Sacred Travel…Reflections of Self [California dreaming, part 2…Mount Shasta]

The road is a place of contemplation for me, in which I experience myself from outside the box of everyday reality.  Traveling brings me closer to the essence of ‘I am’, stripped raw of the trappings of comfort and routine.  In many ways travel is essential to my being, as I count on it for deeper understanding of self.  My ancestors were Travelers, Gypsies of the Irish kind…Tinkers, and Pikeys, they spent their lives traveling from one place to another in fancy wagon houses, selling their wares.

I often think about my great-great grandfather; who traveled from Ireland to the United States, leaving his wagon behind for a little house in the hills of Vermont.  I think of him, when I am traveling about the back roads, and highways, of my home and abroad.  I feel a kinship to him, and his kin, a feeling of likeness.  Although, I have lived in the same house for almost 20 years (my husbands doing), I need to go, be and explore, in order to feel whole.  Some of these travels are close by, and some are not.  But no matter the distance, I rely on the travel to show me who I am, and where I am going.

My trip to California was like most of my travels, a spiritual thing.  This journey was different then others in the fact that myself and my fellow travelers agreed that we would be open & guided by Spirit.  We did not allow for wrong turns to enter our mind space.  This did not mean we were never off the planned course, it simply meant a decision was made, that whatever direction we were taken was the right one.  There is something absolutely freeing about such travel, for one it means you avoid the whole pissed off, I’m late mentality.

We decided in the air, flying into L.A., that we would be heading North to Mount Shasta (10.5 hours north), something I do not regret in the least.  As we had arrived in Shasta when I last blogged, it is where I shall pick up.

Mount Shasta

Mount Shasta (Úytaahkoo or “White Mountain) is a well known Sacred destination.  At an elevation of 14,179 feet, it is an ear-popping drive through a mountain path of deep green.  I was in awe!  The terrain of the mountain path reminded me of the Lord of the Rings, it was magnificent and daunting at the same time, moving me both emotionally, and spiritually.  Driving up the winding mountain road, I knew that I was connecting with something powerful and not completely explainable.  Known for it’s powerful vortexes (spiraling Earth energy centers), and the lava flowing deep in it’s core, it is a force to be acknowledged.

The seclusion, lack of people, and energetic feel of lava running below the surface, were reminiscent of Iceland.  There was something primal about the place, as if the elements were somehow more alive, their presence making up for the lack of human energy.  I love such places!  I love how they expand my consciousness, demanding that I use all of my senses to properly see my surroundings.

We stayed in Shasta for 2 nights, not a whole lot of time, but long enough to know that I will go back someday in the near future.  Our home for the stay was a 1970’s style chalet-style Motel, called the Alpine Lodge.  It was a cute mini-apartment with 3 queen beds and a kitchenette.  the yellow and orange interior was highlighted by a wall mural of trees, which made myself and my traveling companions instantly fall in love.  We love the odd & unusual, and the fact that there was a fantastic coffee shop just across the street, capable of satiating my love of espresso.

On our first night in Shasta we decided we should introduce ourselves to the Spirits of the Place, and did so by journeying in our minds through drumming and vocal toning.  This was a powerful experience for us all, and we found ourselves connecting  individually to different aspects of the mountain.  My sister Sandy found herself within the hollow spaces of the mountain, deep inside one of the caves that open within the mountains peak.  She found herself remembering her previous journey there, almost 10 years ago.  My friend Missy found herself connecting to something that would not make sense until the following day, and I connected to energetic beings made of light.

Now, I understand the idea of ‘light beings’ may make some people feel uncomfortable, and send their mind searching for the safe bounds of known reality. Some may even begin questioning whether the person telling the story is sane,  or has suddenly drank the conspiracy theory Kool-aid.  But once again, I will remind you that you are reading the blog of a person who makes their living talking to the Dead, and frequently goes on about their experiences with Nature Spirits.  In the telling of this tale, I am as always deeply centered in my reality.

Connecting with extra-terrestrial/extra-dimensional beings is not an uncommon conversation, when discussing Mount Shasta.  Look it up on line, and you will find many, many, many tales of encounters with such beings.  The other thing you will find is stories of Big Foot, and unexplained beings in the woods.  You may want to believe that all of the people telling the tales are a bit looney, but then again, you may want to ask yourself whether you truly believe we are the only sentient beings in the Universe.

My experience as I said, is my reality, and I experienced a channeling with multiple (I believe 3) light beings.  This was something I did aloud, similarly to how I speak with the Spirits of the Dead.  My sister Sandy asked most of the questions, as I worked as translator for those choosing to make contact with us.  The message we received was around the importance of sound and light, in particularly when it came to healing the planet and land.  Now they were not suggesting that we just say fuck it, and be gluttonous pigs,  wasting precious resources, without a care in the world, because hey all we need to do is sing and spread some light around.  They were instead speaking of how sound, in particular, effects the living world.  This was something I immediately felt as truth, as I have been working as a Sound Healer for the last 15 years, and spend a whole lot of time singing the sacred songs of place.

They spoke of how they, like the beings of Nature were deeply concerned for our world and species in this time of great transition, how we needed to become more aware of the living world around us, and step fully into the sacredness of life.  The visitation was brief, lasting about 20 minutes, but in that time, I felt as if I had received a lot of information in a short period of time, like a computer downloading files, and that it would be quite some time, before I had fully acclimated the knowledge they shared.

