which I have no memory of writing.  Some days I write more than others but, on this night, I wrote only a single word; live.

My twin was still in the hospital and updates were slow in coming.  I gently pressed his siblings for information and offered prayers of love and support.  I did not want to intrude on his family, but I was desperate for updates, and every day was a lesson in patience and resisting the unending urge to go there.  My desperation would only cause upset and lead to more questions.  I am not family, and they were already dealing with so much during this dreadful waiting game.  I told myself that no news was good news, but I didn’t really believe it. And when we returned to the car after the evening service was over, I turned on my phone to the news that he’d passed, at almost the exact same moment I’d written the word; live…

I don’t remember the drive home, or my husband talking to me.  A singular thought screamed in my head; just keep breathing.

In the days since our time at school, we’d literally met face to face, twice.  When a work trip took me to his town, we spent several hours over two afternoons, catching up and getting to know each other again.  The awkwardness that often accompanies finally spending time with your teenage crush, was intensely present in those first moments of meeting each other face to face, after thirty years apart.  There were a million questions, on both sides.  And, there was pain…

So much had transpired between us; so much love, and so much pain.  Such is the nature of the Twin Flame relationship.

In all, we spent just 6 or 7 hours together discussing the past, our connection, past lives, and why we were, as he would say, binary.  A twin relationship is all or nothing, in or out, binary.

And then, it was over.  He took me back to my hotel and we both went back to our lives.  Never in my wildest dreams did I think that would be all the face time we would ever have. And the reality of his death sent me reeling.

I cried for days.  Sobbing, big ugly cries into my pillow night after night, two weeks before Christmas and two and a half weeks before our birthday.  It’s not unusual for Twins to share a birthday or for them to occur on adjacent days as ours do.

And then I was on a plane, bound for a funeral I knew I had to attend, if only to see him one more time.
I wanted to meet his family, to tell his children, from a woman they’d never see again and likely wouldn’t remember, how special he was and how much he loved them.  The whole agonizing trip was less than 24 hours and I have no idea how I would have kept myself together through any of it, had my friend Kirsten not been by my side.

Until recently, I was a person who knew I had a Twin Flame here on the earth plane.
I knew who he was, and why. And he knew it too. I didn’t think we were done learning from, or helping each other evolve except… he died.

He died, and I’m not ok. There, I said it. I am not ok. And even for all that I know that I know, I still feel lost and alone, to go the rest of the journey of this lifetime without him here.  Though, as a medium, I’m also aware that perhaps he’s more able to help me from the side of spirit. So now I find myself again, in the always agonizing position of having to be patient.

He’s been gone over a month and I’ve not been able to fully connect with him, yet. There have been moments, feelings and confirmation from others who are sensitive to these kinds of energies. But I want more, I want proof he is ok and still here!  And yet I know I’m not ready. I go to my mediumship development circle and pray both for him to come through to one of the other skilled mediums there, while at the same time, praying for him not to come through.

I tell my own clients to wait at least 30 days before coming to see me, to give their grief time to breathe and to give their loved one time to fully transition as well. Except now, that shoe is on the other foot, and the wait is killing me.

 

 

For My Dad – The Stories of Albert

As I write this, the man I’ve identified as Twin, is lying in a hospital fighting for his life.  So, I’m feeling the need to focus on something a bit lighter just now…

kittensWhen I was getting out of college, my dear friend Jessica (who became my boys’ godmother) wanted to get me a kitten for graduation.  But, since we didn’t know where I was heading after college, she did the next best thing.  She got me all the things I would need so, when I was settled somewhere, I would be ready to get one!  When I landed in Boston for a while, my then-boyfriend took me to go looking for a kitten.  I knew I wanted one named Winston (I’m not really sure why) and after a few tries, we found this gorgeous, fluffy gray and white ball of fur.  I was instantly in love!  But he was not a Winston, he was an Albert.  He did have a brother though, and the folks at the rescue were hoping to keep the two of them together.  His brother was a beautiful grey and white tabby cat, and he was definitely a Winston!  I was in heaven!!  I had not one, but two adorable kittens as I went off to start my new life, working in regional theater!

These are the stories of Albert and Winston, but mostly Albert.  My father loves these stories, and I promised him that someday, I would write them down and share them so, here we are.

I loved those kittens.  They had so much character and kept me company and entertained me for many years.  As a kitten, Winston loved to be held and would regularly climb up the leg of my pants to my waist, to get me to pick him up!  Albert dutifully followed suit and thankfully, they were small.  Living in Maine, I wore a lot of jeans, so they never did too much damage.  Winston also tended to be concerned with my safety and would park himself outside the shower, sitting stock straight with a horrified look on his face.  Always relieved when I emerged unharmed, he’d literally fall over while continuing his vigil to ensure I survived my ordeal in the water.  Very quickly, it became clear to me that Winston was the brains of this furry little operation and Albert, well…  Albert was really pretty…

My apartment in Portland was often referred to as a shotgun apartment, meaning you could shoot a gun through the front door and the bullet would sail right through and come out the back door.  I loved that apartment, even though everything sloped a little downhill toward the kitchen.  My landlord was a very sweet guy with half a dozen kids of his own, so he tended to keep half an eye on me as if I was one of them.  He could often be bribed with a cup of coffee or a couple of cookies and, since the theater where I worked was only three blocks away, he’d usually blow the snow off my car since he knew I wouldn’t because I generally refused to drive in winter if I could help it.

