With great trials come tender mercies. They remind us that we are not forgotten after all. They can be a lifeline in the worst storms. The crueler the storm, the more tender the mercies can be. You deserve them, so seek for them and hang onto them.
Last night, I knelt in prayer before going to bed. My heart was heavy. I had gossiped behind a family member’s back, and I knew better.
I opened my heart up to the Lord, and said how sorry I was. Then, I decided to really open up. I wasn’t just going to say I was sorry and promise not to do it again because I knew it was “the right” thing to do. I was going to put down all facades.
“The truth is, Father, I don’t actually know what’s right. Do I open up to my friend and tell him these things so he won’t feel so lonely? Cause that’s what I did, and I feel some good came of it. I also felt better having someone to hear my story… Or, do I keep my ‘secrets’ to myself? Or do I give them to the Savior, and ask Him to take them—then give others the chance to grow and improve, while I completely bury the hatchet? Is it a combination of all these things? If so, how is it done? I don’t know if life is so cookie cutter anymore. I’ll do whatever you tell me to do.”
I climbed into bed, sending out an invitation for any heavenly beings who wanted to come and hold my hands while I fell asleep, but I didn’t demand it or expect it.
Then, after about 20 minutes of lying there, I felt a heavenly hand grasp my right hand. I was comforted.
Then something amazing happened. Heavenly sensations struck both my arms, and my arms started floating across my mattress. These were the same sensations I had felt all over my body while I was in a padded cell in 2012. It had been seven years since this had happened to me…and now it was happening again?!
I’m just going to say this: do whatever you can spiritually to be able to feel this gift. The feeling is unlike anything else in the entire world. If you combine all the love from the people you trust most, the best massage you’ve ever had, a warm blanket, plus the sensation of floating through clouds and soft white feathers…that’s the feeling I felt in both my arms.
It isn’t a baptism of fire sensation—it’s different. It’s more like a “putting to bed with as much gentleness and love the Gods can conjure up” sensation. I think it’s a terrestrial experience, and you have to be able to access a different dimension in order to feel it.
I felt so happy today, just knowing how much God loves me. And I remember how hard I had to fight to merit this feeling last time. I had read the scriptures out loud, fasted, sang hymns, and prayed for four days straight while I was abandoned in that padded jail cell—after all that, it had happened. But, comparing that with right now? Well, it shows me how far I’ve come in my journey. I didn’t have to be locked up or desperate. It was on a normal day, like any other day.
There’s something else, too. This experience is a promise. A promise that my past joys aren’t one-hit wonders. I believe they were only a taste of the Heavenly things that are to come.
The dark side knows our personalities and our preferences and will take every advantage of that knowledge against us. While abuse victims are hurt against their will, it’s a greater victory for Satan to entice us to CHOOSE his ways. Temptations will come whether we invite them or not. But each time we reject a temptation we hand the dark side a defeat, and we strengthen the light side of our coin. Over time, these victories combine to change our very nature.
Yesterday morning, I was in my bed dreaming, again. In my dream, I was part of a group of young people and we were accepted into some sort of secret society. It was a mirror image of being on a religious retreat and learning about God, but this society and its teachings were sinister in nature. I would only realize how sinister once I had woken from the dream.
In this society, I arrived at a castle-like manor and I was taught the secrets, and I participated in the groups and in the fun outings we would have. There were many things that were to my liking during these outings. Everything seemed acceptable to me. I should point out that in my dream I had no memory of my membership in the Church of Jesus Christ or even that such a person as Jesus Christ lived.
After what seemed like weeks living in and around this castle, some of the other novices would disappear with a more seasoned individual here and there. Then whole groups would be gone for an afternoon or so. Eventually, I started to hear from the novices what they had been doing. A little make-out session here, a little grab there—everything was very PG-13 rated at first.
The dream progressed in this vein until I became accustomed to these developments, and they were no longer a surprise to me.
Then, I started to see the novices and the more advanced people acting out these things in front of me. I was at first shocked, but then after some weeks, it became usual for me.
Then, the novices would come back and have increasingly detailed stories about the highly sexual encounters they were having as part of the indoctrination, and how much they were enjoying them. After I got used to these stories, I started to witness some of these encounters, and then after getting used to that, I was even encouraged to watch! If I stated that I didn’t want to watch, all others would look at me with downcast eyes, or gently make fun of me for being such a “prude”.
They were so gentle with their admonishing, that I didn’t struggle to escape the dream—something my spirit would have done if they had tried to use any force whatsoever with me.
After this, the entire estate was into increasingly disturbing sexual practices and ordinances having to do with such. It became commonplace after what seemed like years of indoctrination—although I never chose to participate in the practices. I declined to watch the proceedings—but they happened so often in all the places I seemed to be going, I couldn’t help but gain exposure to them.
Then the time came when I compared what everyone was doing with what I was doing, and I realized that I was very sexually frustrated. What could a tiny bit of “self love” do? I reasoned within myself. The answer slowly changed from something bad, although I know not what nor why, into…nothing.
Everyone else seemed to be enjoying levels of 666% pleasure in their sexual encounters and “high blessings” for what they were doing. I wasn’t sure why I hadn’t chosen to participate all this time. Still, it all seemed a bit disgusting to me. But would a little bit of self-indulgence hurt? Surely not… After all, what could it hurt? And, furthermore, what could it hurt to say certain words and perform one of the rituals I’d been so exposed to while doing it?
I suddenly heard, from another realm entirely, a woman’s yell.
I opened my eyes and reoriented myself. What?!
I was in my bedroom, in St. George, and an unseen woman had just been there, yelling my name. I wasn’t in a castle in Scotland—or who-knows-where, in my gussied up room—about to do something regretful.
I had been saved. A woman—a guardian angel—had been in my room, and she had screamed her hardest directly at my prone form. And I heard her.
The strange thing is, after I woke up and reflected on the dream, I started to realize how the entire scenario was shaped around my likes. Do I like rolling green hills and cloudy blue skies as far as the eye can see? Yes! Do I like shiny white horses I can ride in the rain? Yes! Do I like grand estates with castles on them? Yes! Do I like puppies? Yes! Do I like wearing expensive clothing? Yes! Do I like dozens of seemingly calorie-free expensively decorated tiered cakes with buttercream frosting strategically placed around every room all of the time? Yes!
But no matter how many times you paint a sepulcher white…it’s still a sepulcher with a ton of decay inside.
After thinking about it, I reflected that Satan may have teams dreaming up and building alternate-realities with incredible level of detail—all to ensnare us. They had almost succeeded with me.
I shuddered at the thought, and almost went to a place of self-blame–another tactic of the dark side. I had another thought: what would I have participated in, if they had launched that scenario at me five years ago? Ten years ago?
And I realized that while my temptation during the dream was unfortunate, the restraint I showed was even more remarkable and was an indication of my significant growth on my inward journey.
In one way or another we are subject to Satan’s abuse. But with Christ, our greatest trials can be made into our greatest strengths, and Satan’s greatest victims can be transformed into his most powerful foes. In such cases, Satan may be forced to acknowledge his own hand in our new strength and power.
You’d think that the headquarters of hell would be wreathed in flames, and that it would have a dungeon-like atmosphere, complete with moldering bones in every corner.