The next day when we woke, it was obvious that Missy was not completely balanced.  Sandy and I noticed that she was off, when she came stumbling out of the bedroom, grunting and grumbling like a bear just out of hibernation.  We asked if she was OK, and she explained that she was not sure what was going on, but felt like she had been connecting to something all night long.

Just after doing some sound healing @ the Crystal Matrix shop in Shasta.

That morning after breakfast we headed into town, to check out a Crystal shop that had caught Sandy and Missy’s eye the night before, when they had gone searching for groceries.  The shop ‘The Crystal Matrix Gallery’ was filled with wonders, as it quickly became apparent that most of the crystals were awake, and many of them seemed to be sentient, or carrying a connection to other beings.  The shop owner had worked with Crystals for over 30 years, and was clearly making a living selling crystals because he had to, it was his life’s work.  By that I mean, he felt a love for the Crystals and the beings connected to them, he was a steward of the rock people, a keeper and handler of the mineral kind.

The Dragonstone

Within moments of being in the store, the first crystal of our journey had been found.  A double terminated amber colored, smokey quartz, with a whole lot of activity going on inside of it.  It was a powerful piece, and we all felt it was connected to the Earth Healing work we had been called to California to do.  The second piece was more personal, and explained the odd behavior and imbalance Missy had been displaying all morning.  It was a dark opaque stone, that fit comfortably in ones palm.  It was covered in markings that looked like ancient writing, only the markings had not been made by man.  The stone appeared to be a form of tektite (molten debris from meteorites), but there was definitely a presence connected to it.  It was said to be the thymus gland of a dragon.  Now here again, I know this sounds woo-woo, and hokey, but whether you believe it was the actual gland of a being, or simply a stone, it held tremendous presence, and a hefty price tag. 

My view on Dragons goes the same way as as all otherworldly beings.  There is something at the base of all the folk lore, it may not be as grand or magical as the stories have portrayed it, but life seldom is.  The other piece I would add here, is the mummified dinosaur found in Canada,pretty much in tact, certainly does resemble our fictitious imagery of dragons.  http://www.nationalgeographic.com/magazine/2017/06/dinosaur-nodosaur-fossil-discovery/

What was most remarkable was the way in which Missy and the stone connected to one another.  The spirit residing in the stone, and Missy’s aura both extended outward, as if reaching for one another.  No matter the price tag, it was obvious she would not be leaving the store without the stone.

We left the store, with both the amber-colored, smokey quartz, and the dragon stone, as well as a few smaller stones I felt compelled to purchase.  I was amazed at how many of the stones in this particular shop were connected to beings.  This does not mean the beings were trapped in the stones, simply that the stones were an access point for connection.  I have a handful of sentient stones in my possession, some of them holding the essence of the stone itself, and some holding connection to other beings; working like a walky-talky to the other world.

After our experience with the stones in the Crystal Matrix, we headed out for a day trip to Paradise, CA to visit our father’s best friend.  This was not an option, this was something my Dad had been actively working on, the entire trip so far.  It was important, as we had not had a chance to connect with Mark, since my fathers passing 4 years ago.  It was a healing time for him and us, as we spent the day reminsicing; telling stories of the wild and crazy antics of my father & his best friend/soul mate Mark.

The trip to Paradise was not particularly remarkable in a spiritual way, but the trip back most certainly was.  After leaving Marks home, and heading back to Shasta I noticed a Sun Dog in the sky.  A Sun Dog is an atmospheric phenomenon that consists of a bright spot to the left and/or right of the Sun.  Sun Dogs are rare, and most often you see only bright spot, either to the left or right of the sun.  I have seen them before, and know that symbolically they are a sign that big change is near.  It is seen as a blessing or a sign that luck is with you in such times.  The Sun Dog we saw coming back from Paradise was remarkable in more than one way.  Firstly, it was a complete circle around the sun, with bright sun spots to the left, right, and above the sun, and a rainbow outline encompassing it.  Secondly, it was remarkable in the amount of time that it lasted.  We watched, filmed, and photographed the Sun Dog for 53 minutes.  It was breath taking, and energetically one could not help but feel as if we were being charged by it.  The experience was so phenomenal that we were soon pulling out our crystals; particularly the amber-colored, smokey quartz that had already made it obvious to us, that it was solar powered.

We arrived home (at the Alpine Lodge) late that evening, feeling as if we had been through some kind of attunement.  Both to the Crystals we had purchased, and the Sun Dog in the sky.  We remarked at the other amazing things we had seen on our way back to Shasta; such as the strange cloud formations over the mountain itself.

The next day we began our day, at the same coffee shop (Seven Sun’s Cafe), and then headed back to the Crystal Matrix for some Sound Healing.  We knew we needed to do sound work in Shasta, and also knew it would happen in multiple places.  The first; the crystal shop, was truly amazing.  The owner had an ancient singing bowl, that had been attuned to the energy of Sekemet (an Egyptian Goddess), and I was eager to combine my voice with its.  The toning there was amazing, as we were surrounded by high-energy crystals, at the base of the summit to Mount Shasta.  This experience was only the first of 3 major sound spots that day.

Water blessings for the new stones…lots of water Spirits in the headwaters of the Sacremento.

Annointing my third-eye, with the water of the Sacramento Headwaters.

