I talked before about finally being ready to change, and I thought I should talk about how that happened. That’s not to say it’s the same for everyone, but I think there are aspects of how that happened for me that might be universally true for everyone.
I was at a very low place in my life in 2021. If you’ve read my other posts, you have an idea of what I mean. I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease at the tail end of 2019. In 2020, I began taking medication to combat my autoimmunity. It works, but the tradeoff is that I’m now immunocompromised in the middle of a global pandemic.
I’m an introvert and don’t mind the isolation so much, but I live in absolute fear of catching COVID when I go to get groceries or gas for my car. Add to that the fact that I was working in a public library that did not require masks or vaccination, and my life was terrifying. Every morning, I woke up wondering if today would be the day that I would catch it and eventually die from it.
On top of all of that, my work environment was completely toxic. I used to be a fairly confident person. I’ve always been shy and awkward, but I had been confident in my skills and intellect. However, this environment turned me into a person who doubted myself constantly and lived in fear of the day that I would be fired simply because someone didn’t like me. This wasn’t unfounded. I had been written up for things I didn’t do, solely based on the word of a co-worker who didn’t like me.
Anyway, all of that to say, I was in a very low place. I was stressed and anxious all the time. I had been going to see my dear friend, Jason, for massage for some time. It was good for me, but I’m never one hundred percent comfortable with massage. Jason had been training in vibrational sound therapy and he recommended that I try that.
I booked an appointment for an hour. I’ll do my best to explain this process, though, since I’m face-down on the table when it happens, I can’t say for certain what Jason does with the singing bowls.
Jason always starts a session by asking me what my goal is for this session. Sometimes it’s stress relief, sometimes pain relief, sometimes unblocking. It changes what he does, but the general process is the same. Once I’m on the table, he instructs me to breathe deeply. As I do this, I can feel him moving his hands on my spine above my lungs. He incorporates restorative touch and Reiki into his sessions, so it’s one of those things. Probably restorative touch, because I don’t think Reiki involves actually touching anyone.
Anyway, when he does that, it’s like I can feel negative energy leaving my body. I know any skeptics reading this are probably thinking, sure, because that’s what I wanted to believe. I’m a skeptic, too. Even now. But, I know what I felt.
Then, he starts with the smaller bowls that produce the higher sounds. He moves them around so they might be on my spine, near my head, or by my feet. He may change the volume, frequency, or length of the tone. He works his way up to the larger bowls with the deeper sounds. The ambient soundtrack is the ocean, but I never notice it once he begins. I always visualize a forest. Trees are what ground me. They’re my safety.
As I feel the vibrations, I lose the forest visualization and start to visualize a dark void. It’s space, but it isn’t space. And with each vibration, I see ripples. Sometimes purple, sometimes blue, sometimes red. They vary in intensity. When Jason uses the largest bowl, I reset. I don’t know how else to explain it. I’m aware that I’m a conscious being, but I have no other thoughts or images in my mind. I just exist. Without thought, feeling, or emotion. This resets me. Like rebooting a computer.
Suddenly, I’m aware that there is a high-pitched sound and I hear Jason softly calling me back, asking me to take another deep breath. I come back online and I feel renewed. As I take this deep breath, I can feel Jason’s energy in my lungs, helping me breathe, and in my veins, helping my blood flow. I can only guess that this is the Reiki. I know it all sounds crazy. I wouldn’t believe it myself if I hadn’t felt it.
I talked to Jason about my experience. He explained that the “reset” was the vibration of the bowl mimicking theta waves. Theta waves are the brain waves that are active when you’re in that place between asleep and awake. The bowl triggered that state for me.
That was the impetus. That experience was what made me realize that I don’t have to feel anxious, trapped, or limited all the time. My over-thinking brain can find respite. My weary soul can find peace. I decided that I needed to find out how to feel this way all the time. Or, at least as much as I possibly can. I go to vibrational sound therapy once a month now, but I need to learn how to be at peace when I’m in the world. It’s easy to be at peace in a safe space with someone you trust. It’s harder to find that when you’re in traffic or up against a deadline. Yet, there are people who do that. I want to be one of them.
Thus began my spiritual journey.
For those of us who have begun our spiritual journeys, I think that trauma was the trigger for most of us. We had been in such low places and we needed to change to find a way out of that. It doesn’t have to be that way, though. You aren’t ready until you’re ready. However, I do think that trying something new to you, whether that be vibrational sound therapy, meditation, yoga, whatever, can spur that change without having to hit a low.
If you’re reading this now, I hope you find what brings you peace.