Thursday, May 24, 2012

Spirit Guides, Invisible friends, Teenage Hell and Death and rebirth.

I was the last of 5 kids, the Cindy of the Brady Bunch so to speak, and my siblings were a bit older. They didn't have time to spend with me all the time and so I spent a lot of time alone. I actually didn't feel too lonely as I had the run of the house, yard and plenty of pets.

One day I heard a voice coming out of the vent in the bathroom. It was of a young girl, around my age ( I was probably 4 at the time) and I would spent a lot of time talking to her and telling her about my day, she would give me advice if I needed it and would answer my seemingly endless questions. Later she told me that she was coming to live with me and her Mother was going to drop her off. She said that she would be there to help me anytime I needed.  I was excited. She didn't give her her name so I called her "My Ghost Friend".

The day came and I waited at the window. A dark Olive Green Monte Carlo drove up, a late 70's model. I went outside to great my friend. Her Mum gave her a hug and gave me a brief wave and got back in and drove off. Her hair was puffy and cute and had little twists with barrettes and beads in the ends that clicked when she shook her head. She had her own pillow and sleeping bag. I wondered why her Mom would let her stay so long. Doesn't she need to go home I thought. She answered that she was supposed to stay with me now, it was her purpose. She was a little taller then me but just has slender. We went into the house and I showed her my room but she already knew her way around.

Sometimes she would just disappear and I wouldn't always see her. Her voice would be inside my head. If I ever got lonely she was there. She would play with me and my collection of donated toys from the church  that I adored. She didn't didn't care either that they came without heads sometimes. We could imagine the heads being there with whatever hairstyle we could imagine. Some kids probably minded hand me downs. I didn't really, I was very lucky. One of my sisters was a competing Figure Skater (as was my Mum) and even though I couldn't get the ballet lessons I dreamed of, I got the next best things , all her hand me down skate costumes, they were sparkly beaded and colourful. My Mum lent me her tiaras and 1950's costume jewelry as long as I put it back where I found it. When my Da purchased a Harley down the street from a Man whose daughter would become my first best friend, I would bring my costumes over and she would teach me what she learned in dance class. Sometimes she would sneak me into class and I was hide in the corner and practice the movements. My Ghost friend came along when her Mum took us on Bart to the San Francisco Ballet to see the Nutcracker. I loved my new best friend and she didn't tease me for having a Ghost friend. I hoped she could hear her too.I'd have to ask her, she very well could have a ghost friend of her own!

Ghost friend continued to grow as I did, older and taller, her clothes changing from the cords of the seventies to more of the ethic styles becoming to her. I like that she looked from somewhere else and not like everyone else.

Sadly I was an abused child, a friend of the family had a strong attachment to me that was not healthy. For as long as I could remember I stayed quiet out of fear, fear that somehow this was my fate since it was going on for as long as I could remember and fear of what would happen if I spoke up. The times I reached out about it, to teacher's (I was laughed at) I couldn't open up to counselors and I don't think my parents could see the signs. Believe me they had their hands full, as upsetting as it is, I had other siblings going through serious issues as well, I thought it was my cross to bear, alone. I felt guilt if I didn't want to spend time with that friend of the family, guilt that other members would unknowingly contribute too by telling me I had too. So I talked to my Ghost friend , often the only comfort was her voice, I would disassociate whenever the schools would send me to the counselors I just couldn't explain my situation or why I felt so bad. I started having blackouts, I didn't know if it was the "spells" or what. She was the voice comforting me when I was attacked at neighbour's house when I went to visit the dog and stumbled on a teenage drinking party.

After years of this happening ,we moved to a new town and I made new friends and I learned to keep my Ghost friend to myself, after all I started to get older and it wasn't so cute to talk to oneself and I started to get teased by my siblings about it. It probably was a good thing they did because I could only imagine the teasing I would get in the school yard and I had it bad enough being a new kid in town! In Jr. High I had made new friends and some my family didn't approve of. One day I opened up to a boy I had a crush on about my situation with this "friend of the family" and he said what was dawning on me: "that isn't normal, that isn't right, that's called molestation and you need to get out of that situation".

