Mom Update: Great!

sand dollar tofino psychic

 

Just a quick Mom Update for those sweethearts who are emailing with inquiries and best wishes:

My Mom is doing really well!  Since her second brain surgery, her chemo has been shifted around to a therapy that is a LOT better for her.  She sleeps a lot, which is actually a blessing.  She was unable to sleep well for most of this year.

She’s feeling much less nauseous than she used to feel on her old therapy.  Thank God!

And, AND – she’s feeling like she wants to start driving again.  She needs a physician’s clearance again, but my mother’s a cautious person – she wouldn’t be asking about it if she didn’t already feel confident she could do it.

I am so very happy for her, and so grateful that she is steadily regaining quality of life and independence.

I am so fucking lucky.

You know, sure I hurt my back, and it limited what I could do for a while.  But I’m getting better quickly.  Eight weeks of recovery time is more than I’ve ever needed for a physical injury – because I’ve been fortunate enough to be healthy most of my life.  Sure I’d get bugs, migraines, burn out.  But I’ve never been seriously ill.  Thank God.

Today is a day of counting our many, many blessings.

Celebrate the Awesomeness!

awesomeness

 

Well, it’s more like 517 – I failed to notice when the odometer rolled over to 500.  Isn’t that cool though?  500 posts!  And y’all are still reading them!!!  There are people who are starting from the very beginning and have read the entire blog multiple times.

THAT is what makes 500 posts amazing – not that they’ve been written in spare moments, but that you’re reading them.

Thank you for reading.  YOU make this blog awesome!

 

 

The Ecosystem of Pain (Inner Demons Pt. 2)

2014-11-21 evil kate sitka psychic

 

Okay, I’m finally ready to write the follow up to the Inner Demon’s post.

 

One of the reasons I enjoy working in a hospital so much: it’s incredibly grounding.  Grounding, maybe not always in a pleasant, zen way, but in a jarring, gritty, this-shit-is-real-life kind of way.

 

The positivity movement is a much-needed balance to the hyper-negative news culture we have in North America, and even though I’m as sunny a Mary Sunshine as you’ll ever meet, I’ve always railed against the idea that you can eliminate all pain and discomfort from life through positive attitude, by disallowing negativity to impact your life.

 

Let me start this piece by stating I firmly believe in the balance of light and dark in life.  I believe that joy, love and happiness are as much a part of life as their counter-parts: sorrow, grief and stress.

 

Yes, we can greatly affect our *experience* of negativity through our faith and attitudes, but we can’t surgically excise negativity from life.  I think negativity is something to be embraced, managed, challenges to rise to or difficulties to survive.

 

I feel it would be a personal moral failing for me to forget there is suffering in the world.

 

So I work at a hospital.  I donate to charity.  Every time I do a reading, I say a prayer hoping to make a positive difference to those who ask for my help.

 

The thing about working at a hospital (animal or human): you have your finger on the pulse of the best and worst in humanity.  Although I am not directly involved in patient care, I am *around*, and when there is acute suffering, of course I feel it too.

 

I feel the emotions the most, especially if I’ve experienced a similar distress in my own life.  This would be true for anyone empathetic, anyone who is strong enough still *feel* things in a setting like healthcare, rescue work (human or animal), social work, law enforcement or any other job where shit gets real.

 

A common practice is to disconnect from what’s happening.  During the health care crisis in Ontario in the late 90s, when I did my nursing training after 7 years of volunteer work as a candy-striper, I watched nurses whom I respected and admired burn out and quit.  The surviving health care workers were empathetically checked out.  They had to be.

 

This is why I am in awe of the mighty few who remain in nursing, who hold the hand of a patient in distress and cry tears of empathy – and show up for work the next day. 

 

After just one year of training, I was burnt out too.  Despite my excellent grades and the counseling from the teachers and nursing supervisors, I felt I couldn’t continue.   I did a search of the blog and it looks like I haven’t yet told you guys about the day I quit nursing.  Someone please remind me to tell that story down the line.

