A Lesson in Spirituality & Self Acceptance

Posted By Lori Painter on May 16, 2013 | 3 comments

Today I felt inspired to embrace a component of my life that I have never publicly shared before out of fear that I would be ridiculed,  judged, criticized, or discredited. Why did I fear this? Because many years ago, I did the same thing to others on the particular topic I am about to share. I doubted them, I didn’t believe them. I judged them, and even said that they made their stories up. However, years later the thing that I once didn’t believe was possible began happening to me. Now I have my own experience and testimony so I cannot deny it. Although for years my ego was afraid of admitting it. I’ve had to pull my foot out of my mouth and eat my words. However, I am done with being embarrassed or ashamed. I am not going to deny it or hide it. I am ready to own it, honor it, deepen it, share it, explore it, and be unapologetic about it. It’s just my truth and this is my journey.

My Fears

For years now I have had a fear of  publicly acknowledging that I am communicating with spirit. Although I understand that we all have this ability to tune in, we don’t all do it, which in turn can leave people feeling that some are “gifted” in this aspect of life. It can also freak people out and make them question you. In sharing this publicly, more fears came up. What if people would hit me up to help them and I wouldn’t be able to? What if I misinterpret messages? What if my experiences will upset views and people feel threatened? I am afraid that if I share that I am communicating with spirit that I will be bombarded with skeptics and not be able to satisfy their inquiries since I am still so fresh in experience myself. However, the purpose in sharing is not to discredit anyone, confront, or prove anything to anyone. The purpose is to own my experiences and to make peace with myself and acknowledge this aspect of my life.

I also undertand that for some, my story might not shock you. It might be that you have had personal experiences yourself. Perhaps you have had an experience where you felt the presence of someone you loved after they had passed. Perhaps you have communicated with spirits who are no longer with us is the physical world. If that’s the case, then maybe you can relate to my fears and experiences. If so, please share your story in the comments below.

My First Experience Communicating with Spirit

I had first heard about feeling a loved ones presence after they had passed from my mom. Both of her parents had died when I was 10-12 years old. I overheard my mom talking to someone telling them that she knew her parents were with her when she was in their home. As a young girl I felt this was a strange concept. How could that be possible? How did she even know that they were with her? What does that FEEL like?

Fast forward into my mid 20’s and my grandfather was passing soon. Before he passed away I visited him. While he was weak and at the end of his life I felt a compelling request that not many make of their passing loved ones. I begged him to visit me after his passing. I begged him to prove to me that the spirit does indeed live on. I told him that I did not want to go through the rest of my life hoping and having faith, but that I wanted an absolute KNOWING of our spiritual existence.

Although I was raised in a religion that taught us that our spirits live on, somewhere in my 20’s I doubted it. It’s not something I thought about often, but it did cross my mind and I had fear about death as a result. So, in my quest to KNOW unshakably and without a doubt I took full opportunity to relay my concerns to my grandfather who was ready to pass.

I came to him and asked, “Grandpa, I want you to help me. I want to know what happens to us when we die. Do we just vanish, like when the lights go out and it is all over?”

My grandfather looked mildly annoyed and said, “Lori, you should know this. Of course our spirits live on.”

Eagerly and insistently I said, “Yes, I understand that’s what I’ve been told, but I don’t want to go on what I’ve been told. I want to know it for myself. I want to KNOW it through experience before I die. I want you to prove it to me. Promise me Grandpa that if our spirits do live on that you will come to me. Let me know for sure that we do live on. Don’t let me go my entire life not knowing 100% without a doubt.”

As he sensed my incessant yearning he hesitantly agreed. A couple of days later, my grandfather passed on.

A couple years passed and I had moved forward with my life. I had forgotten about my talk with my grandfather. I had just moved into a new apartment with my boyfriend and for some reason when I was alone sitting in front of the computer I felt like someone was in the apartment with me. I could feel a young man. Out of the corner of my left eye I could see a young man standing in a white t shirt and blue jeans. He had dark wavy hair. I would turn my head to see if anything was there and I saw nothing. Other times I could feel him looking over my shoulder. Yet every time I looked there was nothing.

I began to get a little spooked out and I called my boyfriend to tell him I thought a ghost was in our new apartment. He asked me, “Why do you think there is a ghost? Have you seen or experienced ghosts before?”

