Sunday, August 27, 2017

Death and Feeling Alone

Death is such an odd thing. One minute you’re rolling along, laughing, singing, or eating ice cream, and the next minute, poof. The person you loved who seemed so real is gone in the flesh.

It reminds me of the childhood game hide and seek, when it was my turn to seek. I’d close my eyes and count as I pictured everyone scattering. Then the search in the dark began. Sometimes I’d find a friend, and other times they’d disappear. I knew their mother had called them home, but there in the dark, it felt like death.

My voice student, Michael, was 21, warm, wonderful, and severely autistic. Earlier this month, I went to an info session with his support team, to help plan a possible job for him. On Tuesday, I listened to him practice for his next recital. His version of I Left My Heart in San Francisco resonated with pure tenor tones. 

Last night, his mom called, sobbing that Michael was hospitalized and probably wouldn’t make it. I told her to go hold him close and hope for a miracle. Today, she said he died.

Six years ago, the last words my mom said to me were, I want to go home. I tried to explain that she had too many broken bones from the accident, but she shook her head and pointed to the sky. Heaven was her next home. 

My thoughts swirl inside of me. I’m all alone with them.

I have no words of wisdom for you, nothing to impart regarding death that hasn’t been written before. I just know it’s frustrating. And complete.  

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

How to Help a Hoarder

I try my best to do some charity work every week. When I noticed on Facebook that a friend was about to move and had too much stuff, I asked her if she wanted help. “Yes!” she wrote. “I don’t want to be a hoarder!”

On Friday, I spent most of the day at Gayle’s side, along with another friend of hers, Ross. At first, she argued, I am NOT giving any of this away! That gave way to long stories about each item she collected. I acknowledged her need for necessary kitchen items, coats, and umbrellas, then decided to attack what I call shit that sits. 

Gayle, I said, this is not really your great aunt. This is just stuff she liked. At one point, tears rolled down her face, but she never got mad at me directly, which was my fear. We packed up six huge boxes for the second hand store, which Ross took directly to my car, and we filled three large garbage bags with trash. Her teenage children's clothing was stuffed in bags for them to hoard or give away. 

When we stopped for the day, Gayle’s parting words were, let me know when you can come back.

My answer is never. Yet my heart reached out to her. My mom died six years ago and I just recently gave away ten of her ugly flower paintings. Some days I sniff her scarf and feel like a child.

We all hoard something. I have a room full of music that I’ve collected all my life. I’ve played it all, but I don’t need to save it all. I guess the way to help a hoarder is the way we help anyone. Loving feelings, patience, intuition, and emotions. 

I told Gayle I’d call her to pick me up if my car ever broke down. But now I think, how soon can I ask her to help clean out my basement?

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Hope, Not Pandora's Box of Evil

In Greek mythology, Pandora’s box is an artifact. As curious Pandora opened the box (actually a jar), all the evil of the world flew out. When she closed it again, only HOPE was left inside. Tarot readings, like life, are a Pandora’s box.  
In the 1980s in Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania, my first psychic mentor pretended to be a witch so the local men would leave her alone. The first time I laid down a tarot card in her presence, I did it on the steps in front of my apartment. Disrespectful, she said, buy a scarf with good vibes.

When she stopped each day as she walked her old dog, she talked about rebirth, the souls of dogs, and devil possessions. None of the three held my interest, but our discussions led me to the local library’s collection of books about ancient soothsayers, devils, witches, and magicians. Until then, I hadn’t understood the extent of paranormal beliefs.

On every vacation, I visit libraries, even in Hawaii. For all of you who love the water, please realize that to be intuitive, you can retrieve the calming effect the ocean has on your mood and body.

Now back to my own intuitive skill set. As I’ve read more about it, I feel less alone. And yet, I can’t get an answer to a few questions. If you had a psychic gift, would you use it to make money? Would you work with police, or would you consider that the dark side and stay away? Would you butt into people’s lives with unasked advice?