The second stop, was the headwaters of the Upper Sacremento River, where the Undines (water Spirits) are remarkably present.  I sang to them, as I submerged stone after stone, into the icy waters.  The headwaters come from deep within Mount Shasta itself, each drop charged by the volcanic and vortex energy of the place.  The crystal clear water, travels from the glacial peaks, through underground lava tubes, before exiting into the light of day. The location of  headwaters is easily accessed, as it is part of a city park, that anyone can go to without charge.

The third stop, was the mountain itself.  We drove our car as far up the mountain road as we could…which was still quite a ways from the summit.  We stopped when the snow prohibited us from traveling any further, the road blocked by over 6 feet of snow.   At this point we turned around, and headed back a short distance; away from the crazy hikers/climbers, where we could sit with the silence of the mountain and sing the soul song of the land.

80 degrees, and 6 feet of snow, this is roads end for Mount Shasta until mid summer.

Elevation 6950′, as high as we could go in our sandals and flip flops.

This last stop, the one nearly to the top of the mountain, was humbling and awe inspiring.  When you sing the song of the land, you are not simply harmonizing…you are connecting/channeling the voice of the land itself, the Spirit of Place/Genius Locus, reverberates through you, filling you with the essence that is the place.  Mount Shasta is a powerful healer, one that I know will call me back, again & again; like Glastonbury Tor, and the Western Shores of Ireland, it holds a connection to my being.  In our brief meeting, we became family.  The Spirit of Place that is Shasta, is kindred to me…we belong!

I hope you enjoyed the read, that it pushed on the corners of your personal reality, and made you think on the world differently.  We are living in changing times, and many of the things we believed impossible are now proving us wrong.  I do not claim to know the secrets of the Universe, but I do believe there are wonders yet to be experienced in the greater world and in our own back yards.  When we approach the planet as a sentient being, and give ourselves over to the unknown, we expand our consciousness and become more.  Travel for me is a vessel of such change, but the magic of travel can come onto you whether you have traveled thousands of miles, or only a few blocks.

spreading love-salicrow

STORIES OF SPIRIT…Pina Coladas and Cheeseburgers [errand girl of the dead]

My Aunt Sheila died a couple of years ago.  In many ways, she was more like a big sister, as she was only 7 years older than me, and had to drag me along a lot when she was a teenager.   When she died, she started using a particular song to get my attention, whenever she needed to communicate with those she loved who were still alive, particularly her daughter Morgan.

Now Sheila and I did not have the same taste in music, and the song she chose is one that I do not particularly like, Rupert Holmes ‘Escape’, the 1980’s ‘Pina Colada’ song.  In short, she loved it, I hate it.

A few weeks ago, she began popping into my head with her favorite song, simply singing the chorus in my head “If you like Pina Coladas, and getting caught in the rain”.  By the time the first verse is done, I know it’s her and am generally begging her to stop singing it.  In truth, she is very clever.  Using a song I don’t like, grabs my attention, like being stung by a hornet.  I just want it to stop.

One night, after getting my full attention with her musical serenade, she told me she needed me to reach out to her daughter, and let her know how proud she was of her, and how she was watching over her.  This was not a surprising statement, and made me aware of the fact that her daughter was really mourning her, at this moment in time.  I reached out to my cousin, who is more of a niece, passing on my aunts message.  This seemed to be sufficent for the moment.

It was not!

Sheila is opportunistic, and spends a lot of her time, trying to figure out the best way to reach out to people.  Friends of hers have sent me videos and pictures with orbs in them, asking me if I think this could be Sheila.  My answer is always yes, as I know her to be a ‘pushy’ Spirit.  This is not a bad thing, simply a fact.  If she wants you to know she’s around, she will keep at it, until you do.

About a week after she was serenading me in the car, she took advantage of the fact that I was going to be driving through the same town her daughter lived in, on my way to the airport.  Normally, a trip to the airport would be a tight schedule, but our flight to Milwaukee (to teach Earth Magic) was an early morning one, so we planned to stay with friends in Boston, the night before.  Which meant more time to be maneuvered by Spirit.

It has always been my belief, that getting there is half the fun.  I love road trips, and the feeling of being slightly sleep deprived, and giddy.  I love spontaneous stops along the way, to observe the beauty of nature, or the weirdness of little towns.  Thankfully, so did my traveling companions, my sister Sandy and our ‘adopted’ sister Missy (who was driving Sandy and I to Boston).  With this in mind we gave ourselves over to the fact, that there would be stops along the way, and they would most likely be led by Spirit, and Bessy; the genius locus/spirit of place, that is Missy’s vehicle.

Bessy loves adventure, which means there is no straight shot to Boston, but instead a meandering road of wyrd opportunity.   The first stop was literally 5 minutes down the road, when we needed to stop for some wyrd car malfunction, only to see we were parked next to a huge head of Witches Broom growing on an old pine.  The pine’s roots were down in the ravine next to the curb of the road, and the broom was at easy picking level.  It was obvious that the plant wanted me to take a few sprigs with me to Wisconsin, so I snipped a few, thanked the tree, and jumped back in the car.

Witchs Broom is a deformity that can form on a Pine tree, in which a ball of branches forms.  Energetically it carries the properties of the Pine-cleansing, purifying, attracting abundance, as well as the symbolic energy of a witches broom…flying, astral travel, shifting ones reality.  It was a perfect bit to be added to the weekends intensive.

Soon I was back in the car and we were on our way.  We made it as far as the Basin, in the Franconia Notch, NH before stopping again, where we once again collected some bits for our travels; birch bark, a rock and a piece of wood that had been tossed around by the rivers current. By this point, my Dad (who is a Spirit) had joined us on our trip.  He loved adventure of any kind, and is pretty much guaranteed to be along on any trip we take.

