A Writer: From First Person To Every One

writerA thread of thought has been in my mind for a little while now. It drifts in and out when I sit down to write my blog. I think about becoming a writer. What it took to start, how I have the discipline to continue and what happens afterwards to what I write.

I know quite a few people personally who I would consider to be writers. I look at what they share with a kind of awe. How did they manage to tap into my head so well that they write about  the same questions I have. Some of them would never give themselves the title of writer. Yet when I read their work I know that they are in the flow of their own creative energy. In fact I have bought many books only to feel that the writer isn’t actually a writer. So what do the writers I admire do differently. Firstly, they follow that good piece of advice – they write about what they know. Because that usually reveals something about themselves. And as their story (whether fact or fiction) emerges I get a glimpse of their world. I’m let into their inner space for a short while.

These writers communicate by using the personal. They put their personal in front of every one to say ‘here, if you can use this please do so’. Even if they write in the third person. When I began blogging I had a pile of journals, notebooks and jottings stashed away. Putting things down on paper has been a habit for most of my life really. Especially when setting off on anything new. But I had to think about how a blog would work. I could stuff it full of facts and statistics. Or use the ‘every one knows’ kind of statements. Even debate popular opinions. However, I also felt that would restrict me in some way. I understood that to be a writer in the way I wanted I had to discuss my personal experience. Because it works better at explaining what my life is really like.

That’s the aim for me as a writer. My experiences of life are by no means unique.

So if I share my personal world for a moment or two someone else may identify with it. I am a product of my experiences. We all are. But I know that we all share many common or similar experiences. And letting my world be open may give someone else a sense of connection to me. Through our similar experiences we can be on the same wavelength for that fraction of a second. Thinking about myself as a writer I also know that I would like my writing to promote positive energy and change in my world. If I can connect for that second, be open and sharing with someone for a moment, then we can agree that we are the same in some way. Because right now there is too much made of differences. And not enough of similarities.

With my writing I explain who I am and invite others to take a look at me as I move through my life. And I invite others to do the same and share their stories (Inspired 2 Write is one of my projects). There is something very honest that emerges from writing from the first person to each other. We begin to see past the restrictions of culture, race, gender, religion, sexuality. Past the assumptions and judgements that seem like a thick glue when we are trying to talk to each other. Writing isn’t about everybody agreeing. It is all about promoting debate and understanding. Even within myself. Writing as ‘I’ helps me own my inner world so I can address the parts of it that need to change. Because all of us need to change. The world needs honesty and clarity right now.

One of our oldest traditions is storytelling. By writing it down we preserve those stories for the future. Voices caught, held and ready to be heard again even if the person is long gone. How wonderful to pass on an honest account of all of our shared lives. I’m certain that starts with writing about ‘me’.

Day 892 of my blogging challenge

Concluded! The 6th Inspired 2 Write Challenge

empowerment concludedI’ve concluded that I love writing. That might seem obvious after 765 blogs and a book. However, it’s taken me a while to get to the idea that I am a writer. An author.

I’ve just concluded my sixth Inspired 2 Write challenge on Facebook. This year I took the opportunity to see if I could extend or expand my writing. And I decided it would be great to have some company whilst I was doing it. Hence the six groups and various numbers of people joining me to explore their writing voices. It’s been an amazing journey. Some people have been with me on each challenge. Others have done one or two. Each time I launch it I get really excited that I will be reading pieces from lots of different points of view. In fact I find that the time flies by and the end is happening before I know it. I love it so much that I’m usually working our when I can start another one!

Finishing something also brings a little sadness that these wonderful voices might retreat into silence again. I don’t want that to happen. Writing has given me so much throughout my life. Even in the times when my own writing voice was squished or fell silent. Overcoming writers block enough to get through two years of blogging showed me that I really wanted to get the words out into the world. And they empowered me to stand by my writing voice when I wobbled and worried. I feel that the blocking time has been concluded. Now I hope that the people who have been in the challenges will feel empowered to pick up their writing even when there is no ‘official’ challenge.

Knowing that I am concluding a year of lots more writing has also empowered me to make a big leap. A leap into writing nearly full time. So I want to share the my final piece to the group tonight.

” I love that I set these topics without thinking. I’m empowering my creativity to leap out and bite me on the bum. Especially with a request for 300 words! And after a full on day and a church service. I guess I enjoy a challenge. That’s what I have been empowering myself to do. Grab the challenge, manage the fear and enjoy the leap of faith. For a long time I let other people tell me what to do. Or I responded to their expectations. Without realising that I was giving away my power. It seemed to be one of my obsessions that people had to be looked after, be happy and that I must do as much for them as I could. Yet all of the time my needs shrank further and further into the background.