Just like any other job, I only have some of the answers. Yes, I deal with evil on murder cases, but yes, I believe in hope.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Book Sales Down, Other Businesses Up

I’m psychic, but I often can’t tell my own future. I thought my fiction book, Carriers of Genius: Conversations with the Mothers of Twelve Famous Men, would sell in the thousands. It’s done alright, but I haven’t hit my goal. During the past year, I pushed, then privately worried and pouted.

When I paid my quarterly taxes, I started thinking. How did my book affect my other businesses, if at all? When I looked at the figures, I realized my income had bumped up 30%, and in some months, 50%. Nothing else had changed, so it had to be my book.

I’m self-employed, and I work as both a psychic and a private piano and voice teacher. Psychics are often perceived as kooky and uneducated, so maybe my clients were shocked that I had the self-discipline to pull it off. As a teacher, I asked all my students to buy my book, and they did. In their eyes, I went from a one dimensional older woman to a two dimensional author.

Life twists us all up, and doesn’t go the way we plan. I know I have a lifetime to sell my book, and in the meantime, I took four vacations in three months. How can I care where my success hit? Like love, intuition is not an exact science. 

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

A Mom's Five Eyes

In the 1950s, all of our mothers had “eyes in the back of their heads”. At first I wasn’t sure what that meant, but I decided it meant two eyes in the back, underneath their hair. When a boy at school stared obsessively at pictures of Hindu’s third eye, I believed him when he said it meant a higher consciousness. That added up to a total of five eyes.

All my friends’ moms watched us in different ways. D’s mom had gorgeous skin and talked to me in private, an unusual occurrence. She barely saw us as we played outside. My own family didn’t abide silliness or jokes, but K’s mom, whose life revolved around her invalid husband, let us pretend to be horses as we ate our dinner in bowls on the floor. L’s mom baked cakes and gazed sideways at me. My mother, Lorna, had some autistic tendencies, so I thought she didn’t notice me with any of her five eyes.
Yet when I told her I had an application for grad school that also paid a stipend, she bugged me until I sent it off. I think she knew I would get it. Her insights about strangers surprised me, and her desire for me to get a “real job” pushed me to develop my artistic talents into careers that paid well.

I used to get SO irritated with my mom. The worst was when I was about eleven. Suddenly I didn’t like her voice, her smell, her hair, and her demands. Right now, I’d give my slice of the moon to get any part of her back. But we gotta make room for the babies, so all of us die.

I just read that a child’s cells are in a mother’s body forever. No wonder a mother has extra eyes and senses to help others along their paths.
In this lovely day of May, let me shout out Happy Mother’s Day to your mother. Salute!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

My Sixth Sense in Museums

In school, I disliked history because of the male bent of wars and conquering heroes. Too shy to ask questions of my teachers, I felt them swirl in my brain. I wanted to ask: What did women do during war? How did children cope? What about the men too old to fight? What was everyone feeling?

That lack of history knowledge led to my loving exploration of museums. Last weekend I visited my new favorite, the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Massachusetts. As my son and I soaked it in and marveled, a quiet wave of my sixth sense pervaded everything. In the Puritan room, I “saw” children playing and women cooking. In the Revival Jewelry area, I “glimpsed” creamy necks and beautiful faces. In the Musical Instruments room, I “heard” sweet music. On marble statues, I “saw” strong hands carving.
The older I get, the more I love history. I only wish I had studied and read more of it. There’s a Pennsylvania Dutch saying that fits. “Too soon old and too late smart.”

Friday, March 31, 2017

Business Decisions and Intuition

I work for myself, so when a business decision goes south and swirls down the drain, I can’t get mad at the boss. To combat my frustration, I pretend I’m playing the 1950s game of Kick the Can. That game must have started because few people had access to expensive balls. I know that when I played that game, I said ouch to my foot as I watched the can travel only a few feet.

Business decisions, like life decisions, can be put into mathematical formulas. Weigh one side against the other. Assess the costs and benefits. Even with all those formulas, your resolution comes down to intuition, or desire, or a combo platter of both.