I ran alway from home. I went to a best friend's house and because her Mum was a social worker onto the halfway house I went, after all I couldn't stay at there house, this was a good thing. In the halfway house I found I lost the ability to talk. A girl named Michelle took me under her wing. Somehow she understood I couldn't speak that something so bad had happened that she told me her story to help me open up. She was an ashtray. Literally. Her arms and legs that I could see were covered with burns of all shapes and sizes. He Dad and his friends took turns putting out their cigars and cigarettes on her. I felt so sorry for her, but she saw my look and said, "Nah I am out of there and you are too" If you can't talk, I bet you can write" She gave me a coloured pencil and some paper. "They are calling your parents, write down what you can't say, you be heard now"

I didn't understand then that I had hysterical muteness that all the stress of the years of abuse and fear had taken a toll. When my parents came they listened to what I had wrote written by the counselor and with the new knowledge they took me home. It answered a lot of questions for them and thankfully the abuser was cut out of our lives.My voice eventually returned.

It goes to show you should listen to your inside voice. I probably could have avoided more pain and suffering if I had learned to listen more, avoided places when I got that "feeling" or if there were Chip Coffey and shows like Psychic Kids on the tele back then. Though my Mum showed a little fear of my abilities and my Dad was always encouraging me to learn about what inspired me, I considered myself very lucky. In Jr. High I was able to meet one of my best friend Alyssa (who Mum was the Social Worker that took me to the house where I got help) they were actually a part of a new church in town that encouraged its members to work on their gifts. It was there that I found a solid footing in a chaotic life. I started to learn some basics of grounding and healing and where I was warned that because my soul shone like a lightpost to be extra careful. Hearing on the outside what were once whispers on the inside really connected and started me on my journey to find the right types of techniques to tap into these gifts.

I didn't always deal with things so well , even with this support. There were years of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder to work through. My parents have not the best view of Doctor's so I was not sent to any and in a lot of ways I am glad for it, I am glad to not have been medicated as hard as things were. I went to Planned Parenthood to take care of my physical issues that abuse has caused but my mind I tried to heal with the help of the Creative Life Center , prayer -lots and lots and lots of prayer- and self medicating.
The size of my pain and the amount of self medicating spiraled out of control. It was nice to have some sort of relief but one particular day , the eve of my 15th Birthday. I had gone to far. I stole away from my so called friends and sought out one of my best tried and true friends Alyssa. Alyssa nursed me through the worst and she almost lost me. Of course I feared going to the Doctor or ER and was in no space to even know what was going on and for a while I was gone. I'd stopped breathing and turned blue.

I don't remember any tunnel or lights for sure, but I do remember seeing myself passed out on her kitchen table not breathing. I think I had a vague thought about the movie "Flatliner's" about the med students inducing death so that they could see what was beyond. I'd thought I laughed seeing that it wasn't like the movies.
It was just a case of a sad wasted kid that felt special but had no one to back it up save a few friends. Bullied in school by the other kids, threatened with knives on the Jr High campus, missing out on school dance for being late by avoiding the knives. Trying to tell your Science teacher that you trusted that something bad was happening at home but you couldn't make it stop and could you help? Hearing his laughter as he didn't believe you. Reading teacher in the 4 grade trying to touch you because you were so smart and he loved the purple you wore telling you were attractive. It's not a good thing to be "attractive" , all sorts of creepy people touch you and other people hate you for being "pretty" and taunt you and call you a slut.
The pain of being tore apart, punched, raped. Jumped walking to friend's house by the boy you had a crush on , while the kids you were friends with at the beginning of the school year attempting to rip the shirt of your back and steal your boots. Their punches with sand-filled riot gloves hitting your face but no tears come out. You've felt worse. Other kids lacing your cigarettes with PCP and sending you outside for whatever the hell could happen to you. Everyone having problems and not enough time for yours.

All the while my heart was racing out of control and it stopped and somewhere I can hear my one of my few real friends screaming my name over and over. I felt so bad for scaring her.