 

So why suffering?  And what the fuck are Demons anyway?

 

I received a really sweet email from a reader who suggested that rather than using the word “demon” that I use “entity” instead.  Let me explain the differences I perceive, based on my personal experience.

 

So far, my understanding of the Garden of Shadows has become a loose classification of the individual types of beings I’ve encountered.  Critters, Entities and Demons.

 

If you’d asked me last month, I would only have talked about Critters and Entities, the low-vibration life forms that recycle the energy imprint of negativity into neutrality.

 

Okay, wait, let me back up a bit more.

 

Picture a house.  Now, picture a married couple in that house.  The husband and wife fight, a lot.  Then one of their kids is killed in an accident.  The marriage collapses under the pressure, the couple moves out and the house goes on the real-estate market, but sits empty.

 

Nothing has been done to clear this house, energetically, so the thing sits on the market.  People walk into this house, but it just doesn’t feel right.  There’s something about it.  They don’t like it.

 

What the potential buyers perceive is the energetic imprint left by the emotion of the former occupants.

 

That energetic imprint has altered the energy eco-system in the house.

 

Our eco-system goes far beyond the physical environment we experience with our bodies.  The energy we put out into our environment is like adding an essential oil to a big bath tub, and it changes what energetic organisms thrive in this environment.

 

In a place where the atmosphere has been altered through pain, the critters who thrive off of that will be pulled in.  This is perfect.  Under normal circumstances they just transmute the energy to neutral through feeding on it, and they move on.  When I perceive critters, I usually see them as insect-like, doing their composting duties.

 

But if there is a location rich enough in pain that they want to stick around, you can end up with an infestation.

 

Let’s say this house is purchased by another happy couple.  The day they move in, they have a fight.  The stress inexplicably continues as they wait for things to even out.  One bad thing after another seems to happen, and finally one of them is injured.  The injured partner generates more stress and sadness for the critters to feed upon.  The critters multiply, and their increasing numbers enhances the subtle negative energy of the whole house.  It becomes a self-perpetuating cycle.  The critters become parasite-ish.  Insects in small numbers are normal and healthy, but an imbalance of insects is a plague.  Think locusts, cockroaches, tapeworms.  Very unhealthy indeed.

 

The humans start to get depressed, which is expressed in irritation towards each other.  Within two years, this happy marriage is on the rocks.

 

When I was growing up, I lived across the street from a place we called “the divorce house.”  Every two years, this place would go on the market.  A happy family would move in, break apart and sell the house.

 

You’d think the real estate agents would be the biggest clients of psychics and priests offering house-clearing services… but then, if the house stayed off the market, the realtor would have less opportunity for commission.  (I have not extinguished my inner cynic!)

 

Once a place is swarming with critters, it starts to invite entities.  Entities can also hitch-hike in on resident humans.  Just like lice, scabies or the flu, humans can transmit sad parasites back and forth to each other.  Entities have more of a discerning consciousness than critters.  I perceive them as monkey-like, making conscious choices about what to do and where to be and who they latch on to.

 

Entities are more proactive about their environment, and they actively incite the sort of energy they feed off of.  They like to garden.

 

Entities love to hang out with depressed and ill people, especially if there’s a chronic illness that’s associated with a lot of shame or emotional trauma.

 

An entity hitch-hiked into our house, once.  We discovered it after our guest left, and it decided to hang out in the “sad room” of our Ucluelet house.  This room, we later found out, was where the property owner’s son accidentally / intentionally ended his own life.  I was kind of pissed the property manager hadn’t alerted us to this event, which had traumatized not just the family, but the whole town, and all of that sorrow had rained upon our living space for over a decade.

 

This little creature was hanging out in the top corner of the house, and I noticed him only as a movement in the corner of my eye.  I slipped into medium mode and THEN I was able to “see” him.
I do not deal with these sorts of things myself.  We called in the angels to take care of it, and they did.  Immediately.  We were then advised by the “cleaning crew” to cut open an apple and leave it on a plate, cut side up, overnight to absorb the remaining energy and then dispose of it the next day.