So much so that I become unable to express my needs because it felt like they wouldn’t be listened to. I was sadly in need of empowerment by the time I realised I had nearly burnt myself out with this imbalance.

Taking back my power has been a long, frustrating and uncomfortable journey into myself. But it has taught me how easy it is to strip the power out of other people. Gaslighting, passive/aggressive behaviour, disrespect or undermining language all take their toll over time. I gave away my power in lots of situations because i wanted to be kind to others, not seeing that they weren’t kind to me. But the regaining of power can be done. I have given myself permission to speak as I find. And allowed myself to let other people’s reactions pass me by. I understand that my intentions are good even if other struggle to see that. And I recognise that I have the same right to life as everyone else. So I make no apologies for living life my way. And enjoying doing so.

Empowerment is about what you will let yourself do to recognise your rights as a human being. It brings with it the requirement to have an ethical base to work from. And a heart full of compassion for yourself and others when issues of power, rather than empowerment, crop up.” Challenge concluded!

Day 736 of my blogging challenge

Another Milestone: Speaking Up And Out

MilestoneI’ve been thinking about passing another milestone. A marker of my progress towards my authentic self. How different my voice has become through my writing practice.

It’s been an interesting journey. From the scared to the confident. From ‘can I really say this’ to claiming my subject matter without hesitation. Past the wondering if people will read my blog to not caring if they do or don’t. All along the way I have been trying to reach the authentic words that live inside of me. The words that define what I believe and create with. A journey into me. Not to notice only the words I like about myself but to uncover the words underneath. All the little vocal sub routines that stop me being who I really am. Knowing that if I find them I will want to reshape them. To be, as my counselling self would say, congruent. Feeling, thinking, acting the same as my principles. Not an easy piece of work. A big milestone.

I set off on this journey on a tide of irritation. I’d watched a TV programme that seemed to have gone out of it’s way to find people who expressed their psychic selves in ways that the makers could easily ridicule. I know I was fed up of being expected to dress in black, or have bangles and jangly earnings, even to behave as if the Spirit people couldn’t shut up in every conversation. I felt it deeply. What I saw wasn’t me at all. Yet I wore the same label. However, I was an ordinary person doing extraordinary things. Things I knew everyone could do if they wanted to. I suppose that isn’t good television. And the programmes create such a lot of misunderstanding. Don’t get me wrong. I love that people are aware of psychics and mediums and ask questions. If only the answers given were more straightforward.

So my first milestone was to get thirty blogs done. My second was to talk about my life as a psychic and medium.

By the end of a month my third milestone was to keep on going for another nine hundred and seventy one blogs. As I passed the half way point of my daily blog target I realised that I was developing my writing voice. The blogs behind me were slowly revealing my true nature. Instead of being ‘how to’ pieces they were the review of my day. Inspired by conversations, feelings, thoughts and experiences I had. That’s when I decided to put a book together. As if, by exploring another writing path I could get extra practise at speaking for myself. In the end the book emerged. Not a reworking of my blogs. But a record of my journey into mediumship.

I feel it was another milestone in my progress to live in my intuitive world. To be brave enough to speak about how I ended up here and why. A counter-balance to the stereotype that psychic medium brings to mind. And the blogging continued. At the start of this year I found another milestone. A desire to help other women bring their writing voices to the table. To break the wall of silence imposed on intelligent, articulate women who didn’t believe it was ok to be themselves. Inspired 2 Write will have it’s sixth challenge next month. The voices that are emerging are speaking up and speaking out about women’s lives, our intuitive selves, in a different way. A powerful way.

So I’ve set myself another milestone for next year. To bring together an Inspired 2 Write weekend for women. Another opportunity to hear my writing voice alongside those of other women.

It’s really necessary at the moment. The truth about what affects the lives of all women is being revealed. The recognition that women stay silent whilst they are disrespected and abused. A feeling of not rocking the boat. Even of powerlessness. The idea that sexual harassment is a normal, everyday occurrence and women just have to put up with it. Recognising the little voice screaming inside to be heard. This is not about men and what they can do. It’s about the experience of being a woman. And what I can do. Not only feeling irritated enough about the label psychic to challenge it but also inspired enough to challlenge the label ‘woman’.

