We’ve all at one point been tinkerbell begging for believers. Feeling alone, our truths discarded, we grasp for scant glimmers of faith. We’re sustained on our own truth and the morsels of validation we find in far reaching corners of life. I have been this desperate beast so often that I forget it’s not me— I don’t have to plead.
There are hoards of people who don’t believe in who I am. There are also many like me. The power of their will can still be transmitted through the miasmic fog of criticism. So many hearts are desperate to hear their own truth, our words make it to those who need to hear them. Always, there’s always someone to believe in you. I know this because I am here and I am not unique, you have allies and supporters. Why should I have begged for anything, then? Why am I only now learning to not to ask for forgiveness or permission?
I’ve been the queer youth looking for validation, the abuse victim fearful of rejection, and the psychic child who neve gave up. It may have begun being born on Friday the 13th with a spiritual mother praying to anyone who would listen, but I’ve always been connected to what I and many call the Other. Intuition and dreams come from this Other. My earliest memories are of talking to dandelions while I ate them and learning their personality, my mother waking me up from strange dreams of foreign yet familiar factories and machines and tragedy, mid-repetition “something is wrong, something is wrong, something is wrong”, and the ghosts.
I rarely use the term ghosts as to me all energy culminates in spirits and souls, but it can be useful for linguistic sake of differentiation. Most people believe in them or at least want to, and many cultures are deeply connected to spirits of the dead, but I do respect skeptics for having the misfortune of never witnessing proof of something more, something other.
Someday I believe science will uncover many facts regarding the paranormal. Our history as a species is twisted around strange phenomena. Many of our oldest myths come from solid facts with a little human consciousness mixed in. I have my own questions and have found a few answers.
Never in my life did I doubt the existence of these spirits, these ghosts. To me and my family, they were as real as we were. They didn’t frighten so much as pique the curiosity of a child who felt little attachment to the living. Being groomed, abused, and assaulted by living beings, I dedicated myself to the Other. I was never given any reason to doubt what I experienced was real. I was lied to by many people and I’ve lied to myself but the Other had never let me down. The more I explored, the more I understood the energy of life as well.
From early childhood until current day, I’ve developed a casual practice of communication with earth’s energies, all of them, or as many as mortal fallible senses can experience. While the hectic fugue state of moving from city to farm country has kept me from devoting as much time as I used to, this way of life is an every day, every moment type of experience.
A local psychic was filming in the candy shop I used to work at, doing cold readings for customers. A woman broke down sobbing after a message from her late father, another was told to let go of her survivors guilt from a friend who died in a car crash when she was young, and there was not one miss or hesitation throughout. I’ve seen cons and fakes and I’ve seen the real deal, and I was inclined to believe her. During a break she made some purchases and told me about when she realized as a little girl that she could see spirits, that she was born strange, and she said she could tell I was strange too. We discussed the openness and closedness of Sagittarians, our shared sun sign in astrology.
Suddenly she held my hand and told me my relationship was one to last, that it was no fragile or temporary thing. I told her I knew. The director told the cameramen to start rolling and they began recording our conversation. The psychic told me something great and wonderful would come into my life in four years, the exact time in our five year plan that my fiancé and I planned on trying for a baby.
I believed her because I could sense her energy pooling in her hand and feel the electricity in the air, because her words aligned with hopes and truths, and because she looked at me the same way I looked at her. I quit my job soon after and despite contacting both the film crew and the psychic herself, I never found a way to watch the recording. I would have loved to be able to show it to my children.
So rarely do I meet someone who understands. So rarely are my abilities appreciated or validated. Middle school and high school nearly beat the aspiring exorcist out of me. Even elementary school contains memories of ‘burn the witch’.
I would write theories and make art and try to put the pieces together as a teenager, and while I’d been learning the spiritual needs of the deceased, I still struggled to pull together the bigger picture. I was an occultist, a mystic, but also terrified to be known as such, and I knew of the spirits and of reincarnation but couldn’t reconcile them as being of the same cycle.
Stereotypical and predictable of people like me, it took psilocybin to stitch my answers together.
Twenty years old, a while after a difficult and draining situation where I met the spirit of a murderer, I decided to take shrooms for the first time. I was struggling with the after effects of the encounter and felt lost as to how I fit into the whole equation, the small one and the big one. The shrooms came to me, I didn’t need to seek them. I hadn’t crossed paths with the psychedelic before and yet just as I asked the universe for help, a reliable aquaintenced offered me potent magic mushrooms. Myself having hardly even a will to live, I took three times the normal dose for a beginner. I’m an advocate for mentally ill people to abstain from drugs, especially psychedelics, but I was already involved in drug addiction and from the conversation I had with the mushroom when I first held it in my hand, that I didn’t have anything to fear.
What a difficult sentence to write as a crazy person attempting to explain that their spirituality isn’t a delusion— but I’ve known delusion, and these conversations I have with plants have never let me down. Delusions lie to me, but the earth never has.
As I lay on my floor swimming in the sea as the dolphin I had dreamed of, I had one of these same conversations. Some would call it communing. I don’t know who I spoke to and I don’t remember what was said, what was spoken is lost to me but I remember what I learnt.
How can ghosts exist in a world of rebirth? The flow cannot be disrupted but the parts of life that go through it are not so infallible. Yes, the soul is undying and we continue on through many lives, but as a single life experiences trauma and disruption, so can the journey as one in a whole.
Versions of myself are frozen in time by trauma and so are other things. The murderer and his victim, the cats who felt more loyalty to us than life’s purpose, the widow in the window still waiting having forgotten her lover has moved on, and the snapshots of memory that space and substance contain (the walls that bleed, the footsteps upstairs every night at 10pm like clockwork, an eerie scream in the swamp, fragments without form or cognition), stuck for now. I wouldn’t be surprised if my own spirit becomes snagged and I struggle to be reborn once more, one of the reasons I believe so deeply in the alchemy of self, so that I may be ready.
As a dolphin, I could understand the concepts far easier. Being creatures of wavelengths and communication, knowledge and family, and being closer to the primal core of life than a human, regressing into my past life allowed me to come back with many questions answered. Spirits of the dead are not anomalies in this greater system but are injuries in need of healing.
So many confusing interactions I’ve had suddenly made so much retroactive sense. Flowers and dead things give lots of advice but much of it is beyond my reasoning, but something that has been imparted to me several times is that ‘nothing really goes anywhere, everything goes everywhere’. It’s one of the reasons I’d get caught up in my rationalization of ‘another side’ or why spirits could be conjured of identities that have most certainly passed on to other lives already. Our understanding of a whole soul or a whole spirit is incorrect due to the many layers of being.
I seek these answers because I have duties as someone born able to learn in certain ways. With the experiences I’ve had, I can’t ignore my gut instincts. I’m not an exorcist, I’m a healer of trauma just as I have been since I decided I didn’t want to die.
I’m a way of being, not a new one in the slightest. You can believe in it or you can disregard it as a mentally ill person who’s self awareness is decent but not quite good enough. I respect skeptics and I would not wish to aggravate someone else’s delusion, so I have no quarrel with those who don’t can’t connect with my words. I am who I am and the ways I view and interact with reality are not much different from yours. Many of my beliefs are similar to your own, if you believe bodies simply decompose and return to the earth, if you believe in heaven, if you’re agnostic, atheist, religious, or believe in love, or that we can truly be known by each other, or if you think we can’t. I believe you.
Thank you for reading, this train of thought will continue in ‘My Progress’.