Freeing the voices in my head

Posts tagged ‘Memories’

Grief Isn’t A Journey…

Grief is a stagnant void where nothing feels right and no one can help pull you out of it.  Grief isn’t a series of “five stages” or “steps” back to normal life.  Normal life included my daughter, alive and available, able to be visited or talked to, helped and hugged.  Normal is no longer possible.  Time doesn’t heal shit; the wound is open and stays that way.

 

So, wow, okay…couple of things I’ve noticed these past few weeks; not that I’ve noticed much of anything, but anyway…

When someone you know loses a loved one, you want to help, you want to send comfort, support and love.  But, since humans fear Death so  much, you have no idea what to say or do for that person, so you do what comforts and supports YOU.  That’s fine, just realize that the mourner won’t react in a manner you wanted.  Most of the time, I don’t react at all; I’m still rather numb regarding the outside world and society.  Since we are (most of us) raised to be polite in public, you won’t hear the truth, so let me help you out a bit.  Please remember, this is my experience, maybe it’s different for others.  Also, I AM grateful for all the support and love; I’m just not good at reacting to it.

 

Food: Sure, go ahead and cook something, bring it on over – in a disposable dish, please!  Cooking is comforting for you and I’m grateful I won’t have to think about feeding my family (or the dogs) for a day or two.  But don’t expect me to eat; my body is rejecting anything that pertains to Life right now.   And don’t expect your dish back; it will rot in the fridge, or sit in a congealed mess on the counter or get broken because I have no idea who it belongs to or how to take care of it for you (and I’m too clumsy right now to handle anything breakable – I’m surprised the laptop’s still working!).

Do come over.  Don’t expect me to come to you or call you.  Driving is dangerous, especially when alone in the car – the tears are always right there and it’s too easy to let them flow.  All I want to do is curl into a fetal position under the blankets and scream until I die, too.  Leave me in my bed after patting my shaking shoulder and go clean my house, thanks, but don’t expect me to talk or interact much with you while you’re visiting.

Phrases that help you, but aren’t really helpful for me:  “God needed an angel.”   Fuck that!  God has enough angels.  I hate God right now and am really angry at Him/Her/It.  Do not talk religion or God-talk to me.  “We’re praying.”  Pray for my baby to be back, alive and well, pray to turn back Time; otherwise, go pray somewhere else.

“You have your memories.”  Yeah, and every memory, good or bad, hurts like acid on a raw wound right now, thanks anyway.  Pay for a lobotomy for me so I have nothing in my brain that can hurt me.  Punch me in the head so I get amnesia and have no memories at all and no more pain.  Best of all: kill me so I can go beat the shit outta God and Death for stealing my baby from me.

“What can we do?”  and “How can we help?”  Whoa, don’t ask me to make any decisions!  I’m having a good day if I managed to get out of bed long enough to drink some water and pee.  Seriously, do not ask me to decide shit or function in an acceptable manner.  I can’t.  My first trip out of the house was spent crying in the car, the bank, the grocery store, trying to read my list of errands so I could at least get one chore done.   Didn’t work.  I went home and there I stayed for another week or two or five.  So, take my list, pay my bills, and do my chores, run my life for a month or two, thanks.

Helpful words:  “We’re so sorry for your loss.”  Perfect, leave it at that and hug me.  Be ready to hold me up because my knees are gonna buckle.  Sorry about your soaking wet shoulder, but, yep, I needed to just cry on you, just needed to be hugged, because it let me feel something other than the agony inside me.

There.  Don’t feel guilty if you smiled a little or chuckled; I’m glad you did.  This rant was a release for me and I can still be humorous even when I’m so sad, angry or in pain.  Morbid humor, I guess, or maybe I’m re-reading this wrong and seeing humor where there isn’t any.  I don’t know anymore, my perceptions are way off – I watch violent TV shows and cheer when people die, but a cartoon about a lost dog has me sobbing….

Anyway, thanks for “listening,” don’t know when I’ll be back, but this rant helped a little.  Hug each other!  Now, dammit!

Vignettes

I love words and vignette is a favorite of mine.  “A short, graceful literary sketch.”  “A brief, appealing scene, as in a movie.”  I don’t know how graceful or appealing my blogs are; they usually aren’t short or brief, that’s for sure!  To me, a vignette is a glimpse or an anecdote of  mine or someone’s Life, a quick story told on the fly, usually at the dinner table, almost always resulting in laughter.

I’m outnumbered here, gender-wise, and men don’t tell stories the way women do.  A woman will go into great detail, she’ll add sub-plots and side-way tangents; she will regal you with rich observations that would fill a book.  A man will say three to five sentences and be done.