I know that my blogs don’t always draw people to read them. I can see the website stats. After all I’m not posting about things that go bump in the night. Or Spirits that won’t leave me alone. Nor the tragedies inherent in the messages I give. That’s not my experience of the intuitive world so I don’t write about it that way. I’m proud of fact that my writing voice is clear, down to earth and getting stronger. That I keep putting in another milestone. Now I’ve also set myself the challenge to explore what being psychic adds to being a woman. I’m going to deal with all the energy of oppression that I have soaked up in my life. I’m not sure how but it seems like a good thing to do. Another part of my journey to bring out my authentic self.

Milestones are way markers showing me how I am growing. I’ve passed a few very important ones in order to speak up and speak out. Now I’m ready to head towards the ones that release me from silence on subjects people prefer not to talk about.

Day 700 of my blogging challenge

Ode, Verse, Ryhme, Poem: Freedom With Words

Ode to the windI went for a walk today, words tumbling around my head. I want to write more. Could it be an ode, verse, rhymes or a poem. Actually, they are all the same in many ways. They are me letting the words out.

I’ve been working up to a decision. Part of it has been to publish my book. And to write my daily blogs. But underneath the writer is still hoping to be set completely free. So I’ve run five Inspired 2 Write challenges to make sure that for each set of twenty eight days I doubled up on my writing. And I’ve submitted articles against the pull of my ego which is trying to keep me in a box. But the decision has still been unconfirmed. Lurking in my mind but not necesssarily expressed. Though I have even set the publishing date for my next book. Today I was on the beach. Letting the wind blow the cobwebs away. Thinking about my love of poetry. Each verse, ode, rhyme or poem I could recall a snippet of.

The lines where whirling about my head as if a flock of birds had appeared. There was a seat placed handily at the edge of the beach. So I sat down to work out why my decision to write still didn’t feel like it was complete. Why I still felt a box around my creativity. I felt someone else on the bench with me. Suddenly the wind blew all those words in my mind into some sort of order. A poem started to write itself. Out came my phone and I pressed the keys as fast as I could to capture my ode to the wind. Ignoring the ego urge to make it rhyme I tapped away without real conscious thought. It felt so free. Writing that emerged from my creative brain. The intuitive bit. My Third Eye chakra tingled like crazy.

The wind blew my hair into my eyes. But my fingers tapped on. I had to capture the essence of this moment in my words. My ode had to be completed.

I felt it was an ode – the kind of poem devoted to the praise of a person, animal, or thing, written in varied or irregular metre, expresses deep feeling – though I’m not the kind of person to think of that term. But the Spirit sharing the bench with me clearly thought that’s what I should be writing. He kept reminding me to listen to my words. Out they poured. As if they had been waiting some time to be freed. When I was finished I sat and looked at the waves tumbling and turning as they flowed into the bay. Like the words had tumbled out from me. I remembered my love of words. Of writing. And I also remembered my poems. As a child I made up lots of rhymes and verses. I shared them with anyone who would listen.

Even my pets, the sky, my little brothers. Then somewhere about High School my poetry slipped away. Lost in all the comparisons about ‘great’ verse. My writing slipped away too. Gently, without much of a fight, I started to write the way everyone else did. Today I made my decision concrete. My ode is my freedom to write again the way I want. Because I want to express my love of words that way. In the end it isn’t about a great piece of poetry. It’s really about me expressing me. Taking that step of sharing my words because I hope that others will enjoy them. And making it possible for other people to be inspired. I would like people to read my words and say ‘if she can do it, so can I’. Because I am no different from anyone else. We all use words if we choose to.

Finally, I am willing to try to communicate in any way I can. As a way of sharing the love and power of words. Words used to heal, to teach, to share. So here is my ode. Although I suspect someone more technically qualified might call it a poem instead!

It’s choppy out at sea
On my bench all is calm
Yes, the wind whips through my hair
Lifting it the way it lifts the sea
Catching my clothes
And rattling my toggles
But I am peaceful
The storm inside has died
Washed away with my tears
Of regret, of anger, of fear, of despair
The wind brings tears of release
The freedom to be me
Steady and eternal, like wind and sea
Timeless Spirit
At home in any setting
Feeling the wind warp and wrap around me
Me and the sea, driven before the wind
As the waves crash their white tops
Share the constant energy of change and renewal
I am renewed too by the wind
I am me

And there it is. My words from today. I’m sharing it to urge you to explore your own writing. Ode, verse, rhyme, poem. It doesn’t matter what it’s called. Please try to write it down. I know you will discover the magical freedom of words if you try.