Then a male voice. Not Ghost friend's voice but a strong male voice with a Southern lilt, full of authority and caring, stern say "It is not your time. Is this how you want to spend your Birthday? Dead? Live little one, you have so much to do you need to stop doing this to yourself. You need to stop, now." It sounded like the voice of reason and for ever on I called him "Reason".

"Live" he said. and my body started to return, I could feel the tingling as sluggish anemic blood attempted to move around the poor poisoned little body. Alyssa who had been working on me was relieved when I returned, I had scared her to death, with all my ranting before hand and turning blue. I proceed to tell her all I saw.

It took me a bit of help to heed the advice of "Reason" and by a bit of synchronicity on a solo trip to the mall I met some kids in a car. How embarrassing that some of my first questions were "do I know you?" "and what drugs do you do?" They replied "we'd like to know you" and "we had to give them up" much for the same reasons as me. They were all sober punk kids! I had a new bunch of instant friends, who found other ways to deal with their lives and took me to meetings with them and I learned that by talking to other kids I could cope with my issues and learn from Elder's some new coping skills. I had found some Therapy.

It took me a long time to get straight the different voices I heard in my head. I started to get concerned as I learned more about psychology that I could have some sort of disorder, hearing voices? That is crazy! So I started integrating these voices into my consciousness and telling myself they were aspects of me, in a way I was right but I wasn't to find that out till much later. Both my theories were correct. Spirit and Psychology in a way. Being a past Science nerd and a Spiritualist I need to be able to satisfy both sides.

Fast forward to the future and how all these stories come together, because my dear few readers I have taken you on a long journey about my known Spirit Guides, and I got to get to the punchline sooner or later.

In 2005 I was "called" as they say by the Orishas. I had started a Secret Occult Society with some friends and we would go on Ghost walks together and explore places in San Francisco. It was in this group I met my friend Mickey who saw the light go on when he spoke about the Orishas and Santeria. I had learned about them from books from my friend Shannon and I was excited to hear from someone who had been initiated to the mysteries. It was through his Ile (temple) where I was able to do so myself and explore and learn more about my abilities. Some of these stories will make it on these pages later. (of course in respect certain things will be left out, to respect privacy and etc.) but it was here that I learned the most about my Spirit Guides. Here was a place that told me I wasn't crazy and then suddenly everything made sense!

In was at one such Misa (Spiritual Mass) where a Santera told me she saw my Spirit guide and she was from the Congo. She had described Ghost Friend who had been with me my whole life. I knew then that if someone I had just met could describe her, there must be some truth to my little kid Ghost Friend idea!

Now I didn't learn about Reason's truth until I started writing this very blog. His voice I confused with Ghost Friend's at times in the past and thought it was the sound of my own consciousness. Although I now had the idea he was separate from Ghost Friend (who by now has told me her African name but since it is sacred to her I will keep referring to her as "Ghost Friend"  till she says ok) my best friend reminded me I had spoke about him before in the past. I thought perhaps he was a male past life come to give me advice or something. I had no idea that would be confirming my Spiritual beliefs!

I had started on that journey to find out if their were truth to family rumours and to find out more about my Partner's family. Whilst I researched what I could about my Father's Ancestors I found a very curious name on my Family tree through his Mum's side.

"Reason Rutledge Born 1728 in Abbeville, South Carolina. Died 1803. He is your 5th Great Grand Uncle"

Whoa. No wonder he felt so close. Reason is the name of an actual family member. I didn't just pull that out my butt. He really existed. For whatever reason, he's come to help his Grand Niece sort out her problems so that she can fulfill her purpose. Maybe it's helping other people know they aren't alone. Maybe it's connecting people to their Ancestors and telling people some aspect of them is still around to help us out when we need. Perhaps our Guardian Angels are not someone impersonal but someone related by blood.

When I see someone who has a person hanging around them that I know isn't in the here and now, so to speak, I will trust myself. I will trust my Ancestors and my Elder's so maybe if I listen, I could avoid some more costly mistakes. Mistakes that almost kept me dead.

I will listen to Reason.

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