But, oh, my men have the most interesting stories, um, tidbit tales!  My brother hasn’t been able to write down his Woodstock adventures (he’s in a great deal of pain, barely managed by his pain meds).  We’re hoping he can get that Dragon program and just speak into his computer and have it type it for him!   The only parts of the Woodstock story I remember are that he smoked that funny stuff, camped out, played in the mud, and got the station wagon stuck in the mud.  Someday, I’ll get him to tell me the whole story again.

When they had the Woodstock reunion in the 90s, I was the manager of a Pizza Hut, just off the New York State Thruway.  We were mobbed and so not ready for it.  We had people five deep at the counter, starving, filthy campers, eagerly pressing forward, watching the ovens, hoping I was cutting their pizza to be boxed.  Amidst the chaos was one … woman.  Yes, I’m being polite.  She insisted that no meat, meat substance or meat oil touch her pizza.

We tried.  My main cook made her pizza on a clean board and used fresh gloves to place the garlic sauce (no tomato marinara sauce for her, no sirree, it might have meat products in it!  Gack!) and cheese on the dough.  She was right up front, and could see everything.  Before he placed her pizza in the oven, she saw the other cook grabbing cheese from the bin…”Wait!  That’s the cheese you ALL use?  It’s tainted with meat substance!”  Oh, god…

We apologized and Ted trotted to the walk-in, pulled out a new bag of cheese, and used it for her new pizza.  Good, pizza now in oven.  I was lifting pizzas out as fast as I could to keep the ovens from backing up and burning them.  The slightest pause meant disaster.  I grabbed her pizza, slid it out of the pan onto the cutting board… “Wait!  That board just had a sausage pizza on it!”  Oh, god (and the twenty people behind her groaned, too)…

I apologized and Ted made her another new pizza.  I swiftly dealt with a few more pizzas, making sure a clean cutting board was at hand for the vegan lady.  Her pizza rolled to the front, I expertly slipped it onto the clean board and sliced down… “Wait!  That’s MY pizza and you just used THAT slicer on a pepperoni pizza!”   Oh, god (and the thirty people behind her didn’t just groan.  They bitched, they told her to give up, they looked at her with murder in their eyes…but, wonder of wonders, they did NOT blame me and my crew!)…

We apologized, again, and started over.  Now, we had a backed up oven, pizzas burning, rhythm disrupted.  Hurry to box her pizza and cash her out, whirl back around and zip, zip, slice and box three more pizzas.  I turned to cash those people out and noticed the crowd was watching the front door.  When it shut on vegan lady’s exiting behind, the mob cheered, applauded, and thanked me and my crew for our patience!

We had a bunch of extra mistake pizzas and breadsticks.  I had my waitresses pass out slices to everyone and comped all sodas as my thank you to the crowd.  Ah, the Woodstock legacy of “Peace and Brotherly Love” blossomed again for the rest of the night!

Heh, see what I mean?  I’m sure my brother’s story is longer than the tiny bit I recall, but it took a whole page for me to tell my Woodstock reunion story!  🙂

Some of the funniest, oddest, best stories I’ve heard from my menfolk aren’t stories at all.  They are mere vignettes, a few sentences at most.  I have to pull more details out like a cat giving birth to an elephant…yeah, improbable at best, impossible most of the time!

For example:  Hubby’s ship went through a corner of the Bermuda Triangle.  I was fascinated and wanted to hear if anything weird happened.  His response?  “Well, it got foggy and the radio wouldn’t work for a few minutes, but everything cleared up on the other side.”

That’s IT?!  Really?!  Can you elaborate at all?  Nope, that really was it, delivered in a bored nothing-unusual-today tone of voice.  GACKKK!!!

Or this one, from my oldest son:  Walks in the house all sweaty, without his car (a 1967 Mustang, runs good, maybe, sorta, kinda…)…  I asked, “Where’s your car?”  Brian said, “Oh, the drive shaft for the tranny fell out.  I had to push it over to Midas.  I got a ride home with Matt.”  And heads for the shower.  “Wait!  What?” I frantically call out, instantly on the alert, knowing that the Midas shop he uses is at one of the busiest intersections in our part of Tucson, AZ.

He paused, returned to the kitchen and got a soda.  “I’m really hot, tired, and sweaty, Mom.”

“Please?”

So, here’s the REST of the story…  He was at the intersection of Ina and Thornydale, in the far left lane, got to the light and started through.  In the MIDDLE of the intersection, in the middle of his turn, in the middle of rush hour traffic, the Mustang drops her tranny (transmission), and comes to a dead stop.  With cars whizzing by in all directions, my son got out and single-handedly pushed that ton or so of car across a gazillion lanes of traffic, up a slight hill and into the parking lot of Midas.  He received assistance only at the end, when a mechanic saw him and came over.

