On Nov. 14th we went to Spokane, Washington, for a PET Scan and brain biopsy, which brought good news and bad news: the tumor in my brain had not metastasized beyond my head but it is a melanoma that is spreading quite rapidly and I was feeling the impacts. It took almost a week for me to recover from the biopsy surgery before they could start the Gamma Knife radiation procedures which gave me time with my daughter, Wendy, and son, Andy, who took turns supporting me through the process.

Prior to this trip, I was seriously considering following the path of my dear college friend, Kay Townley, who several years ago chose to stop fighting her cancer and pass on. Kay and I had been kindred souls throughout our lives, for we each had married alcoholics plus we both pursued life purposes that made our lives challenging as well as meaningful. Kay’s decision had shown me that death is a choice, which for some is made consciously, while for others it may be made unconsciously. Regardless, it’s a free will choice every soul makes. Though I don’t know this for sure, it felt to me like Kay made her choice to pass on because her soul’s purpose had been fulfilled. I felt close to reaching this conclusion for myself, as well. But my spiritual journey over these past fifteen years has given me a different lens through which I see life and my relationship with my heart. I’ve experienced the power my heart has that my head does not, for it is the actual center of my physicality, my emotions, and my spirit. If I maintain my defenses around my heart, I undermine its gifts by negatively affecting its beating patterns, pulse waves, electrical output, hormonal functioning and neurochemical releases, all of which go to the appropriate organs and sites throughout the rest of my body, which ultimately affect my state of mind and overall health. So this was an important decision time for me and I knew I had to become totally tuned into my hearts feelings on multiple levels if I were to be sure that I fulfilled my soul’s purpose for this incarnation.

I’ve long been self-critical of my shortcomings as a mother, for though I was a responsible one and did the best I could, I was not emotionally available and connected to my children when they were young. Over the years, I’ve apologized to them several times but have still tended to blame myself for some of the difficulties in their lives. How could they love and forgive me when I have had such difficulty loving and forgiving myself? So what the trip to Spokane needed to be about for me was letting go of my baggage around this issue and just being grateful for their support and open to humor and having fun together in the midst of this difficult time. I had to allow my heart to completely feel all my feelings and doing this was a major breakthrough for all of us.

But this pattern was simply a reflection of a much deeper issue related to a past-life discovery that came through me when I was in the fourth year of a five-year therapeutic process called Pathwork, involving the reawakening of my emotional self. During the process, I was gradually able to remember how to feel, understand and embrace this heart-centered part of me again. But I did it rather differently than most of my classmates, for I often found myself activated by their stories and occasionally dissolved into extended crying jags without knowing why. In March, 2001, out of the blue, I felt the need to release a lot of anger which was clearly covering up a great deal of pain. I broke a tennis racket pounding pillows; I tore phone books, screamed and finally became physically exhausted, though still furious, so I pictured myself carrying an AK 47 into a shopping mall and shooting everything that moved before I finally collapsed exhausted onto the floor in tears. What came through next was a past-life memory and the anger dissolved into pain as the sobs took over.

Had this not happened before witnesses, I suspect I might have dismissed it and resisted believing in the reality of reincarnation and karma. But this experience forever changed my life, my identity and my destiny. I now know that my true self is a spiritual being and that every one of my hundreds or thousands of incarnations in third dimension has been a school for my soul and the fulfillment of my soul’s purpose. The Akashic Records are real and I’ve come to understand that my script for this lifetime was decided before my birth. This has helped me understand why I was born to parents who taught me that being female made me innately inferior, for I’ve needed to reject the defenses I developed over two thousand years ago and once again embrace the beauty and value of being female. But doing this was more easily said than done until two weeks ago.

Pathwork had been the perfect introduction to my emotional rebirth, but the year before graduating from there I met and began working with Carolyn Rutherford who is the founder of The Jwalan Muktika School For Illumination (www.jwalan.org) where I’ve gotten my Master’s Degree in Illumination Sciences and learned the true meaning of the words over the doors of the ancient wisdom schools “Know Thyself and Thou Shall Know the Universe”.

So with Carolyn’s assistance, I was finally able to release my two thousand year old pledge to avoid pain by never allowing myself to love again so deeply. In Spokane, I was finally able to open my heart and receive the many kindnesses of family, friends and providers, which had not been possible for me before this. For decades, I’ve prayed for a grateful heart but was never able to allow myself to have one until last week and doing it was transformational! What love, joy and fun it has brought and my body is now capable of sending messages to assist in my recovery. I’ve been totally surrounded by loving energy and life has now become worth living again in spite of the fact that my body has become so compromised. This has taught me the awesome power of love which I’ve been seeking but unable to access for virtually all of my life!

So today, Nov. 28, Wendy and I head back to Spokane for two more Gamma Knife procedures on Tuesday and Wednesday and in a month I’ll have another MRI to check out my situation. I’m now having positive feelings and confidence that the numbness on the left side of my head will begin to recede and I’ll be able to see and chew again normally in the future.

I’ll keep you posted.


  • linda c. thomas

    Dear Janet,
    Thank you for sharing your journey. I love and appreciate your wisdom in calling “My body’s latest lessons”.
    That is a perfect way to see these challenges.


  • renate

    Be brave and strong and be sure that you will be blessed !!!Warm thoughts and hugs…

  • Susan Christhilf

    Janet: You are on my mind and in my heart lately. May you be richly blessed for all of the beauty you have PUT BACK INTO this world. Much Love, Susan

  • Debbie Huntington

    I too love your words “my body’s latest lessons” along with your courage to face yourself and to share your story.
    You are an inspiration to me on so many levels Janet.
    You are so precious. Wishing you a speedy recovery.

  • Marie king

    Your sharing touches me deeply. I feel very sad that we are physically separated by so many miles. You are in my prayers. Your continued commitment to your spiritual path is truly inspiring to me. Sending you puppy-pile love and touch.