When I first arrived in Bali, I wasn’t very well. I was jet-lagged and completely lost my appetite for 5 days after landing so I was taken to a Healer.
My host, Ketut, took me to her Healer. If any if you have seen the film Eat, Love, Pray with Julia Roberts then you’ll understand a little more about what a healer is. Since the release of the film in 2010, it has become more common for tourists to pay a Healer to spend some time with them and have a reading.
In the Balinese community, a Healer is a doctor, therapist, friend and family member all in one. In a nutshell, they are there to nurture your soul, mind, health and body. Each family has their own Healer but the Healer helps a couple of families. A family usually visits their Healer when they are unwell, perhaps a chest infection, aches, pains or even stomach upsets.
Let’s get back to my experience with my Healer. I was sleep deprived, homesick and hadn’t eaten properly in roughly 5 days. I spent hours in my room crying, talking to my family, looking at flights home and I hadn’t been away from home even a week yet! So off I went to Ketut’s Healer.
We reached the Healer’s home which is where he is always visited, (I must admit I expected a local hall or something) and sat to wait my turn. While we were waiting, Ketut speaks to the Healer’s family and I’m taking in my surroundings. I can see over a dozen small birds in separate cages, lizards on the wall, a small child watching TV outside and a cockroach or two by my feet.
When my turn arrives I head up the stairs to where my Healer is sat crossed legged on a small short stool. I sit opposite him and he tells me that I am not well. This is something I was very aware of and felt like laughing at him because that’s the whole reason I went to see him. I respect Ketut and didn’t want to upset her so I carry on,
I am given a coconut and told to drink the coconut water inside. Okay so here’s a fact about me, I hate the taste of coconut. Love the smell but cannot stand the taste, so this for me is my nightmare. I look at Ketut and she gives me an encouraging look. I drink the warm coconut water but have to give it back after a few sips as it was disgusting. My Healer takes a couple of small dainty pink and white flowers and pours the leftover coconut water over the flowers and shakes them in my face. I’m now soaked and wondering how on earth this is going to help me get my appetite back and make me fall asleep.
I didn’t understand the majority of what was said to me. The Healer pushes his three fingers into my mid-chest and I’m told by Ketut to resist it. Now I’m wet and my chest hurts. Ketut translates for a few minutes telling me that I should meditate and listen to my soul and what my body wants.
Another fact about me, I hate feet. They are ugly and I’m just not a fan. Guess what the next part of my healing process entails? My elderly Healer putting his feet ON TOP of my feet and stomping. Yay.
I’m given a red string bracelet and sent on my way. I honestly had no clue why I left my bed.
This is until the following morning when I realised I had fallen asleep and stayed asleep for 6 whole hours. Two days later I was eating normally again and was mentally happier again,
At first, I only went to the Healer to please Ketut but two days later I was cured of my troubles. Because of my Healer, I stayed on travelling, I got to experience South East Asia and meet some amazing people.
I truly believe that my Healer helped my mental state too. This is because before I went travelling my head was rather negative. I was in a job I really didn’t like because of the people I was working with. I went to the doctors and I was crying before every shift. Something clicked when I left the reading with my Healer. Since then I have been able to truly be myself and do what makes me happy. My family have also noticed this too.
My experience was life changing, not necessarily the best or pleasant process but it worked and I got better both physically and mentally. I now practice yoga at least once a week with meditation and am still relaxed!
If you find yourself in Bali, I recommend you to Pray. To experience a reading from a Healer for yourself and have your own story.