Think on it:  a 1967 Mustang, weighs a lot, probably almost a thousand pounds because it’s made of METAL not fiberglass, no power anything — brakes or STEERING.  One guy pushing AND steering it…oh, good lord, my mind seized up.  Eh, Brian assured me, once he got her moving, it wasn’t so hard…and off he goes to the shower.  GACKK!!!

Then there’s the tale of the pallet of ammo that didn’t exist and the one bullet, “What bullet?”…but that’s a real tale to tell and not a vignette, so…

Later, my lovies!  heh heh… 😀

 

The Buzz-Buzz Monster

“Here it comes again!”  “Outta my way!”  Shrieking, jumping, laughing… My little sister and I clambered up to the top of the couch.  From there, we plotted out separate routes across the living room.  Pixie claimed the easy road; down to the arm of the couch, across the side table to the back of the big armchair and then jump onto the dining room table.  I was more daring.  If I timed it right, I could jump down to the middle of the living room floor, run to the stairs and perch on the table sitting on the stairway landing.  Risky, but the monster might go after Pix and give me time to escape.

“Buzz, buzz!”

“Aarrgghhh!”  The monster had a long reach; if we slipped, he’d get us!  Pix took her chance and I jumped.  Strong arms grabbed me, “Buzz, buzz!” And the tickling commenced.  I rolled in Daddy’s arms, laughing and kicking.  Pix jumped on his back, trying to help me, but Daddies aren’t ticklish, especially when they are Buzz Buzz Monsters.

Her little legs pummeled his sides.  “Horsie! Horsie!  Gi-pa!”  And the game changed.  With a rear and a whinny, the Gi-pa took off across the living room, Pixie shrieking with joy, her hands fisted in his thick black hair.  I sat up, trying to catch my breath and waited for my turn.

Every family, I hope, has games.  Silly fun games.  I’m pretty sure Jim Carrey (in “Liar, Liar”, I think was the movie’s name) does not have the exclusive rights to “The Claw!”  Hey, my daddy was “The Claw” before the actor was born!  Daddy was the big sneaky shark before anyone ever heard of “Jaws!”  He would swim underwater to us and one hand would rise up.  He would corner us in the shallow end of the pool, hands crooked, reaching for us, and ominously announce, “It’s The Claw!  The Claw!” in a twisted accent.  If caught, more tickling…  I learned how to swim just to escape into the deep end.

That was a rule.  “The Claw” couldn’t get you if you were on dry land or in the deep end of the pool.  Same with the Buzz Buzz Monster – it couldn’t climb on the furniture to get us, but if we touched the floor, we were fair game.  We didn’t play these games with Mom.  I don’t remember a single tickle session with my mom.  She did come outside and push me nice and high on my swing, though.

Maybe they were Daddy games because he was home.  We were “latch-key” kids long before the phrase was coined.  We’d walk home from school or the bus stop, enter the unlocked house, and do whatever.  Our older brother and older sister were supposed to be our baby-sitters, but, honestly?  Between the time we left school until my Dad got home from work, we were out in the neighborhood playing.

Dad had the typical 8 to 5 job; Mom, as a Registered Nurse, tried to work only the 7am to 3pm shift so she could be home with us in the afternoon, but she sometimes worked doubles or she’d be sleeping because she had to work 3pm to 11pm or 11pm to 7am.  If she was home, sleeping or not, we’d grab our bikes and take off.  We didn’t want to bother her – that woke up a whole different kind of monster.

But once she left for work and Daddy was in charge, ah, the games commenced.  Did she know we climbed all over the furniture?  Did she find out Daddy let us sit in his big chair with him to watch “The Twilight Zone” and “The Outer Limits” late at night?  Did she ever come outside and catch fireflies with us?  She did love to swim and I remember playing “The Claw” with her in the pool.  Mom made a good “Claw.”  She had long slender fingers and could cackle like a witch.

I have my dad’s hands – small with short chubby fingers.  But my fingers have Mom’s agility.  I played a variation of “The Claw” with my kids when they were little.  “The Spider” would creep across the table toward their highchair, creeping, “legs” extending up and out, wriggling forward…ooo, the suspense, the wide-eyed happy fear as “The Spider” advanced.  And then…Pounce!  Tickle, tickle!  If my baby swatted at it, “The Spider” would dash away.  If my child landed a hit, my hand would flop over, palm up, the “legs” curled in defeat.  Ah, but maybe the monster was just playing dead.  Maybe, if you poke it with your baby spoon (never your soft meaty little finger, oh no!), it will move and jump at you again!  Cats love “The Spider” game, too!

