When my abilities showed up overnight, I was not only afraid of them, I was ashamed of them, too.For the first three months I seesawed between thinking I was going insane to being a victim of a secret government LSD experiment. After all, I lived in the San Francisco Bay Area. What else could be the logical reason for this?I was not completely naïve. I was aware for decades about “new age” concepts. I had a friend who composed new age music years ago. He would take me to his alternative church on Sundays to meditate. That didn’t last long as I got terribly bored and thought it silly. I had astrology charts run with my girl friends on our monthly lady’s night out. I had a personal collection of minerals and crystals. In retrospect, that was all child’s play!Nevertheless, I never saw this opening coming and when it did, it shut me down for the first three months. I was in shock. When I recovered from the initial impact, I began to take a few classes on intuition and energy. One of the instructors mentioned something that was helpful to me: offering readings to people might be grounding for me. She speculated it would validate the things I was seeing and the information I was picking up in such a way I could get more comfortable in this new skin of mine.I began offering free readings to my fellow classmates. And, I passed a test interview on one of the psychic hotlines. I grabbed a royalty free photo online and used a pseudonym and did phone readings for 0.30 a minute. The photo was that of a thin, beautiful red haired woman with alabaster skin in a bright orange blouse – nothing that resembles me at all! Callers would mention how my voice did not fit my face!During the day I would work with business clients. I’d sit across a conference table with someone and see their departed loved ones behind them. I’d look them in the eyes as we talked and think, “I wonder what they’d say if I told them who I saw standing behind them.” I’d go out for drinks with a colleague at night and sit at the bar listening to them talk and think, “You have no idea what I really do.”I felt as if I lived two lives. I did. I felt like I was hiding a dark secret and for the most part, felt cursed. I resented what happened to me. I came into this spiritual profession kicking and screaming. I was not happy. I was suffering inside. I was afraid my analytical, real world professional colleagues would find out and marginalize me. I was afraid to be identified as a crazy psychic. All those weird people wore gauzy clothes, big earrings and carried crystal balls around. They looked, appeared and acted insane.My life was all about fear, fear, fear, fear, fear. Then, one day, I was chatting with a meditation class instructor. As I told her my story I cried, “I don’t want to be one of those crazy psychics!” She looked calmly at me and said, “Then don’t be.”“I don’t want to be ostracized as a lunatic!”“Then don’t intend to be.”“I’m an educated professional!”“Then still be.” “Define a new sanity in all of this.”Thus, calm, professional, sane guidance was born.