 

I don’t like to waste food, but this is a really neat trick.  It worked well.  In general, I burn candles, use salt, rocks, holy water, bells, cleaning, smudging, prayer – but never before a cut apple.  The ways to energetically clean your house are endless.

 

I have since believed that this creature, this monkey-like entity must be what they’re talking about when people say “demon”.

 

Now, I’m going to tell you *how* this new information came to me:

 

I had just finished my third and final reading of the day.  I was positively *high* on energy.  The usual two-inch thick stream of warm energy I usually feel down my spine during readings had expanded into this four-foot column of warm happy light that enveloped my entire body.  My very being was pulsating with energy and love.

 

This doesn’t happen every time I do readings, and this was the most powerful experience of the universal god force that I’ve had to date.  I was just so high on love.  I felt like I’d never come down, no matter what sadness I witnessed, no matter what happened, it was all love, baby, love envelopes us all.

 

And then, my mind flashed on a particularly difficult person in our life.  I’ve been perplexed by this challenge of a human for quite a while.  And then it hit me – and it all made sense.  And it was all still part of the perfect love story of existence.

 

This person was an incarnated demon.

 

My knowledge and certainty of this was instantaneous and complete – like Neo getting the kung-fu download in the Matrix.  It was also completely harmless, non-alarming knowledge.  I was filled with understanding, compassion and – get this – renewed RESPECT for this person.

 

Because – this is so wild – sometimes demons incarnate to shift their pattern – they are going from dark to light!

 

Isn’t that amazing?  They’re transmuting themselves.  This is one of the purposes of demon incarnation.

 

THAT’S NOT EVEN THE CRAZY PART YET! 

 

Some of them are FANTASTICALLY GOOD PEOPLE!

 

SERIOUSLY!!!  I was too zen / full of universal love to have my mind blown by this at the time, but it was blown about six hours later when I came back down to earth.

 

I was awash with images of religious leaders, teachers and doctors, social workers and nurses, police officers, fire fighters – people devoting their lives to and sacrificing themselves for other people in need of help.

 

The thing is, no transition is easy.  This “dark” nature expresses itself in a variety of ways, and sometimes these demon people are easily corrupted in positions of power.  Not just the big, obvious positions of power, but the subtle, day-to-day positions of power.

 

You know how many incarnated demons end up as priests and ministers?  A LOT.  They’re working *really hard* and they’re taking their cue from a long and powerful tradition.

 

An example from my ancient history – when I was working as a temp in Toronto, I had a boss who bullied me.  She would find a way to call me fat and stupid every single day of the week… but she had the power to fire me at a moment’s notice, so I couldn’t defend myself until after I was hired on permanently.  It took a year and a half of daily office torture before she was finally fired.

 

This concept suddenly shed light on why some people just can’t resist being assholes, power-mongers or just plain crazy-makers.

 

They may not even know it themselves, but they feed off of negative energy.  They almost can’t help tweaking a situation negatively to get that energetic feedback.  For someone working really, really hard at being a good person, a moment of relapse in making a hurtful comment may come as a great relief to them, like letting off steam.

 

The flip side is the utterly shocking impact this can have on those around the incarnated demon.  How could this amazing, wonderful person say / do such a  thing?  It’s very confusing.  It’s almost irreconcilable.  Often, it seems easier to just forget what happened or what was said, because it seems impossible to incorporate this information into who you thought this person to be.

 

Here’s another thing:  There are demon SOUL FAMILIES!

 

Sometimes, they incarnate in groups, over and over into the same family line.  And woe to the angelic kid who chooses to be born into a demon family – this happens.  This explanation flashed with three separate headlines I’ve read in the past ten years with tragic stories of kids who died at the hands of neglectful and abusive guardians.

 

Child abuse is such a common tragedy that it doesn’t make the papers unless it’s truly horrific.  These are the sorts of things I feel a personal responsibility to witness, to never forget or deny that the innocent suffer in this world.