My husband makes an awesome “Claw.”  He has big strong hands with long slender fingers.  Back when we were first “going steady” in high school, I taught him how to swim properly.  Oh, he knew the basics from swimming in the river or streams, but he had few opportunities to swim in a real pool.  I took him to our housing development’s pool or up to Saratoga Springs Park – for a dollar, you could spend all day at the two big pools there, swimming and diving.  I taught that boy the crawl, the backstroke, the side stroke, taught him proper form for a simple racing dive, beat him in lap races the length of the pool…then he went to SUNY Maritime College.  My aspiring sailor came home, challenged me to a race, and was halfway across the pool before I’d hit the water!  College had taught him better than I and I stood in the shallow end, watching a man shoot through the water with clean strokes from powerful arms and efficient kicks from those nicely muscled legs.  Then, he disappeared in the deep end…moments later, something grabbed my legs.  “The Claw” broke the surface and, well, that game didn’t end in a tickle session!  Maritime instructors taught him how to hold his breath for a long time, too.  I hope I’m the one who taught him how to kiss like that!  😀

I also introduced my love to “Scrabble,” gin rummy and poker.  Just a few games later, he was winning every time.  Hard to win against a guy with genius IQ once he learns something!  I took him horseback riding.  I had years of training and experience; he settled in the saddle, picked up the reins, tucked his feet in the stirrups – heels down, toes out – and, yeah, a natural, no more lessons required.  He had the “seat” and the “soft” hands, and horses responded beautifully for him.

Men and games.  Kids and games.  Family games are necessary, made up games are the best.  Imperfect and dysfunctional as my birth family was, we had some fun times.  I worry that I’m the only one who remembers, that I’m the Keeper of the Good Memories.  They’re gone now, those two beautiful, talented walking wrecks of people, but, sometimes, I miss them.  My brother battles intense pain and struggles with a mind fogged by powerful pain-killer drugs.  My older sister is lost to us, buried in mental illness.  My little sister, Pixie to my Trixie (Daddy’s nicknames for us), is raising her family, working, living through the grief of having her oldest son die at the age of twenty.  So I frantically type, attempting to organize the memories and get the family stories out of my own failing brain.

Don’t be my mom; go catch some fireflies with your kids or point out the stars in the sky.  Better yet, let your children climb on the furniture while you, the Buzz Buzz Monster, crawl on the floor below.  Make the good memories now and they’ll help you fight off the Dark.

The Toilet Paper Toss

At some point today, I bounced out of my funk, determined to be more cheerful.  I was sitting in the bathroom and realized someone-who-shall-not-be-named had used up the last of the toilet paper and left the empty roll sitting in the holder.  Unfortunately, I didn’t go shopping today, even though I knew that was the last roll of toilet paper.  I’d been hoping it would last until tomorrow.  Oops…

Swiveling into a contortion to reach the tissue box on the back of the toilet, I knocked some things onto the floor.  The tissues landed in the bathtub, just…out…of…reach.  Well, damn…

Our one cat, Trixie, is fascinated by the bathroom and will play in there.  She grabs hair scrunchies and jumps in the tub, batting them around.  Toss something in the toilet and she jumps on the rim to watch it magically swirl away when flushed.  I decided to use her to help me.  I grabbed the empty toilet paper roll and got her to play with it in the tub, trying to swat it out of my hand.  Closer, a bit closer, and, ah-ha!  She found the tissue box!  Startled, she jumped away from it, knocking it just close enough for me to grab.  Ah, I love it when a plan comes together!  Okay, no, I didn’t completely plan it, just kinda, sorta hoped…

The playtime in the bathroom awoke a pleasant memory…

My little sister and I used to play a game when we were stuck in a restaurant with the parents.  We’d eat as fast as we could, desperately trying to time our escape.  When the third or fourth drink was swallowed, the glasses slammed down, the hissing insults curdling the waitress’ ears, we’d say, “Excuse me,” and dash off to the ladies room.

We didn’t need to “go.”  We just wanted to be away from the embarrassing drunken scene in the restaurant.  Being kids who needed to stay in that rest room for awhile, we looked for a way to pass the time.  Back then, some restaurants kept their extra toilet paper rolls in plain sight – on the counter, the backs of the toilets, or in a cabinet under the sink.  This was back when rest rooms used normal household toilet paper rolls.

I don’t know which of us came up with the idea…  We’d each go in a stall, next to each other, with the extra toilet paper rolls evenly divvied up between us.  Then, we’d toss the rolls over the stall wall, attempting to land one in the other sister’s toilet bowl.

There were a couple of Rules to the game of Toilet Paper Toss:  You had to stand on the other side of the toilet bowl (we were only 9 and 10, short – thanks a lot, Mom and Dad – so we needed the room to throw the roll high over the wall, anyway.).  You could not block the toilet bowl and you could not stand on it to block it (Eewwacchhh!).  There were two ways to Score:  One point if you heard a “Woof!” or “Ow!”  That meant the other sister had been hit by your toilet paper roll.  Five points for actually getting a roll to land in the toilet bowl.  And the one with the most rolls in there was the winner.  You lost a point if your roll came apart and opened and unrolled during your toss, making more of a mess we’d have to clean up.

