I have always been a psychic.  Until I was 12 I had no idea that everyone wasn’t or that I saw the world in a unique way.  I was talking to a woman that I worked with, yes, I worked in a restaurant when I was 12 washing dishes.  The cook was a nice lady, but always super stressed.  So was my mom, so I didn’t think about it.

One day she came in to work late and was clearly dragging, super tired.  She sat down and started put her head on the table.  I walked over and looked at her.  I saw the man in the hall with his fists clenched and knew that he had been hitting her.  There were no marks on her face or hands, but the menacing man was clearly in the shadow of her life hitting her.

“I said to her:  Why don’t you leave, why do you let him hit you?”  She looked at me in terror, shocked at my words and said: “how do you know?”  I responded with a little confusion:  “I can see him right there, walking down the hall with his fists coming for you.”

It was plain to me.

Like the patterns I would see around people, the beautiful or ugliness of the energy around them.  I just saw things.  I knew if a place was dangerous, and it was easy for me to tell how things were going to go.

After the event with the cook, I started to ask others what they saw.  They would say the obvious, mundane things.  “She is wearing a blue sweater” but no one seemed to see what I was seeing.  It slowly dawned on me that I was seeing different.  When I asked if they saw the ___ color on the persons head or if they saw the ugly creature or the see through person hanging around them or the animal around a person, I mostly got strange looks and “no, are you crazy?

I did not have supportive parents, and went to Catholic school.  Lived in very blue collar south suburb of Chicago and was already a weird, tall, bold, overly studious, adoptee, so I didn’t push the whole “can you see what I see thing”, I tried my best to get along and forgot all my weirdness.  Being Catholic, I found the special priest and secret libraries were very interesting to me, but mostly limited to movies and what I could find at the public libraries.  Not a lot of use for a young woman mucking about in the private libraries learning about the mystical world of the church.

I was about 19 when I was in the public library by my new apartment.  A book by Lynn V. Andrews was on the circular book rack at the end of the long shelves.   I couldn’t go passed the book.  I casually checked it out, got my 7-11 fancy coffee (yes, there was a time when 7-11 was the fancy flavored coffee rock-star), strolled to my building, took the elevator up the 8 floors, then took the next 1.5 flights up the narrow metal steps that lead to the roof, where as a community we had salvaged a few chairs and created a shared roof top oasis.  The view of the lake, the smell of the city, but above the traffic noise, an island for reading and drinking hot coffee in the brisk autumn sun.

Cracking a book open was always a fresh rush of anticipation and the smell of the well worn page, coffee and falls leaves had my inner geek atwitter.   The book was about an art collector, a dream that led her to a Native American village, and the journey of a white woman from Beverly Hills becoming a shaman.  I consumed the book over the next hours, finally I was not alone! I wasn’t a freak, I had gifts!  Gifts that have value, purpose, and that people actually work to have. Others saw the world the same way!  I was not alone!  I was at the library 5 minutes before it opened the next day.