Para: a prefix meaning “alongside, beyond, altered, contrary”

Normal: an adjective meaning to conform to a standard; usual, typical, or expected.

October 5th, 2013, at Fort Rodd Hill, was definitely an altered, contrary, way beyond the usual, typical evening for me and nothing I ever, in my 43 years, expected to be doing, on a standard Saturday night!

Put on by Beyond Belief Paranormal Group, this paranormal investigation was the first of its kind in this National Historic Site. The site had been active from 1878 to 1956 as a coast artillery fortress in defence of Victoria and the naval base at Esquimalt harbour, as a part of the larger defence strategy of the British Empire and Canada. That said, I was not there for a history lesson. I was there to develop my mediumship.

Until a week prior I had not made up my mind to go. I was scared. I’ve always been scared; of the dark, tunnels, caves, anything less than puppies and sunshine could pretty much freak me out. I have an internal fear based personality that is subject to attacks of anxiety and the odd fainting spell. You may not be able to tell from my personality, or my presence in a room but one look at my fingernails, bitten to the knuckle, tell the real story.

None the less I had come to a stale mate. When in communication with spirit I was frustrated by my limitations. I would have moments of such accuracy and clarity and then a fog would settle in, allowing me only fragments of information that never seemed to make a whole image come to light. I would have to face the boogeyman, real or imagined, if I was to move on in this area of my life.

Since mid 2008, NORMAL has slowly become a word that no longer has definition in my life. Out of the blue and with no prior belief I began to experience the dead. I could see, feel, hear, smell and taste as a way of communication with spirit. The first year I cried a lot, both from psychological shock and from an overwhelming joy. Year two, I focused my attention on meditation in an attempt to understand what was happening to me. Meditation became a regular part of my life and year three saw me letting my guard down taking more risks, and offering information to others as I received it. Year four brought remote viewing, shape shifting and other bizarre things, far to strange for me to ever mention publicly. Now . . .  year five! Year five has been amazing. My fortunate spiritual awakening has been a catalyst in the development of my business. I use Reiki, Reflexology and Massage as a way to be present with others and provide healing in conjunction with spirit connection, but even greater, it has been the year where my personal growth has become evident.

Do you know when concrete is at its coldest? It’s at night in the fall. It’s when the building is an abandoned military bunker down a tunnel with a steel bolt door. It’s when you are bum on floor, back against wall, lights out. It’s when your waiting, in silence, ghost box positioned and ready for spirits to speak. Everything becomes sharp; the air against your skin and the sound of a whisper.

Most of the buildings at Fort Rodd Hill are concrete structures, and in the dark, with flashlights protecting our careful steps, we moved from station to station setting up equipment in the hopes of capturing evidence of spirit energy. I am not familiar with this equipment and can not say I am closer to understanding it now, but for this event I was more interested in my ability to sense the potential energy surrounding or present in these environments. It was suggested to me, by a trusted Medium, that this would be a good way for me to develop and grow in the depth of my ‘sensing’.

And so, the long walk to the first building, the Lighthouse. Along the gravel path around the building and down a small hill to the beach my first impressions came. I could feel two children at the light house and moments later a large injury to my face. My body was intact and unharmed, but my face felt a terrible mess, and I expressed this to the gentleman I was walking with. In the lighthouse a multitude of feelings some validated, some not. We walked back to the main buildings and it was there that I was able to ask the site keeper on duty about my senses on the beach. He recounted that one of the lighthouse keepers was attempting to catch Minks one day, along that stretch of beach, and was bitten in the face, sustaining a major injury and creating so many medical bills, that it financially destroyed his family. He had two children.

