My darling friend, Susan, of the amazing Mariner to Mother blog has another tasty guest post for us. As you might remember, Susan has been actively and wonderfully healing the severe trauma she suffered in childhood at the hands of her caretakers. This time, she’s back to tell us about a fascinating and hugely healing practice that she recently underwent. Susan is such an inspiration. Please show her some love, here, guys for sharing more of her journey with us.
Pieces Lost and Found: Soul Retrieval Ceremony
As we grow up and go through life, things happen to us to cause us pain, discomfort, and trauma. These things can be big, like losing a parent when you still very much need them to be around. Or, they can seem smaller, like being so very proud that you dressed yourself and fancied up your hair all by yourself, when you were four, only to be met with disdain from your mother because you messed up your room in the process, leaving clothes all over the place. And, you ruined her best lipstick, wanting to be more like mom.
As life happens to us, little pieces of our soul can get left behind. The pure joy and love we have for ourselves as a wee one becomes hidden behind shadows of judgment. Have you ever asked a four-year old what she would change about herself? I saw a video recently where women of various ages were asked just that very question. All the adults talked about their bodies; things they didn’t like and wanted to change. But, when the young children were asked what they would change about themselves, many some said there was nothing to change. And, one imaginative child said they would add wings so they could fly. We are taught that we are defective; that there is something wrong with us.
Pretty soon our self-esteem is diminished. Our light becomes dull. And, by the time we reach adulthood, big chunks of who we really are have become blocked off from our consciousness. What healing work does, is to bring these bits and pieces back to us. At least, that’s how it feels. What it really does is uncover or unblock them from the rest of us, allowing us to actually be more of who we truly are.
I’ve been doing just this in a variety of ways for about the past five years, and have used different Energy Healing techniques to this end. Reiki, Matrix Energetics, unnamed energy healing often guided by intuition, and hypnotherapy are my most often used modalities.
Being curious about Native American methods, I recently went through a Soul Retrieval Ceremony. The idea of the ceremony is that a healer, in this case a Shamanic practitioner, creates a sacred space and invokes ancestors of the person wishing to be healed, to come forth and bring back pieces of the soul that have gone missing. During my ceremony, these pieces were brought back accompanied by a variety of birds and animals, who are symbolic.
It was a fascinating experience that began by having the space and all of the ceremony participants’ energy cleared and cleaned by using smoke from burning sage. This is called smudging. I talked with the Shamanic practitioner, answering a bunch of intake questions she had put together. I talked about my family and some of the dysfunctional dynamics that I grew up with, and about some relationships that I wish to change.
Once we got down to the brass tacks of the ceremony itself, I was lying down on the floor with my husband sitting by my head. The Shamanic practitioner lay right beside me, arms touching, and we also had a drummer drumming out a fast drum beat to assist the practitioner get into the meditative state. My job was to stay present. My husband’s job was to help me stay present and to “love the shit out of me, ” as he was directed by the practitioner.
The practitioner at this point had created a sacred space and called in ancestors to help us. Bit by bit, pieces of my soul were brought back. Love of life, love of nature, and love of self were accompanied by a monkey, a bear, and an elephant. There was a shift in one relationship in particular that I’ve been having some difficulty with, and time will tell how that will all work out. And, at one point, lots of light energy flowed through my entire back, affecting me down to the DNA level. The practitioner had a few tools that she used to usher my soul back into me and to cut energetic cords that are no longer beneficial for me. She had a rattle, a crystal shaped like a pyramid, and a polished piece of rose quartz. She had other tools, but these stand out in my mind.
Her work went on for about 30-40 minutes, and then she was done. With the end of the drumbeat, the practitioner told me what she experienced and what soul pieces came back to me. When all was said and done, we shared tea and I showed my appreciation by giving these wonderful, supportive people a few small gifts I’d picked out for each of them, as well as giving a gift of abundance ($) to the practitioner.
One of the things I’ve noticed after I do energy work, especially when big shifts are happening, is that I get very tired and need sleep. Much of the changing happens when I sleep. So, after the ceremony, it was all I could do to keep my eyes open that night until about 9 pm, when I finally crashed and slept.
Since the ceremony, one distinct thing I’m noticing is a shift in my chronic back pain. Because of severely herniating a disc in my low back about six years ago, I often have discomfort, especially when I lie flat on my back. There is increased comfort now.
Another thing that’s going on, although I am not able to recognize it yet for myself, is a gradual healing on the energetic level of things that have manifested at the physical level. I live with acid reflux and an underactive thyroid. Both of these existed energetically outside of my physical body before I felt physical symptoms. Now that I’m working on healing these at the energetic level (while taking medicine to support my body as long as it needs that support), at some point, my physical body will be healed and I won’t need these meds.
So, if I can’t “see” this happening, how do I know it is? I work with a woman who is a medical intuitive, who can see energy and who is able to actually see this happening. Awesome!
With regards to the challenging relationship, I feel more detached from this person who could quite easily set me off. I don’t interact with them very often, so it may take a long while to see just how things have changed there. But one thing I do know for sure is if you have a challenging relationship with a person, when you change you, it will definitely change the relationship. Letting go of old “hooks” that set you off, is a beautiful way to cherish yourself.
What I know for sure about soul retrieval, is that as I do this work and make shifts, I feel more and more like me. I carry less and less crap belonging to other people, because I realize that it isn’t mine to carry. And, I am feeling a deeper sense of peace in my heart. Recently, I defined peace as the ability to stand with people who are swirling dust devils of their own shit, while I stay centered.
I don’t know about you guys, but I want to know more about this. So, I looked up a few resources on soul retrieval. Here’s some stuff to paw through:
- The Foundation for Shamanic Studies web site
- Sandra Ingerman’s web site on soul retrieval
- An interesting article on soul retrieval by Sandra Ingerman (she’s everywhere, I tell ya)
- Sandra’s book on the topic
- Here’s a link to a really loving healing center in WA that Susan shared with me; they do Akashic Records work with people, which Susan tells me is basically another form of soul retrieval work
- Here’s the practitioner with whom Susan worked on her soul retrieval ceremony