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I don’t talk a lot about being an empath. Partly because it’s a complicated thing. It’s also a pretty private thing. And these days, it has entered into popular culture enough that it can be easily dismissed by those who don’t share this quasi-gift, and easily adopted by those who are struggling to belong, to attach a cool label to themselves, or to understand their own feelings. I don’t diminish those people and their needs, but I do not know if their experience is the same as my own….though that could be said of everyone.

This week has been an eye-opening one for me with regard to this component of myself. Being an empath is something different from being empathetic or highly sensitive, or even empathic. I’ve been led to the realization that it is not something I can ignore at times of global collective distress – or anniversaries like September 11. It took the universe dropping a heavy veil over my body and spirit for me to see that this gift, this calling, this ability to wend my way between worlds and realms, is something precious and needed. I am a path through the veil for silent acknowledgement and connection for those beyond. Being a channel, a vessel, is part of the reason for my being here, on this earth, at this time. And the divinely given art of dancing across levels of existence is something I need – and want – to practice.

I judge my own words through the eyes of others. So, to head you off at the pass, I’m not high or crazy or a hippie. I’m a wife, a mother, a sister, a friend, a cousin, an aunt, a homeowner, a writer, and I work three jobs to put my daughter through college without (fingers crossed) student loans. I’m the picture of responsibility. I pay my bills on time. I don’t wear make-up, except eyeliner as my work disguise. I don’t color and style my hair. I like jeans and yoga pants and dressing up and thrift stores. I like tuna salad sandwiches (warm, with cheddar, mustard, and hot peppers), rib-eye steaks, and butter pecan ice cream. I like Appalachian music and opera. I love flowers and mountains and especially the sea. I love to travel. I help tourists in Denver when they look lost, and like to smile at strangers, especially, these days, women in hijabs, because when they see the smile in my eyes, their eyes smile back and I can tell they feel welcome and trusted and a little bit safer. I’m not stunning, I’m not unusual. I don’t have any piercings or tattoos, because my mother drilled into me at an early age that there’s no sense in poking holes in yourself for the sake of fashion (and she was right) and the only thing I would ever like to have indelibly inked on my skin are the latitude and longitude of my favorite places on earth, perhaps as anklets or bracelets, but not now. Maybe someday, when I’m older.

If you were to see me walking from Union Station to my office in the morning, you probably wouldn’t give me a second glance. But at a glance, I can feel so much about you, and you’ll never know that. I can sometimes turn it off, but not this week. This week there were so many souls who wanted their energy and their words resurrected into the consciousness of now for just a few moments, and needed me to be a silent channel for them. And so, while it took me a few days to figure it out, I did. And we are all, for now, somewhat soothed.

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Some beautiful beach, some beautiful where between worlds.

Quote of the day: “People underestimate the stars and the connectedness they bring between spirit and matter. More often than not, when lost, we seek solitude in staring into the darkness hoping something speaks back to us, usually through a feeling, a thought or a rare occurrence of a shooting star.” — Nikki Rowe

Daily gratitudes:
That my cricket has moved to the kitchen
A clean bedroom
That MKL loves me regardless
Truck stop coffee
That Kelsea called me from the grocery store, asking about spices for what I have taught her to be her “signature dish” to cook

If you’ve followed along my journey for some time, you’ll know that I have a lifelong tendency to attract and communicate with spirits. As I’ve been exploring my own spirituality more in-depth of late, and noticing that my beliefs are evolving, my curiosity about this connection has been deepening as well. I’ve lived with spirits in houses since I was a child, and as I’ve mentioned before, this gift (for it is a gift) that we call “the shine” runs in the women in my family. Based on her own self-knowledge and desire to feel in control, my Mother denied it in her 20s, but told me about it as she noticed that I had it, and gave me warnings that I have heeded. We won’t go into those now. While my company tends to be benevolent spirits, that has not always been the case – yet another story for another time. And since I like to walk the edge a bit with this gift, those city ghost tours tend to be exceptionally interesting for me and the others on the tours that I attend (Boulder, Cripple Creek Jail, and Portland, Oregon, to name a few.)

The bungalow has, I have discovered, an exceptionally quirky history, and along with it, some spirits. I think they were here when I moved in – in fact, I am certain of it, as I recall sitting in a corner of the empty kitchen in tears and feeling them shifting curiously around me. Once they realized I was a kindred spirit, so to speak, they showed no reticence to make their presence known. Objects mysteriously moved – generally sparkly things like jewelry, set in the center of the doorways. Items that would vanish and then reappear in places that I had looked a dozen times. The occasional mysterious loud thump that even startles Mr. Man. A pinch on the ass when I’m standing at the sink washing dishes. For a while, a cat was visiting, courtesy of Cousin Tam, curling up in a lump on my feet when Mr. Man was up by my shoulder. And always, that fleeting glimpse of something just out of the corner of my eye, passing by the doorway.

