How to Heal After the Death of a Loved One

How to Heal After the Death of a Loved One

Not long after my first shamanic treatment, Deborah, my shamanic practitioner, instructed me to go to the waterfront not far from where I live in search of a rock that would serve as a touchstone. While I was concerned about how I would know when I found the right rock, she was right: I just knew.

In keeping with Deborah’s advice, I asked the universe for permission to take the rock home with me and it now sits beside my computer in my home office. I find myself reaching to it for comfort countless times a day.

What led me to seek shamanic treatment? The death of my beloved older brother. For weeks and months following his unexpected passing, I was overcome with both grief and guilt. Could I have done something to save him? Did he know just how much I loved him? He was my rock; the person I turned to for the very best advice. I couldn’t imagine a future without him.

I felt as if I had a gaping hole in my heart that couldn’t be filled, even with the countless wonderful memories we shared. My body ached and I no longer recognized myself.

Admittedly, I didn’t know much about shamanism at that first session. I did know I wanted to feel like myself again and wanted to be able to function, if only to better support my family. As I lay down on a healing table, Deborah shook a rattle to call her helping spirits as she passed around me. The energy in the room changed and I began to relax. By the end of the session, I felt drained but also lighter and more at peace.

That marked the beginning of regular shamanic treatments and sparked my curiosity in the mysterious connection between the physical and spiritual worlds. As I learned about spiritual force fields and soul loss, I was able to make sense of why I was feeling so sad and vulnerable.

I’ve undergone a variety of shamanic treatments, including soul retrieval. In some shamanic sessions, I’ve felt a comfortable downward pressure. Could Deborah’s helping spirits know I’m flailing and need some stability? Other times, it feels like I’m being lifted, perhaps because the helping spirits know I sometimes struggle to simply get out of bed and need a helping hand. I often feel an overwhelming sense of calm and gratitude.

In order to allow yourself to heal, I believe you must trust your shamanic practitioner. Deborah has earned my trust in so many ways. One example: my brother once worked just steps from the waterfront location where she instructed me to find a rock to serve as my touchstone.

In another example, I commented that Deborah’s drumming was particularly energizing during one session and was inspiring me to move forward. My brother’s spirit was present, had taken her hand and chose the rhythm he wanted in order to send energy through new pathways and to make me feel safe in those pathways, she explained. It was another ‘aha’ moment, as my brother had his own drum kit and my family often joked that he marched to the beat of his own drum.

Deborah often uses crystals during our sessions. One day, I discovered she had placed a perfectly round quartz crystal under my left hand. Parts of the quartz were cloudy and muddled, while other parts were clear and bright. Deborah’s new power animal, a dragonfly (an insect characterized by large eyes) had instructed her to place it there while my right hand rested on my rock as a reminder that my past will always be there but doesn’t need to be my sole focus. I can enjoy a 360-degree view that includes my past and future.

That session helped me realize that I had been living in the past as I tried to make sense of my brother’s death and find comfort in cherished memories. But I’ve come to accept that he hasn’t abandoned me. As I continue the profound journey to restoring my soul, I call on my power animal and rely on my touchstone that Deborah helped bring into my life for guidance and support. I have a sense of renewed vision and heightened awareness and appreciation of the world around me. I’m feeling brighter, more productive and at ease. More like myself.



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