That’s not the case. Hell HQ is a non-descript one-level building in a rural area, just off the highway, surrounded by farmland right here in America.
Well, at least, that is what I saw in my dream as I made straight for the glass entrance, followed by my dad—who was apparently along for the ride.
I experienced this dream from two points of view. There was the first-person view—looking through my own eyes and being an actor in the scenes that unfolded. Then there was the third person point of view—where I watched the scenes unfolding from above my body. The former view came with surety and strength—a complete knowledge of how to break into hell, what my mission was, and how to get back out as quickly as necessary. Sadly, I did not retain this point of view after the mission.
And the latter view, where I was watching from above? Well, I was both afraid and fascinated to see all this play out. It’s not everyday you see yourself—like in an action movie—break into the headquarters of the biggest baddies in the galaxy.
And of course, like any movie, it was obviously essential to take on the hordes of hell with so much style and grace that a unicorn would be proud. I was wearing a simple, elegant long white dress, with sleeves to my wrists. It wasn’t woven by human hands, but by someone more Heavenly. While long, it wasn’t hot or constricting, and it provided all the movement I needed—even if I were to run or jump, it adjusted itself to every situation according to my needs. My hair and body were the same I had seen in two other visions—I was trim, lithe, and had glossy chestnut blonde hair with highlights throughout the ends. My hair fell below my shoulders in beautiful waves and seemed alive with every move I made. My skin was polished and glowing with a warmth I’ve never seen the earthy likes of before. This was a dream, after all.
So, I both watched and participated as this heavenly version of myself pushed through two sets of glass doors, opening them Aragorn-style with a dramatic flourish. Though I had just entered the headquarters of hell, I stood there in majesty—completely and utterly without fear.
Everything was nondescript. Drab shades of grey were on the walls, there were chairs in the sitting area, and the floor was a murky color. There were hallways off to the right and left, and a tall counter in the front with what looked like a secretary sitting behind it. As I walked in, my hair fanning around my shoulders, she froze—in shock for a moment.
I ignored the secretary and walked on past the reception area to the hallway to the left, my shoulders back, head held high, the white dress swishing around the corner after me. I apparently knew right where I was going.
Overcoming her shock, the woman at the reception desk stood up with a panicked look on her face and quickly pressed an alarm—alerting everyone to my presence. She then ducked underneath her desk.
There were about twenty doors on either side of the hallway. These doors led into classrooms and workrooms. I knew this because at the alarm, every single door flew wide open, and the occupants leaned out to see what was going on.
I strode down the hallway like a queen on a mission, ignoring all their stares. My dad followed me.
Many of the people recognized me, and there was screaming, which spread like fire. Some yelled out directions to each other, some darted in front of me to go down other hallways, and others retreated to duck under their desks. A few paired up and talked hurriedly—trying to come up with a plan of action. The entire building was in an uproar.
But, as I walked forward, no one dared apprehend me or my Dad. They were running like frightened mice.
Watching this from above was thrilling. As I watched the reactions of the entire building my confidence in myself grew.
From the point of view of the upgraded me who was causing all this ruckus, I remember I felt calm, assured, and unafraid as I reached the end of the hallway. The whole building could have been burning down and hordes of hellish demons attacking me and I would have maintained my calm.
I just felt sorry for all these people.
And I had a mission.
The third-person Nicole couldn’t wait to find out what that mission was. This was awfully exciting! I wondered what else was up my sleeve.
As I came around the corner, I spotted the door—the room where it was.
I marched toward the door and found it was unlocked. I motioned for my dad to stay in the hallway. He was speechless at everything that had happened so far, and he was not sure what would happen next.
From above, I waited in anticipation, watching myself in awe.
I opened the door.
He was leaning over a map on his desk and was mid-sentence when I walked in—a pleasant man to look upon, if you went by his features alone. He had dark hair, and was wearing a simple suit—the jacket removed—with no frills or accouterments whatsoever. About 20 generals, all male, were seated in long rows at their own desks along either side of an aisle, which ran directly to his desk and blackboard at the front of the room. Most were dressed in varying shades of brown. There was something militaristic about their appearances—which ranged from uniforms pinned with gaudy medals to simple button-up shirts and ties. Everyone looked to be well-groomed and between the ages of 30 and 50. They all had various papers, notes, and writing utensils in front of them. They seemed to be planning something big—an attack of some sort.
“__________…” he said. He looked up at me with a grin, his head cocked mockingly to the side. He was holding a pen.
“Lucifer,” I said, with seeming cordiality.
From above, I was shocked at the name Lucifer had called me—but there was an inner knowing deep inside me that it was my eternal name.
Lucifer stood up, rolled his shoulders back, and threw the pen on his desk—right on top of a stack of papers—which I took note of. He grinned at me again. His teeth were very white. “We have no need of your…services…today. How about you come back tomorrow?”
“Tomorrow, I’m on holiday,” I said.
Let us pause here to reflect on the two versions of myself. One was standing there in pure white, honey-colored hair rippling around her collar bones, posed like a warrior princess, facing down the smartest, most powerful, vile, destructive, and hardworking devils in all of remembered history…and the other me was above, body-less, freaking out. I was beside myself! Or, above myself—take your pick.
First of all, Lucifer knew me, he recognized me immediately. He even seemed to know me intimately in times past.
Secondly, at Lucifer’s taunt, fear struck me to the heart. I wondered, how can I be standing there, so unafraid? I’m petrified with fear!!! And why am I joking at a time like this?! Every instinct told me to run! Get away! The room felt like facing a thousand dementors.
Back on the ground, I watched as a general in the front row of the classroom turned with the rest of them. He saw me and smirked. “Ah…it’s been awhile. Are you back for more? Couldn’t keep away? You always were such fun to play with.” The rest of the generals elbowed each other and some of the men chortled as they recalled my past abuse. Visions of what he wanted to do to me assaulted my mind.
I waved away the thoughts like they were flies.
At this, all of the generals started yelling things out to me without effect, then changed tactics and sent disturbing messages and visions to me about my loved ones. They tried to get me angry by how nonchalant they could be about the most evil things. They taunted me about what they had done to children and to everything I ever cared about.
The evil in this room increased tenfold and was overpowering to my point of view from above. I was terrified and couldn’t see how the terrestrial Nicole could get out of this one.
I stood there in that classroom, my eyes like green flint. It was so easy. I could pierce through them all—I could hear the fear underneath their words like a current that would sweep them away. I couldn’t be hurt by them anymore.
I smiled, as if to say, “Are you finished?”
After that, every general raised both of his hands before him—like something out of Avatar the Last Airbender—and started to bend evil forces and channel them toward me.
They had incredible power. Each of them felt like they could topple whole cities with this power.
In response, I raised both of my hands in front of me, palms out, stepping forward with one foot into a warrior stance. I felt all their energy coming at me like waves of a tsunami. I sensed Lucifer, standing with his hands in his pockets by the blackboard—so assured that I was about to be done for.
I blocked their energy with a shield of light. All the evil flowed around me and charred the building, warping and twisting rebar.
I had a look of intense concentration on my face, resolute and set to complete the task before me. I knew in Whom I trusted.