The third stop on our trip was a simple one, a late lunch at 5 guys in Manchester, NH.  Something we thought would be a simple in and out.  But in fact it ended up starting me on an errand run, for the Spirits.  My aunt in particular.

While at 5 guys, they got my order wrong twice, which meant I ended up with 2 extra burgers.  We all laughed at how absurd this was; as there was only one other customer in the restaurant, and commented on how my dad must have wanted burgers too.  With this in mind, we wrapped up the other burgers, deciding we would leave them somewhere along the road as an offering for my dad.  We left my father’s burgers on a rock in an industrial park, surrounded by stones.  I know the crows will love the meat, and my dad loved the offering.

I speak about Spirit offerings often, and how the Dead love to be given offerings of their favorite foods, beverages, and libations.  When given an offering of this kind, the Spirit does not actually eat the food, or drink the beverage.  Instead they partake of the energy that the food carries, and the remembrance itself.

As we left the industrial park, with some flower blossoms, and bits we had collected, I checked in on Facebook, as I had been posting pictures of our journey so far.  Immediately, I saw that my niece/cousin had responded to my pictures, saying “Pit stop in Manchester?”.   I knew upon seeing her words, that it was all connected.  The extra burgers, the quick stop to drop off my dad’s burgers.  I wrote back to her…“Where are you?  We are in Manchester now”.

We were literally less then 3 miles from where she was volunteering at a local recovery center HOPE of New Hampshire.

Spirit, particularly that of my Dad and his sister Sheila, got us where we needed to be.  Morgan, was very close to her mother, and had really been feeling her loss heavily.  She needed to connect to family, and needed to hear from her mom in a big way.  It was a short visit, simple yet powerful, for the death of my aunt had sent her daughter (morgan) spiraling into drug addiction.  Something she has been fighting hard against for over a year now.

Sheila wanted Morgan to know how proud she was of her.  How she had taken her struggles and weaknesses and turned them into strength and purpose.  I too am truly proud of my cousin, and was so happy to see her in her element, doing what she does best.  She now works and volunteers in the field of recovery, and is working hard every day to help others as much as she helps herself.

I see this story as one that not only shows the power of Spirit to communicate with the ones they love, but also as a story of how we can carry our wounds in more then one way.  We can take that which has hurt us, and hold onto it as an excuse for why we will never be happy, or we can choose to see our hardships as lessons, meant to strengthen us and give us purpose.  Morgan has chosen the latter, she has taken her hardships and turned them into tools, into a foundation that can be built upon. For that I am very proud of her, and of her mother who has not stopped parenting, even though she is dead.

We all hold inside of us the ability to change our story.  We may not be able to change the hardships we have faced, or the wrongs done to us by ourselves or others, but we can change what that story does to us.  Each and every one of us is flawed, each and every one of us is also divine.  We were created, to be co-creators of our reality.  Do not let your troubles define you, instead let them be the fuel that makes you step more fully into all that you are capable of.  Remember we are made of Stardust!

spreading love-salicrow

 

STORIES OF SPIRIT…The Sound of Spirit [wind chimes in the corner]

It takes a lot of energy for a Spirit to audibly make noise, whether that noise be cupboards opening, floor boards creaking, or the sound of conversation in the distance.  As the Dead do not exist in the same realm/dimension as we do, they need a source of power from which to receive this energy.  Places in which Earth energy is high; where ley lines cross, are one way in which the Dead can get the energy needed to make their presence known.  Another is through the use of a Medium.

A Medium is a natural conduit for Spiritual energy, which means that Spirits can tap into their vibration, and use their residual energy to connect and communicate in this world.

A trained Medium, realizes they are in control of their energy, and often develops skills, that make it so they determine whether or not they allow their energy to be used.  This is a helpful when it comes to living a normal life.  Untrained Mediums often feel drained, and overwhelmed by the activity they experience when Spirits are around.  Being able to control the use of your energy creates boundaries, and puts the Medium in charge of when and where such contact takes place.

As someone who works regularly with the Spirit world; both that of the dead and that of nature, I prefer to be asked if my energy is going to be used.  I set aside time, and go into my working with intention.  This helps me to feel centered, and gives me the ability to tune-out unwanted visitors.  When working I want to be connected to Spirit and often allow my energy to be utilized, as long as it is not misused.  I have boundaries and time limits.  I treat the Spirits like all other sentient beings I encounter; with respect and compassion, and I expect them to treat me the same.

Toning in Merlin’s Cave, Tintagel, UK (photo credit-Dinysio)

When I open myself to Spirit, I am not doing so blindly.  I am doing so through trained methodology, one that is laden with protection, and guardianship.  The Spirits who make up my personal team, provide me with assurance I am safe, and eyes on the other side, as they are often able to see things I cannot.  There is a routine to the way I do things, a ceremonial repetition that gains strength every time I use it.  Like mantras and ritualistic prayers, my practices are infused with the energy of every time I have done so before, and every time I will do so in the future.  They are connected, each empowering the other through time and space.  This allows me to move more freely in my work, for I trust my team, and trust the work itself.

My rituals and connection to personal Spirits, grants me the freedom to be truly present and open whether I am teaching, doing a Psychic Reading, speaking to the Dead, or doing healing work.  I am open and connected in those moments, and often unusual things can happen.

