Hello! I am Reiki Master and Teacher, Taya Gray. I have been given the wonderful opportunity to do a podcast. It’s funny how it literally came to me out of the blue! Someone somewhere thought it would be interesting to pick the brains of Reiki masters and teachers and I was selected from an international directory! It was such a good experience that I was offered a 16-episode podcast show where I get to talk about all things Reiki! The following was my initial interview:
What is your healing practice?
I am a certified Reiki Master and Teacher in the Usui method of Reiki. The name of my healing practice is Roots Reiki.
Where is your practice located?
My practice is located in Anacortes, Washington State on Fidalgo Island in the San Juan Islands. It is a magical and inspiring place to live.
Do you have a website?
Yes! My website is: rootsreikihealing.com. You will find all sorts of information on Reiki as well as the services I offer and my philosophies as a healing practitioner. I am available for messaging either through my website or directly via my email: email@example.com
In addition to being a healer, are you a mother as well?
I am a mother! I have 3 sons. My firstborns are twins: Kipper and Jacob. They will be 25 this August and they couldn’t be more different! Kipper graduated from Belmont University and is producing music down in Nashville. Jacob started working at Starbucks in high school and is now a supervisor at our local Starbucks. He loves it! My third son, Gus, is 17. He will be a senior in high school next year at our wonderful new high school in Anacortes!
I started home-schooling my twins when they were old enough to sit still and be read to. Kipper and Jacob benefitted from home school and were able to start taking college courses at a local college when they turned 16. Gus, on the other hand, needed a team of teachers and a group of buddies to reach his full potential. He joined the Anacortes School District in 8th grade. His teachers were so impressed by his thriving and resilience that they asked him to speak at a teachers’ conference that year. He did great! All three of my sons are wonderful humans. I am grateful to be their mama.
Talk about your family’s struggle with cancer
In 2019, my son, Jacob, was diagnosed with Leukemia. It was a tremendously frightening and exhausting time for our family. After his first round of chemotherapy, he got an infection from some developing mouth sores. Since his immune system had been compromised by the chemotherapy drugs, that small infection moved throughout his whole body and turned into sepsis. We spent 10 days in the ICU with him on full life support. Our doctor had warned me that Jacob might not recover from being as sick as he was. For hours each day I would pace the small hospital room and read to him from the Harry Potter books that he had loved as a child. Fortunately he was able to recover, and to finish that initial 6 months of intensive chemotherapy and achieve remission!
However, leukemia, being a brutal blood cancer, still required 2 more years of treatments in the protocol for healing. And then, unfortunately, after Jacob’s remission, I was diagnosed with invasive breast cancer. The following year of surgeries, chemotherapy, and radiation was difficult, to say the least.
Throughout that period of intensive treatments, though, I felt like a door opened up in me. I felt connected to the legacies of many people, alive today and down throughout history. People who had gone before me in sickness and healing and had chosen to become healers themselves. It was during this time that I finished up my Master Level Reiki studies and was certified as a Reiki Master/Teacher. The timing was perfect to learn about the effects of Reiki on a sick body – my own. It was a rare and fortuitous gift to be able to practice all that I was learning on my own body and mind. Because of that, I was able to experience the healing effects not only as a client, but as a healer as well.
What types of services do you offer?
Roots Reiki is my practice within the field of the Healing Arts. I work with Reiki Energy to bring physical, spiritual, and emotional health and wellness to my human and animal clients. This work can be done remotely as well as in person. I am also available to cleanse land, homes, and places of business. Using Reiki, I initiate a process of restoration and balance. This can create a peaceful environment that feels good to the people and animals that spend time there.
Have you always wanted to be a healer?
When I was young, I was very sensitive to the energies around me – people, animals, the weather, nature. It was a very isolating and overwhelming way to grow up. I was tremendously introverted. My first Reiki class helped me to finally make some sense of the energy around me. I was relieved to learn how to work in agreement with it instead of being overwhelmed all the time.
My Reiki classes were mountaintop experiences for me! The years of frustration and confusion began to come into focus for me. I was able to understand myself in a new way. A very gentle and intuitive energy, Reiki was a very natural place for me to interact with the energies I experienced around me. I was soon able to feel it crackling on my fingers and moving through my hands. It was amazing to feel the energy move through the top of my head and through my feet into the Earth. The experience was a powerful “coming home” for me.
What obstacles have you had to overcome?
It has taken me most of my life to understand who I am. Since I was a very sensitive child, I was isolated and overwhelmed most of the time. I grew up assuming that there was something wrong with me. That caused me to make a number of unhealthy choices that served to reinforce that dynamic in my life. Eventually, I reached a place of such deep unhappiness and desperation that I had to make some big changes.
I left a marriage that had been causing me deep unhappiness for nearly 20 years. Packing up my kids, I left my job and my house behind me. We moved back home to my family in WA state and started over. It was a lifesaver for me to have people in my life who believed in me. It truly helped me to believe in myself. Each of us has a soul which holds light and love. And yet this world we live in can be so hard on souls. I was lucky to have people that loved me and helped remind me who I was.
What advice would you give to others following their own dreams?
“It always seems impossible until it’s done.” Nelson Mandela
Dreams are the pure and magical parts of us that hold the truth of who we are and what we are meant to do in this world. When we have a dream, it is a deep voice within us, helping us to navigate our way. And our “way” is fraught with all manner of challenges, expected and unexpected. It is hard. Sometimes so hard it seems impossible. And yet, every moment, we have what we need. When we are brave, we can put one foot in front of the other, over and over again. This is how we find our way to a path that unfolds before us. On this path, our dreams are able to manifest into reality. Being a Reiki Master and Teacher is truly a dream come true for me!