Storytime with Erika
The Magic of Healing
If you like fantasy stories with lots of mystery, legends, obscure clan traditions and beliefs, life in a secret society, love, time travel, read a chapter from Protected by the Falcon, the first book of The Ancestors' Secrets Series.
Book 1 if FREE September 6-10, and the series is available on Kindle Unlimited as well as in audiobooks. Enjoy!
I limped to the bathroom, sat down on the toilet and removed the tape to examine my toe. It was still throbbing and bent at a revolting angle, and I knew it had to be straightened out. So, I sat there, considering the possibilities of which orthopedic surgeon to consult, and then, it hit me. The memories that were trying to come back to me in my dream started flooding my mind.
I remembered what happened when we were in the grocery store with Mom and the old lady slipped and fell in the aisle. I ran over before my mother could catch me and touched the lady’s hip that she was clutching in pain. After I had touched her, my hands became hot and red. When I took my hands off her, she stood up and then did something other people had done before. She started to go down on her knee. It almost reminded me of the special greeting to address royalty we rehearsed with Mom. I remembered the shock and disbelief in the woman’s eyes, and a look of fear on her face as Mom reached down and helped her up. “Not yet. She’s not ready yet,” she explained to the lady who nodded, still looking at me.
My mother rushed me away quickly. I glanced back, pulled by Mom’s urgent hands, watching the lady standing between the isles and shock still lingering on her face. “You mustn’t do that again, you hear me?” Mom yanked my hand and looked deeply into my eyes. I cried and didn’t understand what I had done wrong.
It confused me, but when we got home, we had a long debate about my ‘gift’ and why I couldn’t let anyone find out about it. Mom began her lecture. “You have a gift of seeing what is broken or wrong in people’s bodies, as well as being able to heal them. It’s not easy to explain, and there are consequences. In order to give, you must take, as well. You are too young to understand, promise me that you will not try this again and keep it a secret until you turn twenty-nine. Then, I will teach you how to use your gift properly and safely.”
I obeyed reluctantly, although I hated the term ‘gift.’ It didn’t feel like a gift if I couldn’t use it.
Mom went on to explain the details. “Everyone on the female side of our family had the gift, but it’s dangerous to use the healing power at a young age, before your body and your nervous system became fully developed and stabilized to receive the little ones.”
“I don’t believe this! I fumed silently. There it is again, the reference to the ‘little ones’ and I still don’t know what or who they were. I remembered how my Mom warned me, “If you try to use your gift too early, it would eventually paralyze you.”
She was right, of course. I found that out, first-hand. My fingers were paralyzed for days after that incident in the store, and it scared me enough not to try it again. I must have pushed the memory to the back of my mind and eventually forgot, although I didn’t really forget—my subconscious just refused to let it resurface.
I remembered Mom telling me, “The women down the line of our ancestors were called healers, midwives, and witches in the Dark Ages. Some of them were burned at the stake if their powers were found out. They all tried very hard to act normal and only heal using known methods of the time, but they couldn’t help slipping up and were occasionally discovered. Can you imagine what would happen if someone knew what you were capable of? There would be a circus of religious caravans and research labs with probing lab tests, and countless machines, trying to analyze the unknown phenomenon.”
No, I definitely didn’t want that. She also told me what would happen if I tried to share my secret with anyone. I didn’t believe her, but I found out when I tried to tell Bela about it. As I started talking, I felt extremely painful cramps in my stomach as well as sharp, excruciating pains in my head. I couldn’t concentrate on anything until I gave up the idea of talking about it. Then the pain stopped as fast as it had started. I learned after a couple of tries that it wasn’t worth the pain and also that I would become mute if I attempted to discuss my gift. I understood then why Elza couldn’t tell me things. She had the same built-in block that prevented her from talking about things she wasn’t supposed to share.
So, I have a ‘gift,’ but I have no idea how to use it. I tried hard to remember what I did to that lady. According to my recollection, after I touched her, I felt the warmth, shooting from my fingers. I recalled the feeling of wanting to make her better and wished her pain to go away. I sat there feeling foolish, as if I were playing with the idea of magic, instead of fixing my broken toe, as a good doctor should. As I stared at my crooked toe and I noticed, startled, that I was humming a rhyme under my breath.