One of the most remarkable things that has happened lately, involved audible sound and Spirit connection.

A few months ago, while teaching my weekly, sound meditation class, Spirit took the opportunity to emote loud and clear.  The weeks class was designed around Vocal Toning and emotion.  Toning is the use of ones voice for energetic balancing.   In short it is intuitive singing laden with intention.  If you have never experienced it before, check out the video I posted on my Facebook page  titled Salicrow, Earth Day  https://www.facebook.com/pg/salicrowpsychicmedium/videos/?ref=page_internal.

While working with our emotions and Toning, we explored how our voice sounded and vibrated differently when we held the emotions of sadness, anger, joy, and love.  At the end of the class we discussed how this felt to us, and spoke on which emotions resonated the strongest with us personally.  One of the men in the class had recently lost his wife, and was still strongly mourning her presence.  As he spoke of the emotions that effected him most, he was moved to tears.  At that moment there was the sound of wind chimes, loud and clear, from the corner of the room.  Now first of all, I have no wind chimes in my studio, nor do  I have anything that could remotely sound like chimes.  Secondly, there was no wind, stirring the room, as it was still quite cold out, and the windows were shut.  Most importantly, there was no one sitting in the area the sound came from, but we all experienced ‘hearing’ the chimes.

How does did that happen?  You may ask…

Simply put, the Spirit, the man’s wife, took advantage of the vast amount of energy we had been raising in our class, and the fact that there was a Medium in the room.  In that moment, when the energy was full, she pushed her self into the world of the living, choosing something that was very compatible with the work we were doing….Sound!

So the next time, you hear something unexplained, like a creaky floor with no one walking on it, or the sound of music coming from no where, make sure to acknowledge the sheer amount of will, and energy the Spirit is using to make contact.  In most cases those Spirits are our Beloved Dead; our ancestors, loved ones and friends, reaching out to let us know that they still stand with us, they still support us, and love us.

I appreciate your support, and hope you enjoyed the read.  Please feel free to pass it around to those who it may benefit.

spreading love-salicrow

 

 

Stories of Spirit…the Sorrow of One [mourning alone]

As a Medium; I have encountered death in many, many ways.  My first brush with death occurred when I was 3 months old, and my father’s, mother passed.  This event, was something, that showed others in my family; particularly, Grammy Brown, that I was able to see/perceive Spirits.  Since that moment, death has been a constant companion of mine.  I have had many personal losses, and have stood witness/messenger, to countless numbers of others.  There is no ‘one-way’ to experience the loss of death, for it is a multi-faceted, and generally requires us to experience it’s power over and over again; sometimes through deep sadness, sometimes through rage, sometimes through an emptiness that would challenge the vastness of space.  One thing that remains constant when it comes to death is that we all mourn alone.

No matter how much we share love of someone with another, the feeling of loss created by death is a lonely thing.  It is something that demands privacy, taking up long hours, in our mind.  It is something that shows up when we are having a great time, reminding us that something is missing, often asking us “How can you be so happy, when your Beloved Dead is not here to join you?” It speaks loudest to us when we are feeling vulnerable, or doubting ourselves, telling us that we will never find happiness again, without our beloved.  The closer we were to the death, the harder and longer it sits with us.  When enough time has gone by, and others see that we should be done mourning, death requires us to hide our sorrow, “move-on” the outside world says, but death whispers quietly in our ears “stay, don’t forget how important they were to you”.

There is no easy answer here.  I cannot bestow words of wisdom upon you, that will take away your sorrow, like the brush of a magic wand.  But I can tell you that communication helps.  Not just Spirit Communication, although in truth communication with your Beloved Dead, is one of the most powerful healing tools I know of, as it gives us the proof that they are not truly gone, but simply existing in another realm.  But not everybody is open or has the ability to make connection with their dead, so that is why good old fashioned talking about it is helpful.  Friends, counselors, and support groups help us to make peace with the sorrow of our loss, even when the others we speak to cannot fully understand our pain.  The act of sharing it, helps us to move it from the hidden realms of our mind, into the light of day where it can be cared for.

This advice is particularly important for those who have experienced a deep loss, such as that of a lover, child, or parent.  When we loose the ones we hold most dear, their death will become a constant companion of ours.  It will attend us in our every day life, and go with us to special events.  It will come around heavily, laden with emotion on the anniversary dates of their loss, and their birthdays, and anniversaries.  It will show up, when a song comes on the radio, or a childhood toy reminds us of them, when the weather is just so, and when we wake slowly from a dream in which they have come to visit.  For those most heavily hit by the loss of a loved one, death will return again, and again, and again.

So what can we do in those overwhelming moments?  What can we do to ease our pain, and find peace?

First of all we must remember we are human, and innately flawed.  We need to be patient with ourselves, and practice the art of  ‘speaking vulnerably’, which simply means talking when you feel weak.  Not everyone can do this, in fact most people stop talking about their loss, thinking that others will perceive that they should be over it by now.  It is my belief that people are generally kind.  That if we tell them we are having a hard day, and that death is speaking very loudly to us today, that we are in a deep space of mourning, they will understand, and most often seek to give us support.  The problem is, that most of us do not do this when we are feeling vulnerable, instead we batten down the hatches and prepare to ride out the storm.  In doing so, we often act in ways that are not really pleasant to ourselves or others.  We may even find ourselves lashing out, again at ourselves and others, and when it is done, we feel like an asshole, but lack the means to explain our actions.

