I know who I am. For as long as I can recall, I have known who I am; and, for as long as I can recall, someone, somewhere has had trouble with that… I have ceased to give a fark. (That’s so cute! Dragon Speaking (un) Naturally — which I generally use when I want to produce large amounts of text because I have finger issues — has decided, all on its own — or, more than likely, was programmed to alert me — that I must have made an error when I said “fuck” and apparently what DSuN thinks I wanted to say — or, possibly, should have said — was a word that does not exist on its own, “fark”; although, just now, when I actually spoke the word — “fark” — DSuN decided — again on its own — that I meant to say “park.” We have issues, Dragon Speaking UnNaturally and I.
Throughout my relationship with technology, I have encountered stumbling blocks over and over again with the electronic miracle that is the World Wide Web and with personal computers. Recently I discovered that there is a name for such folk as I; we are called “sliders.” It was somewhat comforting to know that I am not alone in the way that my energy interacts with electronic devices; we sliders are legion and I would imagine that many of us are considered strange in some way by those who know us.
I’ve been strange all my life, though; this is nothing new. I became aware of this as a child when I began having to interact with adult human beings. My mother — who was a certified, documented genius kind of person — taught me how to read long before I was in school, secretly hoping, I am sure, that I was a little clone of her… but I was not, not even close, but I did take to reading like a duck takes to water. While I cut my teeth on the standard childhood fare, once left to my own devices I quickly moved on to the Books of Knowledge and the Encyclopedia Britannica and to reading words and concepts and information that were far beyond my ability to actually comprehend because reading and understanding aren’t the same thing. But I didn’t care about “understanding” then and I still don’t. I was hooked on books in the way that some people become hooked on addictive substances. I still read things that are beyond my intellectual capacity — sometimes I will read then two or three times — because I maintain that at some level that I just don’t have conscious access to, I do, in fact, grok that information and I trust that it is in there, informing me… because, from time to time, it seems to do just that.
I have a shit memory; always have had. (Damn Dragon Speaking just doesn’t like swearwords, no matter how much I train it. Frustrating.) That said — the odd part about my having a shit memory is I that I have been known, on occasion, to spit out verifiable facts that I didn’t know I knew; so, there’s that. I don’t know why or how that happens. And I don’t really care, as it seems to work for me.
Before I was in school, one spring afternoon when I was on my own, out in the backyard, I suddenly “knew” that that day was my birthday. I’d received an internal message that I was to go inside, get all my stuffed animals, and set them out on the front lawn to celebrate. I did as I’d been instructed, knowing that that internal voice was correct despite all previous evidence to the contrary.
This was around the same time that my evil grandparents, short on cash, decided that my closest sister and I were pretty darn marketable what with us looking more like our Cuban father than like our pale-skinned mom. So, we got trafficked. That’s when I learned how to leave my body. It was an excellent escape. I used to dive into the earth and swim up into the trees from which vantage point I seemed to be able to ‘use’ my body in much the same way that a puppeteer uses a puppet, thus facilitating a pretty rapid turn-around of the unwanted clientele. Mind you, the whole disassociation thing, around 60 years later, would become a very real challenge to all the psychotherapy I’d end up being engaged in, but it saved my mind at the time and, eventually, with copious assistance, my poor body and I have reconciled my occasional but very necessary childhood abandonment of her.
So, you see, I got off to a “good” start with all the so-called “woo-woo” stuff. I don’t think there’s any point in denying that my childhood experiences made me weird… even as a kid I was different from other kids. I spent most recess periods in elementary school by myself, sitting on the back steps of the school, communing with the trees… attempting to see if there were any little kids that had maybe gotten trapped inside them, and trying to see the faeries, which I was never able to do, but I knew they were there; I knew it with every cell in my body. (I still do… I know right where they live where I am now. I knew when they got pissed off and left, and I knew when they came back.)
As a kid I’d developed a passionate interest in the planets. This interest blossomed when I discovered astrology in my first year of college while perusing a multi-story used bookstore in center city Philadelphia. On its own, the bookstore in itself was like a dream come true for me! I discovered, in that same year, tarot which is still a part of my life, though I no longer read professionally.
I have an entire YouTube channel — My Alternate Reality ( http://youtu.be/DXUOBDhP_x8 ) — devoted to much of the strangeness that I’ve experienced. The end result of my going public with my strangeness seems, though, to have resulted in a significant number of my younger siblings determining that I am as delusional as my now deceased schizophrenic sister once was. These are intelligent people, my siblings, yet somehow, they have failed to realize that there is a huge difference between my sister’s “visions” and my own as I am aware that my visions are just that, visions, or, if you prefer, hallucinations. I am aware that there is a portion of the brain — the Sylvian Fissure — that generates “visions”. My brain has always done things like this and, somehow, I have functioned pretty well in the world despite the shortcomings of having been psychologically damaged for much of my time on the planet, the result of the aforementioned childhood trauma. (As I edit this piece for the fifth time, it occurs to me that my siblings may be taking issue with the whole sexual trafficking thing since it didn’t happen to them. But it didn’t happen to them for very good reasons: 1) one of them was about as white as you can be and, therefore, worthy of celebration, and 2) My grandfather died on the very week-end that the other two were scheduled for “their first visit to Nana and Pop-Pop.” Mom’ words.)