I moved my left hand quickly to the side, like I was parting a wave. Ten generals were thrown with amazing violence straight into the wall, breaking the wall in some places. No one could even flutter their eyelids after they fell to the floor and over the desks. And (like any action movie), it didn’t matter how hard I fought “the bad guys”—my hair flew about my face dramatic-style, but then always settled back into wavy perfection, of course.
I turned my head to the right, and my eyes blazed like lightening. At this, the generals on the right side of the room split into two groups—one group tried to hold their power on me, with increasing terror in their eyes, and the other group turned and tried to run, stumbling over desks and chairs while they screamed. I stepped closer to them and moved both my palms forward towards them, pushing light-force at their terrified faces.
They were all knocked out. Bodies and desk parts were scattered across the floor into the corners. Exposed cinder block had melted with the fervent heat I had channeled from God’s Throne. Some generals were even thrown through the roof. The entire classroom looked like one of the school shootings one of these generals had arranged…but it was he who was on the floor now.
Lucifer…he wasn’t too happy. While I was staring in shock from above, my terrestrial self strode forward down the messy aisle, stepping over bodies in the wake of the battle. I stopped halfway to Lucifer’s desk.
He wasn’t laughing or smiling now. He had a look of utter consternation on his face.
He raised his hands, palms outward towards me.
I did the same.
A huge force of darkness burst toward me. I fought back—and we channeled our two forces—good versus evil—towards each other at full power. I remember thinking that it wasn’t all fun and games anymore. This man—this Satan—before me was more than all those generals combined. The utter force of power and darkness rushing towards me could wrap the entire world in darkness. I felt like Harry Potter facing Voldemort when their two wands were crossed, or like Luke facing Vader. I felt like all the heroes facing their ultimate battle with evil.
Because I felt Heaven’s power, we were evenly matched. The forces met each other in the center and the energy billowed out in waves into the classroom. I gritted my teeth, and my arms were shaking. But his were, too. He yelled and grunted but increased his exertions and kept on pushing the darkness towards me.
I shut my eyes in my effort to keep the onslaught from consuming me. Then, I realized something. We were evenly matched when this began. But I had the ability to grow spiritually. While God’s powers were increasing, Satan’s powers were decreasing. I was waxing, while he was waning. And exactly how had I improved so much?
It was as though I heard a voice say…because of his efforts against you, you are growing all the more.
I opened my eyes, and with this knowledge came more power than I had ever had before. I felt it within me—I was stronger than I’d ever been. With a yell I stepped forward and thrust my hands with an incredible ball of light towards Lucifer.
I saw the shocked look in his face in a split second, right before it hit him. I could read his thoughts: Why? How? How could she come so far? How can she do this?
Then the mixture of light and his own darkness hit him, and he flew backward and hit the blackboard, cracking it in half.
From above, I was shocked at what I’d seen. Then I realized something…because Lucifer’s power could no longer take hold in me, it rebounded onto him—causing double destruction upon himself.
My terrestrial self walked down the aisle, grabbed up a paper that had been on Lucifer’s desk, and looked at it briefly. I saw that it was a map. I don’t know what this map was, or who it helped. But it seemed to be a key in heaven’s plans.
The door behind me was hanging off its hinges. My dad was in the hallway, and like we had come, we left—walking down the hallway like I owned the place, people running and screaming and just panicked in general. Energetically, the entire building and all its power were crumbling around us, and all the people were acting like crazed ants whose queen had died—completely without leadership or power to do anything but to be consumed by fear.
The dream ended with my Dad and I walking out of those double doors—the secretary nowhere in sight.
I lost most of the knowledge I had had as the terrestrial version of myself, but retained everything I had seen and learned as I watched the events play out from above.
Not Today, Satan!
Halfway through writing Hell HQ, I was due at the park for a playdate with my friend, her grandson, and my dogs. I was loathe to leave off writing something so dramatic, but I forced myself to leave it halfway done and meet her as we had planned.
We had a great time at the park. After about an hour, I felt that I should leave quickly to go home—and I knew it had something to do with what I’d written. I felt an awareness of the dark side…like they knew what I had been writing. And they didn’t like it.
I gave my friend an excuse and said goodbye, and I walked in the direction of my car.
I had parked my car in an unusual place where I never park it—on the shoulder of the busy Fort Pierce road, which cuts in between the larger park and the smaller park with the tennis courts.
I was walking through the large park towards my car, but her grandson had run after me, and this caused some delay, as I walked with her a little more, but then abruptly left her to get to my car and leave.
At the car, which was parked in the dirt behind a trailer in front of someone’s house, I tried to clean up my dogs as best I could. They were so dirty that I gave up and did something else I hadn’t done before—I shoved them into the back of the car, where they could barely fit. I got into the car quickly, turned it around, and left for home.
Right when I got home, my friend called me and was in a panic. “Nicole! Nicole! Are you alright? Oh my goodness I thought you’d been in the wreck! Were you in the wreck?”
I tried to calm her down and get her to start from the beginning, after I assured her I was safe. A story unfolded—apparently right when I left in my car and was out of sight, a woman was going more than 60 mph around the curve and crashed right into the back of the trailer on the side of the rode—right where I’d been parked. Exactly where I’d been standingmere seconds before.
The noise was so loud, neighbors from all the surrounding houses and all the people in the parks gathered. There was a huge cloud of dust. The police were called, and no one was injured. But the woman…well people couldn’t tell what was wrong with her, or why she didn’t stay on the road. Later, in her questioning, she said that she “thought that was where the road was.”
My friend said it was as though she were crazed—not in her right mind. When they released her and her damaged car, she drove away just as fast, apparently forgot where she’d been going, made a U-turn, and drove back home.
I have yet to find out who this woman was, or why she got into such a terrible wreck—right where I had been standing, trying to get my dogs into the car.
Victims of ritual abuse are rarely understood or believed. They are often targeted for abuse by the dark side, because of their spiritual gifts. On the other hand, Heaven will often balance their trauma with extraordinary visions and manifestations from the Light. Anything the victims might share about either type of experience is rarely believed by loved ones, therapists, or even their clergy. This leads to further isolation. However, by embracing their gifts and experiences with the Light, victims can accumulate strength over the dark side of their coin.
“What I’m seeing now in the last six to seven years is, we’re seeing people that have been taken in the spirit, taken from their homes. They didn’t come from Satanic cults.“
“They are taken from Christian families, out of their bodies and taken and abused. I know this may sound crazy to some people, but I’m seeing it over, and over, and over again. A lot of people in their 20’s, some in their 30’s. It’s a new thing, I believe.”
Dr. Holly Hector, 30 years experience helping DID/SRA Victims
On July 30th I woke from a dream that was extremely disturbing. In the dream, I was a child, and with other children, I was being programmed by Satanists in a place that looked like a chapel. We would have to sit and be strapped into a chair-contraption, and small metal hooks were used around our eyelids to force our eyes open. We had to stare at a laser, which created patterns on a plate-like surface before us. During these patterns, the Satanists would be programming us with words they were saying, and images they were using. I don’t remember what they said.
