The fall / by Vanessa Fiola

**The next 24 days I'll be posting 500 words a day here as part of a creative writing challenge. Join the FB group.  Often I phone it in.**    

I’m having a very hard time writing when others in this group are posting things that actually matter. I’m over here like, “Ugh I’m so lame at parties. I wonder what my phone is doing right now, blatherblatherblather.” Meanwhile, on a daily basis I’m reading the most profound, intimate stories of new life and death and near death; of gaining and losing. I am in awe.  

Full stop.

I put my Reiki training into practice today. Ryan was my first patient, god bless him. He woke up this morning and looked over at me, which I interpreted as implicit permission.

“Can I do Reiki on you?” 

He had barely finished his yes before I got out of bed, walked to his side, grounded myself, and created the healing space that I visualize as a golden bubble, like if the plastic encapsulating The Bubble Boy were gold, but not. For 5 minutes, I moved my hands over and across his energy fields. That is not code.

Jonah woke up and came into our room. Ryan told him that I had just done Reiki. Jonah wanted to see for himself, so I did the whole thing again, while my typically rambunctious three-year old patiently observed without so much as a peep. This shit is magic. 

Like every morning, we moved from the bedroom to the kitchen, and Ryan started making our scrambled-eggs-and-green-smoothies breakfast. I am very much Sagittarius, but I am also Virgo rising and moon, so the daily consistency of protein and sea veggies make me feel safe in this world. 

Normally we try to get Jonah food within the first 15 minutes he’s awake. This morning, before Ryan could even finish adding the spirulina, (I know, I hate me too), Jonah threw the type of LBS tantrum that made me want to give him back. I recalled what my teacher had told me: it’s okay to practice on your children without asking first. So, as he sat flailing his arms and legs in his chair, I swooped in like some kind of goddamned psycho and put my hands two inches from his little body.

“STOP REIKI’ING ME!” He wailed, pushing me away.

She didn’t tell me anything about what to do when your child doesn’t want it, but like, who wouldn’t? I continued, assuming it was for the best. In truth, my gut told me I should listen to him, but I’m really horrible under pressure. Do not make me your emergency contact. I emailed her later to ask about the guidelines, and she was aghast that I continued after he said no. Sorry, little buddy. Here’s a grain-free, Manuka honey-sweetened cupcake for your troubles. May you escape food issues as a coping mechanism for the boundaries I’ve crossed. 

Have you ever had that really low-grade anxiety? The one that is vaguely perceptible so you tell yourself you’re fine, until there’s a glitch in the matrix and you suddenly remember that you’re really not fine because you’re actually upset about x, where x is the fact that you violated your child’s qi for crissakes? That was me today. I got home from work and apologized. I think it fell on deaf ears though, because he was too busy being Carl from IT.