Too Beautiful for Earth

It took three people to prevent her from collapsing and countless family members pressing in as they slowly moved down the aisle towards the casket. Once there, her knees buckled and her sobbing intensified as she cried “No, no, my baby…” She leaned in as if to pick him up from his crib, but all in attendance knew that was no longer an option.

He did not even fill the baby coffin. He wore a white satin suit, probably his Christening outfit, and a small knit hat to keep him warm. His legs were stiff, sticking straight out. My fleeting thought was that a doll had been substituted. He looked so sweet, but lifeless. Dead. A baseball jersey was draped over the side. I wondered if that was his father’s number. He was a junior after all.

The preacher’s gentle, but commanding voice told us to remain standing in support of the family while they grieved. We all heeded her words. Black, white, Christian, Jewish, atheist, the greatest baseball player on the team, the benchwarmer, pro-ball players, amateurs, co-workers, mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, friends, acquaintances and everything in between, it did not matter. The grief in the room cut deep. The tears flowed.

One of the five preachers stood with the mother to rub her back and whisper words of prayer. A volunteer nurse, in a full white nurse’s uniform complete with cap and sensible shoes, wiped her tears away. Another solicitous volunteer provided ice water and boxes upon boxes of tissues.

I admired greatly the family’s ability to let go and allow the church to take care of them. The stoic Irish Catholic in me would have been mortified by the attention despite the circumstances. The baby’s mother put her head back at one point and welcomed the people consoling her. She gave herself permission to fall apart in public and to me that was absolute strength beyond measure.

Even sitting down, the father was as tall as the nurse standing before him. He too allowed her to wipe his tears, but she did so with a washcloth. Tissues were not enough. He had long dreamed of having a son after his two little girls. His wish came true only to have it ripped away from his calloused hands in 3½ short months. Never one to show emotion, his tears were a clichéd, heady mix of lost dreams, dashed hopes and heartbreaking grief. Everyone knew it. He had lost his only son.

“Like God and Jesus,” proclaimed the preacher while the organist kept up with the pace and volume of her sermon. Such statements elicited amens from the crowd. She spoke of love, heaven and not knowing God’s plan. Music was ever present and boisterous. One particular refrain with the words “happy and free” included standing and clapping and waving hands in the air. Again, I was in awe. The music was uplifting. Uplifting? Wait a second. Are we supposed to actually enjoy the singing during this time of great sadness? I looked over at the baby’s mother. She was gently swaying her head with eyes closed. The songs would come to an end, but their power lingered just a bit.

The whole service was an emotional rollercoaster leaving us completely drained by the time it was over. I am not part of the family or even the inner circle. I am a mom of a player on the team; the baby’s father is my son’s coach. It’s been a week now, but when I think of that day, it still catches in my throat. I felt compelled to write about it; I don’t know why.

During the quiet visiting hour while waiting for the family to arrive, I was mad at myself for crying. I could not understand why my eyes kept filling with tears while everyone else seemed to be sitting quietly. At one point, my son nudged me and told me to Reiki myself. I even thought of waiting in the car until it was over. Instead, I breathed deeply hoping not to draw attention to myself. It took a while to calm down and the stillness caused this concept to surface: we are all one. Even if we are not physically related, we are still energetically connected. That is why the pain of another human being can affect us so deeply.

I would never wish this pain on any one, but because of that day I understood what it meant to be human at the most raw, most vulnerable level. In the mother, I witnessed strength in vulnerability. In the father, I saw love and loss behind the steel exterior. In the audience, I felt connection. It was devastating, humbling, and yes, even uplifting.

We never really know people’s stories or understand their soul lessons here on earth, but in moments when absolutely everything is lost, we can find compassion and, dare I say, love in one another. ❤️


From the baby’s funeral program: “An angel opened the book of life and wrote down my baby’s birth, then whispered as she closed the book…’too beautiful for earth’.”


Please say prayers for the family and send them love.


Reiki for Parents

Reiki is a great tool to have in your parenting toolbox. It’s a way to help your child without medicine, needles or doctor visits. I have used it to calm my son’s nerves before a baseball game, for relief when my son broke his arm, to help my kids fall asleep, for those middle of the night sickness bouts, when my kids have fevers, and for general anxiety/stress relief. (I do not use it alone because it’s not a replacement for medical care, but it is a way for me to actively help my children’s healing).

I am not saying it’s THE magic bullet. Is there such a thing in parenting? 😉 It really is a tool that enables you to be present with your children in a way that feels helpful, loving and empowering.

When I first started out in Reiki, I was only learning so I could help my sons. I quickly learned that Reiki was really more for me.