Day 678 of my blogging challenge 

Verbal Verity: Speaking My Truth From Now On

Verbal verityI’m sitting in the evening sunshine thinking about yesterday. My verbal expressions as a part of the end of Mercury retrograde. And about speaking my truth.

I’m running a challenge. A group of people finding their writing voice. And yesterday I was the only one who wrote about the topic I had suggested. Until it went past midnight. Then a couple of other people managed to express themselves in their writing. It made me stop and think about my voice. About how to make things verbal. Give voice to my inner world. Become vocal. Making sounds, speech, that conveys what I think or feel. And how authentic that sound is. How do I say things so that they have a meaning for those who choose to listen? Can I get my own voice out there in the first place? I know it’s an important thing for me to work out. Because I do my weekly Letters From The Light Side broadcast with words inspired by Energy Beings.

And I have to be clear where my voice ends and their voices start. I’m being verbal on the behalf of what the Energy Beings believe. Yet I also have my own set of values and beliefs. It’s important to me not to dilute their voices by distorting the verity of what they give me. My persona thoughts and feelings have to be on one side so I can speak their truth. But I also need to be able to speak my truth when it’s appropriate. Yesterday was a reminder to make sure I have removed anything that might block my voice. Because I am aware that our verbal exchanges are conditional. I know we follow rules of communication that have been set for us by the society and culture we are born into.

What are the rules? How do the words turn into a spoken meaning? And who sets the standards of truthfulness?

A discussion on Thursday reminded me of that. Different languages have different rules. That are not always easy to work out. I’m staying near a place called Kirkcudbright but it’s pronounced KirCOObree. Anyone studying English would wonder why. But it’s in Scotland where lots of words are pronounced differently. And it’s a sort of test, I suppose, of whether you are paying attention, or interested in saying the place name authentically. That’s only one little part of verbal veracity. What about others? As a woman there are voices I’m not supposed to use in certain circumstances. I’m not supposed to be aggressive, except in defence of my loved ones. My voice is supposed to be soft and nurturing. A hearty laugh belongs to the world of men.

I’m generally expected not to have an opinion on politics, religion or any of the affairs of a mans world. Also to know my place and when I’m supposed to say nothing. In the end, it’s worth acknowledging that there are many constraints on my voice. Not for the purpose of blame. But to understand how much a challenge it might be for me to verbalise what I feel or think. And even more challenging to offer what I feel is my truth. About anything. In fact some days I am amazed that I can speak at all. So what about all this Mercury energy. It’s been an interesting blast because for a long time I have been stripping away the layers of conditioning. I’ve been trying to find my authentic self so I can have an inner conversation.

Now I feel I’ve sounded out and rehearsed my authentic inner Spirit voice. The barriers are gone. So it’s time for me to bring that verbal skill out into the open. To speak for whole myself. As well as to speak in the service of Energy Beings. Are you ready to speak your spiritual truth too?

Day 656 of my blogging challenge 

Writing Inspiration: Nearly Time For Another Challenge

WritingTime off always gives me time to think. My writing has been moving on this year because I have added in my Inspired 2 Write challenges on Facebook. Today I was reflecting on the four I’ve run.

I love supporting people to find their authentic voice. Running four of these writing challenges has be a part of that. Because it took me a long time to find my own voice through my written words. Even now I face a daily challenge of expressing what I want to say so that it makes sense to anyone who wants to read it. I’m determined to keep going. There are more words, thoughts and ideas I want to share about my intuitive life, about the intutive world and about spirituality. I also recognise that keeping going can be a challenge too. Especially when I’m not sure anyone is reading what I write. Yet watching the words flow out is a reminder that we are all creative. But perhaps haven’t discovered it yet.

I was listening to the rain. Watching the clouds shroud the mountain across from me. Then seeing the clouds clear away. And everything appeared fresh and clean. I believe that’s what writing does. Clears my mind. Helps me to focus on what is important. Each blast of ‘rain’ and ‘cloud’ can be cleared away when I put it down into words. Not only is my voice emerging but I’m also seeing my world with fresh eyes. I feel that is such a blessing. And I am growing in my confidence to express what I want to say about my world. In my own particular way. That’s why Inspired 2 Write 5 is on it’s way in. I want to encourage other people to gain more confidence through their writing.

In this short blog I hope I have shared with you my passion for writing. I would like to encourage you in joining me in a new challenge. Click the link to my I2W5 Facebook group. Join me in exploring your voice through your written work. Let’s take a fascinating, and life changing, journey together.