All I remember is being so grateful I wasn’t the one in the chair, when someone else was taking their turn. And when I was in the chair? I remember just gritting my teeth until it was over. I also remember being so scared of certain tortures they would inflict upon us, that I would choose to inflict these same tortures on other victims so I could avoid being tortured myself. I won’t go into what these things were…but they were horrific. Whether being tortured, or the torturer, one fact stood out against all others: there was no escape. There was no place of safety. There was nowhere to run. The adults that would comfort us one moment were the very ones perpetrating the abuse a moment later.
The interesting thing that I saw towards the end of the dream was this: the chapel we were in had pews, an altar, and certain satanic items around the room. The Satanists worshipped their god here, and they actually believed in him. An exceedingly dark spirit filled the room. But I heard voices—like the voices of a choir of angels. Standing towards the back right of the room, where there was wood paneling, one of the Satanists opened a secret door. There, on the other side of the wall, was a Christian chapel—complete with an altar, a cross, and pews filled with people singing hymns. It was a mirror opposite from the satanic chapel, something like the dark side of the moon.
When I awoke, I was beyond disturbed by the dream, especially by what I had seen and done. I wondered, did that really happen to me? Was this what happened when I was 5 years old in Salt Lake? These questions haunted me as I tried to bravely tackle my checklist for the day. But I could not shake the spiritual darkness that I felt.
“It isn’t only a dream.”
“As ritual abuse survivors who haven’t yet had or processed the memories move further into therapy and/or Twelve Step recovery, their dreams often become more intense and more macabre.”
Breaking the Circle of Satanic Ritual Abuse (p 49), Daniel Ryder
Later that day, I had a session with a Christ-centered energy healer. When I told her about the dream and my question of whether it had happened to me or not, she said what I knew, deep down, all along was my answer: does it really matter if that happened to you physically or spiritually? You are affected all the same.
For the first time after hearing that answer (I had heard it before), I backed away from my endless need to know exactly what had happened to me. I could see how the pain and the excessive, endless thoughts about the SRA were now contributing to my past trauma. The specifics of my dreams and even of my actual trauma were not always important.
She asked me about my gifts—the gifts I was born with to wield in the cause of truth. I hesitated. What gifts, really, do I have? I couldn’t see clearly what they were.
“How about the gift of sight?” she said. I sat back in the squashy chair I was in, doubt filling my mind.
“Nicole, you have vivid revelations…dreams…visions—whatever you want to call them. They teach you specifically, in startling clarity. And you have them in color, am I right?”
“That is even more of a gift. Do you understand what you have been given?”
I admitted that I hadn’t thought about it recently.
“This Gift of Sight which you have is a gift that only a Light Warrior can wield. What is a Light Warrior? It is a person who can go into complete darkness and maintain her light. It is someone who is fearless—who the darkness cannot overcome. Ever. And this gift you have? It is in progress. What you have seen and experienced…it’s only the beginning of your gift. You are developing it.”
I was stunned. I am a Warrior of Light echoed through my brain. It was one of the mantras I had been listening to every night.
She continued, “Additionally, because your experiences have been so extreme, you have access to angels and knowledge that others do not have. Do you see these gifts that you’ve been given?”
Maggie Irwin, SRA Counselor:
“For every minute they spent with the demons, I believe they also spent a minute with the angels.”
“Ms. Irwin said she has never encountered a group of people more capable of deep spiritual connectedness, because of the strong sense of spirituality satanic abuse survivors had to draw upon consistently in order to survive.”
Breaking the Circle of Satanic Ritual Abuse (p 36)
I could see them now. There was a hope being kindled in my chest, burning all my fear of my SRA dream away. The satanic things I had experienced the night before became small compared to the knowledge of this light and these gifts I was given.
She went on, “So, let’s say you have a coin. On the one side, you have all of the satanic abuse, all of the darkness and neglect and trauma Satan could heap upon you. On the other side of the coin you have Christ. How you have sought Him your whole life—desperately sometimes—and you have found Him! So, on one side, is the light you have found. On the other, is the evil you’ve been exposed to. What would happen if I took away the evil side of the coin?”
I answered immediately, “The coin would disappear. You cannot have one side without the other.”
“Yes, Nicole, there will always be two sides. And guess what? Many ‘normal’ people haven’t found Christ like you have. They haven’t needed to! They haven’t been as desperate as you.”
I pondered that. Then I said, “I…I wouldn’t give up my experiences with the Light for all the safety in the world. …So I need to take the dark with the light.”
“But now…” She continued. “Now after you have all these experiences, you can work on the next part—which is where it gets really exciting.”
What could that be? I wondered.
“You get to become a warrior.”
Later that day, my mom and I went to Deseret Book. We bought a coin, which depicted a man and a woman wearing the Armor of God—the helmet, breastplate, shield, sword—everything. I now keep it with me at all times. If thoughts of regret and sadness about what I’ve been through enter my mind, I get out my coin. One side is in shadow—and the other? As light hits the warrior woman’s form, I smile, and I know.
Not much good comes from comparing ourselves to others. We are either lifting ourselves above another to feel “better,” or demeaning ourselves below another to feel that we are not enough. As long as we are looking outside of ourselves for our own value, the dark side is winning. If we could only see ourselves the way God does, we’d know the truth about our individual worth and divinity.
I woke up this morning after a restless night, filled with anxiety. For me, this type of anxiety can be a slippery slope down into the depths of hell. It is an oppressive presence, like a monster living behind my heart, spreading its tentacles throughout my whole body.
I flexed and released different parts of my body in turn for ten seconds each, a relaxation technique I learned some years ago. This relaxed me a bit until my alarm went off.
The thought came to me, pray.
I felt like I needed more comfort than kneeling by my bedside and praying would provide. I wanted Heavenly Mother.
So I asked, Mother, would it be okay to rock me right now?
The answer was immediate: Yes. I believe now that the answer to this is always yes for when we really desire it.
So I headed to “our” rocking chair. It’s a big brown leather La-Z-Boy chair covered with a feather comforter in the basement. Mom and Dad bought it for me a week after I broke my back in 2009, when they decided to transfer me from the Provo Hospital to the St. George Hospital in the back of the Expedition…a decision which saved us a ton of money. When we arrived at the ER three and a half hours later in St. George, a flabbergasted doctor and receiving team were incensed that the Provo team had released me to be transferred without an ambulance in the state I was in.
But Mom, Dad, and I were quite happy about it—it had been comforting sitting there in that sign of frugality and love in the back of the SUV, my parents looking back and checking on me, talking to me. It was healing to be on a road to recovery with so much love and with faith that I would get better and be able to walk again. (Not to mention, one of my favorite smells is leather.)
So that’s what this big brown rocking chair symbolizes to me. That, when I’m most broken, I can be held here and transferred to a place of recovery for what is broken inside of me.
Sitting in my comfy chair was like a hug, and I trusted it to get me through this anxiety. I collected my pillows and got situated, with the foot-rest up and a quilt covering me. My whole body ached, and so did my emotions. As I went into that place of complete stillness both in body and mind I have learned to go to over the past couple of years, I reflected on the movie Mom and I watched last night. It was Love, Kennedy and we cried like babies through it. This true story is about a girl who has an incurable disease, where she loses all function of her body, and eventually passes away. Since she was a baby, her grandmother’s rocking chair played a key role in comforting her in her life. Her grandmother on the other side of the veil and her mother would rock her there, and the last scene before she dies at age 16, she is held there again.
