What is healing anyway?

We’re back from a two week break away in the US and, aside from a bad back caused by carrying my one-year old around NY in a sling all day for almost two weeks, I have to admit my chronic pain symptoms (the other ones anyway) do seem to be improving.

But healing has not looked anything like I thought it would look like. And I’m not sure I can say it’s better than what I thought.

Actually, it’s been a series of crushed dreams.

My physical pain is slowly going – replaced by old emotional pain, trauma and angst that I had convinced myself I’d cleared away years ago. Turns out it was here all along, disguised as somatic pain instead.

I am being introduced to my brain as it really is – probably beyond the kind of healing I dreamed of because my trauma happened so young it’s affected the way my brain developed. And whatever all the alternative healing modalities promise about changing your brain and energy, we still haven’t discovered how to change a dog brain into an elephant brain – for example – and so it seems very unlikely that I will find a way to transform my whole brain into something entirely new and unrecognisable. That I will heal the way I have dreamed of.

And, in tandem with this, my dreams of becoming, one day, an über-successful energy healer with clients queuing outside the door and me all magical and full of light and joy all the time seem rather unlikely. I mean – energy healing hasn’t exactly done me any favours over the years except to delay the real emotional healing that needed doing. (And I’ll admit it felt reassuring when my old heroine Liz Gilbert posted the other day that energy healing has not helped her either, and she has turned to surgery instead to remove her tumours and her womb. Sometimes, energetic healing is simply not the “energy” that is required.)

Finally, if I go back far enough on this long journey, my CPTSD started after a particularly violent fantasy-crushing in the form of an emotionally abusive psychotherapist.

So, as I say, healing, for me, has been a series of crushed dreams.

It’s been a coming down to earth. A “getting real”. With myself, the world and the limitations of being human.

And I’ve done healing courses where I learnt to move matter. Where I discovered that matter is only subject to the laws we create and subscribe to – and if we stop subscribing to these laws then we can do anything. (I have video evidence for the doubters).

Anyway, I get why I believed anything was possible for so long. But maybe it would take a whole lifetime to change all the things I think need changing about me and what kind of a life would that be.

And it’s a funny conundrum I’ve got myself into – one where I do take spiritual responsibility for the situation I’ve created, but I also recognise that I’ve created a situation with very limited potential for change. My problem is, ultimately, my brain, and the brain is the hardest thing to change – probably because it’s the tool we use to create change.

But I think there must be a reason for this. I think I must be demanding more of myself than I would otherwise come close to achieving. I don’t seem to have the option of changing my reality the way I have seen my peers – fellow healers – do. My only way “out” of the mess I have created is to transcend my brain itself. To transcend the things that would still matter to me if I had the power to change them. I am asking myself to go deeper than an über-successful healing business, than easy abundance and, indeed, ease itself.

I can feel the pull to transcend it all. To pursue the path of mindfulness and consciousness. My real challenge – to find the time – or a way – of practising this day to day, moment to moment – not as a Buddhist nun in a temple, or in a mountain hut, but as me, a mum of a demanding one year old with only limited childcare and a busy city on my doorstep.

This is my challenge. This is my life, my hope and my way forward.


Sarah Nabarro View All →

New mum, old soul... Finding beauty, wisdom, spirituality, and opportunities for learning in the everyday (hopefully)...

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