My days were long, and I couldn’t have been happier.  There were dance classes or rehearsal in the morning, then work at the theater and usually a show at night.  When I was at home, I would play with the kittens as much as I could.  They loved bottle caps, like the ones off 2-liter bottles, and I’d sit by my front door and fling them towards the back door.  Winston, being lazier, was usually good for one, maybe two runs, and sometimes he’d even bring the caps back.  Albert, however, would chase the caps over and over.  Being a long-haired cat, Albert had very fuzzy paws with tufts of fur on sticking out from between his pads and, my apartment had wood floors.  So, every time he would start to run after a bottle cap, it would literally take 3 to 4 seconds of his little legs doing their best Road Runner impression, before he’d get enough traction to start moving forward!  While at the other end of the apartment, it never occurred to him that this same issue would make it difficult for him to stop.  Time after time, he’d go sliding right into the back door.  I think I lived in that apartment for about three months before Albert learned how to spin-out so he wouldn’t keep crashing himself into the back door over and over again!

MY favorite Albert game though, was Super Cat!  I never really knew if he loved it or hated it but, when I’d put my hands on his belly and hold him up in the air, he’d put his paws out in front of him like he was flying.  After a minute or so, he’d cover his eyes and then he’d put his paws back out and was flying again.  I always meant to get him a little red cape, but I just never got around to it.

My building was originally three floors with an apartment on each floor and, somewhere along the way, the whole thing was divided in half to create two apartments on each floor.  Although they each had their own thermostat, the furnace was still only capable of providing so much heat.  Since I worked such long days, my apartment was usually cold when I got home and finding snow on the floor by the windows was not unusual at all.  The good part of this was snugly kittens!  Most days I’d wake up with Winston asleep on my pillow and Albert sleeping under the covers, down by my feet!  How he could breathe down there is beyond me but, it was truly his favorite spot and more than once I wondered if sleeping down there was depriving his brain of oxygen.  Yet on cold nights, there he was, waiting for me to get into bed and lift the covers so he could run right in.  He was such a beautiful cat but, smart he was not.

The top of my refrigerator was another favorite spot for Albert.  It was an easy jump from the stove to get there and thankfully, I didn’t have much time to cook so it was rarely on.  Albert liked to sit with his paws hanging off the front of things; tables, counters, my bed, and the top of the refrigerator.  I didn’t think that much of it until one morning, after grabbing some coffee out of the freezer, I turned around to see Albert frantically trying to remove the tufts of fur under his paws from the seal of the freezer door!  I had seen him lying there, with his paws hanging over the frond of the freezer but I really, REALLY thought he’d move them when he saw the freezer door about to shut on them… Guess not.

Albert also had an unusual affinity for water and I’d routinely come home to find him asleep in the bathroom sink while the faucet dripped on him, creating a puddle in a corner of the sink.  He would even climb into the bathtub with me.  He would do it so often, I started keeping cat toys in the tub because he liked to play with them, usually trying to grab them with his mouth before remembering he couldn’t breathe under water!  He’d come up spluttering and sneezing but undeterred and would continue to play with the toys until the water had long been drained from the tub.

All these things quickly taught me that I’d need to keep a closer eye on Albert than Winston.  One Spring afternoon, I was enjoying watching both kittens, transfixed by the arrival of birds in the trees, one sitting on the sill of each window in my living room/bedroom.  After a bit, I went into the kitchen to do the dishes and naturally, Albert came along a few minutes later.  I had been burning scented candle in the small space between the sink and the kitchen window so, when Albert jumped up to check out the view of the birds from this new vantage point, I figured I better move the candle before he set himself on fire.

You know how sometimes things seem to happen in slow motion?  I barely had time to register the thought when Albert’s tail, forgotten as he focused on the birds, began to droop, right into the flame and his super fluffy tail went right up in flames!  I grabbed the nearest dish towel and started to swat his tail to put out the fire and, I kid you not, he started to chase the damn towel so I couldn’t get it on to his ass!  I finally grabbed him, plopped him into the sink and hit him with the sprayer.  I swear to you, he never had any idea what the hell had happened!  But, for the safety of everyone, I decided that would be the end of my relationship with scented candles for the foreseeable future.

Everything I’ve shared here is true, not even the names have been changed to protect the innocent.  Winston lived a great life and became a big fat cat, passing in his sleep after almost 12 wonderful years with us.  Sadly, Albert developed kidney problems and left us shortly after Eli was born.  He will always be my Super Cat!!

Daddy, here are The Albert Stories, I hope you like them.