 

For the first time, I really started to understand *why*.  I could never before reconcile my ideas of a soul incarnation in human form, choosing terrible behavior.

 

In this blissful, expansive consciousness state, I understood (more completely than I do now, trying to explain it in words) that demons incarnated in human bodies are expressing their nature.  They are a part of the ecosystem.

 

It is not an eternal war between good and evil, harmony and dissonance.  It is a dance.

I understood, too, that we really do make a choice.  There is the potential for harmony and dissonance within all of us, because we are all related when you come right down to it.  Even angels and demons are cousins, incarnated or ethereal.

 

So what do we do with this knowledge?

 

I think we use this idea to change our approach.  Ever see that episode of Friends with the incompetent naturopath treating Ross’ weird mole or “kundus”?

 

“You must LOVE the Kundus!  Let me hear you say it!”  “Uh, I love the Kundus…”

 

We change our approach to incarnated demons expressing themselves in a harmful manner.

 

Our whole corrections system is based upon revenge.  When someone hurts us, as human beings we want to strike back.

 

Now, I don’t know what a “loving” judicial system would look like exactly, but I’m sure it would involve less minimum sentences and much more reparative community service.

 

This humble post isn’t intended to be an answer to the entire world’s problems, it’s just a useful idea.  It came to me in a blinding moment of love and happiness, and I will hold it in my heart as truth for the rest of my life.

 

I’ll let you know how it settles.

 

Your questions are welcome!  I may expand this into a podcast episode.

The Big Plan.

Okay, I didn’t cross-post it, but I did actually publish a new podcast episode this week:

http://www.joyfultelepathy.com/e/26-coming-out-as-psychic/

It’s an expansion on the Ele journal article I wrote, and it gets into how I continue to handle “coming out” as psychic, in response to a sweet email from a reader / listener.

I would gently encourage you to *subscribe* to the podcast feed through either iTunes or Stitcher or directly to the feed itself (http://www.joyfultelepathy.com/feed/) if you have another pod-catcher you prefer.

The reason WHY I encourage you to subscribe: I tend to post the episodes a few days in advance and just schedule the blog post *telling* you all about it! So if you’re subscribed, you get the new episodes “early”. And, as you can see, I don’t always get my scheduled blog posts in on time!

Why have I dropped that ball?

Well my dear friends, I’m in the process of making a course-correction.

You know those really massive ocean liners? I like to think of them whenever I get restless or impatient about the things I want to change in my life. I remind myself that although I’m doing a lot of work and it may *seem* like my life is cruising along in the same direction, it takes a while for that work to be reflected in an actual course-correction, and even longer to start seeing my new destination.

One of those course-corrections that’s taking a lot of energy right now is my job. I work part-time at the local hospital, which gives my partner and I some stability out here. I do enjoy my job, but I’d prefer to be there less often. After all, I have readings to do, blog posts and podcasts to produce, and a class and group readings to run.

If I were able to reduce my hours at the hospital, this would be great for me (and for you guys) for many reasons. I have so little control in what goes down at the hospital. The job is a combination of corporate / non-profit with a dash of branding and heavy on the union flavoring. It can be scary to have this big machine grinding away at your rent/food money generator and hope it re-shapes it into something beneficial.

Sweetie & I are also looking for a new place to live. We’ve been sharing a house with a family for the last three years, which has numerous privacy / respect / boundary / noise issues. We’re really hoping to find an affordable little house with our own laundry, utilities, internet and telephone. We just need to find it at the right price.

It will be interesting to see how things shake down. What we really want is for my hours at the hospital to be reduced, and to relocate to a nice little house in town – a quiet, private, sunny spot with a place for fire, either a wood stove or a fire pit. A gas stove would be fantastic too. We just need autonomy. So I would be grateful if you guys could just hold this visual in your mind for us: Sweetie and I feeling very happy, light and optimistic about whatever changes are happening.