Day 632 of my blogging challenge 

Hard Labour: Giving Birth To A Book

Today my focus has been on a labour of love. I have had a book manuscript to finalise for the last ten months. Finally I feel it’s finished!

I’ve been putting off completing my changes. In a way I’ve made this a hard labour. When I think back perhaps I could have got on with it a bit faster. Yet I’m also aware that the right energy is important. And me being in the right energy too. So it’s been an interesting pregnancy. This has reminded me very much of the actual pregnancy I had with my daughter. I found out I was expecting a baby very early on. Although I never wanted to know if the baby was a boy or a girl I had already settled on a girls name. A boy’s name was much harder to find. I took that as my sign. And I did have a girl.

However, knowing very early also meant I was counting the weeks. I suspect all mums wish the baby was born as soon as they find out they’re expecting. It’s too exciting and terrifying to want to wait seven or eight months. Then there is the uncertainty over dates. When exactly will this new being make an entrance. Added to all of the ways my body made me feel for those months. As my body changed and grew I felt movement, kicks and pushes. Still I had to wait through all these things. In the end even though I was fed up with being pregnant when the time came to get into the serious work of labour I was full of uncertainty. Yet curiously certain that everything would be well.

Today was my last push at this book. After what seems like weeks of labour – I’ve set completion dates in my planner since April – I decided that it had to be born.

I can’t wait any longer. There is another book pestering to be written. It seems I’m ready to enter another creative pregnancy. But it can’t begin because the first book is taking up mind space. So here I am after a day of re-reading, adding, cutting, rejigging and tidying. The manuscript has been emailed to my editor. It’s done. Off in the arms of the midwife who can steer it through these first hours and days. Taking it somewhere where it can get washed and cleaned and made pretty before it comes back to me as a published book. My creation is in the world and I can rest.

Oh, hang on a minute. I can feel book Two marching to the front of my brain. I’ve already done an outline – just to keep it quiet. But that may not be enough. I may have to start another labour of love sooner rather than later. Hopefully not as hard as the first effort. After all I have been working on my writing. The fourth Inspired 2 Write challenge ends tomorrow. A whole group of people who have been labouring to get their words out into the world. Who knows. One of them might be feeling the creative pangs of their first book. I hope so. Because being able to create is such a wonderful gift in all of us.

I feel that it’s only when we labour to create that we realise the gift we have been given. I love books. They are my gift from other mothers (and fathers, of course) to inspire my life. I’m looking forward to seeing if my baby creation can be an inspiration for someone too.

Day 586 of my blogging challenge 

Inspired 2 Write Again: Fourth Time Around

How the year is flying by. I find myself running another Inspired 2 Write challenge. It’s number four and not something I had ever planned to do. Yet it started again this week.

Late last year I was talking about my blogging during an interview for an article. The subject of my writing came up. I was fast approaching a full year of writing a daily blog. All out of a challenge I’d joined. It was to write every day for thirty days. About half way through I felt so inspired that I decided to keep going. I set myself a new target and now I’m over half way there. As I thought about what a gift that challenge was to me I realised I wanted to help other people to feel inspired too. Reading and writing have been a big part of my life. Through my blog I realised I had a writing voice. More, I realised I wanted to use it and share it.

After the interview I decided to try a challenge of my own. To help others write every day for twenty eight days. So here I am. Fourth challenge launched. And already feeling that there will be more of these mini challenges this year. I love the way writing words down helps to clear my day away. It’s great to go back and read what was on my mind too. And I can also recognise my patterns. Those issues that keep coming around again and again. Having written about them before I can also notice how I’ve changed. See where my responses are different this time. Track my progress as I change and grow in my life. No wonder I love writing. Or that I want to help others discover their own writing.

Of course as I’m taking part in the challenge too. It doubles the amount of writing I’m doing. Very soon I’m also going to start writing my next book. One of my lifetime dreams is finally coming into being. I’m inspired. Why don’t you get inspired to write too?

Day 562 of my blogging challenge 

Love My Words, Love My Voice

On the first of January I started a new writing challenge. Inspired 2 Write got me writing more, encouraging others and, today, publishing four guest blogs from other participants. It was outside of my comfort zone but I loved it. One of the pieces I wrote explains why I love my words and how I’ve learned to love my writing voice. Now I’m ready for Inspired 2 Write 2 which begins on 11th February.

As I did this post this morning I thought about revisiting something I’d already written. But that’s really not my way of writing. I like to put down what comes into my head when I’m sitting facing the blank screen. I’ve got much better at staring it down, dredging up the first few words or a sentence and going for it, so to speak.

