Just Married 10-03-19

I have seen him one evening a year, at a work event in November, since 2005. He was the caricature artist we hired to entertain our crowd. I worked the desk at registration and gave away door prizes. He became a familiar face and his talent was a consistent draw for our crowd. We were each living our lives; he in Minneapolis as a special ed teacher with a wife and son. Me, in St. Michael, with a husband and two kids. Over time, our lives changed and four years ago, he asked me out for a cappuccino. I was with someone at the time, so declined. The next year, my situation had changed and I asked him out for a cappuccino but his situation had also changed – he was with someone. The year following, we were both free, but the timing still wasn’t quite right and no cappuccino.

Last year, he wasn’t going to be at our conference in November. He was going to Florida to stay with his brother and his family, and then he would leave for three months in January to visit family in Iraq, where he was born. A week before he left, he asked me to dinner… and we finally had our first date – on Oct 3. And I was blown away! He talked and talked and I soaked it all in. We laughed and he said things only my heart knew I needed to hear. I drove away from that 3-hour date (at 8:30 pm!) screaming to my angels, ‘you’ve GOT to be Kidding! He is Everything on my list!’

I saw him a total of about 25 days between our first date and March 27 of this year. The circumstance of being physically away from someone your heart knows it loves… while not exactly fun, was integral in building the foundation for our relationship. He encouraged me to write, and FaceTime and Viber were our new best friends. I told him all my stories and tears and he shared his as well.  Sometimes those stories don’t get told or processed until much later, if at all, in a relationship. I am so grateful we were able to share on such an intimate level, doing the excavation work, so our foundation could be built on clear, solid ground.

My heart knew I loved him, and he often shared that he loved me as well, but I’m a mistrusting, cynical woman with lots of fears and issues. Now, I had spent two plus years working solidly on myself after my last relationship, and I know I am perfect, whole and complete – but retaining that wholeness while allowing someone in…? This man has seen more of my crazy than I’ve let anyone else see. And I got plenty of crazy! I set an intention to share my wholeness, not hand over pieces of myself for ANYONE anymore.

His years as a special-ed teacher, and the patience and kindness and knowledge that one needs to be successful at that, allow him to ‘handle’ me with a care and consideration I hadn’t experienced.  And, I tried to be offended that he was handling me, but I couldn’t maintain (and why?!) any real level of anger because it was so clear that it came from a place of kindness, understanding and love.

He asked me to marry him while I was visiting him last December in Florida. My heart answered, ‘yes!’ immediately. It took my mind quite a bit longer to catch up.

His life experiences are so different than mine in so many ways: coming from secure attachment in childhood, a rural upbringing in the marshes of Iraq, traveling and studying abroad. Living through a war in his country and becoming a refugee. Working with Human Rights in the aftermath of war, using his art as protest and therapy. Leaving his homeland for good, coming to America and becoming a citizen and making a beautiful life here. He’s traveled extensively, speaks 5 languages and has 3 degrees.

And me? Well, I haven’t done any of that. I’m just me. And he says he loves me and intends to stay and build a life with me. I am incredibly happy! How could it get better than that?!

I’ve loved a lot of people in my 50 years on the planet and I am grateful for the gifts and lessons that each person has imparted. I truly appreciate each and every one. Now, I am ready to love this man for the rest of my life… and be loved by him.IMG_2061

7 years ago today…

It was seven years ago today, that I received my Master teachings in Usui Reiki.

And I had an emotional meltdown the night before which caused me to doubt, not only my sanity, but my readiness for such solemn, sacred teachings.

I had almost ached for the time I could pass on the attunements and teach, most particularly for one person who had been instrumental in support and recognition of my latent healing talents. It was that night, almost as an afterthought, that they mentioned they had already been attuned (a process this branch of Reiki uses to ritualize the end of that set of teachings) – though they didn’t much recall the event.

First off – WTF? How can one not recall such a sacred, solemn event?? They had received the teaching during an emotional upheaval time in their lives and gained much from the course they were taking with this teacher, but didn’t specifically recall anything about Reiki. A former classmate had reminded them later and it hadn’t occurred to them to mention anything to me, since they didn’t know how excited I was to be ‘the one’ to teach them. I wanted to return something big to them in return for what I felt were all the gifts they had provided me in support and friendship.

I hung up from that exchange in horror! For some reason, this disappointment was HUGE to my ego. Why did I even want to go to this class the next day if I couldn’t share it with this ONE person?! I cried and railed in anger and disappointment and disbelief that this would be robbed from me. Even during my tears, I was secretly kind of in awe at how BIG these emotions felt. How deeply I was hurt by this unfairness. And OH, how much I was judging the teacher of their class – how could they not convey to a student how rich and deep this system was – to an extent a student could even recall they were taught!