Yep, we did try to clean up.  We’d use paper towels to fish the rolls out, tuck them back in the cabinet, way back in the cabinet, wash our hands with lots of soap, and saunter on out of there, usually before Female Drunken Parent came hunting for us.  Male Drunken Parent would already be in the car, threatening to drive off without us.  We could ignore them by then, giggling softly to each other, buoyed by another fab round of Toilet Paper Toss.

Hey, you mix the good times with the bad.  Our game came to an end about a year later.  Clifton Knolls Country Club.  So many disastrous, drunken dinner fights there, don’t know why the staff didn’t throw our family out.  We only lived about a half mile away; we kids used to ride our bikes around the golf course at night and swim in the water hazards, then peddle madly home before someone saw us.  Little sis and I were playing TPT in the ladies room when, horror, an actual lady walked in!

It had been a messy round.  We’d both had rolls unravel over the stall walls, laughing too hard to hear the main door unlock and open (Club members had rest room keys.  We thought we were safely locked in, forgetting there were other people in the clubhouse.).  The lady shrieked and ordered us to clean up, where were our parents, what the hell…blah, blah, blah….

From that moment on, our older sister had the chore of escorting us – separately – to the rest room whenever we went anywhere.

A few years ago, my little sister and I visited Tucson, AZ,  meeting up together and sharing a hotel room, going to the casino, having a ball…Imagine my delighted laughter when one night, in the ladies room together, in separate stalls next to each other, a toilet paper roll came flying over the wall…Oh, yeah, baby, it is sooo ON!  😀

Under The Bridge

When I wander into Memory Town, I usually get stuck at the bridge.   I used to have a bit of a phobia about bridges – I hated driving across them.  My too vivid imagination could see me steering the car through those inadequate guardrails to plunge down into the water below.  There are a number of phrases about bridges.

“Don’t burn your bridges.”  Huh, does that mean I can go back over the bridge if I don’t like what I find on the other side?  Okay, I know it means watch what you say (or do) because you can’t take it back and the other person might shut you out of their life.

“We’ll cross that bridge when we get to it.”  Put off the bad until we’re ready for it or can’t avoid it any longer?  I’d like to cross it now and get the agony over with, thanks.

“It’s water under the bridge.”  Meaning let the Past go, move on, etc.  Ah, but this one, this is the one that gets me stuck.  I climb down and have to look under the bridge.

In real and memory terms, the water under a bridge is always dark, murky, full of debris and dangerous currents.  Ugly things live under there, lurking, waiting, ready to snatch at the unwary observer.  Stuff that should be dead and gone get caught in whirlpools swirling around the pylons of the bridge.    Garbage that sank to the bottom reaches twisted limbs up to grab a swimmer’s ankles and pull the victim down into the mud.  An undertow can pull you to the center and suck you down, trapped in the dark shadows beneath the bridge.  You can drown under the bridge, fighting to scramble back to the bright and clear waters on each side where you can see everyone else enjoying the sun sparkling on the river.

I’d like to join them, I try to stay with them, but the dark mess under the bridge still needs clearing out.  I keep hoping if I push the crap around, the murk will flow away and I’ll be free.  It’s a big job and no one out there in the sunshine wants to help me.  They don’t want to hear about what’s hidden under the bridge; they believe I should just leave it alone and walk away.  A few friends have tried to help, but I don’t want them trapped under there with me, so I gently push them away.  Somehow, I think my beloved will be strong enough to help without getting caught, but he won’t go anywhere near the bridge.  They all want me to forget, move on, walk away, and never, ever speak of what’s under there.

But I can’t because the water under the bridge is flowing through me every day.  I live there every moment, unable to break free.  How can I escape when no one wants to hear my shout for help?  When no one will listen as I try to clear the mess out?  They have tried, for about five minutes, just as I’m starting to reveal the darkest debris.  They wave it off, send up a platitude or two, and scurry back out into the sunshine, leaving me to drown.

I thought Love would be the thrown life preserver…but that’s no life saver, that was just another trap…  Someday, I’ll write my way clear, someday, when it’s all on paper, in print, they might read it.  Someday…I’ll just swim away.

Quantum Energy Quips

Before I get into what may be a rambling, confusing blog for some, let me define a few things:  I hate labels, but others find labels comforting.  A label lets them pop me into a definite spot in their relations with me.  So, I call myself an energy-worker or a spiritualist.  Others call me a witch.  No matter, it’s all good as far as I’m concerned, and none of it really fits.

I’m a catalyst.  The definition of catalyst is: 1. a substance that causes or speeds a chemical reaction without itself being affected.  2. anything that precipitates an event.

