Connie Bickman...author, photographer, traveler
The Touchstone Diary Book One - "The Red Thread"
Bathed in the light of a full moon, Miyah slowly turned brittle pages of her worn diary and began to quietly read out loud. She knew the pages by heart, but never tired of reading the wisdom that women of her bloodline had shared through the ages. She loved the smell of the book, the feel of each crisp page, the loop of the penmanship and the sheer energy of hearing her own voice speak each sacred word. And she loved the family secrets woven into the ink throughout the diary.
Entries were written in the book in several languages. Among them were Aramaic, Hebrew, Greek, Latin, French and English. Miyah could read every word of each story since she was a small child, just as she had been taught. Sometimes the pages flowed as an actual diary of events, written in hurried handwriting, as if the writer was anxious to get it all out before she would forget, or before she would burst with the passion of her words. And sometimes healing remedies, herbal recipes and spells were jotted down as a notebook of powerful medicine for generations to follow.
– To increase the effectiveness and power of healing, you must remember to align your energies with the lunar cycle and tap into the natural tides and currents of life. Our bodies are mainly composed of water and because the moon turns the tide, we must wax and wane with the moon.
– Healing energy is highest when the moon is becoming full, or waxing, and weakest when it is waning. The new moon is dark for three days before it appears as a crescent. Tune into the natural flow by working when the moon is waxing from new to full.
– The most important ingredient of any healing is love. Thought and prayer are powerful, but faith and love work magic. You must first believe before your wishes will come true, and always cast your healing spells from the heart.
The leather diary was scarred and weathered with time, soiled with the oils and marks of hundreds of fingerprints of the women who were its caretakers. A simple brown linen bag, ragged at the seams but sewn sturdy, was its protector, keeping the pages safe through the years. An emblem initialed both the corner of the bag and the cover of the book. The symbol was a talisman of sorts, “charged with magical energy,” Miyah’s grandmother, Nona, had said.
Miyah knew this symbol well. It was a family crest, as ancient as the diary itself. Hidden within the design was a double M. Every women in Miyah’s family had one or two M’s somewhere in their name. Miyah’s M’s were in her first two initials—Miyah Maria.
“It’s a tradition,” she was told as a child when she questioned everything. The answers to her questions always led to more questions, but Miyah never ceased asking and her patient mentors never tired of her curiosity.
“This girl. This girl is special,” they agreed, as they smiled in their wisdom, knowing what would be Miyah’s fate.
“Special” in Miyah’s family meant only one thing. She was gifted. She was a healer. That fact would shape her destiny and rule her life. But often in the bloodline a generation or two was skipped, so the birth of a new “special” child was always a celebration.
Miyah’s grandmother, Nona, was the wisest healer Miyah had known. Miyah’s own mother, Junia, was also a healer, but she was a frail woman and seemed to resist her powers. She was happy to have Nona take over the teachings of Miyah, and when the time came, she passed the candle to her eager young daughter.
“You already know more than I can teach you, my child,” Junia said when Miyah was only ten. “I have other work I need to complete.”
That same year Junia died peacefully in her sleep. Miyah was devastated. How could the sisterhood let her mother die so young? For a few days young Miyah rebelled against the insight she had inherited. It was her way of protesting her mother’s death. But the power was too strong to evade her for long and she knew the special bond she and her mother shared would never be broken. Her mother would always be with her, helping her from the other side. Miyah knew there is no real death, that the physical body is just a vehicle for a hundred years or less while the soul is on the earth plane. She found some solace in that.
Having never known her father, Miyah lived with her grandmother, Nona, and continued her apprenticeship, learning herbal remedies, magic spells and ancient healing rituals. They spoke of Junia often, bringing her to life in their stories and their love. Laughter overcame sorrow and loneliness. Being with Nona was a happy time in Miyah’s life.
When Miyah was 18, Nona told her it was time for herself to leave the earth for another dimension. She had important work to do and her mission on earth was finished.
“You can’t leave me,” Miyah cried, knowing her tears would make no difference.
“I will never leave you, my dear child,” Nona soothed her, stroking her granddaughter’s long, curly hair. “I will always be here when you need me. We are bound together. Our hearts will always beat as one. Our family’s love flows through the bloodline and we will never be far apart. All you need to do is ask for me and I’ll be at your side.”
It was a difficult time for Miyah, but soon after Nona’s death she began to appear in Miyah’s dreams at night, and also in her waking dreams. Miyah learned that she could connect with souls who have passed and gain insight from them when she needed their help for healing. She could tap into their knowledge any time she needed their energy. This was comforting to her and she called upon Junia and Nona often. It was also a turning point in her life, as death seemed to become her calling card. Sometimes she was called upon to help the dying pass over peacefully—to celebrate moving into another dimension of time. And sometimes, as with Michael’s case, she was called in to help extend life—to give people another chance to make better use of their earth time—to redirect them into fulfilling their soul’s purpose, the mission they accepted when they were born.
The years passed quickly as Miyah found herself immersed in healing work. She often wondered where the last years had gone since Nona died and she inherited the family’s “doctor bag,” - a medicine pouch holding healing stones, a cedar box and the diary, among oils, crystals, and other healing tools. She had always been satisfied to be completely devoted to her healing practice, but tonight as she sat in Michael’s room she wondered where the next 20 years would bring her. She glanced at Michael and wondered just who this man was. Why did she somehow feel differently about him than she had her other patients? Did they share a past? A destiny?
She brushed away these thoughts and reached for her medicine bag. Taking out a blue candle and a pin, she inscribed Michael’s name on the candle, writing from the base to the tip of the candle. She then stuck the pin into the base of the candle, placed the candle on a tray in the windowsill and lit the wick. She would let the candle burn until it extinguished itself and would retrieve the pin for future use. This old healing ritual, used to alleviate pain, had been scribbled on the edge of a page in her diary.
Miyah covered herself with a quilted, white blanket from the back of the chair and settled in for the night, immersing herself into the diary. Sleep never came easy to Miyah and reading often provided any answers she sought.
– Many illnesses are affected by the mind. Thinking you are healthy can actually make you healthy. Sending love to a sick person, whether the person is aware of it or not, can improve that person’s condition.
Miyah knew about the power of love. It was the glue that bound her family together over the ages. It was the foundation, the Touchstone, of their healing powers.
There was an early entry in the diary that Miyah could close her eyes and envision, as if she were present herself when it was written. She could feel the pain and anxiety of this ancestor as she felt the urgency to journal her message. Perhaps the compassion Miyah felt for this woman was the reason she, herself, had been chosen to work with the dying. Perhaps her destiny had been cast hundreds, even thousands of years ago. Perhaps she had been there, perhaps. . .
— I am saddened that I must leave my homeland and seek refuge in Egypt. The safety of my family is most important for the future of our people. My husband, daughter, brother, sister, uncle and others, will leave with me under the cover of darkness this night and travel in secrecy until we are safe. I mourn leaving friends and family behind, yet know their hearts are with me, with us, as we flee —
It was signed. . . Maryum