Secondly, I recommend setting up sacred space for our Beloved Dead.  A simple shelf can be turned into an altar or shrine, with just a few items and some attention.  Place a picture of your loved one, who has crossed over, on the shelf, as well as any mementos that remind you of them.  Light a candle, and sit with them for a bit.  Even if you do not sense them, know that they are beside you.  For as a Medium, I know that our loved ones in Spirit are reaching out, trying to help us heal…even when we perceive them as having moved on, there is a part of their essence that stays connected to the ones they love.

We all mourn alone, and some of us do that more truly then others…This is most true for people who pull themselves away from the world of the living, identifying their loss as the story of their life.  It is also true for those who have loved in secret, been the other woman/man, or who have had a relationship that was hidden from the real world.  The loss in these cases can be overwhelming, and again…my answer is talk about it.  Find a friend who understands, or a counselor/healer who gets you.  But do not suffer with your loss alone.

I hope you found this article helpful, please feel free to share it, as I believe it is a message that needs to be heard, again, and again, and again.

spreading love-salicrow

 

 

 

Stories of Spirit…Remember the coffee [offerings for the dead]

I woke up yesterday morning, excited at the prospect of heading into the woods.  Not just any wood, but one that I hold dear.  I was heading to the Middle Falls of the Ammonoosuc River, in Bretton Woods, NH.  I hadn’t been there since early winter, when the snow was new to the ground, and I was anxious to connect with the earth in one of the places I hold most sacred.  I was going to river for a quick photo shoot with my friend Stace; for the back cover of my book.  But, as it happens so often in my life, the Universe had other plans for me, other ways in which I could be of assistance to those in the world of Spirit.

I browsed through Facebook, as I sipped my morning coffee, and immediately connected with two posts from clients of mine who had crossed the border of relationship, to now be known as friends.  Both of them were posting about the long term sorrow, of loosing a child, each of them feeling that pain in it’s intensity, as the time of the children’s death was now.

I thought on how the loss of a child is the most painful of all deaths, as there is nothing that can compare to the grieving felt by those who have had to bury their children.  I do not say this lightly, I say this with the experience of a Medium with many years of practice, and interaction with both the dead, and those who morn them.  I do not say this to lessen in any way the loss felt by those who have lost husbands, wives, mothers, and fathers.  I say this for I see it as true.  This truth comes from the fact that we all believe our children will out live us, and that we hold a responsibility for their well being.  This truth is not just applicable if the child is under the age of 18.  If a 75 year old mother looses her 50 year old son, she will still hold a level of irrational responsibility, as if she could have somehow done something to change the outcome.

Upon reading the post from my friends, an commenting with love and support, I realized that one of the women, mentioned the very place I was heading to that day.  She did not specifically name it, but knowing her, it was clear to me what place she spoke of when she mentioned heading to the river in a couple of weeks with coffee and flowers for her daughter.  At that moment, Spirit poked me in the side, and I replied to her privately that I was going to the river that day, and I would bring her daughter coffee.  I asked her how her daughter liked her brew, and waited for her response, but none came.  She had left for work, and would not respond to my question until early that evening.

As I picked up my friend, and we began our drive east to the river,  I told her of my intention and how simple offerings were so powerful.  Often people who have passed into Spirit long for their favorite treats, and truly enjoy when we think of them while offering up such goodies.

The car ride was long, but we are dear friends, and the time flew by in a series of conversations, and laughter.  When I got to the town of Bretton Woods, and approached the turn that would take me onto the river road, I had totally forgotten that I was going to stop at the mini-mart to get a cup of coffee for my friends daughter.  She did not forget.

Just before the driveway to the mini-mart, I heard a voice clear in my head…”Don’t forget the coffee”.  I laughed, realizing, that she probably didn’t want me to give my coffee, up as an offering, as she didn’t strike me as the kind that would like an unsweetened latte, make with coconut-almond, milk.  So, I made a quick turn into the parking lot, and went in to get her offering.

 

coffee offering for the Beloved Dead

As I poured her coffee, I decided I would make her a generic style coffee, with sugar and cream.  I poured about a teaspoon of sugar in the cup of hot coffee, and went to place it back on the counter, when she spoke up again, “I need a lot more sugar than that”, and that she did.  I found myself making coffee candy.  I added about 3 more teaspoons of sugar to the coffee, as well as, a quick shot of marshmallow flavored coffee to the cup, and a whole lot of cream.

When I got to Middle falls, Stace and I trampsed the short distance into the woods to one of my favorite mossy spots, to take pictures.  I placed the hot, sweet, candy coffee on a moss covered rock, and set about giving my offerings to the Spirits of the land, before we got down to the business of pictures.

I laid out a crystal grid on the moss, in my favorite hidden glen.  It was amazing to me how such a place, has the ability to set itself aside from the vision of most people.  For their were paths all around the woods, trampled down by snow shoes, until they were like sidewalks through the forest.  But the glen I love so dearly, with its magical bits, and plethora of Nature Spirits, showed no sign of human traffic.  The pathway to my sacred space was covered in snow, untouched by the feet of humans.  I know that others had visited this space over the winter, but those others  like me; who were seekers of the sacred.  Even they had not been there in quite some time.

The spirits of the land were just waking up there, and there were signs that the inhabitants had enjoyed previous offerings as we found a bottle of fireball whisky, snuggled into the thick moss that covered the glen.  Something I was not at all surprised to see, as some of the heartier of nature spirits that inhabit the place, like their offerings to be a bit more brisk.

