New Thing: Experience Energy Healing


Let me preface this post by telling you, for like the ninth time, that I’m not a particularly woo-woo human.

I do not own crystals. I do not set intentions. If I burn incense it’s because we waited too long to take out the compost.

I have a pretty live-and-let-live approach to all things spiritual. If it makes you feel centered and whole to create an altar and draw tarot cards, you do you, boo. Imma be over here with my Tylenol and to-do lists and we’ll call it even.

So when Hilarie offered me a bit of energy work I said “Sure! Why the heck not?” the same way I’d say “Sure! Why the heck not?” to an antiquing day trip or brunch at a new restaurant. Could be fun! Might find something cool! Probably won’t suck!

If you’re unfamiliar with energy work it’s a branch of alternative medicine that “proposes that imbalances in the body’s “energy field” result in illness, and that by re-balancing the body’s energy field health can be restored.  Some modalities describe treatments as ridding the body of negative energies or blockages in ‘mind’; illness or episodes of ill health after a treatment are referred to as a ‘release’ or letting go of a ‘contraction’ in the body-mind. Usually, a practitioner will then recommend further treatments for complete healing.” <- Wikipedia’s definition.

In most scientific reviews, there isn’t any evidence supporting the clinical effectiveness of energy work.  However, the Healing Touch modality is used in many hospitals across the country to promote faster healing, pain relief, and stress reduction. It’s been endorsed by the American Holistic Nurses Association and the training counts as continuing education for nurses and other medical professions.

I was game to work with Hilarie. She’s a graduate of America’s only accredited energy medicine training program and is currently moving her business towards a distance model. This means she actually cleansed my energy all the way from upstate New York (!!!)

Hilarie and I started our session on the phone. She told me about energy cleansing, what she’d be doing and what I could expect. She was sweet and calm and spoke with intelligence, humor, and candor about her work. She’s clearly one of those people you immediately want to tell your secrets to. You want her to pet your head soothingly and say wise things.

When she asked what I’d like help with and I told her that I was in the process of working on some super important, decidedly unexciting aspects of my business. I needed help staying focused and motivated over the next few months as I waded through riveting topics like “optimizing your ebook for Kindle.”

I also told her about my new role as a stepmom and could she somehow grant me patience? Because my natural supply is, like, two. Or maybe give me empathy for little boys who approach life exactly the way I don’t? Could she get me to stop freaking out about the couch and The Bed-Making Situation? Is there a Cool Stepmom Chakra? And if so, could she please cleanse that?

Hilarie took note of my requests and when we hung up, I was free to go about my day while Hilarie cleansed my energy from her living room in Rochester.  What?!

So I took the dog for a walk and did my best to be present in my body and in the moment.  The breeze ruffled a nearby wind chime! Did that mean something?!  I felt oddly short of breath and weird in my throat!  Is that a thing?!  The sun peaked through the trees in a particularly picturesque way! Did Hilarie make that happen from her couch in New York?

Eventually, I trundled back to my house, completely famished at 10 am in the morning. I then ate too many potato chips and – as per her request – called Hilarie back.

“Well, I noticed a lot of energy layers over your right shoulder. It looked a bit like resentment. So I pulled those off,” Hilarie told me.

“As I’m working, I occasionally see words or phrases float up. I kept seeing ‘structure creates freedom’ so maybe that’s something that will help you move through the unsexy work you’ve got headed your way.”

Hilarie went on to tell me that she’d removed some huge, heavy ropes that have been laying across my energy fields. There was no tension, they weren’t tied, but they were heavy and weighing me down. She removed them to help me be more present.

She also did a lot of work on my crown chakra to open me up to the bigger-than-you energy balance me so I’ll have more energy for my long-term work.

She wrapped up our session by reminding me of the importance of nourishing self-care and the difference between forcing focus and allowing focus. She pointed out that it’s possible to work from intuition rather than necessity. I can trust myself to do what I need to do.

