The Empath as a Human Antenna
Hi, I’m Lorna, and I’m a Human Antenna. Okay, an empath, to be exact. And I scare the crap out of people if I’m open and honest about my “super powers,” aka my blessing and my curse. Friends are wary. Potential mates run away. I’m stuck between being alone more than I’d like or being disingenuous with the people who are or who may become the most important people in my life.
I didn’t realize how scary I could be until I had a brief fling with a fellow empath, and no matter how well I’d shielded my emotions from others, he could read every nuance. I made no secret of my feelings for him, but I did have a few other secrets that no one knew, and he felt them and parroted them back to me on a long walk by a lake that I recall in such vivid detail that I remember the glitch in my gait when he confessed to me what he was and what he felt from behind my shields. He knew my best hidden weakness, something no one else knew, and I’d been with him for no more than two weeks.
“Is that what I do to people?” I wondered aloud. The answer, of course, is Yes. I either know too much about the people in my life or I go too far in the opposite direction and distance myself to avoid it. The sooner I’m honest with people about my abilities, the sooner they disappear from my life. There are really few people who can fathom being around someone who sees them at their core. People may say they have nothing to hide but it’s just not true. We all do. We live in a culture of both reality TV and Facebook where everything is splayed on the screen–and of deep secrets and insecurities no one wants exposed.
I don’t mean to know things and feel things–it’s just who I am. And I’m like a growing number of others who are just now realizing their empathic abilities or always thought they were crazy and now have a name for it.
Being an empath, especially a high-level empath as I am, is much like being a Human Antenna.
The first time I heard that expression was almost 10 years ago, a few months before I realized–through my association with an energy worker and help with her clients–that I was an empath and could feel other people’s emotions, sometimes to ill effect when I started seeing my own life through the emotions of someone mentally ill or depressed. I’ve learned to separate out my emotions from other people’s now, but I’m still not as fast at it as I’d like and my life can be going serenely and beautifully when I get hit by someone else’s emotional viewpoint and have to extract myself.
The first time I was called a Human Antennae was when working with shaman and author Kelley Harrell on a personal issue, long distance, following my divorce. She had found that broken part of me and had guides take me “below” for healing. When I emerged, whole, I was in the form of a giant dragonfly covered in multi-colored jewels and antennae. It was during that time that I realized that I had what seemed to be a net incorporated into my etheric body so that I could pick up the energy signals of other people, even places where other people had been and left an energetic residue.
I’ve been able to push the net out a few feet from my body over time, so that it feels as though I’m in the middle of a dome, or half a sphere, and an intricate antenna is wired into the dome, like a radio antenna in a car windshield. This shield or dome can be reinforced to protect me from random energy of other people, particularly if I’m in an airport, mall, Walmart on Christmas Eve, hospital, near a prison facility, or visiting battlefields like Gettysburg.
On this dome laced with an antenna net, there are lights, like beacons. These are people who are special to me or with whom I have some kind of bond. That doesn’t mean that I even have good feelings about some of these people, but just that they’re bonded to me somehow. These are easily family members, friends, some coworkers, occasionally old lovers, and members of my spiritual circle. They show up as beacons because I’ve had some involvement with their energy and I recognize their energy signatures. Most of them, I know from meeting in person, but occasionally one will show up that I’ve never met except online. That’s happened with only a handful of people. (And yes, I can read energy in the pixels on a screen because, oddly enough, emotional energy can be captured in the words a person types in a blog or on Facebook or in an IM or email. I can know exactly the emotion behind a message before I read the first word of it. Scared now?)
It doesn’t matter how far away the person is: their beacon still shines. Some are weaker than others. Their beacon flickers and fades in and out, not because of a lack of bond with them but because of the strength of their energy and the energy they “broadcast.”
That’s right. Broadcast. We all broadcast our energy, including not so great things in our energy that we don’t want seen. The empath need never reach out to anyone through broadcasting or transmitting in order to feel another’s energy. The empath is the antenna, the receiver. Sometimes, one of those beacons will light up with a fury and I’ll feel the dread or anxiety a dear one is going through. I’m completely passive in how I experience this. There is no action on my part except to be open to it.
If I do want to know if a dear one is okay? I actually don’t do this actively. My net is sensitive enough that I don’t have to monitor it all the time…or any of the time. If a dear one is having a difficult time, the net alerts me. Whether I’m asleep, at work, on a date, at a movie. It’s the same as sitting in my house at my desk with my windows open and someone on a bike rides by outside with a radio blaring. I’m gonna hear.
On the rare occasion where I might want to check on someone, all I have to do is make sure my receiver is tuned to their frequency, for lack of a better word. If they’re broadcasting, I’ll pick it up. Most people, however, don’t broadcast energy in a way to alert me unless they are having a serious emotional blip. Joy and happiness don’t come through in the same attention-getting way that fear and upset do.
Can I turn off my antenna? Not really. I can thicken my shields. I can mute it enough that the signal is quieter. With people who no longer matter, I can mute them to a point where I cannot feel them, except maybe on really upsetting occasions when they’re broadcasting on all channels. That rarely happens with people who don’t matter to me, though.
Strangers do show up in the net, usually if I’m in close proximity or if they try to invade my energy. In the case of psychic spies, it feels like someone trying to tear open my net to see inside, and my own energy–if the net is left open–drains out. I can usually sew up the net quickly and shut them out, but better to electrify it instead.
The net is both a blessing and a curse, as much as the sense of touch is a blessing and a curse. The light pressure of a kiss between the eyes is sweet. A burn on the hand or a cut on the foot? Pain. The more frequently I notice the net, the more sensitive it becomes. It’s far easier for me to keep people out who are trying to invade my energy than it is to keep out signals that are broadcast on a strong frequency.
One last thing, my own dirty little secret: we empaths broadcast, too. We not only are receivers to pick up the signals of others, but we broadcast our own energy and emotions, too. There are places where I try to hide that, particularly in the work arena, but for the most part, I wear my emotions on my sleeve. If someone’s in my heart, they know. No doubts. No questions. If I’m happy, which I generally am, it’s known. When I’m upset, it’s known. It’s only when I have my shields up that people can’t read me and I’ll be angry or hurt and no one has any idea because they see me as just as firm and strong in my identity as just the same. It’s not obvious that I’m angry, so I’ll have to SAY that I’m angry before they realize it, and then they don’t see it because I’ve shielded it that well. I don’t like living with shields up, especially with people I love, but sometimes, especially in the work world or with close family, I don’t feel I have a satisfactory choice. My shields can keep out signals from others…or they can hold my own signals inside my dome.