The Shift Gift

I was sitting in the garden on the first day of September.

The House of Bethan

It was a lovely ambient moment, sipping pearl flower tea and telling Fosbury in a rather humorous way about my awful not-very-humorous pregnancy mood swings (think swinging axe/ guillotine) when suddenly there was an almighty BANG and a riccoshading explosion of glass.

“Oh my God!” I cried. “Fos, I’ve got to go!”

I threw phone down, ran into house and galloped up the stairs shouting, “What’s happened?”

The children, who were clearly unaffected by the calamity, didn’t emerge from their rooms. Ads, on the other hand, came staggering out of the bathroom, his face an unusual shade of yellow.

“Babe …” he croaked pathetically.

“What happened? Are you okay?” I followed him into the bedroom where he flopped face down on a pillow. “Did you fall off the ladder?”

“I got electrocuted,” he replied in a v muffled voice.

What followed was a phone call to the hospital, in which Ads described how he had been removing the light fitting from above the sink, it hadn’t been earthed and a pummelling electrical current fixed his hand to the wire and he couldn’t let go. The nurse asked whether he’d fallen from the step ladder or been thrown off. He said that he didn’t know. He couldn’t remember and that everything was a bit foggy. Apart from some v weak arms, it was agreed that Ads had no other serious side effects, so whilst he lay in bed sipping water and recovering, I prowled around the house to see what had smashed.

I was just peering into the kitchen when someone spoke. “Well?”

I spun around.  “Oh my God PIX! You made me jump!”

“Sorry. Have you found what smashed?” She looked a bit nervous.

“No,” I replied, frowning. “I don’t know what it was.”

“It’s been happening a lot lately, hasn’t it?”


Pix was right. If Ads lying in bed the colour of English mustard wasn’t bad enough, there’d also been other “incidents”. Electrical things had been breaking. Three days ago we’d come in to find that the giant glass bau-bau that Spouser had made for us in his glassblowing studio was smashed to bits all over the stairs. Falling from the window sill, the impact had been almighty. Diamond shards were peppered over both sofas and jagged chunks of glass were wedged like teeth in the plaster of the wall.

It was enough to make you … well … wonder …

“Mum! I’ve found what smashed!” yelled Roo from upstairs, making me jump again. “Look!”

I hurried upstairs and followed his voice to the bathroom where he lifted the blind. Roo pointed to where the entire bathroom window was smashed. Sure enough Ads had been thrown from the ladder. He’d hit the window with such impact that the whole pane had shattered.

And at this point, something in me went “shit”.

Now, I don’t know whether you believe in energy, but I really, really do.

This belief is not faith-driven, but a by-product of the work that I engage in. When seeing a coaching client, the first thing I do is tap into their energy; whether they are calmly withheld, “grief sodden”, relaxed or their energies are quivering and shaking like a pool of water responding to the casting of a pebble. Throughout the coaching session there will be a re-balancing shift within the texture of the energy which is noticeable at the end.

In the same way, when delivering seminars to a room full of people, part of the work is sensing the collective energy. The easiest way to describe this is like being able to feel an invisible orchestra of music. Depending on the work we are doing, the story told, the gathered thoughts, the “music” of the collective energy becomes heavier, lighter, joyous or dark. As the deliverer, you guide and shift this energy like an orchestra conductor.

This energy sense is something that for me, since being pregnant (along with an acutely heightened sense of smell and taste) has become even more finely tuned.

As I swept the glass from the pathway, I began to consciously tap into the energy of the house, using the same calm observation that I would use during a coaching session. As I felt around with non-physical finger tips, it was clear that there wasn’t some horrible negative energy that was out to get us and had a taste for broken glass. Instead, the vibe I was picked up on was more like a wounded animal; frightened and cautious, snapping at the people who came too near.

If it could match anyone in this house right now, the Sanctuary’s energy aligned with Pix’s, who has found the last two years with my marriage break-up, very tough. Being twelve and powerfully sensitive, she’s also raging with live, electrical emotion.

Throwing the glass in the bin, I went around to the back garden and picked up the phone. Rang Fos back.

“Hi, is everything okay?” she asked breathlessly. “What happened?”

“The Sanctuary just electrocuted Ads.”

“Oh my God! Is he okay?”

“Yeah he’s good. I’ve been thinking about the house … All this stuff that’s been happening.” I paused. “I think the Sactuary is kind of … hormonal.”

For many years this house was a stable and apple store. After that an old lady lived here and after that it became a second home to a family from London. The family loved the Sanctuary and the Sanctuary loved them, but it was only inhabited for a few weeks a year. Then one day we arrived; a happy, bustling family of four. The Sanctuary was overjoyed and nestled down with us to be part of a family. But then me and Andrew split up. This was a very dark time for all of us; Andrew, me, the children AND the house. The Sanctuary was put on the market and for over a year did not know whether she would be sold or not. It felt temporary, impermanent and limbo-ish. Then last Christmas it became possible for us me to buy Andrew out, however due to a strange delay in the world of legal wranglings, that sale has still not gone through.

The Sanctuary still doesn’t belong to anyone.

“If this house’s energy was alive, it would be like some young animal who has never been cared for properly. It doesn’t know where it belongs and doesn’t trust anyone,” I explained to Fos. “I think her emotions are all out of sync. She’s pissed off. I think she electrocuted Ads and all this stuff is breaking because she’s feeling massively insecure and is lashing out.”

“Hmm,” replied Fos, who works as a highly successful change consultant in London, shifting energetic dynamics within organisations to create transformation and hence has an equally acute sense of invisible orchestra music. “The Sanctuary needs some love.”


“I’m sending you some stuff.”

And that was that.

Then yesterday morning, just as I was about to leave for work, the postman arrived with a package from Blackheath/Greenwich. Unwrapping the box, I lifted the lid and carefully took out each tissue wrapped item. Inside there were an array of mysterious objects …


There was an Atlantisite globe; a chunk of Tourmaline and a Flourite owl; a smudge stick, a butterfly pad for releasing intentions, two oval river stones from the Narmada River in India; Columbian hot chocolate (to drink like Aztec warriors) whilst the reclamation occurs. There were also four porcelain drawer handles. This interested me because when I was 19 and bought my first flat, I was presented with four drawer handles that were the same but with different designs. Immediately I saw the symbolism of opening and shutting doors.

The card from Fos was made out to all of us and held a beautiful blessing. It was made from natural card, baked with wild flower seeds, so even that could be planted in the garden.

Already, just by having these things in the shoe box in my house, it feels as though the energy here has shifted.

Everything feels reassured and calmer. There’s a sense of something being “heard” and acknowledged. My plan is that once Ads has finished tiling the bathroom and we have everything all autumn-spruced, the six of us (that includes the baby and the house energy itself) will take an hour to do some smudging, drink some Atzec juice, place the crystals, write some love letters to this place and screw in some new door handles.

That way, whether the solicitors in their stuffy offices and insane correspondence etiquette have managed to  pull their documents together or not, at least the Sanctuary will know she’s been adopted by us properly.

And Ads will be safe.

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