I was thrilled with the confirmation but began to feel great pain on the top of my head and this is the point at which, for lack of a better term, felt ‘detached’ from myself. In a panic I thought, “Ok I have to go, this is not for me, I made a mistake”. I asked a woman, I had done my first level of Reiki with, to please, place her hands on me and ease my head. As she did this I shifted, immediately, back into a state of calm. It was that moment when I realized,  I could be here, as a matter of fact I could be anywhere in the world and I did not have to be open. It was my choice, I could decide to feel and sense and be open to spirit sharing with me, or I could close myself down and just observe. Amazing things began to happen that night. I found myself fearless. I found myself down long, dark, cramped corridors, from time to time, standing back as I could feel the spirits of many men running past me, back and forth. When others were feeling the deep emotions of grief and turmoil in heavy energetic areas I was able to walk up to them, freely and without worry, talk them through what they were experiencing. I found my self stating what my limits were. I found myself in the dark, alone. I found myself . . . I found myself . . . wholly crap! I found myself! Within a few hours I had become, in part, the kind of woman I always wanted to be. A woman unafraid.

At one point while sitting on that concrete floor, in the black silence, I began to feel a divine presence in and around me. It began to expand out from me and created a white, lace like aura, about one foot thick around my entire body. I have never seen aura before (and not for lack of trying) – it was a miracle. I felt so strong, supported, protected and secure. I felt solid, sure and brave.

I may seem altered and contrary to some and I may not be typical or conform to what is expected but I am free! I am free from my self-created prisons of fear and doubt. I am free from my worries of how I am perceived. I am more free than I ever thought I could be in this life time or in this flesh!  And I am so incredibly happy to be paranormal.


Of energy dogs and empty spaces


I was in for my 10 a.m. cranial-sacral treatment with a naturopathic physician after a traumatic highway crash (A treatment I highly recommend for an incredible healing experience). It is a multi modality office of talented health professionals; chiropractors, massage therapists and the excellent Dr. I’m about to see. I lay comfortable and ready for the treatment, on my back and fully clothed. During the treatment, all I will feel is the placement of the practitioners hands at specific locations on my body. As she gently places her hands to cradle the back of my head I can ‘feel’ dogs over my left shoulder, barking and quite vicious.

I have not come to accept my aptitude for mediumship or psychic abilities at this point, even though for the last six months I have had awe inspiring, and shocking experiences with spirit. My denial of these experiences was still high, and I wrestled ever day with the wonder of what was happening to me.

I can now sense two Rottweilers and another dog I cannot place, but there are three of them and the ‘vision’ won’t stop. In my mind, I calm myself, take some deep breaths, meditate on the ‘Light’ and think, “ok, maybe this is just some weird manifestation created in my mind because I have some unresolved anger?” I try to listen incase my unconscious is trying to communicate some old issue that my uncooperative, nail biting, overeating self, is trying to ignore. But no! – Quite literally, these are dogs, and they are going nuts over my left shoulder and about 4 inches from my ear. I decide that maybe the woman treating me, was woken to dogs this am, was somehow annoyed and was now transferring her annoyance to me. Honestly! I had no freaking idea! I’m had been searching for answers to the weirdest things lately.

“ummm, can I ask you a question?” I bravely extend my potential for perceived, or possible proof of, insanity.

“sure” in a questioning tone she replies.

“did you have some annoying issue with dogs recently? Like did you wake up to dogs barking this morning?”


Ok, so clearly I may just be nuts! Come on Debra you have to be prepared to accept that finally you may have turned some corner into Nuttyville!

“umm, well, I’m trying to relax but, I know this might sound weird but, ummm I keep feeling these dogs, kind of ummmm, over my shoulder and barking and barking and ummm, I don’t know why? I thought maybe it had to do with me but, ummm I don’t know now cause its still there.”

I went on to describe what I saw, the ‘Energy’ of the situation and the Rottweilers.

“I think you should talk to the women at the front desk.” she replies “I think it may have something to do with someone else, just talk to them on your way out”

Oh man! Temporary hope! I grip the wheel hard to pull a U-turn in the road and see Nuttyville in my rearview – for now. At the counter I pay my bill and like a reckless gambler go ‘all in’ by describing what happened for me in the treatment room.

“Well you know what’s weird?” comes the reply “There was a woman in here about an hour or so ago and she was really upset and telling us about how these two Rottweilers attacked her dog on the weekend!”

Yes! Now I needed treatment to place my jaw back in its proper position.

