An Empath’s Awakening
Growing up as a highly sensitive person and Empath certainly made fitting in quite difficult. I was always very much concerned about whether or not people around me liked me. I also couldn’t really handle being around lots of people or heavy emotions, so I spent a lot of time alone. This wasn’t necessarily a bad thing as I got to really focus on myself and the things I enjoyed most. All throughout grade school, I never felt like I fit into any “group” or relate to most of my peers. I just kind of did my own thing and got along with (on a surface level) almost anyone I came into contact with.
Throughout school, I was always fascinated with science and the natural world. Even in elementary school, I knew I wanted to be an Entomologist! I was a top student through high school and excelled in math and science. By the time I got to college, I felt like the path to pursue was Engineering since it was the hottest field to earn a degree in at that time. I started in Biochemical Engineering and soon realized that it wasn’t going to be for me. During finals week as a sophomore, I was so overloaded with schoolwork and the stress of impending tests that I had an emotional breakdown.
That night stood out to me for many reasons. It was the first time as a young adult that I felt such overwhelming emotion. It was also the first time I ever had an OBE (Out of Body Experience).
I remember the night vividly. I was in the front yard of my aunt’s home near campus. I used to stay in her spare room on occasion during college. Due to the stress that I was experiencing from school, I found myself pacing back and forth outside trying to settle my overwhelm. In a moment, I fell to the ground in a wave of despair and sadness. I cried deeply and wondered if I could recover from the feelings. After I was able to collect myself, I went inside, showered, and went to the spare room. I laid down in bed relieved that the day was over and that it was time to rest. I laid the back of my head on the pillow, turned to my left side, and suddenly everything changed.
In the blink of an eye, I was aware that I was no longer in my body but floating up next to the ceiling. I could look down and see my body on the bed. Something about it felt so familiar and natural to me that I wasn’t afraid at all. I felt free. I could float around the room in any direction that I wanted. In the excitement of this realization, I spun myself around from a hook that appeared in the ceiling. I was blown away at my new abilities. I floated over to the doorway and saw the light switch. I went to reach for it to turn the light on. I felt a hand touch mine and whisper “You don’t want to do that”. It felt as though it were my aunt’s hand, and the gentle voice was convincing. I went out of the bedroom to see my aunt sitting at the kitchen table eating an apple. It was like she couldn’t see me, but I was aware of her. After a few more moments of being in this out-of-body state, I woke up in bed. What I had just experienced began to settle in.
From that moment, I really began to question everything I had known and had been accustomed to. A new facet of reality had emerged, and I needed answers.
After a few more semesters in college and changing my field of study several times, I became less and less interested in school. The more I lost interest, the more I started to disconnect from my reality to find safety in something other than what society was offering as a path forward. I found myself only wanting to hang out with my friends, play music, drink alcohol, and experiment with drugs.
I will sum up the next decade of my life like a whirlwind of excess and escapism. My need to disconnect from reality quickly turned into alcoholism and drug abuse. I won’t go into details, because none of it was pretty or worth sharing with the world.
Once I hit bottom enough times because of my addictions, I decided that I needed help. Asking for help was difficult for me due to my upbringing and feeling like I wasn’t seen (often a challenge for Empaths and HSP’s). I checked myself into a treatment center and that’s when my life changed forever!
After the first week of getting clean, I began to have some interesting experiences. I would occasionally feel a lot of tingling on the crown of my head and experience deep moments of peace. I would feel energy pouring into the top of my head from above and my body and soul would relax in a way I had never felt before. At one point, after going through one of these crown energy experiences, I began to feel this energy move into my heart space. Before I knew it, I felt the front of my chest “open up”, and the energy of pure unconditional love moved through me! It was like someone hooked up a fire hose to the back of my chest and turned it on! This energy was SO powerful and loving! It consumed me and I fell to the ground weeping in such profound joy. At the time I wasn’t entirely sure what was happening, but I now recognize these experiences as Chakra Openings. First my Crown Chakra, and then my Heart Chakra.