“No, of course not. I am not even sure I believe in that stuff anyhow, but I do know someone is here. I just don’t know why. I wonder if there was murder here.”

The thought of living in an apartment where there was a crime scene creeped me out. However, this person liked to let me know that he was here. Sometimes I thought I was   just imagining it until one night when I was going to bed. I had turned out all the lights, I was in bed, laying next to my boyfriend, on my back with my eyes closed. And then, as if the room was perfectly lit and my eyes where open the ghost guy jumped into my face and looked as though he was yelling at me although there was no sound. Freaked out I jumped up and screamed. My boyfriend was beyond startled. I told him the ghost was back and he’s trying to tell me something, but I have no idea what it is. My boyfriend tried to soothe me. Falling asleep that night was difficult and I was sure my boyfriend was worried for my mental well being.

A few weeks later, my grandmother, who was still living and was married to my grandfather invited me to come over and go through photos to see if there were any pictures I’d like to have. As I rummaged through them I came across a photo that struck me. It was of my grandfather, he was young, wearing a white t-shirt, blue jeans, and had thick wavy hair. It spooked me for a moment, even more so when I saw his teeth in the smile. He had these very distinct teeth in the photo. The same teeth that the “ghost” in my apartment had. See, I never knew what my grandfather’s natural teeth looked like because as long as I knew him he had dentures. Dentures that he loved to take out and play with to freak out his grandchildren!  This was the confirmation I had asked him for years ago. I said to myself, “Grandpa, it’s you! It’s not a ghost or a murdered tortured sprit. You’ve come to let me know that our spirit lives on. You are letting me know you are still here. You are honoring your promise to me. Thank you!”

After that day, I didn’t get the “ghost hauntings”. I did not feel his presence. He was gone, as though he had come to follow through on his promise and as soon as I got the message he was off. I do find it fascinating that at first he was so coy, but after several visits I guess he just got so impatient that I wasn’t getting the message that he was visiting me that he needed to take more drastic measures in getting my attention. From this point on there has been no doubt in my mind that our spirits live on and for that I am deeply thankful to my grandfather.

Later, I could just think of my grandfather and I could hear him in my mind laugh or tell a silly joke. Even though he left his body, his spirit was still the same old grandpa with the inappropriate jokes. It was very reassuring that he didn’t lose his personality. I wasn’t too sure if we were different after we passed.

My Second Experience & Spontaneous Mediumship

Several years later, I had a more powerful experience with my grandfather and this time it involved my father, his son. My father and grandfather did not have a great relationship, even up to the time of my grandfather’s passing. I also did not exactly have a close relationship with my father and  we did not interact very often.

Well, one Sunday in June of 2007 my grandmother invited me and my kids over for dinner. I told her that I’d pass since the kids and I had been changing our diet and as a matter of fact I was on day 7 of a 10 day liquid cleanse. She insisted that we still come over. I told her we would, but that I wouldn’t be eating.

When I arrived my father was there. I didn’t know he would be, but I was cool with it. My grandmother talked to me for a short bit, but then due to her pain went to her room to lay down.  My father and I began talking and I am not sure how we got in the subject of grandpa, but I somehow said that he was there with us.

My father was shocked, “What do you mean my dad is here right now?”

I said, “ I don’t know, he’s just telling me that he’s here. He’s also wanting me to tell you that he’s sorry he rejected you. He’s sorry that his ego was too big and that he was too stubborn to tell you while he was alive that he loved you and is proud of you.” The conversation went on for an hour. Although I was there, I really felt like I was an interpreter for the two of them. My father would ask a question and my grandpa would tell me the answer. It was surreal.

Reflecting on it, I remember being somewhat confused afterwards with how I was able to experience that. The biggest mind trip was that particular Sunday turned out to be father’s day. It was not something at the time that was prominent in my mind considering I didn’t normally call my dad on father’s day. Due to my pain, I rarely acknowledged him on father’s day. I found it interesting and powerful that on this father’s day my grandfather came through and acknowledged my dad, apologized, and wanted to make amends with him. He wanted my dad to know it wasn’t his son, but in fact his ego that was the problem and again to let him know that he loved him.