Pain or fracture, you can touch,
Fingers warm and glow. You’ll watch.
Make it better, make it gone,
You won’t need a magic wand.
Little ones can do so much,
They will give you magic touch.
Wish it hard and do not stray,
Pain and hurt will go away.
Whoa! Could there be something to these rhymes? Was Mom, teaching me all along by giving me instructions through these simple and easy to remember verses? I’ve always been a realistic and logical person, not dense when it comes to learning, but now this whole experience made me feel as if I was slipping from reality into a fantasy world, and I had to learn everything without guidance.
Feeling stupid, but curious, I touched my toes with my fingertips and concentrated on the pain—hoping, but not expecting that it would go away as the rhyme had instructed. To my surprise, my fingers instantly became warm, and then turned hot. The glow came as soon as the warmth started to rise in my fingers. Strangely, I was more amazed than frightened, and then felt something I couldn’t explain. My mind was in turmoil and I felt a rushed and frantic searching from deep inside me. I didn’t know what I was searching for, it was a dizzying sensation, but not in a physical sense. Suddenly, I felt content and satisfied, as if I had found something that was lost.
“Now look what you have done! You have to ask permission!” I heard an angry voice in my mind, and a misty face of an old woman swam before my mind’s eye. It couldn’t even register how much the sight and hearing the voice scared me when I heard a sharp yell through the closed door and my vision of the old woman abruptly ended. I looked down at my hand and watched the red glow disappearing as I felt my fingers cooling back to normal. I lifted my hand and gaped at it with increasing anxiety. There was no sign of burn or even redness on my skin. I looked back at my toe, noting with surprise that the pain was completely gone.
The woman who yelled in the locker room started cursing like a drunken sailor.
“This goddamned chair! I stubbed my damn toe. It hurts like flipping hell.” I recognized Lisa’s voice.
I called out, “Are you okay? I’ll be out in a second. I’ll take a look.”
“It’s okay, take your time. I’ll have Zoltan take a look,” she said, and I heard the door slam a second later.
I averted my attention back to my toe. Alarmingly, it was aligning on its own. I couldn’t tear my eyes away as I watched the crooked toe’s slight movements, which were out of my control. I heard tiny crunches as the broken bone edges rubbed together. To my utter surprise, I didn’t feel any pain while the bones were moving. I heard little clicking and snapping sounds, after which I felt a slight pull in the tendons and muscles. Even the dark purple bruise faded, and my toe seemed as straight and healthy as it was before it was broken. I had mixed feelings of shock and delight, but mainly I was frightened. This is totally wicked, I mused, wiggling my toes carefully. There was no pain at all.
I was bewildered and whispered under my breath, “Only two minutes ago I had laid my hand on my broken toe, and now it is healed. This is exciting, almost unbelievable. Is it really possible that I can heal with a touch? People didn’t talk about my Mom as a doctor; they referred to her as a Healer and this morning my mark changed. Is it possible that my mark is the sign of the Healer and mom’s mark was too? This word had a magical or supernatural ring to it… I have to explore this, and if it’s possible, use it.” Hearing my voice made the weird experience more real.
Suddenly, I remembered the paralysis I’d felt after touching the old lady when I was a child. I waited for it to come again, anxiously staring at my hands and moving my fingers. I felt fine, not even a tingle, I guess Mom was right. My body wasn’t ready back then, but I think it might be ready now.
I was really freaked out and nothing made sense, yet I was excited at the same time. I couldn’t explain the vision of the old woman either. Why did she say I had to ask permission? Who from and why?
“Dr. O? Are you in there?” I heard a knock and Robert’s timid voice outside the door. He’d never entered the locker room before; something must have happened.
“Yes, I’ll be out in a second,” I responded.
“It’s okay. I didn’t mean to bother you. It’s just that I have to go back to my office, and I thought… I didn’t want to leave the ER unattended. I apologize.” he stuttered.
“I’m okay Robert. I just need a minute.”