Job and housing discomfort aside, I’ve been working really hard with friends and clients. Since the new scheduling system was installed, I’ve been able to double the number of readings I can do in a week, so this means if you’re on the waiting list you’ll be invited to book your appointment in the very near future!

I am *so happy* about this. We are saving about four hours of repetitive work every week with this new system.

I’ve also been putting in time behind the scenes to automate more of our repetitive processes, like adding new people to the Reading List. Hopefully, that form on my website tofinopsychic.com will soon add you *directly* to the reading list without human help.

AND! Well, this is so cool it really deserves its own blog post.

Love you guys!

Ep 25. Predicting the FUTURE-R-R-R!

25 future

Episode 25 y’all!  Thank you for listening!!!

“Tim from Iowa” sends us his astute questions about predicting the future: does knowing (or thinking you know) something about the future affect how everything turns out?

Did my accurate yet horrible tarot reading on myself in fact influence how challenging a year that turned out to be?
What about what we can do to affect our own future?  We discuss wicca, mantras, prayer and “intention” – how and why does that work, anyway?
The book referenced in this episode is:  Healing Mantras by Thomas Ashley-Frarrand

 

And I know, *I know* you have been waiting for the follow up to Inner Demons:  I’ve written it… and decided to re-write it.  One has to be very careful when talking about literal demons.  It’s gonna be good though, trust me.

Meanwhile, behind the scenes I’ve been working on making the GIFT CERTIFICATES work this year!  It looks like it’s going to – and you know what else?  REPORT CARDS are coming back!!!  Whoops!  That was supposed to be a secret.
Stay tuned, we just have to figure out how to make it all jive with the new scheduling system.
Love you guys!  And thank you everyone who’s been helping me with suggestions for my back pain on facebook.  The lovely Candis (as in Crystal Candis) has been sending me some kick-ass reiki!

 

Past lives, Inner demons and more Crazy Talk!

Karmic Resonance

 

It’s that time again: when I let loose and write about something s *crazy* that even *I* considered holding this one back.

 

This all started two years ago when I began to self-regress in nightly meditation under the guidance of my kind and compassionate spirit friends.

 

Some of the things that came up during that time, I wrote about.  Some of them, I kept to myself.

 

See, our past lives are not always pretty.  We know how messy life on earth can get, and I’ve seen how easy it is to tie your identity and self-worth to a concept like “lightworker”.  Some people only want to look at the light in themselves.

 

My friends, we are not all pure and happy balls of light.  I do believe each one of us has light and shadow aspects of our spirit consciousness and our history.  I also believe that both aspects are a perfect expression of the euphoric, universal, we-are-all-one “god”.

 

I also believe that many of us, including me, have expressed terribly dark facets in past lives, even if, and maybe that’s precisely why, we’re “good people” now.

 

I do truly believe that all action, thought and experience creates an energetic impact, ripples that affect us in future lives and affect our past lives retroactively… because time is bendy like that.

 

These ripples, sometimes caused by us, sometimes initiated by others, create an energetic resonance (karma).

 

In meditation, you might reach a place of expansive consciousness, where this idea is downloaded and makes complete sense, until you go back into your human body and your brain starts to tell you it’s contradictory.  It *is* contradictory from the perspective of an incarnated being with a limited and linear life span.

 

I’ll give you an example from one of my meditations and my personal history.  If you’re having a down day, you might want to come back to this story later.

 

**

 

When I was seven years old, my adult teeth were coming in… except I was getting too many.  I had extra teeth, and this posed a problem.  Not only that, but my adult teeth were far too large for my jaw.  The only solution was to pull the extra teeth.

 

Getting teeth “extracted” is an incredibly unpleasant experience for an adult.  For a kid, it’s awful.  On top of that, our dentist was old-school.  He used *reusable* needles and glass syringes, which make the injection of the local anesthetic really painful.