I’m definition number two.  An odd pattern became noticeable as I traveled the journey of energy-work.  The first time I would do a spell, ritual, meditation, drum walk, etc. it would be great.  I’d get wonderful results.  If I tried it again, it would fail.  Within a week or a month, I’d meet someone or someone in my energy circle (we called it a circle instead of a coven, since a few of my darlings didn’t want to be labeled witches) would ask about the particular working I’d just done.  And, ping! – the light would go on.  I’d pass the info along or do the working with my friend and there you go, they’d have it, it was learned.  And working with me, made it easier for them.

Once the torch (so to speak) was passed, I could again do the working with positive results.  Those were small changes, though, and fun.  Learning, discovering, sharing, is always fun.  To me, all energy work is fun, and when it benefited others; ah, that was the best!

I also learned a bit about quantum physics, quantum mechanics, and how quantum energy worked with metaphysics and regular energy-work.  The definition of quantum is: 1. quantity or amount.  2.  Physics. a very small, indivisible quantity of energy.  3.  sudden and significant : a quantum increase in productivity.

I always knew I was highly empathic, able to feel or sense the emotions and pain of others.  Maybe it became honed on its own because of my childhood – when you live with cross-addicted and abusive people, it helps to sense their mood immediately.  Those few seconds of extra sensing would allow me to decide if I needed to run, hide, or silently obey.  It was a useful gift, and also a curse.  Sitting in the Emergency Room to pick up my mom after work was a confusing trip inside me – I could “feel” everyone’s aches and pains.  The woman in labor on the chair opposite me – yep, I’d get cramps.  The guy with the broken foot, indeed, my own foot would flare into an ache.

I had no mentor or teacher then, no idea how to control or shield, and, again, I think that household inadvertently trained me.  It’s a fact that when people live or work together, they “mesh” to a degree.  Female co-workers suddenly realize their menses have synchronized; if one person in a house is broadcasting high emotion, everyone else will begin to feel the same way.  Humans are all empaths, in varying degrees.  We can put ourselves in the other person’s shoes; empathy allows us to feel compassion and mercy toward others.

But the gift of metaphysical empathy, talented empathy, takes it to the quantum level.  Meta-empaths go beyond just feeling the normal range from others.  A meta-empath can reach through anyone’s natural mental and metaphysical shield to sense exactly what the other person is feeling or touch a person exactly where they are hurting.  A trained meta-path can take that negative energy into her hand, without absorbing it into herself, and flick it away, making her subject feel better.  She can manifest a sudden and significant change in her subject.

And yes, even so-called normal humans, untrained humans, have a natural shield.  If you don’t want someone – even a trained psychic or meta-physician – scanning you, if you don’t want them in, sharing your energy or “reading your mind,” they can’t get in.  Everyone is psychic in some way, and Nature gave us natural barriers against unwanted intrusion – probably to keep us from going crazy.

But if you want help, if you are broadcasting a need, a meta can help you and you will let them in.  Again, we all do it, in small, untrained, ways.  The lady who gives everyone, including strangers, hugs – yep, she’s sharing her happy or soothing or motherly energy with you.  It’s a surface thing; it rarely goes deeper into your psyche, but, admit it, it does make you feel better.

Now take that small normal human touch and train it.  Strengthen it, focus it.  Now you’re sending quantum energy out, and in.

My younger untrained self needed a defense against all that and against the negative emotion in my childhood home, so my natural shield became stronger.  Once I started studying, and especially when I found a mentor, I learned control and focus and how to assist others without invading their energy.  I’m a diagnostic meta-path – I can sense something’s wrong inside you.  I can touch you and find old injuries, dark spots, stopped energy.  I won’t give a definite diagnosis; in fact, I just say, “Go to a doctor and get a check up.”  I’m not a healer, even though my gentle surface tissue massage will make you feel better.  All I do with that is help your body re-learn how to heal itself, unblock a minor flow, so your body can remember it can heal anything on its own.  It’s not really a massage; it’s a stroking along your energy flow, boosting it a little, so you’ll feel better (and stop making my hands tingle!).

Now, throw the energy catalyst into that mix and, wham!  When I’m “on,” I plunge right through shields, even a trained psychic’s shields.  My spirit-brother described it this way, shortly after we met:  “I have a very strong shield, no one gets in, but you just dove through it and found my soul.  How?”

I was so embarrassed; it’s such a no-no to invade someone like that!  I apologized and tried to explain.  He assured me it was all right, saying, “It felt good.  It was like a burst of Light.”  Oh, geeze, more blushing on my part.  Then he asked, “What is it like?  What did you see?”

Now, I don’t “see” auras (aurae?); I leave that to my son.  No, to me, everyone is energy, and, sometimes, I’ll see colors.  So, I told him he had a lot of blue with some orange and red in his energy, that he had a “good” soul, a long soul (I said “old” back then, but Time is an Illusion, so old isn’t the proper definition – long fits better.).

A few days later, he asked me, “What did you do?”