*Please note-I take it upon myself to clean such sacred spaces, and will be back in the spring to clean up the remains of offerings, and any debris that is left behind.

My offerings were not as spicy as fireball whiskey, but I did light a cigarette, and give it a few puffs, for my father, and for the spirits who enjoy the energy of tobacco.  As I am not a smoker, my dad had to be satisfied with the little bits he got, but in giving offerings, it is important to remember that more important then the actual offering, is the nature in which it is given.  What are you thinking when you give an offering to your Beloved Dead, or the Spirits of Nature, is far more important.

I then set about creating a crystal grid, my true offering to the land.  I had selected crystals that carry the vibration of peace, wisdom, and the removal of negative energy.  Helping to strengthen the land, and the Spirits that reside there, as they wake from their winter slumber.   My offerings given, we began our photo shoot; Stace trying to find balance in the snow to take the pictures, and me billy-goating up onto the moss covered rocks, so she could get the pictures she wanted.

Pictures done, we made our way to the river itself, where coffee was offered up to my friends daughter, my words making it clear that the coffee was from her mom.  After giving the coffee to the river, I sat with Stace and my dad (in spirit), and admired the power of nature, and the raw force of Spring.  It was a powerful visit, one in which I was happy to be the delivery-man, to the Spirit world.

When I got home from my adventure, I had a reply waiting for me on Facebook, and I had made the coffee, exactly how her daughter liked it, extra sweet, and extra creamy.  I had a brief conversation with her, and found out that the last cup of coffee Mom had bought her, had come from the same mini-mart.

I love being connected to Spirit,and am thankful for this life I live; that is so filled with magic and mystery.  Thanks for reading folks.

spreading love-salicrow

 

 

 

 

 

STORIES OF SPIRIT…Ode to the Plowman [remembering Plowmen passed]

townplowtruckI cannot follow a  plow truck, or look out the window during a snow storm without thinking of my grandfather.  He worked for the town of Whitefield, NH most of his life.  This meant he spent every snowy day & night rambling the roads of his town, doing his best to keep it safe.  He never bitched or moaned about his job, I honestly think he loved it, and saw himself as a steward of town.  One with a job to do, keep people safe.

Grandpa Brown with his retirement house. An old school bus, he decked out in his free time.

Grandpa Brown with his retirement house. An old school bus, he decked out in his free time.

My grandfather was a widow for as long as I knew him, as his wife/my grandmother died when I was 3 months old.  Most of my childhood he lived with his mother, ‘Grammy Brown’.  When I was little he lived at her house, and later in my childhood the roles reversed, and she lived with him, in his house. I was practically attached to Grammy Brown by her apron strings, which meant I spent a lot of time with my grandfather as well.  He was a man of few words, a man who liked to watch time go by.  He was simple, predictable, and reliable, and his job in many ways defined him.

In the winter he slept on the couch in the living room; close to the phone, ready at any minute to get called out.   When a storm was forecast, he would set about preparing for the inevitable night on the roads.  His lunch box was a sturdy, old, metal thing, large enough to hold a couple of sandwiches, some snacks, and an emergency soda; in case his sugar dropped.  He was diabetic, which meant he carried a needle with insulin, and a sugary treat just in case.  Along with his lunchbox, he carried an enormous thermos filled with coffee.  I always loved watching him put together his road pack, specially watching him fill up the thermos with coffee.  I loved the little cup that screwed onto the top, and thought how fun it must be to drink out of it.

As a child, watching my grandfather prepare for a winter-storm , was like watching Indiana Jones prepare for an adventure into a hidden temple.  Everything was prepared, just in case it was needed.  Flashlight batteries were checked, extra clothing was packed, and rations were laid out.

My grandfather told stories of his wintery adventures.  One that stood out, involved a blizzard and a VW Bug. Like all towns, there were winter snow bans in Whitefield; simple really, if we are expecting big snow, don’t park in the road, and like all towns, there is always someone who does not think this rule applies to them.

One snowy night, during a heavy snowfall, my grandfather was out on the roads in blizzard type conditions.  It was late into the night, and he had drank as much coffee as his bladder could handle, when he headed up onto South Whitefield road.  South Whitefield road, winds up and over a long hill.  It’s rural, and heavily wooded.  You don’t see much traffic on it, but the roads are a bit narrow.  My grandfather was about half way up the hill when he came across a complex of family houses, place where all the neighbors were related to each other.

One of the younger cousins of the complex had totally ignored or forgotten that his car should not be in the roadway.  When my grandfather came up the road, with his plow blade down, he did not see a car in front of him, on the side of the road.  He saw a snow drift, much like half a dozen others he had seen that night.  When he hit the snow-drift, it became apparent that it was not snow, but was indeed a car.  The VW bug was completely lifted off the ground and shot into the snowbank, as if it was no more then a block of ice.  My grandfather being the matter of fact man, that he was, didn’t even stop.  He just kept driving, chewing his gum, and rumbled a bit to himself, about how the dumb-ass shouldn’t have parked his car there.

Another story that sticks out to me; when I follow  a plow truck, or sit comfortably on my couch during a snow storm, is of a local man I have communicated with in Spirit.  Many of his family have been to see me for Spirit Communication and he loves these visits.  He worked for the town road department, right here in the Northeast Kingdom; in Sheffield or Wheelock, VT  I believe.  Like my grandfather, he was dedicated to his work; stopping in to the family holidays and dinners when he could, but the roads came first.