If I had been in my own space, I think I may have broken things in utter frustration at the cruel trick the universe had played on me.

And, as I slowly calmed down, feeling more and more contrite at my immature display of anger and misplaced righteousness, I called out to the Reiki Masters of Old to help me understand what I had just been through. How could I possibly go through with class the next day – I was a fake who wasn’t even CLOSE to being ready to receive these teachings. If I could have such a violent display of pettiness, how could I ever be trusted to receive and hold the teachings I had come to revere in a body/mind that was so immature?!

And, miraculously, a sense of calm and peace slowly surrounded and enveloped me. I began to realize this was a purge of sorts. The rearing of these ‘ugly’ sentiments could be gifts to me, as a preparation, if I so chose. These were hurtful and mean things I was expressing, mostly about myself and my worthiness. They were there, in me, but hidden and latent – so much so, that in their discovery, they freaked at being expressed as much as I freaked in expressing them!

I ended up attending class the next day, a much humbler student than I had been the day before. I realized that it wasn’t up to me to decide if I deserved to receive the teachings. I was there for a reason and my outburst the night before gave me a new perspective on what I was receiving that day.

I wish I could say that in receiving the teachings that day seven years ago, instantly healed all my judgement and anger surrounding the ‘big reveal’ with my friend. Actually, I have to admit that took much time, self-Reiki treatments and self-reflection to dig at the roots of those powerful feelings that were unearthed that day. I’m not proud of all the dark places I’ve exposed in myself, but I am proud that I haven’t shied away from them (well, mostly) and found more tools and enough self-love to shift my perspective from being robbed that day, to being profoundly gifted.

My First Time(s)

The first time I heard the word ‘Reiki’ and how it was described to me – scared the hell out of me! My religious upbringing had me fearing spirits entering and taking over my body and being around someone who was possessed freaked me out as well.

Five years later, was the first time I was called ‘a healer,’ by a dear friend. After I sat down and let the words sink in, I asked her what she knew about Reiki. She knew it was a type of energy healing but not much else. I began my information digging.

Within a month of that moment, was the first time I channeled Reiki for myself during my level one class. The questions earlier that day spoke about ‘hot hands.’ I didn’t experience that, but I felt a sensation in my palms after the attunement that I would describe as a gentle electric vibration sensation.

The first time I put my hands on someone with the intent of sending them Reiki, was actually kind of like coming home for me. It felt right and good and I took level two the next month.

The first time I received a Reiki session from professional (not in class), I scheduled it a month out and was very nervous. What would it be like, how would I respond? She was business-like and friendly and during the cord cutting portion she offered, (that I have since learned is the procedure found in many of Doreen Virtue’s books and I have since used myself) a departed someone came to make peace with me. Not all Reiki folk have mediumistic gifts, but she did, and I am grateful.

The first time someone attacked Reiki in front of me, they savagely mocked and spewed their disbeliefs about this form of healing, loudly. I had to leave the room; I had to breathe deeply for several minutes. This Reiki he disparaged had already helped me on so many levels, physically, spiritually, mentally and emotionally over the first several months. I was livid and hurt, yet, as I breathed, I realized Reiki did not need me to defend it at that time. This person’s attack and vitriol was more about what was inside of them, not the truth of the loving, healing energy that I was coming to know so well.

The first time someone without a voicebox, reached out his hands to mine, asking for Reiki, was my father on his journey to passing. There was always a distance between us during our time together on the planet, but for a few months, prior to his death, I was able to connect with him through the touch of Reiki. This gift was priceless to me.

The first time I truly realized Reiki had become an intractable part of my being, was shortly after receiving my master teachings. I was a wreck the night before that class. I had an emotional meltdown and felt like I had learned nothing about the teachings in the two and a half years I’d been working with the energy. As after most breakdowns, the aftermath was also full of realizations and gifts. After those teachings, I knew Reiki wasn’t going anywhere – it was in my cells and part of everything I was and everything I did.

And not for the first time, I am grateful for this incredible gift in my life. Reiki is available to all of us, all the time. I agreed to learn the system and made a commitment to myself to use the energy, mostly on myself for several years and more recently, on others!

Is there something you began despite the fear and found yourself immersed and in love?

Path to Healing Intro


I’ve got a lot to say at times. Other times I watch and listen and ponder and don’t say much at all.

I think we all have that dynamic built into us.

There are times when people respond splendidly to the things I say, they share positive feedback and are grateful for my words. Other times, I feel I am too blunt and/or just plain wrong and by the looks on their faces, sense perhaps they agree!

I fear I may step my foot into ‘it’ with this blog. But I’ve decided to begin it anyway. I’ve lived a large portion of my life living in fear of real and unreal-imagined things and had moments where I’ve broken free and did things anyway. Beginning this blog is one of those moments of freedom. And I’m quite looking forward to it.