As I watched the movie, I couldn’t help but compare myself to Kennedy. I felt like I wasn’t good enough to be like Kennedy, and I was even jealous of her. When in the hospital with my broken back, I was like her. The constant opposition of mental illness and Lucifer was gone, and I had a clear connection to the other side, and I felt unconditional love for everyone and everything. The Spirit was palpable whenever I was alone in my hospital bed, interacting with visitors, or doing my therapy. There was a sacredness in my life, and every moment seemed precious. I willingly suffered through the physical torture of having a broken back because I knew…deep down that the Savior was with me, and that I had chosen to go through with Him. This drew me closer to Him.
Because of that memory, I was jealous of Kennedy and her incurable disease. I missed that feeling of being so focused on the present and so connected with Heaven. I hope I can explain this properly…some of us just don’t want to be here, on this earth. We miss the other side so badly, and the amount of emotional, mental, and spiritual suffering we’ve had here seems to be too much to handle. But this is how God works: those of us who long for death, live. And those who long to live, die. After all, we are here to work on what’s missing inside of us.
I’ve resigned myself to the fact that no matter how many near-misses I’ve had, both physical and mental, I’m here for good.
So I sat there in my recliner and went into stillness. I felt pure intelligence and comfort flow into me. It’s a curious thing—once I identify where it’s coming from, I’ve learned I can open the gate a bit more and actually receive more. I felt in my heart that Heavenly Mother was, indeed, the one who was rocking me back and forth. It’s a physical sensation but more of a refined physicality. As she rocked me, I sensed from Mother that I am just as special as Kennedy. We are completely different—so why compare? I have my own brand of beauty, my own mission, and Heavenly parents who love me.
That was the question I needed to hear: Why compare? Why do I so naturally fall into comparing myself to others? What do I really want? What things am I jealous of that I believe I’m lacking, or will not eventually receive? Do I believe God will withhold any truly good thing that I desire?
The truth is, what I really want is to be genuine and lovely. I want to give unconditional love and receive unconditional love. I want a close relationship with Heaven. I want to create happiness here on earth and fulfill my role here.
Maybe I was jealous of Kennedy, because I saw those characteristics in her, and I thought, she has what I want, and since it’s not showing up in my life, I’m not good enough or worthy enough to have it, too.
The truth is, the good we see in others is most likely something that’s seeded deep within ourselves, and our righteous desires will bring forth this fruit in its time. And of course it’s not going to look like the other person. Would the color pink be jealous of the color blue? No! They are both perfectly happy to be their own color!
I realized, while sitting in the rocking chair, as I felt the very real sensation of being rocked back and forth, that what I really wanted was to be the most me I can be—as Kennedy was the most her she could be. We want to be who we truly are—to merge our spirits with our bodies completely—and be unconditionally loved for who we truly are.
I felt Heavenly Mother’s love. She was pleased with my realization and added, I want every beautiful thing for you, too. Rejoice in Kennedy’s story as others will rejoice in yours. You are needed right where you are, how you are.
Then the rocking stopped.
Let me back up a moment to relate my first memory. My first memory is of being in my earthly father’s arms—Daddy’s arms—in our old pink La-Z-Boy chair in 1989. I must have been only a few months old. Our ritual was that he would hold me there in his arms on his chest, and I would completely relax and feel safe. I remember the rise and fall of his breathing, which would become rhythmic and slow. He nearly always fell asleep, and I did, too.
I don’t know what happened to that chair (we got rid of it at some point—with how old and weathered it became). But now I’m connecting the dots between my mom, my dad, and this big comfy rocking chairs.
The feeling of safety and unconditional love is crucial in a child’s life. It’s interesting to me that this is my first memory, and how it connects to my parents being there with my broken back, this chair they got for me, and to what I am going through now.
I then felt like, instead of being rocked back and forth by My Heavenly Mother, I was on Heavenly Father’s chest, cradled in His arms, and I felt His breathing. I’ve felt this many times before.
Is everyone always being held by the Sacred Ones?
I believe, in one way or another, we are. We are all being held by them.
If Christ is real, then there is hope. By overcoming evil and all sin, Christ saved us. Whether on Earth, after death in the Spirit World, or during the Millennium we will all have a chance to accept this free gift, which includes forgiveness, cleansing, healing, and restoration into God’s presence. It’s free, and it’s a package deal. But we must CHOOSE it and BELIEVE Him. I have reason to believe.
In November 2017, I was attending an energy healing retreat at the Homestead Resort in Midway, Utah.
One night, as I knelt by my bedside about three days into the retreat, I had a peculiar awareness of “tuning into” something, as if I were a radio and I was dialing into a frequency. I simply said the words which came into my mind, which were, “Heavenly Father, I ask tonight to look into the eyes of someone who loves me. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.” It was one of the shortest prayers I’ve ever said, but I knew that the words were divinely inspired.
I got into bed with a child-like faith that my prayer would be answered. As I was falling asleep, I had a little conversation between two parts of myself—one of the perks of someone who has multiple personalities. The childlike part of me asked, what if…what if it’s Jesus who loves me?
I had another part of me retort, of course He loves you, you dork. Don’t you remember the time you could hear His voice and He joked with you for ten straight hours? Or when you had a near-death experience and He supposedly gave you a tour of Heaven?
The childlike me then answered, well, yeah…but I mean, what if it’s His eyes I’m going to look into tonight?
The other parts of me had nothing to say to that.
That night, I had a vivid dream.
In the dream, I was leaving a Target in a big city I didn’t recognize. I was carrying several bags, and I walked through a half-empty parking lot towards my car—which was very far away for some reason. To get to it, I had to walk underneath a huge overpass to a different parking lot. Just as I stepped back into the sunshine from underneath the concrete pillars, I heard a man’s voice.
I turned around. I saw a laid-back young man who was sitting on one of the concrete barriers, his hands in his pockets. A gust of wind picked up some trash around his feet, then ruffled his bangs so that they fell across his eyes. He looked to be somewhere around 25-30 years old. He had tousled dark hair, an arrogant “too cool for school” college-drop-out air about him, and he slouched a bit. He was wearing ripped jeans, a dark unzipped jacket, and looked like he needed a shave and a place to sleep other than someone’s couch. Or was he homeless? I couldn’t tell.
“You got any change?”
I felt exasperated. Here I was carrying all these heavy bags, and the guy wanted me to stop what I was doing and give him money? But right when I was about to dismiss him and walk away, a little voice inside of me said, stop.
So, I stopped. Giving him a look which clearly said, this is inconveniencing me, so I hope you’re happy, I put the bags on the ground, and opened up my purse. I got out my wallet, and unzipped it. To my embarrassment, all I found was a quarter.
“Um…I have a quarter,” I said, lamely.
“Ah—the widow’s mite! I’ll take it,” he said. I raised my eyebrows at the expression. He extended his palm towards me, and everything seemed to slow down as I let go of the quarter. It spun through the air, the sunlight reflecting off of its face. Then it landed in his palm. His hand hovered in the air for a moment, and I had the strangest thought—that’s the most beautiful hand I’ve ever seen in my life.
