I stepped off the plane in Muscat, Oman at 4 am, barely able to breath as I was hit by the intense heat and humidity. It was August 1989, I knew not a soul, and felt a huge urge to give up my 6 month contract. However, it turned into an 11-year love affair with a country and culture so rich in tradition and spiritual belief.
Taking my Western knowledge of the beauty spa industry to the East was most fullfilling, but I never imagined I would bring so much Eastern tradition back with me.
I spent 7 years at the Bussan Palace 5 star Hotel, managing their beauty spa. The hotel was voted best in the Middle East for 5 consecutive years, ranking it in the top 5 hotels in the world.
It was a huge education for me, meeting the influential clientele, which included Royal Family, political leaders and famous actors, as well as the humble Hotel Coffee man, local fishermen and their families.
The next three years I spent at the Samma exclusive health and beauty spa for women. Set up for the Oman Royal Family, it also catered for wives of ministers and diplomats. Under the guidance of Champneys U.K., it was the pinnacle of my spa career. Managing a team of ten therapists of many nationalities was an interesting challenge in itself; however, becoming familiar with so many cultures, their methods of healing and well being was life changing for me.
Susanna, one of the Spa’s Holistic Therapists, first introduced me to Reiki. It all seemed a little strange to me at first and I felt uneasy with the idea, but she finally persuaded me to have my first treatment. I had a big emotional release, was completely exhausted, my temperature soared and I felt like I had flu! I realised then that there was a lot more to Reiki than I could explain, and it quickly became an important part of my life.
Suffering from stress in both my work and personal life, I realised that I was nearly at breaking point. Outwardly I would put on a happy face but inside I was in turmoil. I started going to a Reiki healing group once a week. As I grew stronger emotionally and physically, I wanted a greater understanding of the healing process I was experiencing. I read many holistic books on the mind, body and soul, and began to realise that I was the only one who could change and improve my life.
The more I read about Reiki, the more my determination grew to learn this healing art for myself. Through studying many books, I knew I wanted to train with the Reiki Master Tanmaya Honervogt. This proved to be a test of my commitment as I was living in the Middle East, and Tanmaya lives in Germany. She did, however, run courses in England, and more than a year later I met Tanmaya for the first time when I did my first degree training,
My Reiki training had such a profound effect on me, that I felt compelled to change my career and the entire course of my life. I returned to England, leaving the Eastern world behind, ironically, to study more Ancient Eastern Therapies; I have never rushed my journey with Reiki; I have let Reiki be my guide, not my ego. The journey has been hard at times, but the rewards have been so exquisite that I would not have changed a thing.
I created Sarpenela Natural Therapies Centre, and my life felt right: I had at last found my true path. I spent time working with Reiki healing on family, friends and myself. I started a vegetable garden and even gave Reiki to the seeds and plants; I remember the first crop tasted so good!
I was treating my mother with Reiki, who was suffering with cancer. I felt a need to increase the flow of universal energy. It was 6 months since I had done the First Degree, and I felt ready to move forward and deepen my knowledge. Tanmaya attuned me to the Second Degree.
Now able to be a Practitioner, my work with healing really started to grow; treatments became stronger and so did my confidence. It was at this time that I first started to experience ‘ Energy Shifts ‘, as I call them, when I feel connected to a Higher Vibration; it is always a beautiful experience.
I am deeply grateful for the gift of Reiki that Dr Mikao Usui brought to the world, and after 7 years of practising this healing art, I felt ready to pass my knowledge on to others. After prolonged encouragement from Tanmaya, I finally embark on another Reiki Journey: The Master Degree. It was a profound experience, and one that has empowered me to pass on this beautiful, challenging, yet ever supportive art of Reiki healing to you. May it help you, as it has helped me, on your path with love and light, so you may walk in beauty with integrity.