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Something Beautiful

I live on the South Side of Chicago, an area that most outsiders think of as ugly and violent. Although I know there are many challenges here I also see the beauty and resilience. I believe that it’s important to remember the good as we work to heal the wounds in our community.

Teenage pregnancy, domestic violence and rigid gender expectations are big challenges in my community and there are few mental or emotional health resources available to help women and children deal with these issues. This lack of mental health support is what motivated me to leave my career as a classroom teacher two years ago to open a private practice that integrates counseling with reiki energy healing.

My private healing sessions with women involve a lot of grief work. Because I have done so much of own grieving and healing, and continue to do so, I can provide a healing “container” for women to go within to those places that hold the most shame, despair and anger. I then guide them to begin to release some of these emotional burdens. They can then feel more peace and clarity and become more empowered in their lives.

I also work at a homeless shelter for women and their children. I guide the women through yoga and meditation to help them connect with their inner resources when so much of their lives are in crisis. The fact that I am not seen as an outsider, that I have experienced so many of their wounds, that, for example, at one time in my life I lived at a shelter with my own children, gives me credibility among the women with whom I work.

Experiencing Pulse Wire has helped me to see how an online community can be a healing community. And it has helped me envision creating an online space where women from the inner city of Chicago can submit their stories just like we do on Pulse Wire. Going through this VOF process has helped me understand the healing that happens from writing your story, and reading other women’s stories, In seeing the strength of others you start to see your own.

This online space I would like to create can also act as a bridge between these communities and more affluent ones in Chicago. There is a thriving yoga and alternative healing presence here but because this city is so segregated there is very little interaction between them and areas where such services are sorely needed.

As I said earlier, there is a lot of strength and resilience in my community, particularly in the women. But mostly the media shows stories of crime and violence. It is easy to forget that along with the pain there is so much goodness here. So I envision this online site will be a space that highlights not only the challenges but the everyday miracles of our community it will help remind us, and outsiders of the beauty that is here.


Stella Paul's picture

Thanks for the reminder

Dear Lisa

Yes, its a shared sickness of all mainstream media: see the evil, spot the evil and ignore the good. Sometimes its not at all about removing the evil, but maligning the ones you hold a grudge against.
I am happy you are here, among all of us to share the stories of goodness. Through us all, these messages and stories will spread far and wide. Keep healing!

Stella Paul
Twitter: @stellasglobe

soulhavenlisa's picture


Thanks Stella for your comments and encouragement. Yes we are all spreading the light. Much love and many blessings!

Monica Clarke's picture

Hello Lisa, wise Lisa

Your insights are deep and have touched me. I particularly like your vision of sharing miracles around! There is so much pain, so much suffering, it overwhelms one and can lead to debilitation instead of action. Yes, shouting out about our strengths and achievements is equally important!

All my blessings to you in the healing work you are doing. Mother Earth returns your radiant smile to you.

With lots of loving from Monica in France

Monica Clarke, Writer & Storyteller, bringing human rights alive.
I wish you 'Nangamso', that is: May you continue to do the good work which you do so well.
(A blessing from my ancestors, the Khoikhoi, the first people of South Africa).

soulhavenlisa's picture

Thank you

Dear Monica,
Thank you for your beautiful comment and for sharing the blessing from your ancestors. You have such a lovely mother energy about you. Thanks for your light.


RocioG's picture

Reiki sister

Interesting how reiki could be an inspiration for this web site. I practice reiki as well, and never thought I could use as a devlopment tool. or web sites either and here we are sharing all. light writing Lisa, I did enjoy reading you!

soulhavenlisa's picture


Thanks Rocio. So cool to connect with a fellow reiki healer. I am more amazed each day at how gentle and powerful reiki can be in healing trauma and helping women re-connect with their truth. Thanks for reaching out and connecting. Sending you many blessings!

Love and light,

Ibtissam22's picture

You are a brave woman

Your story has really touched me. You have done a great job. I totally agree with you when you say that healing happens when you read others stories and when you share yours. A lot of times it happened to me to feel down but when I read stories of other women, when I see how they have worked hard to help others I really feel better and your story is one of these stories.

I am always proud of women like you.

All the best


soulhavenlisa's picture

Thank you

Thank you Ibtissam. It really touches me to hear that my writing can inspire healing. Your comment was very much welcomed. Much love to you,

Alicia_Marie's picture

Your ability to envision

Hi Lisa,

I really enjoyed reading your story. In particular, that you can go from a place where you are helping children learn, and then realizing there are other identity groups that you can help so much with your own life experience. Have you ever thought about writing an autoethnography? Not only have you lived the experiences, which makes you such a valuable resource to these women and families, but you help them work through their own traumas, and find inner peace. You are doing such wonderful things, and I look forward to hearing more about your work.


soulhavenlisa's picture

Thank you

Thank you Alicia. What a great idea about an autoethnography. I'm intrigued. I will have to look more into that. Thank you for reaching out and connecting.

Many blessings,

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