“Okay then, I’ll be in my office if you need me.”
Despite all that had happened, and that I was still in a daze, my sense of duty was strong. I took a couple of deep breaths to calm down and splashed some cool water on my face. It wasn’t easy. It took me a few minutes to get my racing thoughts and emotions under control. So much had happened in a short time that my head was spinning. I knew I had to get a grip; otherwise, I would lose it. I had to do something normal, something familiar. I couldn’t afford to freak out.
I opened the door and walked to the station to look at the charts, and when I composed myself enough, I headed out to examine my first patient, Mrs. Molnar. She was lying on a stretcher half covered by a crookedly hanging curtain. Part of the material was ripped; perhaps someone grabbed it for support when falling. They said she was waiting for me. I wondered how she knew me. According to her chart, she was a seventy-year-old woman in good general health who complained of abdominal, mid-chest and back pains with nausea.
I reviewed the X-rays of her abdomen on a portable computer before making my way to her bed. She clearly had a small bowel obstruction. When I pulled the curtain and looked at her, I saw that she had the mark of the Hunor, so I greeted her in our fashion.
“Oh, I’m so glad to meet you,” she gushed. “I was so happy when I saw in the Collective that you were coming of age yesterday, and I heard you were working in this hospital. Please heal me fast. I’ve been in so much pain for two days now, but I was afraid to travel all the way to the closest Healer in Boston.”
I was afraid to dwell on what she said—I knew I’d lose my mind if I did and began examining her, laying my hands on her abdomen to palpate. Suddenly, images started flooding through my mind, as if I were seeing a scope sliding between her intestines and moving around her liver and stomach. Startled, I broke contact.
As soon as I released her, the images stopped. What now? Am I hallucinating again? Something is wrong… I was close to losing it, but then I’ve tried to calm myself and tried very hard to think rationally. Questions and thoughts began jumping in my mind like popped corn in a hot kettle. I saw the pictures in my mind only when I touched her, but I didn’t see them when I touched my toes. Perhaps it comes with my freaky ability like a magical diagnostic tool of some kind? This is crazy! I wish someone would just wake me up from this nightmare. Maybe I’m in the psych ward, tied to the bed and heavily medicated.
Mrs. Molnar snapped me out of the miserable state, “What’s wrong?” she asked, alarmed. Her small face wrinkled with concern.
“It’s nothing,” I replied, although I was utterly confused, “Please give me a second.”
I turned away from her, took my phone out of my pocket and pretended to look at it. My mind was racing. I couldn’t make any sense out of what was happening to me, so I used my method of calming myself to gain control. I let fear rule me for five seconds. Okay, just go with it. I prompted myself. Fear is not your friend. Fear is your boss for five seconds. One… two… three… four… five. Fear, you’re done! The control is mine now. I had a mental picture of a steering wheel, and I grabbed it in my mind. It worked again; I could calm myself enough to pay more attention. Instead of being frightened, I became curious. I took a few deep breaths, put my phone away and turned back to focus on Mrs. Molnar.
I laid my palm back on her belly and instantly saw the same pictures in my mind. I probed and moved my hands slowly over her whole abdomen. I realized that what I was seeing was something like a 3D picture. I moved my hands slower now, going over the kidneys and ovaries. They looked healthy. Then I slid my hand over the small and large intestines, and there was a blockage exactly on the spot I saw on the X-ray. I could see it in my mind much more clearly than in the X-ray image. This was a live picture I was seeing as if it were a perfectly clear movie made with a live camera. The liver, pancreas and the stomach looked healthy. Am I totally losing my mind, or is this for real? I must question my sanity, but I feel fine. Then what is this? I questioned, but then I decided to let it happen and explore further to see if I could make sense of it. I’ll try to keep an open mind because I want this ability to be real.
I moved my hand on her belly, and different images began flooding my mind. I saw a young and happy housewife with a hard-working husband and a house full of children. She cooked, did laundry, and cleaned the house day in and day out. It made her happy and content to care for her family. Then the children grew up, moved away, and her husband died. She was left alone, though still happy to see her children and grandchildren on holidays. She was happy at other times, caring for her cats and dogs, a house full of them. Whoa… how is this possible? I thought feeling amazed. It’s like a movie, a short version of her life.