My schizophrenic sister, in contrast to me, was absolutely positive that there were men who wanted to rape her and that they were, in fact, very real and were at that time — and every day — stalking her. (Golly gee, I wonder how her poor brain could ever have come up with something that outrageous… Oh! Wait! I do not wonder! I know exactly what damaged her because it damaged me too, it just damaged me differently.)
At any rate, around the time when I acquired a rapidly advancing case of diffuse progressive systemic sclerosis in 1988 and my body began, slowly but surely, turning into leather, I was fortunate enough to have a friend who recommended me to the exceptional woman who would provide me with my first experience with alternative healing. Since there was — and still is — no cure for diffuse progressive systemic sclerosis, and because I refused to take painkilling drugs for fear of becoming addicted to them, alternative healing seemed like the perfect alternative. I went on to work with a variety of healers, many of whom, after I began to exhibit signs of returning to so-called normal, began suggesting that I was a healer as well. After having done some work with a group of Lakota Sioux Medicine Women, they invited me to return with them to their home to train with them. I was honored by the invitation, but I turned them down.
I avoided thinking about the whole ‘healer’ thing for as long as I could… Right up until I had… Wait for it… Can you guess? I had a vision! Yes, that’s right, the entire room I was in filled up with light and I found myself confronted with a nebulous sort of being who opened my chest, as though my rib cage were a closet, and from which there then emanated numerous slimy-looking black things that slunk across my bedroom floor and squeezed themselves out the bottom of the closed window. The very large Light Being then told me that I had a job to do helping other people to release the demons that they were carrying.
My response? A silent WTFF! That was no fairy and I was no Christian; I didn’t know what to think. Rather boldly, I asked the immense light what or who it was.
“Michael,” was all it said and it disappeared.
That experience was and remains one of the most vivid experiences I have had with my so-called visions. In attempting to determine what had happened to me, I set about searching around to discover more about this Michael creature and I discovered that he was an archangel whose main job it was to expel demons. So, I guess all those insistent healers had been correct… or at least they were on the same wavelength as this St. Michael person… being… angel… mentally-generated illusion?
If only to save my sanity from future startling visits, I determined to pay attention to all the messages I’d been given.
That’s how I started doing healing work with people. That’s how I discovered that all I had to do was look at a person’s photograph — as long as their eyes were really clear — and I could see whatever was sort of haunting them and, apparently, make it go away. It wasn’t always demons I found; sometimes it was other people who had provided these folks who were calling me with some kind of trauma, the ramifications of which they couldn’t seem to shake. I didn’t really want to be doing this work; it was nothing I would have ever chosen to do. It had literally come to get me.
Eventually, I ended up getting into much “lighter” work than demon-release, acquiring training and certification in various types of modalities. I became a certified Inner-Faith minister and got an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree; I learned a few types of hands-on healing which I ended up doing for some years although I have to say, I never really enjoyed the work. I love my life now that I’ve stepped away from all that. I suspect that it was all simply something I had to learn from… or, perhaps, simply another level of training/experience that I needed to get to be where I am now… or, then again, maybe I’ve been working through some sort of karma because, yes, I believe in that as well. I don’t know and it doesn’t matter as I am, at this point, quite content.
It was during the period of time when I was working as a shamanic hands-on healer, that I’d met a woman who introduced me, in a sense, to myself. She had been a client for a while and one day, when she walked in the door, and saw me sitting cross-legged on the floor, she tossed a pamphlet into my lap from a group called Walk-Ins for Evolution. She told me to read it. She stood there and observed as I did as she’d instructed; it was a quick read; and in what I read I recognized myself. I looked up at her and said, “I’m a walk-in.”
“I know,” she said, and followed that by saying that she also knew that I hadn’t known that I was and that’s why she had brought the article for me to read; she knew, she told me, that I would recognize myself in it. That was one childhood mystery solved: the movable birthday. I’d never forgotten about it and had often thought about it. The ‘other’ birthday — the one I consider my real birthday — is the day that “I” — the energetic being that inhabits this body — walked-in to this body. The other date, the one on which this body entered the world (not breathing, by the way), I think of as my body’s birthday. I celebrate both, albeit with very little fanfare.
I’m still weird and I still have visions and I write about my life and all the troublesome stuff that I’ve been through specifically so that other people can see that they need not be ashamed of having been broken, of having behaved badly, or of being “weird,” and I paint as well… the vision stuff comes in very handy with the painting. Most of my work starts with “a vision;” artists call that “inspiration.”
This is my life; I am woo-woo. This is who I have been… and who I am. And this sort of strange shit is still happening.
PS: for more information on visions and hallucinations: