Reflections on Life Thus Far

My life. My story: Exploring mental health, spirituality, meditation & random thoughts I have


Book Recommendation: Life after near Death

Buy the book here:  or here:


I don’t know much German so Google translated the phrase out of curiosity. It translates literally as “Quick flees the time was ready” which I think may be better stated as “our time goes too quickly” or perhaps “Times flies before we are ready”. Sorry for the poor translation.

As a NDE (near death experiencer) this book is invaluable. I finally feel like there are answers to the questions I have had ever since my NDE in late 2000. The author has had her own NDE and interviews others including their experiences in her book. She comes from a research background so it’s not a book filled with ‘New Age’ concepts as much as personal stories and evidence based research (but don’t worry it is far from dry or tedious).

The book came out earlier this year and I just found it at my local library. It has given me a sense of peace knowing I am not alone in what I experienced and the after effects of the NDE. I even found myself thinking “aha! so that’s WHY I do/feel like that” and just generally feeling less crazy. Best of all is finding out about how all people who’ve had a NDE have muddy brown/black and white in their aura representing the trauma and shift in consciousness following the NDE. A friend able to see/read auras told me (before I found this book) I had a the black and white colours in my aura as described in the book. It really helped me feel better knowing everyone has that aura if they’ve had a NDE.

If you have had a Near Death Experience or know someone who has you should read this book! I’m not getting paid to promote or endorse or anything-I just want people to have something they can go to and find comfort/answers to some of their questions about the near death experience. You might find it in your local library or book store or you can order it on Amazon.

©Natalya for Reflections on Life Thus Far, 2016.



The Importance of Community

Interconnection Yes, that’s right folks. Community is important. A radical concept if you’re a North American or perhaps Westerner generally. Why is community important? It is a check and balance on our collective psyches because you can’t get too “crazy” if you have a solid formation of people close to you who are willing to check in on you. I don’t mean a community of ‘busy bodies’ or gossips, but a genuine group of people who look out for one another and generally care about them. If you’re not in a community it’s easy to isolate yourself with the belief individualism counts for more than having others around you. Now I can hear the introverts getting worried-I’m a strong introvert-but don’t panic. I’m merely advocating we reach out to other people and find a community we feel a sense of belonging in. You don’t have to be around them 24/7!

How are you?

As a child growing up my family was dysfunctional and isolated. Anyone from a dysfunctional family will tell you there’s always a level of isolation involved in keeping family secrets, be it alcoholism, sexual abuse, addiction, abuse of any kind etc., or else the abuse would stop. It’s pretty hard to abuse your family if outsiders are regularly checking in to see how you are because they care about you. The problem is there’s often so much shame involved with abuse that the victims have a hard time confiding in anyone. Even so, it becomes harder to keep abuse hidden when you have a community to support you. My family had no such community. I was isolated at home and at school because I had no social skills. Surviving mother-daughter sexual abuse damaged my core sense of self. I was enmeshed with my mother and didn’t know how to make friends or keep them. The only thing I knew was to be submissive and give whatever was asked for. An ironic caveat here is I was warned(by my mother) about male sexual perpetrators so managed to avoid falling victim to that form of sex abuse.

Had I grown up with lots of caring people around me I likely would have developed a better sense of self independent of

Someone to care!

my mother. But isolation is difficult to break free from when you’ve also never learned what it’s like to be part of a supportive group of people. Thus, I had nobody I felt I could turn to since trust had already been eroded early in my life.  What I needed most was to have someone see me and tell me I mattered. Unfortunately, I can remember no such person in my life early enough for it to have impacted me significantly. The people in my life who were positive were not met until I was in my adolescence and by that time my self esteem was thoroughly diminished. So where did my resilience come from? Inside myself. Without anyone early in my life to positively influence me I learned how to survive using my own qualities. Perhaps, not surprisingly, it took me longer than normal to develop a full sense of who I am and know where I began and someone else started (boundary wise).

I’m not going to write about the mother-daughter sex abuse I suffered; I merely wanted you to see how a community of people, or lack thereof, can affect a person’s development and well being.

Not the community I would join! lol

Community can be any mixture of people grouped together. It is not just about proximity or geography, but the values and interests collectively shared. As long as you have a group of people willing to share in each other’s lives on a regular basis much of the damage due to isolation can be avoided. If, however, your abuse began as an infant(as in my case) it does become more challenging to counteract the damage. Still, all hope is not lost. One can always recover to varying levels of success depending on individual circumstances. It’s a rare individual who can’t recover at all when given the right support(s). The issue is more about how we can access those supports and build a community, or join one, if we are not connected socially.

How has community played a role in your life? Have you ever needed support but didn’t know how to find it because of social isolation? Did becoming part of a community enrich your life in an way (if you didn’t always have one)? I welcome your thoughts on what you think of community as a concept, as well as more practically and its implications/influences in your life.

©Reflectionsonlifethusfar, 2012.