I thanked Hilarie and as we hung up I felt normal with a side of ‘slightly more focused than usual.’ I spent the rest of the day sketching out ideas for blog posts and researching ebook sales platforms. That weekend, we had the boys and I was sliiiiightly more patient with the constant noise and running and bickering that accompanies children.

Was I more a bit more focused and patient because Hilarie cleansed my energy? Who knows. I do know that it is always beneficial to say aloud what we want, what we’re struggling with, and what we’d like to change. It’s always good to devote time to getting closer to the life we want and the person we’d like to be – whether that’s through energy healing, a therapist, journaling or list-making.

I’d love to hear from you! Have you ever had your energy cleansed? If you have, what happened? And do you have any questions for Hilarie? (I realize that not everyone subscribes to energy cleansing as an effective healing technique. As always, polite disagreement is welcome; incendiary comments will be deleted.)

P.S. Other new things that I’ve tried: writing to an inmate, going on a police ridealong, taking an overnight train ride.

photo credit kazuend // cc

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  1. Kate

    When I was in college, I went to a woman who had gone to a lot of different types of school and ended up working as a therapist, energy healer, and chiropractor. Each 1/2 hour visit was filled with a small chat about what was going on in my life, some energy healing, and finally ending with an adjustment. I went initially because I had pulled a muscle in my neck, and I was pretty iffy on the energy thing. Eventually I came around though. There was something really powerful about talking to her (a very soothing, warm, wise presence, much like Hilarie seems) and having her focus so much positive, supportive, healing energy on me.

    • Sarah Von Bargen

      So glad it was a good experience for you, Kate!

  2. lonestarsky

    Ooh, this sounds amazing. I’ve never had an energy cleanse but I’ve had reiki and crystal healing – I gained so much from both experiences that I’m now learning the techniques myself. I wouldn’t say I was skeptical before I tried them; I guess I was open minded in that I accepted they seemed to work for some people and not for others. But I guess that can be true with medical treatment aswell.

    This definitely seems to have been a positive experience for you, regardless of how exactly it worked, and Hilarie sounds lovely 🙂 . Anything that helps with being a stepmom can only be a good thing because it can be haaaard x

    • Sarah Von Bargen

      If you’re a fellow stepmom and you’ve got any favorite resources or tips, I’d love to hear ’em! 🙂

  3. Kristin

    I would encourage folks to explore different types of energy healing as well as different practitioners to see what works best for them. There are some very gifted healers and some who are are unfortunately not legitimate, so do your best to do a little research. Don’t be afraid to ask them what their training was!

    My personal experience with Reiki was so transformative that after many years of practice I became a Reiki Master myself. It still seems magical to me and can be hard to explain at times because it defies the current world view (for most). The best thing is to let the experience speak for itself–try it!

  4. Minnie

    So……here’s the thing…..I’m from India, and literally this is mundane for most people here. But……make that a very large BUT….. there are more charletons than there are the real deal and it is best to go to a spiritual healer after checking their references. Now, I’ve been for a session on spiritual healing to a husband-wife duo who turned out to be very powerful healers and exceptionally good at what they did. I went with some very painful emotional baggage and a very closed mind as I always saw this segment as a commercial woo-woo! Boy…was I in for a surprise! the intense pain I felt being pulled out of me during the healing and the post session relief of a huge burden being literally lifted off my chest and core left me weeping. I’d kill the friend, who took me there, if he told anyone he saw me weeping 😀 as I’m someone who rarely weeps.So strangely, even though I’ve benefited from it, I’m a bit wary of going back as I don’t think I’m willing to open up to someone as I did that day . It literally felt like I was stripped naked of all the layers one puts on to show a brave face to the world and then you’re standing there for the healers to see you for what you actually are…vulnerabilities and all! Scary…..effective……healing…….powerful and greatly useful to deal with aspects of your life that really mainstream healing cannot handle effectively.

    • Sarah Von Bargen

      So interesting! Thanks for sharing a different perspective, Minnie!

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