Let me back up and say we are all made of energy. We are not just a physical body. In simple terms, if you go to a wake and look at the person who is deceased, you know it’s them by their looks, but something is missing. The missing piece is their life force energy. Everything is energy and this is what you learn in class. I know it sounds kind of “woo-woo”, but I cannot stress this enough.

From an energy viewpoint, when we constantly focus on what is “wrong” with our children, we will find more problems. When my son was first diagnosed with PDD-NOS (autism spectrum), I reached out to special needs support groups, but they never worked for me personally. I always left the meetings feeling drained and more emotional than ever. In my GROW group for special needs moms, we hope to be able to take a step back and focus on ourselves so that we can really see the divine perfection in us and in each of our children.

Parents of special needs children are often stretched to the max. They are visiting doctors, taking kids to various therapies and preparing special meals. They are advocating for their children in school with teachers, therapists and IEP teams. They are seeking specialists, researching the latest treatments and figuring out ways to pay for it all. They have their own feelings of fear, anger and guilt which they may not have time to process. There is limited time for the caretakers to take care of themselves. Going for a mani-pedi (which I love!) is not the kind of “self care” that I am promoting.

When a parent can take a break and take some quiet time for soul growth/inner reflection, then there is a positive energy that can flow from the parent and ultimately to the child.

I am NOT perfect and I am not proud of the many times I have lost it with my kids. However, learning about energy, law of attraction, soul contracts, Reiki, etc. has really been so helpful in shifting my thought process.  It’s little daily things that we can do to stay on track so we can respond to situations that come our way instead of reacting impulsively. Instead of being down and saying “why me?”, I now say “bring it on!”.

inspiration, reiki

For the Highest Good

Before every Reiki session, I connect with my guides and angels and pray that the healing be “for the highest good”.  I love that phrase “for the highest good”.  I had never really understood it before I learned Reiki.

When you ask that things be for the highest good, it allows you to let go of any outcome.   When you know that God/Universe/Spirit has got your back, you are not as disappointed if the result is not what you wanted or expected.

Let me give you an example.  Both my sons play travel baseball and, if you know anything about youth baseball, you know how political and competitive it can be.  Instead of worrying and wringing my hands, I just pray that whatever happens in the game is for the highest good.  If my son is pitching and really not doing well, I pray that the coach will take him out (LOL!) and that his poor performance be for the highest good for all involved.  Maybe there’s something he needs to learn from this situation for his soul growth or maybe the batter needed that hit more than my son needed the strike.  When the score is super close and everyone is on the edge of their seat for a championship game, I pray that the winner of the game be for the highest good.  If the other team wins,  I figure that team needed the win more than we did.

Don’t get me wrong.  I’m pretty competitive when it comes to games and sports.  But when you think about “for the highest good”, it takes the edge off.  It’s disappointing to lose and then drive home with your crying kid in the car.  It’s difficult to explain that life is not all about winning.  However, as an adult, I’m really taking “for the highest good” seriously and looking at my life in a whole new light.

From a Reiki perspective, “for the highest good” means that the particular issue for which you sought Reiki, may not be resolved exactly the way you wanted. For example, if you come to me because of strange stomach issues, the Reiki may decide to help heal your unresolved anger deep inside your heart.  Coincidentally, you may find that your stomach pain goes away.

Reiki is intelligent.  It goes where it is most needed.  That is why I do not really need to know what is going on with a client when they come to see me.   I know that the Reiki will work “for the highest good” no matter what the client tells me.

As an aside, please do know that God/Universe/Spirit really does have you covered.  You are deserving of all that is good and the Universe will conspire to make it happen for you if it is part of your soul growth.

The next time you come in for a Reiki appointment, know that your healing will be “for the highest good” because of the greater life plan and soul lessons God/Universe has in store for you.  ❤

angels, inspiration, reiki

A Personal Angel Story

Three weeks ago, on a beautiful summer evening, my 12 year old son went to play capture-the-flag with all the neighborhood boys.  No sooner had they started the game, my son ran full speed and tripped over a small wall along the driveway.  The boys’ faces when they came to tell me confirmed that the injury was more than just a scrape.

As I arrived on the scene, I could see my son’s bloody face and he was writhing in pain.  My neighbor had already called 911 and was steadily holding my son’s arm with an ice pack — more likely to protect him from seeing his broken bone and puncture wound than to prevent swelling.  When he pulled back the ice pack to show me where the bone had pierced through the skin, I thought I would be sick to my stomach.

I knew immediately that I should be sending Reiki to my son.  I knew that this is what Reiki was all about — no special equipment, no special medical training needed! I could calm him down and medical personnel could do their thing.  Perfect!