Whenever he comes through, he always shows me his plow truck.  One of the stories he likes to share,  is how he went off the road, and put his plow-truck on it’s side.  It was during a big storm, with a lot of ice.  Coming down a steep hill (I believe Square Mile Road), his truck ended up in the ditch on it’s side.  I always wonder what kind of tow-truck it takes to get a road-truck out of the ditch.

snowstormtimewarpI think about these Winter road-warriors, whenever I start to complain about following a plow truck, or when the roads are so bad, that I am thankful to follow one.  I think about the long hours, through blinding, warp-speed looking snow, and ice.  I think about drinking lots of coffee, and trying to stay focused and awake, while everyone else is hunkering down.  I think about the time I watched a plow-truck with chains on, have to back down Newark-hill (the hill I live on) unable to make it up the icy incline.  I think about the challenges of a job that many of us take for granted, and I am thankful.

The next time you run into someone who you know plows for a living, whether they are working for the state, or plowing your driveway, remember to give thanks.  There is a lot of sacrifice made to keep our roads safe for driving.

spreading love-salicrow

 

 

 

STORIES OF SPIRIT…I Stand! [love vs. hate, and the power of unity]

headstandenglandI feel the collective holding of breath, and hear the fear whispering in the hearts, of the people, of our country.

We are standing in a time of change.  In the Tarot such moments are often represented with the Death card, for they are the ending of a way life, the ending of way of being.  Such times change us as people, stirring our emotions and values into sludge.  Like the Tasmanian Devil, from the Bugs Bunny cartoons, this change leaves chaos in its wake.

Approaching the inauguration of the new President, we all wonder how are world will change.  Some of us believe it will improve, many of us believe there will be suffering of one kind or another.  The media pokes at us, like animals in a cage, prodding us on to more and more anger.  We are damned if we do, and damned if we don’t.

As a person who spends a great deal of time looking into the future, and talking to those whose lives have passed, I believe the only thing we can do in such times is stand strong as a community.  When we are fearful, lost and confused, we must rely on the power and support of the tribe.  We need one another.  We need our family, and neighbors, and friends.  We need to remember that we are not all weak at the same time, that when some of us are at our weakest, others step into their strength.

I believe in equality!  I believe we all have a right to love, safety, and justice.

When facing fear, we have a choice on how we will do so.  We can hide, and cower, waiting for it all to go away.  We can fight, and bicker, creating discontent for ourselves and those around us.  Or, we can stand in peace, coming together to support our selves and others.

Standing in peace, does not mean we turn a blind eye.  Nor does it mean we stick our finger in the eye of anyone who has a different view then us.  It means we unite with our community, and together we maintain an upright position, one supported by the feet of many.

I stand!

I do not stand because I am a woman,  or because I have a different faith then the masses, or because someone I love is homosexual, or because I am friends with people of color.  I stand because of all of these things.  I stand because I believe in LOVE.  Not love that is limited by relationship, not sensual love, platonic love, love of country, or love of world.  But LOVE that is all of these things at once, love that is the essence of being.

After all what are we here for?  We are here to experience love.  Love of our families, friends, neighbors, work, art, hobbies, places, the list goes on.  We are all searching for LOVE!

People have written to me of late, telling me they feel out of control, that their lives are in chaos, that they cannot seem to find center.  This is all connected to the way in which we experience change.

When change seems difficult, and we see hardship approaching we clench up, and prepare for the worse.  Our minds distort the situation, blowing things out of proportion, until there are demons in the closet and monsters under the bed.  The amount of time that most people spend worrying about the possible ways that shit can hit the fan is phenomenal.  The funny thing is nothing good comes out of that fear, yet we do it anyways.

In times of crisis, we are given the opportunity to create.  We can choose to follow our fears, and create demons and monsters, or we can change our focus and choose to create heroes.  Creating heroes means we support and strengthen those who are standing, whether it be ourselves or others in our tribe.  If we cannot stand, we can give support to someone else who can.

When we stand, we do not stand alone.  We stand with the strength of our Ancestors.  They walk beside us, helping us to carry our burden. When we feel week, we can call on them for strength, and bravery.  When we feel alone and vulnerable, we can call on them for love & comfort.  They are there, standing quietly, holding space for us, co-creating with us the world that we want to manifest.

Love is more powerful than hate!

I am not afraid.  I know that we approach trying times, but I believe I am here, walking on this Earth, at this very moment, for a reason.  Therefore, I choose to stand bravely.  I will defend the rights of myself and others, with quiet strength.  I will not shout, and I will not bellow.  I will become the resistance in a world of hate.  I will show LOVE to those I meet.  In the words of Mahatma Gandi, I will be the change I want to see in the world.

I will be marching in Montpelier on Saturday, the 21st in the Women’s march for Unity.  If you are marching please let me know, so that we may be connected through spirit, standing together.   If you choose to send energy and strength to  those who march, but cannot make it yourself,  share your reply.  Simply saying “I stand”.

My labradorite 'booby stone'.

My labradorite ‘booby stone’.

For those of you who want to do more, find a crystal or friendly driveway rock, and mediate with it for 5 minutes.  Imagine that rock is connected to all rocks, and that your rock is seeking out the rock that I carry against my HEART CHAKRA .  As you connect with me, you connect to others.

spreading love-salicrow