I was dumbfounded and must have stood there like an idiot, because Mrs. Molnar impatiently snapped at me, “What’s wrong? Why don’t you do your thing and heal me already?”
“I’m sorry, but everyone seems to know more about me and this supposed ability I have than me,” I griped, trying to stall for time.
“Please tell me your mother prepared you!” she exclaimed.
“Unfortunately, no. She didn’t have a chance.”
“Well, the power is in you, you were born to do it. Just put your hand on my belly and let your instincts guide you,” she instructed.
This was too much. I had to go into my time capsule to think before I lost my mind. I called it ‘my time capsule’ when I slowed time around me. I wondered if I was really ready to heal others. Suddenly, a rhyme popped into my head.
Touch someone and see inside,
Only you can do.
Hands to brain to eyes the sight,
Bright and shiny flow.
Twenty-nine you turn tonight,
Many failed as so they tried.
Only healers have the glow,
Only you can do.
I should really pay attention to these rhymes, I thought. I don’t think I’m losing my mind. It’s all in there, in the rhyme. Mom said, “Physically and mentally ready.” So, does that mean I’m ready now to receive these images, and I’m ready to heal? Maybe that was her reason for grooming me to go to medical school… so I would be ready to see these pictures in my mind, and I would know what they were?
Safely, in my time capsule while everything stood still around me, I took a stroll down memory lane. I remembered my mother taking me to see autopsies when I was nine years old. At first, she showed me organs; later, when it didn’t gross me out, the whole body. She explained the human anatomy in minute detail. She had me go through the organs and then smaller and smaller parts under the microscope until I fully understood the physiology of every part of the body. I could imagine the shock it would be for an untrained person to see intestines, liver and kidneys in their mind if they didn’t know what on earth they were seeing. On the other hand, I didn’t know what the short version of Mrs. Molnar’s life story had been about. It was like a movie playing fast forward.
Thoughts and questions ran through my mind. Is that part of the healing too? Maybe I must see what the patient’s life is like in order to make a full connection. Well, let’s see if I can heal her… I did it to myself; perhaps I can do it to others. Could it be that easy? Touch and heal? Nothing fancy. My stars! Either it is that easy, or I have become a total lunatic. We’ll see if I’m a healer, or if I belong in the mental ward.
I snapped time back to normal. Mrs. Molnar didn’t notice I was far away in my thoughts and looked at me expectantly. Although I put on my brave and confident face, I still didn’t know what to do. I just wanted to heal her as I had my broken toe.
“Okay, here we go, but I warn you; I don’t know what I’m doing.” I exhaled sharply. She looked a bit scared but didn’t say anything.
I closed the curtain around the stretcher tightly, and then placed my hands lightly on her abdomen and made a wish to heal her. Again, I felt an urgent search and turmoil inside. Suddenly, I heard a voice in my mind saying, “You didn’t ask, but you have my permission to take what you need. You’re new. I forgive you, but next time, please ask and show respect.” I saw the face of an old man winking at me playfully surrounded in a blue mist from the other side of Mrs. Molnar’s stretcher.
“Thank you and sorry, I’m indeed new. I don’t really know what I’m doing.” I answered in my mind. Somehow, I knew the old man would hear my thoughts.
“It’s okay dear, but next time, don’t forget to ask.” The voice faded in my mind, and the vision disappeared. I felt satisfied and calm. I had no idea what it was, or whom it was, but in order to save my sanity, I didn’t dwell on it. To my surprise, I remembered another rhyme.
You can heal, but there is more,
Careful what you’re wishing for.
Find a passing, ask permission,
Take and give to fill your mission.
Keep it balanced otherwise,
Someone greatly pays the price.
What does this mean? I questioned in my mind. I understand the beginning, but what is this take and give? Who or what are these misty faces popping up and reminding me to ask permission? Find the passing, keep the balance. Oh, gracious Mother; it’s just too much!