Do?  I hadn’t done anything, just peeked at his soul.  Brad told me he felt lighter and his psychic sense was stronger.  Curious, he let me check his energy.  Sure enough, the catalyst gift had kicked in and his molecular vibrational frequency had gone up a couple of levels.

Yes, Magic and/or psychic work is a science (and so is prayer).  It’s the science of manipulating energy with focused intent to bring about desired results.  Just because our technology isn’t advanced enough to consistently measure and record it doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.  Hey, no one believed in quantum physics until a few years ago!

We are all just energy in different densities and different forms.  Our molecules vibrate at different frequencies, holding us together, shaping us, and the physical aspects of everything in the world.  When a catalyst comes along (and they’re rare, so don’t expect your local psychic or medium to be able to do this), she can go in, mesh her energy with yours, and bring you up – increase your vibration – to another level.  What does this do?  Well, it increases your ability to use your psychic gifts, and it opens psychic gifts in some.

And, it can be used and exploited.  I had a friend who was already a trained meta-physician.  Unknown to me (and, yes, I’m too naive and trusting as an energy-worker), she was interested in power, controlling others, doing workings to benefit her at the cost of others (all of which I found out later, and only because my kids warned me – I’ve learned to listen and obey when my kids and pets don’t like someone – they are very good “readers” of people!).  She insisted I “turn on” and raise her frequency very high in one session.  I thought I was helping her, and I did, but it was wrong.  She had found an easy way to level up, instead of doing the work herself.  She was a psychic energy-vampire and almost sucked us both up to a level the human body needs decades to reach.

I knew it was wrong and brought us out of it.  I felt awful, sick, dizzy, shaking.  And the visions, woof, that level, that Dimension was not a good place for human energy to visit without an invitation.  Now, that’s how I knew it was wrong.  Energy-work, catalyst work, even channeling (yep, I’m a Voice Vessel, too, a medium, a channel, whatever, ‘cept I don’t get dead humans speaking through me, oh no, I get Higher Level Energy Entities…oh, joy.) – after any meta working, I usually feel upbeat, jazzed, energetic myself.  Not this time.  She had pulled me beyond where we should have gone without decades of frequency work.  I wouldn’t touch her after that and made sure to control any catalyst urges around her, but I still hadn’t learned my lesson.  I still hadn’t kicked her out of our circle.

Fortunately, the next time she tried something, a Great One stepped in.  I was doing a Tarot Card reading for her.  She wanted clarification, she wanted more.  She looked me in the eye and demanded, “Channel my patron goddess.  I command Isis to speak to me.”   Oh no, no, no, human!

First of all, while I’m a mostly conscious channel, I have no control over Who comes through me to visit.  Usually, it’s my sweet She-Who-Laughs (I suspect She is Bast, but She won’t give a Name.  She said, “What need of a Name when One is Energy?”), and, usually, I need to take my two or three cleansing breaths to sink into alpha trance and let one of Them through.

Secondly, you do NOT command any of these higher level entities, great ones, gods, whatevers.  Human arrogance; we have it in spades and it’s our downfall.  No human is a high enough level to command or demand or manipulate these higher beings.  We can pray, ask, hope, yes, but order Them about like lackies, um, no, not gonna happen.

So, one second I’m sitting there aghast at her order, the next second, I’m cowering down deep in my body as an enraged Great Female took over.  I don’t remember exactly what She said to my ex-friend.  I do remember She stood up, threw the Tarot Cards in the woman’s face and shouted something like, “You Dare?!  This, none of this matters.  YOU do not matter.  Never again.”  BOOM!  Like a thunderclap of Power surging through me, my house, that ex-friend.  My throat was sore for days.  And that friend?  She never called me or anyone in our circle again.  We later found out her life and her psychic gifts went downhill from there.

Yep, Karma (or perhaps, Isis) is a bitch when you fuck with Her.

Whoa, okay, this ran much longer than I meant.  I just wanted to answer a friend’s question about my personal energy-workings.  I haven’t even touched on another friend’s question about my “group” soul.  I’ll save that for later.

I hope you enjoyed these snippets, and aren’t too confused!  Feel free to post questions and your own stories.  Let’s Explore this Journey further!  🙂

My Best Christmas Gift

Kinda sounds like one of those “What I did on My Christmas Vacation” reports we used to be forced to do in school, right?  Do they torment kids like that these days?  I could rehash a few for you.  “I got phew-ammonia and puked in the hamster cage.”  No?  Okay, how about the time we drove home from Endicott, NY to Schenectady, NY inna blizzard and Daddy hit a deer?  The deer was fine, got up and walked away, but we spent Christmas night inna ditch?  Mmm, nope…ooo, I know!  We survived the Ice Storm of ’63!  Or was it ’68?  Anyway, we went sledding on cookie sheets down the frozen drift – from my brother’s second-story bedroom window to the street!

