My own healing journey began thirty years ago in my twenties. I wasn’t comfortable in my own skin and I didn’t see the point of living. I tried to take my own life twice. I had a very traditional Catholic Indian upbringing and although I strived to break away from that I had unwittingly recreated a similar paradigm in my relationship where I felt controlled and suffocated. It wasn’t long before my whole body erupted in eczema, an external representation of the repressed emotions I was holding inside.
As soon as the reiki healer put her hands on me I knew that this was what my whole being needed. Not just my physical and emotional self, but my spiritual and energetic being too. As soon as the session ended I asked the therapist where I could learn reiki and she recommended my reiki master Linda Penny. I knew instinctively it was my path that I needed to follow. I felt my energy beginning to open, an inner journey of healing had begun. I was waking up to myself.
After I completed my reiki level 1 the 21-day cleansing process connected me to my own intuition in ways I could not have imagined. I fell pregnant and knew almost instantly. I was excited and knew I wanted to have the baby, despite my partner not being in the same place as me and facing shame and cultural pressures not to have children outside of wedlock. This was the first time in my life I claimed my power. I said I am having this baby
The next five years were the hardest of my life. I was pulled in and out of an abusive relationship with someone who rejected me over and over again. I later realised this was a repetition of childhood trauma I was yet to heal.
I was in a seriously bad place, I was on benefits, I had no heating and had water leaking through my roof. My self-esteem was on the floor. Every area of my life was shit. I knew that I needed to do something, I needed to take responsibility for my life. I needed to heal so that I could close this chapter and welcome something new.
It was then that I took my power back for the second time by ending my abusive relationship once and for all. Closing that door almost immediately opened another. I got a grant from the council to help with my home repairs, and I began volunteering at a charity that worked with young people and substance abuse, where I met my now husband Frank.
The next few years were a positive time of rebuilding my life, growing and healing. I worked in a number of roles within the substance misuse and social care sectors, where I developed skills I didn’t know I had including space holding for people. I married Frank and had my second son. I also qualified as a theta practitioner. During this time, we lost Frank’s mum to breast cancer.
Then in 2014 I was diagnosed myself. What followed was a gruesome nine months of hard work, two surgeries, chemo and radiotherapy. I was in total shock. But I knew that cancer didn’t mean death for me. It was going to be a doorway to transformation. I was determined to survive and I would do everything in my power to heal myself.
Months before I’d been diagnosed with cancer people had been telling me about a guy named John who did acupuncture and was amazing treating cancer patients. So here I was now battling cancer, and I decided to go and see him.
I didn’t know it then, but meeting John was to be a pivotal moment for me into much deeper healing. I took up Qi Gong which helped me stay calm and grounded throughout my cancer treatment.
Once I had finished my treatment I had a strong sense that it was time to face life head on. It was then that I began my shamanic journey with the first of four vision quests. I would live on a mountain in silence and without food or water for four days in the first year, 7 days in the second year, 9 days in the third year and 13 in the final year.
Stripped of all comforts (bar a sleeping bag), I connected to myself and spirit on a deeper level than ever before. It was the scariest thing I have ever done, but I had to do it, I had received a calling. It’s so easy to ignore our calling when it comes, but that was not an option for me.
On the mountain I received a vision of my logo, the hummingbird. Small, but with a powerful, uplifting energy. Seeking out the sweet nectar of life.
Following my cancer treatment, I felt absolutely done in. I’d been through so much in my life. I had experienced the momentary sweet relief of meeting my husband, having my two boys, getting married and beginning to build the life I’d always wanted, and then the cancer came and it felt to me as though it took that all goodness away. When I saw the hummingbird, it inspired me to find the joy in my life again.
I realised that I had two choices – I could either be bitter, or I could accept my past as all the different parts of me that had led me to this point, my chance to start a new chapter.
I’ve learned that if we don’t heal ourselves, our unhealed anger, resentment and trauma can manifest into something greater – for me that was cancer. However, if we take responsibility by stepping out of a place of victimhood and resistance, our pain and suffering can be healed and can be transformed into freedom, empowerment and joy.
History of Reiki Lineage
2500 + years ago Tibetan Practitioners and Adepts
1870's Dr Mikao Usui
1900's Dr Chijiro Hayashi
1939 Mrs Hawayo Takata
1973-1980 Iris (one of 21 masters trained by Takata)
1982 Arthur Robinson
1989 Jeanine Sande
1992 Judith Tripp Chasen
1995 Linda Penny
2004 Maria Gomes