I’ve been struggling physically lately with what I originally thought was a pinched nerve, but which has been getting progressively worse, and so am now taking some mega-dose of steroids, which aren’t suiting my system and are messing with my already disastrous sleep patterns. Tonight, on a whim, in lieu of sleep (partly because the spirits have hidden my book), I decided to see if I could have a little dialogue with them.

Now, I don’t hear voices, because I know that’s a bad thing on almost all counts. But there are tools that paranormal professionals (hmm) use to communicate with spirits and I’ve had some success with dousing rods. Do you know what they are? Not the water-seeking kind, although I do seem to recall using those one summer in Arkansas. They’re these, laid out in this image on a handmade quilt that I bought at auction four years ago:

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I have learned that you have to ask your questions and tell the spirits how to move the rods to communicate their answers. So when I establish a baseline, it’s something like “find me” or “find Mr. Man” or “if your answer if yes, point to the chicken”. Tonight, I learned through our dialogue that there are more than two, they currently are most comfortably in the small back hallway between the bedrooms, but they’d like to have a light there, they are young adults, and they are happy where they are. They are neutral about my staying, but they do get along with me. And there was apparently one young man and one young lady, though they had a difficult time understanding the concept of gender given their current state of affairs.

It was powerful and interesting. It felt safe communicating with them, and I will probably do it again, especially if I find myself awake in that hour betwixt and between when it seems all things of heaven and earth are in a drowsy state of active receptiveness.

Quote of the day: “The terms we use for what is considered supernatural are woefully inadequate. Beyond such terms as ghost, specter, poltergeist, angel, devil, or spirit, might there not be something more our purposeful blindness has prevented us from understanding? We accept the fact that there may be other worlds out in space, but might there not be other worlds here? Other worlds, in other dimensions, coexistent with this? If there are other worlds parallel to ours, are all the doors closed? Or does one, here or there, stand ajar?” — Louis L’Amour

Daily gratitudes:
MKL’s true love and support
Flocks of pigeons
A reduction in my nerve issues (from the steroid mega-dose)
My Victorian nightdress
Seeing old friends in dreams

I can’t remember if I’ve written about my favorite astrologer before – I think I tried to, and every time I tried to link to his website, my computer would crash.  Wierd.  But I’m going to try again tonight.

I’m not generally a big fan of astrology.  It’s mostly just amusing.  I know that in the days of yore (like the 17th century), astrologers often doubled as physicians or apothecaries, and used their astrological casting skills to predict the health and gender of unborn children, the outcome of serious illness, and a wide variety of other turns of fortune.  It’s small wonder that they were considered quacks by educated lords, while being honored and respected by the lower classes.

E-Bro went through a long period of doing astrological charts for people (me included).  He cast Kelsea’s chart shortly after she was born – I wish I still had the details, and no doubt I do somewhere, as I don’t recall much about it, but the things I do remember seem to be uncannily accurate, even if they weren’t quite the things that I wanted for her in a perfect world.  But they are exactly and perfectly her.

As for me, I idly toyed with “Linda Goodman’s Sun Signs” at the peak of its popularity (in my teens).  But I’ve never been one to put too much stock in the stars, at least not in the astrological sense.  However…

Some years ago, somehow, I discovered Rob Brezsny’s Free Will Astrology.  He seems to reach and touch and channel someplace up and away that speaks to me.  He’s so on track in his astrological parables and down-to-the-clouds advice that it’s spooky.  He’s also written a book that seems to be along the lines of www.tut.com’s Notes From the Universe.

Even if you’re the world’s biggest skeptic, I encourage you to check him out at www.freewillastrology.com.  As a little peek for my fellow Cancerians, here’s our horoscope for this week:

“In her essay “The Possible Human,” Jean Houston describes amazing capacities that are within reach of any of us who are brazen and cagey enough to cultivate them. We can learn to thoroughly enjoy being in our bodies, for example. We can summon enormous power to heal ourselves; develop an acute memory; enter at will into the alpha and theta wave states that encourage meditation and creative reverie; cultivate an acute perceptual apparatus that can see “infinity in a grain of sand and heaven in a wild flower;” and practice the art of being deeply empathetic. Guess what, Cancerian: The next six months will be one of the best times ever for you to work on developing these superpowers. To get started, answer this question: Is there any attitude or belief you have that might be standing in the way?”

I’m off to www.amazon.com to order both “The Possible Human” and Rob’s “Pronoia Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.”  Self-help city, here I come.

August 2018
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