>From Holy Thursday to Hellish Sunday, I went on an incredible spiritual, physical, and mental journey. In the story to follow, I will try to take you with me as I recall the events as I remembered them.
Some memories are etched in gray matter forever, while others were kept alive with the copious amounts of notes taken in my altered state. I’m able to hear these stories now and sometimes laugh at my antics. I have found healing in laughter.
This story is not only about a psychotic break, but also more importantly, about a spiritual awakening, a re-birthing. It’s about what happens when you need to change course and the universe takes over and does it for you.
Thursday, April 1992 1:00am
Talked to my friend Toni, in Oklahoma for a long time. I had told her of my experience in the bathroom at the hospital. I had stood in front of the mirror to see if I had arms. They were feeling like all the life was draining out of them. She gave me instructions on what to do to rid myself of the bad energies that I was picking up at the hospital.
Here is a note I have from that evening:
Ring of smoke
Bathe in vinegar
Cage of Consciousness
Talk to Body
Later that night I was up and running through the house like a crazy lady, I was a crazy lady! I can remember standing outside my bathroom door, running in place as fast as I could. I could not force myself to enter the bathroom. It was as if there was an invisible wall keeping me out. The wall was “fear.” I was feverishly making the sign of the cross, one way and then the other, with sage in my hand. I wanted to be able to go into the bathroom but I was terrified of some unseen force.
I ran into the living room and noticed that the shades were drawn. I remember thinking, “if anyone saw me now they would think I was crazy.” I ran into the bedroom where I was keeping notes of the time. I returned to the bathroom and went through the same process of running in place, making the sign of the cross, one way and then the other, and fluffing my aura with sage.
This time I was able to go into the bathroom but I was terrified of looking into the mirror. I ran quickly and looked in the mirror. What I saw was a wild-eyed face that I did not recognize. I wanted to scream. This had to be me, but I didn’t recognize “me.” I fled in fear from the stranger in the mirror. I ran into the bedroom, through the hallway, and back to the bathroom. I needed to look deep into those eyes that should be mine.
Running, as always, I’m able to enter the bathroom without stopping at the invisible wall. As I stand in front of the mirror, I stare at the wide-eyed stranger and search for recognition. I find none. I flee the room and return to my bedroom. I begin to twirl, arms extended and eyes closed. I’m a whirling dervish going faster and faster, trying to rid myself of the demons within me.
Then I’m in darkness, floating free and unencumbered among the stars. I’m in total peace. I want to remain this way forever. I am given a choice to stay or return to earth. It’s not a voice I hear telling me this but “a knowing.” I feel that I must return, for reasons I did not know. The next memory I have is finding myself on my knees, prostrate on my bed. Today I can still feel the peace and serenity that I felt as I floated among the stars. It was out of this world and so was I. My notes show that this episode took place between 3:26 A.M. and 4:26 A.M.
Here are my notes that were written simultaneously with the events:
Awoke at 2:59 my watch
Shit at 3:00
3:26 writing this
Cleansing myself with sage in hand
Need bath with vinegar
4:16 sitting down with sage in hand
4:26 headed for the bath, one step at a time
Called Toni at some point to tell her “I’M AWAKE.”
Years later I was reading the book, “Living Buddha, Living Christ” by Thich Nhat Hanh. On page 22, I read, “the word ‘Buddha’ comes from the root buddh, which means to “wake up.” A Buddha is someone who is awake.” I found that quite interesting as I felt that I had experienced an “awakening.” I awoke from the “darkness” that had been with me all my life, to the “light” of a new life, and the beginning of being the person I was meant to be.
Thank you Rita for this very intimate description!