Then time sped back up. He pocketed it.
I shook my head a bit, trying to clear the trance I seemed to have been under. I then sighed, thinking, are we finished?
The next part of the dream was strange. I picked up my bags and started back to my car, but he followed me. We talked for a little bit, but this part of the dream passed by in a moment and it felt as if I was watching the scene take place from underwater—as if it was meant to be blurry. I don’t remember any details, except that I got the impression he was inordinately interested in every aspect of my life—to an excessive degree. I wondered if he was a bit off-kilter—for, I thought, nobody in their right mind would ever act this interested in a perfectly good stranger. Finally, ten paces away from my car, I tried to shake him. I spun towards him and I said, pointedly, “Okay, bye…” with a smile, then turned slightly to go.
This is where the dream became a genuine vision. All the details came into sharp focus. I could see, smell, taste, hear, and feel everything. My chest expanded. I breathed the air and could detect a slight hint of smog from above the city. The sunlight directly above us threw a short shadow behind the man’s shoes. The shopping bags cut into my fingers, and I could hear the cars far away on the overpass.
“You don’t recognize me, do you?” he asked, smiling. His eyes were playful—no, not just playful…they danced.
I turned fully back towards him, and then the familiar dread hit me. I studied his face, racking my brain. I thought, now all the talking makes sense. This guy does know me! And, to my shame, I realized I did not know him.
These situations of not knowing someone who I should know are very embarrassing for me. They happen often and I feel like I have to explain myself. You see, I have memory problems. But they aren’t your normal run-of-the-mill “I’m horrible with names!” kind of memory problems—I have dissociation because of trauma, and I’ve had it since I was seven. It’s what comes with the territory when you have Dissociative Identity Disorder—amnesia is often an accompanying symptom.
Other people’s memories work like a bucket; they can forget something in their past, but then after some digging they can eventually draw things out. But mine is more like a pit of quicksand. Things going in run the risk of getting trapped–deep underneath, never to surface again. Sometimes, repressed memories might surface, but most of the time, all you can see—or all I can remember—is what is happening on the top level. That is my reality. Having a mind and fragmented memory like mine is uncomfortable and a touchy subject.
So, now that I was studying his face, I wondered if this man knew I had a memory problem. Is he trying to press my buttons? I thought. If this was true, why was he looking so playful about it? My memory was a sensitive subject for me! Who on Earth is this guy?!
Again, he said, “You don’t recognize me, do you?” He smiled and I swear his eyes were doing the Samba.
I thought, there’s NO WAY on earth this guy knows about me, or my memory problem…yeah, he’s acting like he’s my best friend, but for sure I’d remember someone if they knew me this well. He’s probably just crazy. So,I answered him the way I usually answer all people from my past who come asking me to remember them and any shared memories we made together.
“I’m sorry, I have brain damage,” I said, in way of explanation. “And you are…?” I smiled, although I realized halfway through the smile that I was sounding a bit passive aggressive. I hoped my face wasn’t turning red. My brain searched for answers as to who this man was and his strange behavior. Maybe we had attended a college class together?
“Oh, I remember you very well,” he said, grinning.
I stared at him pointedly, not breaking eye contact or blinking, waiting for him to explain who he was. But he didn’t give me that satisfaction. He continued,
“So, you said that your goal was to ‘ascend’ and talk with God and all that… did any of that ever actually happen to you?”
Alright, this guy was getting on my nerves, I decided. He was too pushy and irritating for my taste—especially when talking about my spiritual aspirations and God, my favorite and sacred subjects. And when did I mention in a college class that I wanted to meet God anyway? Well, it was possible I had…but I couldn’t remember. Big surprise.
And adding insult to injury, he was asking me to talk about an occurrence I had to have faith to believe had even happened.
In 2011, I had been put in a mental health ward on the island of Kauai. I don’t remember those seven days—all I remember is that I wasn’t in my body, or even on this planet, for that matter. I was…elsewhere. For seven days, I believe I was in Heaven, with Jesus.
The nurses there at the hospital said that my nearly-comatose body was muttering things about being in Christ’s arms, and about being in Heaven. After seven days, I remember coming back to my body, and the experience of where I’d been was veiled from my memory. Yet, there has always been this deep knowing I was with God.
Up until that moment, where I was standing in that parking lot in this dream or vision with this homeless man, parts of me had doubted that I had had a type of near-death experience in 2011. But, as I looked into the man’s playful eyes, I had all the evidence I needed, right in my heart. And that said more than any scribbled nursing station notes ever could.
I thought, this guy isn’t going to believe a word I say! Why cast my pearls before swine?! Or…is he testing me? I decided to ignore that, and I pushed it to the side again. If he was acting, well…then he was the best actor in existence.
“So, you said that your goal was to ‘ascend’ and talk with God and all that… did any of that ever actually happen to you?” he had said.
“Well, would you believe me if I told you?” I asked.
He put his hands in his pockets and shrugged his shoulders. “I’d have to, wouldn’t I?”
I paused, then said quietly, “Yes, it happened.”
“Haha! Yeah right.” He shot back, chin jutting upwards. He was looking down his nose at me. A funny little smile was playing about his mouth.
I don’t know what came over me, but in the blink of an eye I dropped all of my bags and I grabbed the guy’s elbow firmly with my right hand and looked him straight in the face. I said—my voice low and dripping with resolve, “I have seen my Savior, Jesus Christ, and I have talked with God!”
The determination and conviction with which I said this and the surety in my voice surprised even me.
Then something happened I could not have anticipated.
Our faces were a foot apart, and we stared each other down. My fingernails dug into his jacket and I could feel the muscles above his elbow tense up. He knew I was serious. All the playfulness left his eyes, and all pretense was gone. I saw a man in him emerging I hadn’t seen while crossing the parking lot—a man with more wisdom than many lifetimes could offer. Suddenly, he grabbed my shirtfront by its neck so quickly that I didn’t have even a split second to react. He pulled me upwards so that I was on tiptoe, and close to his face until our noses were almost touching. I wasn’t even aware of my body as I got closer and closer. His eyes were blue. I was so close to him that when I focused on his right eye, it expanded and became my whole world. I went from shock as my heart leapt up into my throat, to absolute wonder and awe. I saw every shade of blue in the folds of his iris—royal blue like the deep ocean, sapphire blue like cascading cut gems, turquoise blue like stone or blue lightening—and a million other shades which flowed toward me and consumed me. His pupil became bigger and bigger, and then…I fell in.
I fell into what I thought was an inky black hole, but then it became the entire universe.
I saw all of space and time in its breathtaking kaleidoscopic grandeur. Planets, stars, and galaxies without end, as varied in form and color as one human varies from another. Spiral galaxies like discs flinging diamonds into the vastness, clustering in groups too mighty in scope and magnitude to comprehend. Planetary systems timed to perfection, and clouds of gas and dust which formed nebulae which bloomed outward into an infinite space like mandalic flowers. Planets being formed and put into orbit, stars being birthed at the center of rotating clouds of energy and swirling matter. Galaxies upon galaxies, heavens upon heavens, each one important and beautiful, but which held as great a weight in importance to God as a teardrop upon the lashes of a small child.