 

The sickening maraschino cherry on top of this crap sundae is:  the local anesthetic didn’t really work.  So there I was, a seven year old kid, getting two or three teeth pulled at a time, screaming my head off, saying “it hurts!” and no one believed me.

 

I was an obedient child so it took three visits before I stood up for myself and refused to go back to the dentist.  I threatened to fight and to run away.  Finally, my parents took me seriously.

 

They found me a new dentist who used disposable needles, a different, effective anesthetic, and he even used a chocolate flavored topical anesthetic so I wouldn’t feel the needle as much.  He had five birds at his house, and would bring me colourful feathers as a present whenever I came to “visit”.  Eventually, I became this family’s babysitter of their five children, and I survived the subsequent necessary extractions without further trauma.

 

But I carried resentment with me for years.  How could my mother hear her kid screaming in pain and not come to help?  How could she bring her kid back there, and not investigate better options until I was so terrified I refused to cooperate?

 

Of course the rational brain kicks in.  Intellectually, I forgave my mother, but the trauma was still there.

 

One night, in meditation, sliding through the lifetimes looking for old wounds that needed healing, I came upon a life experience with such vivid, visceral certainty in the truth of these memories, that it shocked me to my very core.

 

I dropped into the body of a massive man, hunched at the shoulders from a lifetime of ducking under doorways and stooping to labor with tools too small for my body.  I was wearing filthy, oily leather armor, conscious of the chafing because I was not wearing the proper undergarments.  I was wearing only filthy protective clothing and a rusting metal helmet to hide my face, but no soft fabric because it would get ruined from the mess.  All the blood, and other body fluids.

 

I walked down a stone staircase and watched myself pull the teeth of other living humans, while another man in black robes asked them questions.

 

There I was, doing the bidding of a weak, cruel man, and I was bigger and stronger than anyone in the building.  I could have picked up this prisoner and walked them out of the compound, no one would have stopped me.  Instead I stayed and pulled his teeth, and the teeth of many others.

 

Then I understood why I had to experience a small part of the pain I’d inflicted as a result of the choices I’d made in a past life.  This was karma, settling itself.  The energetic resonance needed a harmonizing note, and my understanding of it released the last bits of resentment and anger I harbored towards my mother.

 

The last extraction I experienced was when I was nineteen, and I had all four wisdom teeth removed under general anesthetic.   My cheeks blew up into chipmunk size pouches for two weeks afterwards, and my face became discolored with bruises as though I’d sustained a terrible beating.

 

And I have not had one ounce of trouble from my teeth ever since.  Not one cavity, knock on wood.

 

I haven’t gotten to the really crazy part yet.  I think I’ll save that for tomorrow.  (Or the next blog entry, whichever comes first!)

 

Ep 24. Fleas, Angels Calling, Precognition and Spiritual Cheating!

24

 

Happy Tuesday!  It’s Podcast day!  Episode 24: Fleas, Angels, Precognition and Spiritual Cheating!  

The pets, Sunshine the Cat and Happy the dog took me on a bit of an introductory detour as we discussed fleas and grooming and their experience of topical flea pesticides.  Then we get down to business, following up with the questions from October 11th blog entry: No Wrong Way to Die.

We have gotten so much mileage from this post.  We ask and give possible answers to questions such as:

I forgot where I came from (spiritually) only because I wanted to remember again?

Because “heaven” is too wonderful and souls are eager to learn things the hard way? 

Because the time and temperature on earth is perfect for human habitation so why not?  Let’s be suffering humans? Really?!

Big existential questions, y’all!  I do my best.

Then MB came in with questions about Dowsing & Pendulums – how the heck to those things work?  And precognitive dreams, how do you know when you’ve had one?  How can you tell if it’s real???
And you get the context for this photo:
2014-01-01 angels calling

Injury = Productivity?

2014-11-01 Truth-Antahkarana

Celebrate, y’all!  It’s November!  October is OVAH!  But not before I managed to tweak my back again.  Get this:

I was feeling pretty good.  Cocky, even.  I’m a freaking psychic, I *know* how to heal my body.  I was feeling strong, healthy, and ambitious!