On the exterior I was determined to remain calm so that my son could not see my fear.  I instinctively kept touching him to comfort him.  On the inside, my mind was racing and frantic.  The police and EMTs were asking me questions.  Neighbors were offering help.  Some of the boys who saw what happened were crying.  My son was crying, screaming, squirming and asking questions I couldn’t bear to answer.   It was all just too much.

When they opened the ambulance doors to lift my son inside, I tried to fill the ambulance with Reiki by drawing the symbols in my mind.  But, I was simply not calm or centered.  Frustrated, I thought things would be better inside the ambulance with the doors closed and with fewer people watching. However, my son was still in excruciating pain and I was unable to bring my thoughts to Reiki.  Feeling desperate and afraid, with my hands holding on my son’s “good” arm, I lowered my head and begged – BEGGED – ArchAngel Raphael to please come and send his healing.  I couldn’t do it.  I needed extreme help.

After a moment, I looked up and saw 111 on the monitor for my son’s heart rate and blood pressure.  111 is a fantastic angel number!  I knew right then that things would be okay.  Seeing that number at that exact moment brought me the tiny bit of hope that I needed.

Has everything been perfect and blissful since my 111 sighting? Certainly not!  I knew, and still know, that we have a tough road ahead.  The bumps along the way are here for a reason and I have to believe there is a greater learning experience I just don’t understand at the moment.  I still get signs and numbers from above and they have definitely kept me going.

So what are the “take aways” for you from this story?

1) Always ask the angels for help.  Be open to the signs  — repeated numbers, coins, feathers, coincidences that seem too good to be true, or special song lyrics.

2) Reiki works.   I know it does, but I was too attached to the outcome in this case (hello ego!).  When my son was in surgery, I was able to email my Reiki friends and ask for their help and healing.  I had to let go of my “I should do Reiki!” and let others take over.

3) ArchAngel Raphael is the angel of healing.  His color is green.  If you want to send prayers and healing to someone, imagine them basking in green light and ask ArchAngel Raphael for help.

Thanks for listening to my story.  ❤

reiki, Uncategorized

Depression and Life-Force-Energy

From a life-force-energy point of view, I find this article fascinating. People describe a heavy feeling as if they are climbing Mt Everest. Guilt, anger, jealousy, anxiety, sadness are all low vibrating energies. People with depression literally have low life force energy and they feel it physically.   Traditional treatments for depression can help, but I would also add Reiki or some form of energy or spiritual healing to the mix so that mental, physical AND spiritual symptoms can be addressed and balanced.

Huffington Post: What Depression Feels Like


Stress–>Despression–>Reiki–>New World View

A fantastic story about what it feels like to go for your first Reiki treatment…and subsequently how learning Reiki can change your views on life itself.   How Julie, the woman described in the story, started taking Reiki classes and made small changes in her life is similar to my own personal experience with Reiki classes and spiritual growth.  Enjoy!


books, inspiration, meditation, NDE

Summer Reading List

If you are looking for some spiritually minded summer reading or want to get a jump start on my future class offerings, here are some books to check out this summer.

Dying To Be Me by Anita Moorjani

(very inspiring story and a Book Club Discussion book for Sept/Oct)

Moorjani describes her early life, her 4 year battle with stage cancer and her subsequent near death experience (NDE).  Her medical records prove that she was riddled with tumors and open sores from her toxic chemotherapy.  Within weeks of having died and come back, she was miraculously cancer free.  Her message to the world is that we are all love.  Truly an inspirational read and it was interesting to compare her NDE to Eben Alexander’s NDE in Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon’s Journey into the Afterlife.

10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works by Dan Harris

(a book for Meditation 101)

You may recognize Harris’ name from Good Morning America, Nightline and his reporting on ABC.  This is his personal account of how he skeptically and eventually embraced meditation.  If you are at all dubious about the benefits of meditation, if you think you do not have time to meditate, if you think you could never sit still for meditation, then this book is for you.  Even if you already believe in the benefits of meditation, his stories of celebrities, politicians and scandal make for a fun read.

All is Well by Louise Hay and Mona Lisa Schulz, M.D., PH.D.

(my own personal reading)

I am already aware that imbalance in our emotional centers (chakras) can cause physical illness, but this book is an easy read and reinforces my personal ongoing education in this topic.  “Structured around these emotional centers, the authors outline common imbalances and probably mental causes for physical illness….including case studies that show a complete program for healing that draws from all disciplines, including both tradtional and alternative medicine, affirmations, nutritional changes, and so much more.”