And no, I didn’t see the Christmas Star or an angel…  My Christmas Star is a man.  He’s a Merchant Marine – civilian sailors, the guys on oil tankers, dredges, tug boats, non-military (most of the time) – and my husband.  His work schedule was often unpredictable.  He could be out for three months, home for one, or be called back to the ship after only a week home.  Holidays had to be as fluid as the ocean.  Quite often, our kids’ best Christmas gift was a phone call from Daddy, full of static and short because ship to shore calls were extremely expensive.  (This was twenty-plus years ago – long before computers, cell phones, all the toys that we take for granted today.)

Yet, somehow, Randy managed to make Christmas special.  His voice lifted our spirits and reminded us we were loved.  When he could, he would mail a letter or card.  A few times, he shopped early and hid the presents, just in case he wouldn’t be home on Christmas morning.  He once hid them under a huge pile of clothes I was supposed to wash and then take to the Salvation Army store.  He forgot to tell me they were there.  I was busy and never got around to doing that laundry.  We found those gifts three months after Christmas.

One year, when we lived in upstate New York near Syracuse, Randy’s ship was dredging sand along the East Coast.  Normal people would ask why we didn’t go visit for a day or why he couldn’t drive home for a weekend.  “New York City’s only four hours away.  Why don’t you take the kids down to the Port there and visit him?”  Hmm, sorry, no, it doesn’t work that way.  Merchant mariners may not be military, but they operate along the same guidelines.  I could explain it to you, but this is a blog, not a book.

And, yes, it was depressing knowing he was that close and we couldn’t be together.  My little sister and her husband visited us that year.  I had people I loved in my house, their sweet toddler was a living doll our little girl was enjoying babying and our boys were teaching naughty tricks to, we had laughter, presents, good food, and, I was lonely.  My husband wasn’t overseas that year, he was in the same state, and we couldn’t have him with us.  He hadn’t even been able to call us, which pissed me off because he could have used normal phone connections instead of a marine operator.

The weather was lovely – fresh snow, cold but not frigid, and a sunny Christmas morning.  My sister and I were making French toast for breakfast, still in our pajamas and robes because in my house, no one gets dressed in real clothes until noon on Christmas Day.  Christine’s husband looked out the window and asked, “Do you know anyone who drives a white van?”

“No.  Why?”

Jeff pointed outside.  “He’s in your driveway.”

At eight o’clock on Christmas morning, after being up until dawn wrapping gifts, I had the brain function and curiosity of a dust bunny.  Christine had helped me, but managed to be a chirping chickadee – god, how I hate morning people.  She was also more of a city girl than I and instantly alarmed at the sight of a plain, unmarked, paneled white van skulking up my driveway (visions of kidnappers dancing in her head).  “Where are the kids?  Call the police.  Jeff,” she prodded her husband, “is your gun in the car?  Put on your boots, chase him away!”

I yawned.  “Sweetie, Chief Willy lives two houses down and is probably still asleep.  It’s a small town, everybody knows everybody else.  They’re someone’s relatives, using my driveway to turn around.”  I flipped the bread in the pan and heard Jeff say, “Huh, he parked.  He’s getting out!”  Dear Jeff, the most open, honest, heart-on-his-sleeve guy, and I heard the lift in his voice.  Something had just made him very happy and Christine squealed with joy.

I whipped around and ran to the window.  By that time, the driver had the back of the van open.  Jeff scrambled to shove his feet in his boots as the driver unloaded boxes and bags.  I knew the curve of that strong back, the tilt of that beloved head…I beat Jeff out the door, dashing through the snow in my slippers, and was caught up in a hug that nearly crushed my ribs before I crashed into the side of the van.  I have no memory of going back inside the house, I think he carried me because my feet were turning blue and Jeff carried all the gifts.  I do remember that kiss – one that hurls fireworks down into your stomach and buckles your knees, a kiss that requires your love to hold you upright because you no longer have any bones in your body.

The ship had been put in dry-dock for a quick repair at New York City Harbor.  The captain gave Randy 24 hours off the clock, just enough time…  Randy asked if he could borrow the port captain’s van to make a trip home.  He stopped at a 24-hour Kmart outside the city and bought what he could with the cash he had.

After the excitement of kids climbing all over Daddy and ripping into the gifts he’d brought, we settled into the rest of the day and enjoyed our Christmas feast.  In the afternoon, my sweet sister and her dear hubby giggled and winked and bundled up children.  “We’re taking them to the park to go sledding!” they called out.  I think Randy and I were upstairs before the back door slammed shut.

Cuddled together, beginning to hear the happy voices of our loved ones returning home, Randy whispered, “I didn’t get you a gift.  I’m sorry.”

“Silly man, I have the best gift of all, right here.”