A large pawed tiger was stalking my back today and I felt like a white pelted snow rabbit frozen in fear, wide blue eyes staring wildly out with my back turned to the wall. It’s a feeling that I experience frequently like while walking in the park, I take with me my large Labrador on his protective prowl, and I still glance nervously over my shoulder often as if the large pawed tiger is going to leap from the trees at any moment and drag me off into the woods. In my twenties I had recurrent dreams of being stalked by a man in a black coat whose face I could not make out and then I was powerless once he attacked. That frozen terror of not being able to scream, not being able to run, to just being there being attacked, fully conscious and not doing a thing except panicking internally with all of my adrenaline spiking my anxiety through the roof. Today, it was a large male who oddly I did not energetically sense walk into my store. I’m pretty damn intuitive and not often caught off-guard in this way. Normally I sense or at least hear a person approaching or coming inside. Today, I didn’t sense him and I was daydreaming while carry a load of sparkling new fairy crystals in my hands and then SMACK there he was larger than life standing in front of my register. There was no warning and my anxiety spiked and crested instantly. His dull eyes clearly haunted, and I still couldn’t feel him out energetically, he was a chaotic mess but his energy was held so tightly that I couldn’t get a good read on him. He walked around asking odd questions, and then sat for a long time in a rocking recliner near our tea area and asked questions of me while staring at the wall. Retelling the story makes me sound like a complete fool, why didn’t I just pick up the damn phone and call 911? I’ll tell you why, it was pure FEAR. I lost control and I hate to admit that, because I’m a fiery, feisty soul who has always been told how strong that I am and my natural inclination would he have said “BOO” right in my face probably would have been to punch him, but this odd silent stalking is different. It somehow is one of my greatest fears. After he gave a few odd thumbs ups to the wall he was conversing with he managed to get up and begin to walk around, he tried to head into my yoga studio in the back of the building. My soul screamed don’t go alone or follow him in there so I stood frozen and finally my voice worked “there’s no shoes allowed back there.” He told me “oh I am just looking around.” Then he tried to move towards my back office and I shouted “there’s nothing for sale in there it’s the office.” Then he asked “this small room here, is this your office?” Now you’re probably saying “DAMN IT TARA WHY DIDN’T YOU CALL THE COPS NOW!?” I’ll tell you why, SHEER TERROR that’s why. Now, I knew for certain it wasn’t just me overreacting because I kept telling myself “why are you playing victim mode when nothing has even happened, he’s probably perfectly fine he’s just odd, he clearly has some mental issues going on, but he’s not a threat.” Or is he? How could I know that for sure? Why do we have to live in fear of mentally ill white males? This guy was a big one too. I’m not exaggerating when I say that he was well over 6ft tall and probably 250-300lbs. If it wouldn’t be a breach of customer confidentiality I would post some of the quick pics I snapped of him in case he raped, kidnapped or murdered me. So, I said stupid things in response “yep that’s the office and again there’s nothing for you back there.” He asked if the tea was free (normally it is), but I told him no in the hopes that it would shorten his stay in my store. I was frantically texting people that I knew and my business partner now offered to come down while he was there. I was too terrified to call the police because what if he lost his tenuous stability, or what if he stewed on it and came back later to get me? He stalked me and the store for at least another 10 minutes asking odd questions. He stood for a solid 60 seconds staring right at me and not saying a word while I acted like a teenager texting on her phone. (SIGHS LOUDLY) I know I annoy even my own self while retelling this story from the perspective of the large breasted girl who always gets killed in the beginning of the horror flick. My only flicker of hope in this story is that in high school I was nominated for the IBTC by a pack of boys (itty bitty titty committee), but now I’ve nursed two children and probably have been kicked out of that misogynistic club. Once I became so uncomfortable with his staring that I thought I would snap he said as if he had been staring at our name over my head (maybe he was but at this point I’m so far down that white pelted rabbit hole that he is for sure going to be dining on stew that night in my mind) he said to me so tell me why do they call it “GHIDRAH’S?” I knew the answer so it tumbled straight out of my mouth “it’s the three headed female dragon in Godzilla.” The last thing that he said to me was “powerful creature that…” He took one last long spin around my store and then said goodbye and walked out. I melted. My heart hurt so badly from the anxiety that I was carrying that I couldn’t even breathe. I wanted to collapse. I pulled on my hair and I rubbed my face. I tried some deep breaths but the adrenaline wouldn’t cease. It morphed it’s face into other anxieties all night long and ended up with me imagining the deaths of my children and letting myself wallow in my deepest held fears and griefs. It was the only way to get it out was to go even further down the spiral. Now it’s the next day. I didn’t sleep well. I feel fried and weepy. I don’t know why I am not angry. Normally I rage with righteous rage against the masculine machine and the patriarchy but now I am just sad. Today I want to weep with and for the women whose greatest fears have turned into realities. His stalking was perceived on my end. I’m smart enough to realize he never actually physically harmed me, but his presence, his oddities and his lack of energetic aura still hurt. We could go down a myriad of discussions on mental illness because he was clearly not well, we could go down a shamanic discussion of black entity possessions because as an intuitive I could see he also had that. I could see it through his eyes. I’m a freaking witch. How could he slip past with my shields, salts and protective spells? I’ll tell you the answer my soul comes up with to that … it’s because my highest spirits, divinities etc. believed he had a lesson to teach me or that I could somehow help him because as a healer for some odd reason it’s folks with the dark entities that seem to show up for healings from me, but I haven’t been doing healings. I am taking a soul break. I’ve practiced really hard to be a channel, a hollow bone to allow these healings that I was doing to be done not by me but by my trusted army of spiritual warriors, but it still seeps through and my soul was tired from the holding the space for these healings so I have been on vacation. He did ask me about reiki and healings amongst his questions so I was primed to help, to offer but I didn’t. I also realize that I am really good at blaming myself for everything and so I’ve circled now into this idea that this stalking, large male tiger was somehow divinely ordained and sent to me to teach me a lesson. Ugh, anxiety sucks and it loves to play the victim. I am going to try to stop kicking myself for my terrified rabbit response and honor the fact that I am on a soul break from doing healings. I know he needed healing, but I am not taking him alone into a back room and that’s OK! The easy thing to do would be to tell you that it’s always related to my patrilineal wounds, because it is but I am so tired of singing that song. Perhaps, the story here, the lesson here is that it is time to grieve for that wounding dished out by the fathers that causes this fear of being stalked and to do it deeply, to grieve collectively as women and to remember that it’s not always my job to heal the men that we love in this world. It’s time for us to heal ourselves first and to wail the soul wrenching sounds of the great Irish keenings again so that we can release the energy of this deep grief and connected anxieties over being harmed and stalked by our own male counterparts and caretakers. The lamentations of not feeling safe anymore. An ode, a lamentation to the simple walk in the park without fear. One day our hands will raise in joyful freedom again, and we will walk again without fear. Namaste, Tara Nordstrom.
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