Afterwards while I was driving home, I felt like an entire community of spirits were surrounding me, equally excited that I was tuning into them. They really like to be acknowledged. They were all demanding my attention. It felt like I was in a crowded room with loud talking everywhere, but in reality I was sitting alone in my car. It felt chaotic. It felt distracting and confusing. So I said firmly, “Go away. Leave me alone. This is not my life’s purpose. I am not here to carry out your messages. Go away.” And with that everything was silent. They were gone, and I was left with the mind boggling ego wondering what the hell just happened!

When my mind settled, I was afraid to tell others out of fear of being criticized, ridiculed, violently attacked, rejected, judged, thought of as a freak and un-credible. I didn’t want my family to think I was crazy, however, they did. I didn’t really know how I felt about the situation myself so I was prone to the opinions of others and that left me feeling too vulnerable to share openly.

Experiences Beyond my Grandfather

Years after my first experience, I had been told by other psychics, mediums, and channelers that I had the ability, and I was told to develop it to serve others, but I just couldn’t wrap my mind around this. No where in my life did I ever see myself using this ability. It wasn’t in my vision of what I thought I wanted my life to look like. Why couldn’t I just be normal like everyone else? However, I continued to experience communication with several others who had passed. One was a girl I knew in high school who had passed, another was a high profile murder case that had been all over the media years ago, another was the grandmother of my children’s father, another was a friend of my ex who had died on the job, another was a boy who had committed suicide, and another was hours before my grandmother passed I had a vision of her dancing. It brought me to tears because it was a symbol that she was no longer in the physical pain that had plagued her for all the years I knew her. Later I found out she had passed on.

Over time spontaneous little messages came through. Sometimes I would think about a person who had passed and I would ask them to communicate with me. However, I can’t make it happen. I can’t make spirit communicate with me. I can’t think too much about it or try too hard. When I think about it nothing happens. It’s just one of those things that happens. I almost have to go brain dead and not think at all in order to receive information. That’s when things seem to show up, but I can’t force it. When I try I guess I am trying too hard and my mind is too active that I don’t sense anything. Someday I’d like to get to a point where I can call spirit in consistently and accurately interpret them. In the meantime, I admit that I am  a novice. I have never been to school or trained in this field. There are many things that I still do not understand. I am sure there are many things that  I am not even aware of that could help me understand this ability even further. Perhaps after today I will explore deepening my own personal experiences and understandings with those who have mastered this ability.

So there it is, my confession, my acknowledgement and acceptance of myself. The coolest thing is that as I wrote this I felt the weight lift off my shoulders. I felt more and more accepting of my experiences and less concerned with what others will think of me. I am freeing myself of the good opinions of others and honoring my truth regardless of how it is received or rejected  by others. I am at peace.  Mission “Self Acceptance” Accomplished!

Inspired Action

Did this post inspire you? If so, now it’s your turn. What are you afraid of sharing with the world? What are you afraid you are going to be rejected by society if you come out of the closet with it? Share it, release it, lighten your emotional load, honor who you are, embrace it, and expand. Become free of your fears, become free of the opinions of others. Share it and shine on.


  1. Hi Lori, I, too have had spirit encounters where I’ve briefly worked with asking ghosts to leave (as a novice), or sensed other presences. As a teen I recall certain very terrifying events. I now have a spiritual guide who helps me to a great extent. In addition, and much more frequently over my life, I receive messages from nature very clearly meant for me at that time–such as visitations by certain birds or other creatures. But I’m careful about talking about the details and careful who I tell. I notice if I do mention it, I do so in an almost apologetic tone and with lots of disclaimers etc etc. Lately, after spending some time with a local psychic who talked about the prejudice she knows she receives a lot as a professional psychic, I began rethinking why I keep so low-key about daily practices I use and how I am reluctant to share them or talk about them. After your post I am further inspired to write my experiences down.

    I’m glad you wrote this, for your own freedom and also for how supportive it is of others experiencing similar phenomenon.

    Your writing is great by the way.

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  2. I think all of this is super freaking cool! You’ve got guts girl. Love it 🙂 x

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  3. Hey Giri! Aren’t you blogging anymore? I want to hear more! 🙂

    Post a Reply

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