As I traveled at the speed of an unknown guide’s thoughts through the entire universe, my words echoed through my mind: I have seen my Savior, Jesus Christ, and I have talked with God. I have seen my Savior, Jesus Christ, and I have talked with God… the words seemed to whisper from every corner of every galaxy, over and over like a sacred mantra.
I saw and heard all of this in an overwhelming second, which seemed like an eternity, and I could have gazed upon the scene forever and never have grown tired of it. But suddenly it all zoomed back out, I came out of His eye, and I was back to myself. He loosened his grip and gently put me back down on my feet, letting my shirtfront go.
“Yes…you have,” He said.
I stepped back. All I could do was stare at those blue eyes, my mouth slightly open.
The man looked at me, his gaze piercing. He seemed to be sizing up every cell of my body as if libraries of information were kept there for Him to look upon. “It’s written all over you.”
I gazed upon Him, and just before I could fully comprehend who He was, I woke up.
Humility is a virtue and is supported by the Light. The dark side is adept at twisting humility into self-loathing and shame. They shame us after hurting us, they urge us to make missteps and then shame us when we do. They can even find ways to shame us when we make good choices. Shame is always from the dark side, and it should always be rejected.
Almost exactly three years ago, I was invited to babysit through the Care.com website for a very rich family up in the Provo hills.
The first time, the kids were sleeping and I was in the house alone at night. It was a veritable mansion. But I was so close to the Spirit then that I went around the house—completely free of all comparisons or jealousy—and blessed it from top to bottom. There were cameras everywhere, but I don’t think the couple saw me on their phone app or had any suspicions that I was doing anything weird, because they invited me back.
The second time I went to this home was around Christmas, and it was at night again. After the couple left—a statuesque blonde woman and her incredibly tall, dark and handsome husband—I sat around reading on the couch which was surrounded by exotic white-fur-covered settees. The little five-year-old girl was supposed to be in bed, but she softly padded down the stairs and approached me with her big blue eyes.
I was fascinated with her. It wasn’t her perfectly shaped face, Angelina Jolie lips, or blonde hair that fascinated me—it was her spirit. I could feel it.
“Why, hello princess!” I said.
“H…hello,” she said. She looked at me from under her lashes, and then tentatively smiled.
I had the idea that we should write letters to Santa. She got excited, and then pulled out sheets of white paper and colored markers and pencils.
We sat in the perfectly lit kitchen, at the pale grey designer table, and started our letters to Santa. Ignoring the markers, she picked up a pencil.
To my surprise, ten seconds into the exercise, she shoved the paper away from her, saying, “Oh no, oh no, oh nooo! It’s wrong. It’s wrong!”
“What’s wrong, honey?”
“I can’t do it. Look at it!”
“I think it’s a wonderful start to a letter!”
“No—it’s not perfect! I CAN’T DO IT!”
I’m sad to report that the little girl insisted on starting her letter over and over again, several times, each time crying and crumpling up or shoving away the paper and markers. Finally, she folded her arms in a decided stance that clearly said, my writing isn’t perfect, and therefore why even try anymore?
I tried to convince her that surely her writing must have gotten better since last Christmas—and wasn’t that an improvement? Wasn’t that something to be grateful for? And I expressed my concern that she was comparing herself to others who were probably older and more experienced.
“It’s bad! It’s so bad!” she kept on saying. Obviously, what this perfect little tow-headed girl was saying was…I’m bad. I’m bad. It broke my heart more than anything else that year.
Eventually, I distracted her with something to eat—surreptitiously taking a picture of the letter she eventually produced and discarded (it was adorable). Then, I took her upstairs to put her back to bed.
Well…this is where things got a little out of hand. Since I was in such a childlike state myself, when she didn’t want to go to bed, I didn’t feel like I could argue with her too much.
I imagine what the mother saw while checking her hidden camera app was us dancing around her daughter’s room—because, well, in our minds there was snow coming from the ceiling…and one must dance in the snow. And even if one could go to sleep while it was snowing in our giant snow globe…it would be impossible to sleep with fairies flitting about, inviting us to all sorts of parties, anyway.
It was 10pm when I heard the door open behind us and felt an enormous sense of foreboding and darkness enter the room. I turned around and backed up against one of the pink walls of the bedroom. The mother was a blur as she strode past me, grabbing her little girl’s upper arm—bodily throwing her across the room towards the direction of the bed, where she landed like a rag doll.
My mouth fell open—I followed the trajectory of the little girl until she landed, and I saw she was safe. Then I turned to face the darkness that threatened to suffocate me.
It wasn’t the mother who was evil—it was like there was an evil cloud around her, attached to her with cords.
She gave me a look that could freeze fire.
I slowly backed out of the room, as if before a wild lion. I backed down the stairs, saying, “Um…so we…um…wrote letters to Santa…”
Still, she glared me down, following me—stalking me out of her perfect house.
“Um…thank you…for…for this opportunity?” I lamely got out.
My blood was chilled. Her perfect model face held so much hatred. It seemed like her limbs were growing, and she was getting thinner, her cheekbones seemed to cut across her face like razors. As she grew taller, I grew smaller.
We walked—or she stalked, and I retreated like a scared wet puppy before her—past all the pictures on the walls, pictures obviously taken by a professional—capturing gestures of love and laughter, matching outfits and family rolling in the leaves or posed on beaches, sand between manicured toes.
I grabbed my bag and coat as I retreated, and she reached into her pocket and threw money at me. I gaped at her, and then disgracefully picked it up.
She opened the door and as I left, she slammed it behind my back. She hadn’t uttered a single word to me.
As I reflect back on the little girl’s face as she crumpled up sheet after sheet of paper, I see clearly what was written all across her face: shame.
As I think back on how I exited that house, and what feeling the mother instilled in me, I see clearly what was written across my heart: shame.
And as I picture that mother’s perfectly buffed and glowy face, I see what is behind the intense anger and hatred in her eyes: shame.
Some believe Satan can only attack us if we invite him to, they believe Satan cannot harm us physically, and they believe little children are protected from Satanic attacks. DID/SRA victims know these beliefs are false. They are less than helpful and possibly even dangerous, because ignorance increases our vulnerability.
One night I had gone to sleep in my room, which was in the basement of my parent’s house.
I had had many attacks in that basement—my panic attacks, my “dragon attack”, seeing a demon, physical abuse, and other things from my childhood happened there. Anessa, my friend, was also attacked in that basement several times. But some good things happened there as well—like seeing deceased LDS President Thomas S. Monson in a dream, sitting in the big leather chair and physically feeling Heavenly Mother rock me back and forth, and traveling spiritually to the future. To this day, I’m still ambivalent about the basement.
On the night in question, I got into bed quite late. The room was dark, and my dogs were sleeping just outside of my door. I lay back onto my pillow, but couldn’t get comfortable.
I switched positions several times, and then I felt an oppressive weight settle over me. My heart started beating erratically. Somewhere deep in my body, there was a knowing—I was about to die.
