Reiki is my life. It is my heart and soul and passion. And it is my one goal to share it with as many people as I can who want to know more about it!
I have a really good reason to be so excited about Reiki. I’m not just blindly fanatical You see, I used Reiki to heal from a disabling illness.
But let me start at the beginning…
Before I was a Reiki practitioner, I was aware of myself as a healer at various times. It was part of why I came to Reiki. I was fascinated by the opportunity to learn a healing technique where no particular effort was required and there was no risk of draining my own energy.
All that was needed to work with Reiki healing was an intention to help and a willing recipient. I was only 17 when I learned Reiki and it was the ‘90s. So without so much as a Google search and with just the advice of my trusted meditation teacher, I jumped in headfirst. And while over the years I may have looked sideways, I have never actually looked back.
Choosing Convention Over My Calling
I remember after I took my Level II Reiki class, I started college about five months later. It was the next logical step in my life. I had been an excellent student with more than enough intelligence to earn a degree and acquire a respectable career. Not to mention I love learning!
But even as I went off to college, I felt a calling to be a healer. (Now let me clarify something. I consider myself to be a person who facilitates the healing process and creates and holds a space for others who are ready to heal themselves. In our society, that is most easily identified as a “healer.” But I don’t actually heal anyone else.)
For multiple reasons, I felt like that would not be a respectable thing for me to do. So I let go of all the magic and spirituality that I had been cultivating and invested myself in college and whatever alternate future I believed that this choice held for me. Or so I thought.
I remember early in our relationship, telling my future wife, how I would dream of opening my own healing practice and helping people all day long. I could feel how rejuvenating that would be. I just believed I needed to go to college and get a “secure” job and live a “normal” life.
All that was needed to work with Reiki healing was an intention to help and a willing recipient. I was only 17 when I learned Reiki and it was the ‘90s… And while over the years I may have looked sideways, I have never actually looked back.
The Cost of Ignoring My Intuition
And so I pushed ahead. I excelled in school. But I was getting sick, tired, and collecting diagnoses and prescriptions.
I struggled for years with vague symptoms that became more and more disruptive. Eventually, while in my junior year of college, my body just quit. I couldn’t keep food down and started losing weight. I wasn’t able to finish the semester and ended up practically living in the emergency room and doctors’ offices.
Eventually the correct test was run that showed at least part of what was going on with me, but no clue as to the ultimate cause and therefore treatment. I was put on a bunch of medications just to help me keep some food down. But I was only able to be awake for three groggy hours per day.
I spent the next four years getting sicker and sicker and searching in dozens of doctors offices for the answer – and the cure.
I went through batteries of tests and took dangerous, side-effect laden drugs. The tests often revealed abnormalities, but nothing close to a clear diagnosis. And I desperately wanted a diagnosis! I needed to know “what was the matter with me” so that I could “fix it.”
Eventually I got more sick and a diagnosis became clear. I was told I had a severe version of autonomic dysfunction, an illness, I was told, that had caused permanent damage to the peripheral nerves in my autonomic nervous system, making it struggle to function.
And the autonomic nervous system is important. At the point of my diagnosis, my resting heart rate was over 180. My blood pressure was often under 100/60. I couldn’t walk or stand and often couldn’t even sit up without losing consciousness. I had digestive problems, breathing problems, vision problems and a bunch of other scary stuff.
From Bad to Worse
I went from bad to worse and quickly ended up in a wheelchair where I stayed for nearly 3 years.
I was scared and even my doctors were scared. There was a point I remember when it was unclear what the prognosis was and whether this illness would claim my life. I remember seeing how scared my wife was, but being too weak to comfort her.
So I kept taking the medications I was prescribed and laid there doing, well, not a heck of a lot. I remember telling myself that I just needed to accept that this was my life and I needed to learn to flourish within my limitations.
The years passed by and I stayed sick and I stayed still. I fought and fought. I sought better diagnoses and treatments from all of the best doctors. I was not going to give in to this illness; I was not going to lose.
The more I fought the worse it got, but everyone around me kept telling me that I couldn’t give up, that this just couldn’t be how my life turned out. I remember being so tired and not understanding the concept that was constantly being thrust on me that “I didn’t deserve this;” the idea that “this just couldn’t be how things are.”
I remember being confused. So there are some people who are sick who deserve their illness? If I don’t accept that I am sick, then I won’t be sick?
My life had become filled with walls and boundaries over which I could not and would not pass.
I didn’t have a degree. I didn’t have job. I had, what I felt, was a broken body and a broken life…
The story continues in: Finding My Path: My Reiki Healing Story – Part 2
Thanks so much for reading Part One. See you in Part Two!
Wishing you love and peace and many Reiki blessings,
Tarin Rataic, The Reiki Guide
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