And the word limit is interesting. I often find myself tap tap tapping away well past five hundred words. Especially when I’m really deep in the flow of the sound of my own voice. I do try to stop at twelve hundred though because that’s more like an article than a blog. Or the opening chapter of a book. When I check my writing back I always wonder if I’ve been repeating myself to get to so many words. I’m always surprised when I realise that my stream of consciousness stuff hardly ever doubles back into repetition. Perhaps it’s because I’m a fan of Just A Minute on Radio 4.

Added to that is my life long love of words. The bigger the better. Not that I can spell most of them correctly first time. Thank Goddess for predictive text and spell checking. Although I’m not encyclopaedic enough to play Scrabble. However, when I’m writing the words weave themselves into and out of sentences. They dance around the screen asking to be involved in my plot. Sometimes two or three fight over being included in a sentence. Then I find myself having to keep things fair by using all of them in several sentences.

The words drag the shape of my writing into new avenues. Different meanings emerge. I get to the end breathless and wondering how I got there. And there is often a long way from where I thought the piece of writing was going. I love it. I love the wild and free nature of the words that jump from my mind onto my screen. As they wrap around my plot, plan and intentions they tempt me to embrace the freedom of nonsense rhymes, the wildness of strongly felt emotions and the radical, rebellious viewpoints that sit quietly in my head waiting to show themselves.

Whew! The words promise a wild ride and they usually deliver. As I sit back and look at my completed piece I feel an elation that is almost overwhelming. It’s done. The words have been captured. Tamed ever so slightly. Pressed to the page. Telling a story of sorts. Something unintended has emerged. I am tempted to cut and prune, to edit with merciless abandon. But will that be what the words in my mind intended? Mostly I leave what I have written the way it is (apart from correcting typos). It was wild and free and it came to serve or entertain me. I thank the full page for being an expression of my creativity. And then I move on to the next piece.

Day 436 of my blogging challenge.

Meeting Pashima

Since embarking on my spiritual journey I’ve become more and more aware of the wonderful Spirits and Energy Beings around me – my ‘team’ of spirit guides. Some of them I knew in life before they passed over to spirit, others I don’t ‘know’ in the same way, but I’m still so thankful that they are with me; to guide, encourage, inspire, uplift and support me and help me to learn and grow. A couple of these beautiful spirits have come forward to ‘introduce’ themselves and help me with a particular aspect of my growth and development and I’d like to share with you a little about one of them, a beautiful lady I know as Pashima.

I was aware of her presence before I actually ‘met’ her. Smell is just one of the ways Spirit can communicate with us, and one day, out driving in my car and feeling a bit fed up, low and down on myself, I smelt the unmistakeable scent of Nag Champa incense. It appeared out of nowhere and once I acknowledged it, it faded as quickly as it had arrived. I was puzzled – I’m familiar with the scent but hadn’t had any of this type of incense for quite some time, there was just no logical explanation why I should be able to smell it now. I smiled and said thankyou to whoever was letting me know of their presence.

Several weeks later I was soaking in the bath after a particularly difficult day. I was feeling tearful – hurt and upset, useless, unloved and my confidence had taken a huge knock. Out of nowhere that unmistakeable scent of Nag Champa wafted around me, as strongly as if I was burning the incense for real (we didn’t even have any in the house!) I called to my partner as I heard him walk across the landing, asked if he could smell anything. “Yes I can” he replied “are you burning incense in there?”

Intrigued, I asked who was there and felt the most beautiful, loving energy surrounding me like a huge comforting hug, then in my mind I saw the face of an Indian/Asian lady. She was older in years, a mother/grandmother-type figure with greying hair, twinkling eyes and the kindest, most beautiful smile. She radiated pure love, warmth, peace, gentleness, kindness and compassion and I instantly felt loved and uplifted by her presence. I asked her name and misheard her the first time. “Pashmina?” “Pa SHI ma”, she gently corrected me.

I thanked her for being with me and felt her presence start to fade, but the wonderful feeling of her love remained with me. Since that beautiful first meeting a couple of years ago she’s often popped in when I’ve been feeling fed up, surrounding me with her love, encouraging me to love and believe in myself, and in those moments when I doubt myself, reminding me that I am enough. I’m so thankful for her support and feel blessed that she’s by my side.

This is a guest blog by Sharon Mackle who took part in Annie Conboy’s Inspired 2 Write 28 Day Challenge. Well done Sharon.