I didn’t know what to make of it, so I concentrated on the physical happening instead. I pushed my anxiety aside and wished to heal her. Soon, my fingers warmed up and started glowing. After a minute or so, my fingers cooled down to normal temperature, and I slowly lifted my hand off her belly.
“Well done Dr. O.” My belly doesn’t hurt anymore. I feel warm and healthy,” she announced, wide-eyed, her pain alleviated.
“I’m glad I could help, but I still don’t know what I did, or if I did anything at all. This is all new to me,” I confessed.
“I really thought that your mother prepared you how to use your gift, but now I see why she couldn’t do it. You’re different than other Healers,” she said, with concern.
“I’m beginning to remember things that happened when I was little. She said she would teach me, but she passed away when I was nineteen.”
“Yes, I know, and I didn’t mean to surprise you like this, really. I wasn’t thinking when the pain started; all I wanted was to be healed fast. I should have known you needed time to learn and accept who you are. Had I thought of that, I wouldn’t have come to see you so soon. I’m so sorry dear.” She shook her head.
“I wish she were alive…” I whispered.
“Yes, I just moved to this area, but I heard she was an excellent Healer and a good person,” she went on. “Sorry you have to find out about your gift this way, it’s easier for others. You did an excellent job, though—I feel perfectly healthy. Thank you so much.”
I was in deep thoughts; I’m in a crazy world where reality meets fantasy. My rational mind tells me it is impossible, but what if… just what if the healing really took place? How could I explain this miracle in her chart? I must make it sure she’s alright, I have to order another X-ray, but in case it comes back clear, I don’t know how to explain it to the radiologist without confusing the hell out of him and rousing suspicion. I decided to send her for a CT, if it would come back clear, they would think that something was wrong with the X-ray machine.
I turned back to Mrs. Molnar. “I’d like to have a CT scan if you don’t mind, I want to make sure that the healing took place.”
“Oh, you don’t have to do that. You have confirmed that I had a blockage, so I’ll just sign out against medical advice and you can put it in my chart that I wish to go to another hospital.” She came up with the solution quickly.
“I don’t feel comfortable with that. What if I didn’t heal you? This is a serious condition.”
“You did, I assure you. All my symptoms are gone, and I feel healthy and energized. You should continue what your mother did, you know. She had an office and people didn’t have to visit her in her at home or in the hospital. When you’re ready, the collective can help you to set everything up. Just let me know.” She gave me her phone number and made me promise to call or visit her sometime in Kingston.
I was certain it would be a big mistake letting her go without making sure she doesn’t have the obstruction anymore, “Can I take another look?”
“Sure, go ahead.” She pulled her gown up.
I touched her belly and instantly began to see the 3D images again. As I moved my hand on her abdomen, I received the clear pictures of healthy organs, in my mind. I paid close attention to her intestines, with no sign of the obstruction.
“I don’t feel the blockage anymore, but I still would like to do the CT scan.”
“Okay, do it if it makes you feel better, but you will see I’m fine.” She insisted.
I sent her for the CT and went to see a few patients. I was thankful for the ‘normal’ diseases that were ‘real’ and I could deal with. I knew I couldn’t have handled another case like Mrs. Molnar. After an hour or so, the flag on my computer screen popped up signaling that the radiologist saw the CT and the result is in her chart. I was nervous and excited. I went back to Mrs. Molnar to inform her of the results. “The test came back negative. All is clear. There’s no sign of obstruction.”
“Told you, didn’t I? I know my body and I know when I’m in trouble. Thank you again.”
After discharging Mrs. Molnar, I sat at my desk, thinking. Wow, I can heal! With my hands! This is just utterly unbelievable! I-can-not-believe-it, but I did it! I’ve seen the proof. The blockage was there, and then it was gone. There is so much more to explore about this gift. I couldn’t stop thinking about the possibilities.
There is a lot more magic, mystery, legends, obscure clan traditions and beliefs, life in a secret society, love, time travel in The Ancestors' Secrets Series
Read it FREE September 6-10
Storytime with Erika. Enjoy!
Erika M Szabo
Read a Chapter