“Every choice we make,
And every road we take,
Starts a chain reaction.”
From the song “Touch” by Natasha Bedingfield
What a magical week! I had the great pleasure to offer messages twice this week at Lily Dale Assembly. My teacher was chairing the afternoon service at the Forest Temple and invited me to attend. As I am “on sabbatical” and have a lot of free time, I made the effort to attend and volunteer my service.
First, the Forest Temple is a beautiful place. I have been to Lily Dale more times than I can count, and until this week, I have never been to the Temple. It is closer to the lake and less deep in the woods than the Stump, but still quite ‘natural’ and in the wild. If you haven’t been, there is a service daily except for Sundays at 4 p.m. Registered Mediums from Lily Dale, visiting Mediums (including me) from all over and student Mediums participate at the services. Much like the Stump, attendees can receive readings in a platform style if they are called upon. Full disclosure, if you want a reading, sit closer to the front. I am not saying that is a guarantee, but having observed enough of these things of late, it seems those folks in front get readings more often than those in the way back.
From the Medium’s perspective, you might be wondering how we choose people. I can only speak from my own experience but what happens for me is I see a whole bunch of people and then a face stands out to me. It is clearer, or the light shines on them, or it catches my eye in some way. Have you ever looked at one of those 3D optical illusion pictures where nothing in the image is moving but the way it is designed, it looks like something is moving? This is like that for me. It is completely intuitive and almost requires zero thought at all, it’s a magnetic pull if you will. Sitting on the sideline, I sometimes see who I am going to first, other times it’s not clear until I stand up there in front of the group. I have trust issues at large in my whole life; doing public demonstration readings requires so much trust that I can’t handle it sometimes, but I know that Spirit will always show up. The more I do it, the better I can relax.
As I drove down to Lily Dale that first afternoon, I consulted Waze before I left to check the traffic. Waze proposed to take me around the back of the lake, so I went along with it. I had never gone that way before and truthfully, I have had Waze take me to dead end streets before, but this was a glorious ride. I saw the most beautiful scenery, a woodchuck, some horses, just lovely. And I ended up exactly where I needed to be with a few minutes to spare.
Then, as I sat waiting my turn, I heard a rustling and spotted a squirrel. It came up on me with a giant hickory nut in his mouth. And when I say came up on me, I mean like inches from me as I sat on the bench waiting. I knew this would be relative to my reading, I just had no idea how or for whom this was going to be integrated. All in good time as they say…
I saw my person before I stood up. In fact, I saw her as soon as she walked to sit on the bench; like the light shone down on her, I can’t describe other than to say my attention was drawn to her. I also went last in the lineup that first day so I just sat there hoping no one would go to my person before I had a chance to. Score! No one approached her so she was all mine.
And then finally, it was my turn. I went up, and immediately zoned in on my person. I saw that both the squirrel and the Waze path to Lily Dale were for her. So, I just started talking. It’s like the words just come and I don’t always know where they come from. All of it landed for this person. Taking the road less traveled, knowing that we are always right on time and this concept of storing up for later when there would be a need for more energy expenditure, it was all there for her. And to be honest, it felt like these messages were for me as well.
There was more, her grandmother came through and she was wearing her ring that day, some other details, but these things that had shown themselves to me as a part of just carrying on with my day were all part of the message. I love synchronicity so this was just a magical moment for me.
There was another reading, and I was done. It was great. Then, as I was standing at the end for the chit chat part of things, I suddenly experienced a burning pain on my right leg. Out loud I said, “What is happening to my leg?” Sidenote, I thought I was saying this to myself. Another Medium pointed at the bumblebee which was stinging me again through my pants. What the heck? It got me three times before I managed to get it off me. It was absolutely a bumblebee and even had pollen on its legs. This was most definitely an unprovoked attack!
Now, if you have read many of my other posts, I am very aware of cues from nature and totem animals. Aware, obsessed, you call it what you want. Since a squirrel just helped me with my first reading, I was not going to take an unprovoked attack of the bee voted least likely to sting as random. As I am a full-on nerd, I have several decks and books on animal totems, so I was planning to fully investigate once I got home.
As I got in the car to go home, the first song that comes on the radio is “Let it Be” by the Beatles. Hysterical!
Proceeding onward, I get to a traffic light. The car in front of me has a vanity plate that says “move a mountain” in some shortened version. Ok, noted. Again, never sure what these messages will mean but I take mental note.