So this brings me to the picture and the quote; “Wherever you stand, be the soul of that place” Rumi

The madness that must be created by the ignorance of what I have shared above, has often made me sad. That some may be vulnerable to that which does not belong, personally, to them.  I wish I had a manual (I’m sure many of us do) for the new awareness of the Energy Era. Energy seems to be a new catch all for a multitude of experiences; spiritual, physical, and metaphysical or metaphorical. Our collective talk is about what is seen and unseen; until we microscope it further, and even then must assume that there is still more, out of sight – mysterious.

This experience has made me more conscious; more mindful of where I am and what I might be feeling or experiencing that does not belong to me, and equally when I am going about my life, what am I leaving behind. My intention is to be of light and peace – I am not always successful as I struggle; like many, with the humanness of me; yet I always strive for a better expression of who I am.

Live consciously and wisely, be humble and open, with a pure heart and the intention to love better, the creator will provide the opportunities to do so.



Holding a ‘raw’ piece of pottery in my left hand and a carving tool in the other I began to make my mark on a coffee mug I had chosen to craft and glaze. A girlfriend was staying with me while my husband was out of town on business; I never liked to be alone. We had chosen the craft as something fun to do that evening while we sat cozy in the living room with a cup of chamomile tea and each others company.

As I began to carve into the mug, a feeling of being suspended in time and a sense of peace shifted my consciousness; it is what I would imagine a trance to feel like. I carved letter after letter around the center belly of this mug, starting on the left and working my way across, forming the words FAITH, HOPE, LOVE, ACCEPTANCE, GRACE. The moment I finished the last letter, my awareness shifted again and I stared, in wonderment, at what I had done. My girlfriend looked over and was clearly impressed.

“How did you do that? You are so good!”

“I’m not” I replied. “I don’t know how I did it”.

Now, this is not to deny any artistic skill. I have always been good with my hands. My mother is an artist, and while that is not a label I would use for myself, I can do better than stick men. I still could not see how I was able to produce letters that looked, not only computer generated, but were evenly spaced from one side to the other. Handle to handle. After the final stages of painting on the glaze I was looking forward to having a finished product to drink my morning coffee from.

The following day I dropped off our pieces to the shop where they would be put into the kiln and fired. Pick up would be in a week.

Ten days later I had some time to drop by and claim our coveted items – I was excited to see how the glaze turned out and to lay my eyes again on the perfection of the job I did. I approached the counter to meet a friendly, dark and curly haired, woman in her 50’s. The counter was in the middle of a large open space, filled with wide shelving units, which held pottery in all stages of preparation. She walked over to one of the shelves and took down a small box. When she returned she set the box down on the counter and opened the top, just to make sure the product was, in fact, what I had brought in.

As she pulled the mug up, out of its protective wrap, her expression changed and she quickly looked up at me with impassioned eyes. With some urgency she said, “Are you the one who did this?” the tears already beginning to well up.

“Yes” I replied, curious about her reaction.

“I have to tell you, the day I pulled this mug out of the kiln I had just hung the phone up from my daughter. I, I was on the phone with my daughter; she was calling me from the doctor. She was told she has cancer and she had just called to tell me. I hung up the phone and went to empty the kiln; I was devastated. I pulled out your mug and those words were the first things I read. This mug got me through the first days of finding out about my daughter. I have wondered who this belonged to”.

Overwhelmed, and with tears of my own, I had a new understanding of what had actually happened ten days earlier. I took a step back from the counter “that’s not my mug” I uttered. As she replied “no, no” I was already putting distance between those perfectly carved words and myself. “You don’t understand” I countered, “I did not know, until right now, how I did that. How I was like, in a trance, and could carve such perfect lettering, I had no idea what had happened, but now I know; that’s not my mug it was made for you”.

Deeply touched, I walked away – I just left. I sat in my car, in the parking lot, weeping and powerfully affected by the knowledge that somehow spirit had moved me aside in order to write the words that would comfort a stranger in a dark and painful moment. I felt so divinely used and so humbled to have been such a vessel.

It would be 12 years before anything similar would happen again. But when it did, the floodgates opened . . .