I got home on Thursday night, a little distracted by the things I was wanting to do this weekend.  I noticed the toilet bowl was empty of water, so I flushed it without thinking…  and the water started to back up.

Horrifyingly dark water, rising rapidly!

I snatched for the plunger and *EEERK*!  Ah, no!  Not my back!  Not now!

Yes, now.

All I could do was sit on the bathroom floor, breathing through the muscle spasm, trying not to do anything that would make it worse, helpless to do ANYTHING about the smelly, swirling vortex rising relentlessly in the toilet bowl.  Dear god, I thought, please don’t let it overflow.  I knew I couldn’t get out of the way if it did.

It didn’t.

So I just took it easy yesterday, spending most of the day installed on a heating pad with muscle relaxants and anti-inflammatories coursing through my bloodstream… and I’ll tell you, I got so much done!

I finally got my booking system on to an online system.  This has already improved the process monumentally – instead of playing email tag with clients for days or weeks to figure out a date and collect payment, this new system does it all for me!  I woke up this morning and two people had booked themselves appointments and paid for them.

Hallelujah!  I may be able to double the number of weekly readings I can manage with all the time I’m saving with this billing system and having a cleaner.

And that makes me very, very happy.  Maybe this is why I hurt my back this month.

 

 

 

Sweetie’s Dad

Sweetie came back home on Thursday night, and I feel human again. While I enjoy and need a certain amount of alone time, this unexpected, frantic takeoff and separation during this time of Sweetie’s grieving was very hard on both of us. We’re so relieved to be back together, and at the same time we’re so grateful that she got to go and be with her family – that they all came together from all over the world to attend their father’s funeral. It was the first time the siblings had all been in one place in years, and aside from the grieving, it was really nice.

I met Kat’s Dad only a handful of times. Kat’s childhood friends (Awesome Josh included) had only nice things to say about Mr. Cunningham. “I never saw him unhappy. He was always laughing or smiling.” This seemed to be the sentiment all over facebook too.

Sweetie’s Dad loved to fly. Last week on the stressful Friday afternoon of her unexpected departure, she was nervously strapped into the little 8-seater airplane as it idled, engines running, on the tarmac for 40 minutes. The smell of fuel tweaked her anxiety; the abysmal weather did not help either.

Oh my god, the cabin is filling with exhaust and we’re all going to die of carbon-monoxide poisoning. Or the wind will blow us into the ocean. Or we’ll drop mid-air and the pilot will lose control. We are all going to die!

Right as Sweetie was spiraling into her own panic meltdown, she felt her Dad beside her, and felt him squeeze her arm in an assertive, fatherly way.

Kathy-Ann, listen to me. Nothing bad is going to happen. You are safe, I promise you.

He then proceeded to chatter to her about how cool the airplane was, explaining all the reasons why she was safe and how the airplane worked. None of it was particularly clear to Sweetie, given her state of mind, but she felt deeply comforted.

It’s amazing what they do for us.

On the evening Sweetie returned to our house, we spent the night talking about her Dad – and he showed up again.

Pegging! Pegging! Ha ha! I understand why that’s funny now!

This goes back to our first visit to Sweetie’s brother’s cottage when her parents attempted to teach us to play cribbage.

Sweetie’s mother is an energetic, animated woman who would embellish her husband’s instructions with her own explanations. As Fred was trying to explain a particular rule of the game, his wife continuously interjected with the accepted nomenclature:

It’s called pegging! PEGGING!!!

Sweetie and I were nearly on the floor pissing ourselves with laughter, because “pegging” to us, in our generation, means something quite different than it does to our parents’ generation. Of course we didn’t want to explain this dirty alternate interpretation to this serious cribbage lesson, so we did our best to suppress our giggles.

But Fred knew something was up.

For five years, whenever either of us needs a laugh, the other might shout, “PEGGING!”

Now Sweetie’s Dad is finally in on the joke.