I get home and check my animal symbol sources. The bee has two separate meanings - 1) to pursue dreams, no matter how wild they are, and know you will be supported (aka move a mountain?) and 2) lead with forgiveness and compassion. Well, I thought, those don’t even come close to being the same thing! And truly, if you are interested in bees, there are volumes on bee symbolism from all different cultures throughout history. They are magical and essential creatures that truthfully based on their structure, should not even be able to fly. But they do of course, and they do it quite well. This felt like a dead end. At least until I sat with it a while.
After some time in marination mode, I decided that maybe, just maybe, to pursue your dreams, you need forgiveness. You may need to forgive yourself or others to make space for the dreams to manifest. Imagine me slapping my head with the simplicity of this. Of course, the bee stung me three times, because that is how things work in nature. (For reference, please refer to a previous post, “Three Times a Lady” from August 2, 2021.)
I spent some time with this on Wednesday. Of course I have stuff I can release in the form of forgiveness, don’t we all? I did some of that and asked for guidance on how best to release all the junk I carry with me. That alone could be considered moving a mountain when I really stopped to think about it.
Fast forward to Thursday, which marked my second day of readings at the Forest Temple.
I arrived early, taking the way I know and not asking Waze for help this time. I was with another group of Mediums, some I recognized from before and others I had not seen before. Still others I recognized from readings over the course of my life which was also pretty cool. I sat next to an older man who was visiting from Ohio. He explained he was the longest running visiting Medium to Lily Dale and had been at this since he was 20. He was now in his 54th year of visiting Lily Dale to offer messages. Wow, impressive I thought. He had loads of things to share with me who he recognized to be a “younger” budding Medium.
“You go up there and connect with Spirit and then you sit down on this bench and it’s over. It’s not like that. Spirit is with you all the time. You just have to get quiet enough to hear them. And talk to them. Ask them questions. Just remember, they don’t say no, they just get quiet. So the things you get answers on, they are for you. Remember that.” declared the longest running visiting Medium in Lily Dale.
He also went on to tell me that back in his day, there were no classes for this stuff. He said the Mediums chose you from the crowd and taught you because they recognized you have the potential. Literally, if this man hasn’t written a book, he should really consider it.
This was all so fascinating to me! And truly, he was a marvel to watch. During his reading, he put his hand out to make a point, and a dragonfly landed directly on his palm! If I hadn’t seen it with my two eyes, I don’t think I would have believed it.
Guess who got to go up after him. Yep. Me. I managed to make it funny however saying that he was a tough act to follow. I told the audience of his long tenure, and that this was only my fourth time presenting at Lily Dale. They laughed and were kind which helped to center me.
I delivered three readings that I was proud of and went back to the bench, to listen to the rest of the Mediums. This time however, I was aware that this connection hadn’t ended because I sat back down. Spirit was still with me. I knew that before he told me, right? Yes, I really did. But I can say I most definitely do not live like I know that.
In the days since that conversation with the longest running visiting Medium in Lily Dale, I have had his voice in my head many times. I have leaned into some hard conversations that needed to be had. I allowed things to just flow to me rather than forcing the outcome or the next move, whatever it might be. I even went to the grocery store without a good list and just grabbed what I felt I needed. I packed my bag for the weekend without any sense of what I might be doing and am just making the most of what I brought with me. Is that what it feels like to trust? Trusting myself, or trust that I am supported, just all of it?
What if I can move a mountain of grudges, grief, and bad beliefs to make space for more miracles in my life? What else might follow? As we say in yoga, “What are you clenching unnecessarily that you can let go of?” What are we all holding on to that is no longer of service to us?
Here is the thing I came to realize this week. I am not sure what my own future holds but I will not stop doing Mediumship work, even if it is not the thing I can do full time right now and still pay my bills. This is not about me. I mean on some level, sure, it is because I am the one making the connection and being vulnerable enough to share and deliver, but when people get messages, it can change their whole day, or even their lives depending on what they need. And, in my optimistic mind, I like to think these people then go out in the world a whole lot nicer and more pleasant. Maybe someone I read for this week goes to Tim Horton’s after and pays for the car behind them in line. Or maybe they let go of something heavy that has been bogging them down for some time. Who knows?
What I do know (sorry for borrowing Oprah) is that it is possible to choose love much more than we probably do, myself included. I also know that love doesn’t die when people die. Being able to bear witness to outpourings of love and connection from the other side is a true gift. It doesn’t matter how long they have been gone, they are still with you, guiding if you will let them, offering support and love along the way. That makes me feel better and I hope it inspires you as well.
“Every interaction starts a chain reaction…”
PS - I have temporarily taken down the groups section because I realize people can’t get it to work for them so I am attempting to create a better solution! I still want to hear from you though so if you have stories or messages to share, send them to me at email@example.com