Born Knowing by John Holland

(my own personal reading)

Described as “a medium’s journey accepting and embracing my spiritual gifts,” this book was recommended to me by my cousin Celeste Woods (a spiritual medium herself who many may know from her work here in NJ).  The back of the book has interesting Q&A and some exercises to enhance intuition and spiritual awareness.


Blind Obedience

The other day I spoke of two influential TED talks.  Here is just one more to add to the list.  I wanted to write about it separately because it has a slightly different message, because I wanted to add in Elizabeth Gilbert’s comments, and because this is the story of a teenage girl who has already lived an extraordinary life.

Do you remember Malala Yousafzai?  In 2009, Malala was writing under a pseudonym for the BBC as she described her life in the Swat Valley of Pakistan under Taliban rule.  At the time she was 11 or 12 years old.  She was later in a New York Times documentary and her advocacy for girls education continued to garner attention. In 2012, she was shot in the head by a Taliban member on her way home from school.  The international outcry thrust her immediately into the spotlight.  She was nominated and awarded several prizes for her bravery and advocacy.  She wrote a book, spoke at the United Nations, met with presidents and heads of states and has been nominated twice for the Nobel Peace Prize.  This year, she will be just 17 years old.

Credit goes to Malala’s parents and her father in particular. The way she was raised defies many strong Pakastani and Muslim traditions regarding girls.  Her father Ziauddin Yousafzai spoke March 17th in Vancouver at TED2014.  I am copying Elizabeth Gilbert’s Facebook post directly because she writes so beautifully about what he said.  (Elizabeth Gilbert is best known as the author of Eat, Pray, Love and had her own TED talk this year.)

From Elizabeth Gilbert:


Last night at the TED conference, I wept while listening to Ziauddin Yousafzai speak about his daughter, Malala.

You have have heard of Malala Yousafzai. She is the brave young Pakistani girl who was shot in the head by a Taliban gunman for speaking up on behalf of education for girls.

Her father began his extraordinary speech by saying that in tribal and patriarchal societies, a man is known by his sons. “But I am one of the few fathers who is known by my daughter,” he said. “And I am proud of that.”

He spoke about how, in rural Pakistan, when a girl is born, it is never cause for celebration, but rather shame. As she grows up, she is taught only one virtue: Obedience.

Yousafzai refused to follow suit. He celebrated his daughter from the day she was born, and wrote her name in the family tree — a 300 year-old document that had never mentioned a female. He put Malala in school — not only so that she could know her own potential through education, but also for the mere political defiance of writing his daughter’s name on an enrollment form, thus signaling her very existence as a human being. (He had never seen the names of any of his 5 sisters on any document whatsoever; they simply did not exist within their own country.)

And most of all he said, “I taught her to unlearn the lesson of obedience.”

Which was such a shocking transgression that a Taliban gunman shot her for it. (I always think it’s particularly telling that she was shot in the head — shot in the MIND. Anything to shut down that female brain.)

She survived, famously, and still fights for education for girls. (She spoke last night to us from a video feed — she couldn’t come to the conference because she’s in SCHOOL — and she dazzled.)

This girl is extraordinary; this father is extraordinary.

He finished his speech by saying that people always ask him what he did to make Malala into such a strong warrior. He says it’s not what he did; it’s what he DIDN’T do: “I didn’t clip her wings.”

I was so honored and emotional to be there last night to hear this, and wanted to share it with you all.

Unlearn your obedience, women.

Teach your girls to unlearn their obedience.

And let a star shine in the crown of this father, and all parents, who guide their daughters to grow strong.


Unlearn Obedience.  My goodness!  How many times do we blindly follow the herd without even thinking?  Certainly, rules have their place and keep our society safe and sound.  I have always been a rule follower in order to be the “good girl.”  However, after reading Anatomy of the Spirit by Carolyn Myss and after seeing this particular story, I can’t help but think that many times, in order to experience soul growth, it is necessary to break away from our “tribe” and the strong hold it has on our being.  Consciously being aware of our cultural background and upbringing is important, but being able to stand up for our own true Selves is more empowering spiritually.  I am not saying that you should blatantly disobey all rules or disrespect your family.  What I am saying is that when you consciously know, deep in your heart, who you are and what is important to you and what you stand for, then you are not afraid to stand up for your Self, despite what may be going on around you.

Are there any rules or cultural norms that you believe are holding you back?  Can you acknowledge them and still be true to your Self?  It’s not easy.  Many times, it may take all of your inner strength to stand up for yourself.  Maybe not Malala-get-shot-in-the-head-international-spotlight courage, but courage none-the-less.