I fought it—the thoughts, “No! I don’t want to die!” and, “I’m completely fine leaving this earth right now,” bounced around my brain.
In my extrasensory perception, I could tell this was not a normal death—it was caused by unseen forces of darkness which were intent on bringing an end to my life.
As I felt life struggling to stay within me, I had a crazy thought: “I can’t die and pee all over this bed! I don’t want mom to have to clean that up.” So, I clenched my pillow in my right hand, rolled out of bed, and crawled all the way to the bathroom—which was tiled. I lay halfway on the tile, and halfway on the carpet with my pillow under my head. I collapsed in exhaustion, and rolled onto my back—my arms falling to my sides.
I felt the life seeping from my fingers, and they grew cold. Something in me—my animal brain, perhaps—started to panic and knew that the end was near. But my spirit was completely at peace. I was okay with leaving this way.
As the life drained away from my hands and then my forearms, I tried moving my fingers, but they wouldn’t even twitch for me.
My dog Edward lifted his head, jumped off the couch, and ran to me. He started whining, and circled around me several times. Chewy came second, and started doing the same thing. Chewy lay down by my right side, and Edward licked my left fingers repeatedly, whining even louder. He lay down next to my other side with his head on my arm. I’d never seen my dogs act this way before.
The life drained from my lower legs and the whole length of my arms. My heart beat faster and faster in fear. But I grit my teeth and decided to face death with a smile on my face.
Tears streamed from my eyes, and the oppressive weight fell upon me in greater and greater waves. The end was near.
I could tell my body was more than 50% cold and lifeless now. I thought, when death overtakes me, will I be able to leave my body? Will the angels come for me? Or will I be doomed to be attached to this body as it decays in the earth? I had scenes of myself cross my mind, lifeless at my own funeral, with my mom crying over my casket. I saw that there weren’t as many people as I would have liked there, and there was so much left unfinished. So many stories left untold.
I decided, I don’t want to die! I’m not ready! Oh God, save me!
Then everything went black.
I woke up in the morning next to my dogs, who were wagging their tails. I was—obviously—alive.
Sometimes I like to imagine what unseen battles were raging, unseen, all around me and over my body that night. Other times, I don’t want to think about it at all.
Very young victims of spiritual and physical abuse often split in order to protect the child from unbearable and unimaginable pain and suffering. This makes life livable for them, if only barely. As they grow older, often around the age of 30, The repressed pain can come back as a “body memory,” and the pain can resurface at the location on the body where it was experienced.
I can’t remember the specific date this occurred—somewhere between 2012-2014. I was walking out of my room in the basement of my parent’s house (again—where so many of these things happened). All of a sudden, a scraping sensation started at the bottom of my feet and traveled slowly up my legs. I collapsed on the ground and started screaming. Soon, the sensation overcame my entire body.
It felt like someone was physically peeling my skin off with a knife. I looked down at my body as I writhed in pain, and there was no blood—no swelling or redness of any kind. I screamed and arched my back as a fresh onslaught of cuts rippled across my shoulders, my face, and my back. I was being skinned alive, and there was no proof of my agony…and I didn’t know why I was subject to it.
It’s not pleasant to write about this. I’m realizing just how many times I experienced so many of the types of torture and pain the human body can go through, to its maximum capacity, almost to the breaking point of death. This was one of those times.
For three hours, I screamed a prayer to rebuke the evil source of the torture. I attempted to raise my arm to the square but could hardly succeed, because more waves of pain racked my body. My mom was beside herself, and had no idea how to help me or what to do. She kept on saying, “Just cast out! It’s Satan!” I kept on screaming back, “I know it’s Satan! And JUST CASTING OUT ISN’T WORKING!!”
After this was over, I named it a dragon attack—and I would take what I called my Atonement Attacks over it any day. My Atonement Attacks I’ve always believed had a purpose. They were cleansing and refining. This, though…this was just pure torment. As if someone on the other side of the veil had set their pet dragon on me, just so they could be entertained while he licked me over and over with his barbed tongue.
Since then, I’ve learned this was very likely a body memory of previous torture done to me—probably through a Satanic spiritual attack. The time had come where I was ready to process it. I felt everything as though it were happening in real time. Jesus Christ protected me from the visual memory coming back, but I believe the physical memory had to be felt in order for it to be identified and then healed.
If the veil were lifted, and we could see the machinations of the dark forces arrayed against our freedom and happiness, we would likely be both terrified and more determined to reject their snares.
I was in the throes of an addiction which had plagued me since I was 8 or 9.
I knew it was wrong. I had always known it was wrong, to tell you the truth. The way to tell if something is wrong is to ask the question: “Does this edify my soul in some way, or does it bring me down?”
But—like with food—it gave me a release. Something to dull the pain and confusion of what seemed like endless years of suffering. I didn’t know why I was suffering—and no one else seemed to, either. I just knew I was.
Nevertheless, I have this addiction to thank for serving a purpose for some time—it probably saved my life numerous times by numbing my suicidal feelings.
But, even though it was the lesser of two evils, all my doubts pertaining to this question of whether it was right or wrong for me were settled once and for all the night I saw him.
I was in the basement of my parent’s house, laying in my bed, indulging in this addiction. The room was almost completely dark, save the starlight coming in through the window.
All of a sudden, the room seemed to get darker. Then, to my left, I felt a presence of pure, unadulterated, evil come into the room. I turned my head and saw a man standing beside my bed. I sensed he was grinning—I can’t tell you how I knew this, because he was of a substance that was darker than dark. He was so dark, and so evil, you could cut the atmosphere in the room with a knife.
He started pacing back and forth, along the line of my body, like a panther watching its prey. He was relatively short—perhaps 5’5”, and his gaze was fixed directly on me as he walked 1, 2, 3 steps down to my feet, and then 1, 2, 3 steps back up towards my head. Besides the tangible evil, I could also sense pure delight emanating from him. He was so happy—in a very twisted way—that I was indulging in that addiction. It delighted him to no end.
In the split second I saw him and took all these details in, something else came through: this dark being—this demonic evil spirit—was assigned to me, to keep me addicted and under the influence of Satan, to bind me as his for the rest of my life. And he knew he was doing a good job of it.
Although I couldn’t hear him with my ears, the message he was sending me was absolutely clear. He was saying, “You are MINE.”
A jolt of fear struck my heart. I leapt up and ran past him—missing him by inches—towards the light switch. After light flooded the room, I looked at where he was. I couldn’t see him—but I knew he was still there.
I cast out in the name of Christ. I was so scared, I tried to convince myself he was little more than a friendly spirit who came into my room to say “hi”. I even grabbed a piece of paper and drew the entire scene as if he were a dark Gumby playing an innocent prank on me. This untruthful retelling of the facts allowed me to fall asleep in my room, where the dark visitor had been only minutes before.
But in the morning, I knew the truth: I would never indulge in that addiction again.
I wish that was the end of the story, but as addictions go, I only kept the promise for about two years until I fell back into it again, saying to myself, it’s harmless. It’s even a good thing in so many ways.
It wasn’t until I later broke the addiction for good, that I noticed the measure of light I’d been missing once more rush into my life. I then renewed my vow to never give that evil man another chance to exercise power over me again.