More than I bargained for

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I was told to sit on the edge of the cold tiled veranda which I assumed was outside the clinic of “the healer”, and it wasn’t open yet. It was early morning and I was first one to arrive. My driver insisted we leave early. First come, first served. Others started to arrive and sit on the edge of the veranda. A couple of young school girls in uniform, a couple in their middle-years, an elderly man.

Evidently this healer is very popular and well respected. Offerings were put on a small table in the corner of the veranda. Some offerings were flowers, food. I put an offering of money on the table.

I was in Bali and I hurt my back. I could hardly stand from sitting, or move without pain. The owner of the guesthouse I was staying at urged me to go see “the healer”.  I trusted her, I trusted my gut instinct that said yes, and so I arranged to go see “the healer” even though I didn’t have any idea or details what kind of treatment I would be getting.


It was a 30 minute drive and we arrived and entered his compound. There was a cacophony of birds singing, roosters crowing, and chickens clucking, an old man doing some gardening. There were old bonsai trees in craggy pots and the vibrant blooms of yellow frangipani flowers against the clear blue sky.  

After waiting some time (they said he was having breakfast) a spritely looking thin Balinese man jaunted over to the veranda with a wide smile.


Being the first to arrive, he called me to the center of the veranda where he sat down and I realised that this WAS the clinic. I gingerly got up and moved towards him in the center of the tiled veranda and slowly, painfully sat down. He started vigorously rubbing some oil onto my lower back out of a bowl he had carried with him. Mind you, everyone there was watching. 

He then requested I lie down on my side. A series of movements happened quickly. Leg lifted, feet pushing my back. Other side. I won’t kid you, it was a bit painful but not really worse than the pain I was already feeling. Then he sat me up and got behind me and pressed with his feet and then knees up my back as it cracked and clicked. 


It was over in about 10 minutes.

He asked me to get up and walk around. He started on the next person. He was smiling as he asked me to squat and get back up. He wanted to know if it was better, or if not, he would do some more work. I felt it was enough. I don’t think I was ready for any more. And actually, I was able to squat and get up ok. I still felt a bit stiff, and the pain, although not magically completely gone, had shifted. I could feel that. And the pain was less. I was more mobile than when I arrived. 

Over the next few days the inflammation of my injury subsided and so did the pain. My back felt good again.



Ok, I thought, that’s it. Wow. What an experience. However, after about 2 weeks and back home I noticed strange loud clunks in my mid-back region at random times. Not unpleasant or painful. It was if my back was doing it’s own adjustments every now and then.  

Still, I didn’t think much of it.  I started to notice my energy level increase and I realised it was very high since returning home and my inspiration, excitement and creative outpouring is accompanying the higher energy level.  I put it down to my husband getting the all clear for his health and a deep relief that brought me. I’m sure that is a part of it. But I can’t help sensing that my treatment with the Balinese healer was more than a massage and physical back adjustment.



I remembered the conversation with the driver on the way home when I asked him about the oil he uses on his patients. Evidently when one is bestowed special powers as a healer (by the gods) there is also access granted to finding a special rare oil with immense healing properties. Only a few drops is used mixed with coconut oil and apparently, story be told, the oil never runs out. The only times it runs out is if the powers given by the gods, is taken away (if the healer may be too greedy it seems) and when that happens of course no one goes to the healer anymore because he can no longer heal. The healing energy no longer flows through him. 


Well I don’t know anything about this except what I was told. What I heard. But it does make me wonder about this oil, its healing properties, and especially what I have been experiencing since that healing which seems to continue to ripple through me.


There are a few things that this story highlights.


1) Trust your gut instincts and follow them.

There is always more than you bargain for when you do. Life shows you the magic and the mystery that exists beyond our thinking mind when we trust our instincts and follow our heart’s intuition into unknowns.


In societies that tend to focus more on left-brain skills, our right-brain which is our connection to the mysteries of life, non-duality, and our creative potential, takes a back seat. And we suffer from this imbalance, whether we realise it or not.


2) Be both in the world and not of it

We need both the capacity to be in the world and be otherworldly for our gifts to flourish and contribute.  


3) Value and honour your gift. 

Recognise that you have a gift. Gifts are not created from ego. Our gift comes from “the gods” and these seeds of who we are and how we serve have been already planted within us.  It’s up to us in this life to realise, honour and nourish our gift so it fully blossoms and contributes to the wellbeing of all.


Let me know how this lands for you. Do you follow your gut instincts and intuition. What happens? I’d love to hear.

P.S. photo is of my friend and driver, Wayan, when we were at the water temple. 

Love and gratitude,

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With love & gratitude,

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