“I…. Am…. A Man!”

Joseph Carey Merrick, a.k.a. “The Elephant Man”.

On August 5,1862, Joseph Carey Merrick (who was often incorrectly referred to as John Merrick) was born in Leicester, England. His parents were Joseph Rockley Merrick and Mary Jane Merrick. During his early years in life, Joseph Carey began to suffer from extreme facial and body deformities. He appeared to have thick and lumpy skin. His lips became rather enlarged, and a bony lump started to grow on his forehead. One arm and both feet also grew to be enlarged and during his childhood he had fallen, damaging his left hip which caused him permanent lameness.

At the age of only eleven years old, Joseph Carey’s mother passed away. The cause of her death was bronchopneumonia. His father remarried not long after. Wrongly, he and his new wife rejected Joseph, treating him like an outcast. Joseph Carey was forced to leave home, finding shelter at the residence of his uncle, Charles Merrick.

At thirteen years old, Joseph gained employment working at Freeman’s Cigar Factory in Leicester. And then, in December 1879, at seventeen years of age, he joined the Leicester Union Workhouse. A few years later in 1884, Joseph got in contact with Sam Torr who was a showman. Joseph suggested that Sam should put Joseph up as an exhibit because of his unusual deformities.

Torr agreed on the proposition and along with a group of men who managed Joseph, they came up with Joseph’s exhibit’s name of “The Elephant Man”. After touring for some time, Joseph made a trip to London to be put on exhibit in a penny gaff located on Whitechapel Road which was rented by Tom Norman who was also a showman. Norman’s shop was located right across the street from the London Hospital.

Frederick Treves, who was a surgeon from the hospital, visited Norman’s shop. Dr. Treves automatically showed interest in Joseph Carey Merrick. The doctor invited Joseph to the hospital to be examined and photographed. This made Joseph feel uncomfortable, like an animal, and he refused to return to the London Hospital. This angered Dr. Treves and oddly enough, Norman’s shop was closed by local authorities. Upset by it all, Joseph decided to seek another opportunity elsewhere and joined a gentleman by the name of Sam Roper who owned a traveling circus that toured throughout Europe.

As time went on, Joseph was unfortunately robbed in Belgium, abandoned in Brussels, and finally made his way back to the London Hospital. Dr. Treves allowed Joseph to stay the remainder of his life at the hospital, free room and board. With daily visits from Dr. Treves, the two men quickly formed a remarkable friendship. Even the wealthy elite, including Alexandra, Princess of Wales visited Joseph.

And then, on April 11, 1890, Joseph Carey Merrick sadly died at the age of twenty-seven years old of asphyxia which is a condition where the body is seriously deprived of oxygen. It was believed that he was awake, attempting to get up from his bed just prior to his death. He was found stretched across his bed with a dislocated neck. Perhaps the weight of his head was too much for his neck to support. His skeletal remains can be found on display in the Royal London Hospital, which is a large educational facility in London, England.

It’s said that one of Joseph Carey Merrick’s favorite poems was:

“Tis true my form is something odd,                                                                               but blaming me is blaming God.                                                                                Could I create myself anew,                                                                                               I would not fail in pleasing you.

If I could reach from pole to pole                                                                                      or grasp the ocean with a span,                                                                                         I would be measured by the soul.                                                                                 The mind’s the standard of the man.”

 

 

“I am not an animal! I am a human being! I … am … a man!” ~ Joseph Carey Merrick, a.k.a. “The Elephant Man”.

 

 

 

 

Get a copy of my novel, The Spirit Within on Amazon!

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Twitter: @sheilarparker.

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Facebook: Sheila Renee Parker – Author

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Instagram: @sheilareneeparker

~ Art by Sheila Renee Parker available at: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sheilarenee-parker.html

~ Sheila Renee Parker on YouTube: Sheila Renee Parker

 

 

 

 

Here is the artwork that I created in honor of Joseph Carey Merrick simply titled, “The Elephant Man”. Prints, pillows, blankets and even stationary…. available only at Fine Art America!

(“The Elephant Man” ~ by Sheila Renee Parker. Prints, tote bags, coffee mugs and so much more available only at https://fineartamerica.com/featured/the-elephant-man-sheila-renee-parker.html!)

 

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Can’t Stop The Feeling!

It was one morning a little over a month ago, I was in my car on my way to work when all of a sudden, out of nowhere, the image of fluorite stone randomly popped into my head. As I was nearing the stop sign of the intersection, I was like, “wha??”. Thought it was odd because I wasn’t even thinking anything remotely to the subject of healing stones. But of course, being the person that I am, I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I openly took it as a sign from the Universe. So, when I got to work and had a free moment, I began researching fluorite and its meaning.

And that was when it hit me! Upon my research I discovered this…. “Fluorite is a highly protective and stabilizing stone, useful for grounding and harmonizing spiritual energy. When working with the upper Chakras, Fluorite increases intuitive abilities, links the human mind to universal consciousness, and develops connection to Spirit.”https://www.healingcrystals.com/Fluorite_Articles_107.html

“Fluorite crystals cleanse your mind, body and spirit. On a psychic level, they are very protective stones, protecting you from outside influences and drawing off negative energy.  They balance both sides of your brain to bring mental clarity and rid your mind of any mental or creative blocks. They also cleanse and stabilize your aura, cleansing, purifying and dispelling anything within your body or energy field that is not in perfect order. Fluorite crystals are said to rid your aura of any cording—meaning any unwanted energy lines from other people.”  ~ https://www.energymuse.com/blog/placing-fluorite-crystal-home/

It literally gave me goosebumps! Why? Because on so many levels I’ve been going through a major lifestyle change. I’m eating healthier, exercising daily, creating a much more positive atmosphere, I’m being more open to my abilities and expressing them to others in hope to help people embrace their special gifts. I mean, so many wonderful things are happening and I have never felt so at peace before in my life!

So, by the image of the beautiful fluorite stone coming to me, I had to tell my husband about it! We then decided to order some fluorite beads to make our own necklaces. I made myself a sweet little choker, one so that I could easily layer it with other necklaces if I wanted. For my husband, I made him nearly an 18 inch necklace.

I’ve been wearing my choker every day now for several days and I cannot express the mental clarity it’s given me. I honestly believe in the benefits of fluorite! It’s even helped me “see” things better psychically. I feel like it’s helped me open my third eye all the more.

I also like layering it with my necklace adorned with a moldavite pendant. Moldavite is excellent for…. “Connectivity, Moldavite carries an intense frequency, a fusion of earthly and extraterrestrial energies that are quickly felt, often dramatically in those who resonate with its power. Holding Moldavite for the first time often produces a sensation of heat, felt first in the hand, then progressively throughout the body. In some cases the heart chakra is activated, experienced as a pounding pulse, followed by sweating or flushing of the face, and an emotional release that may range from laughter to tears. Moldavite’s frequency may take some getting used to, but its profound ability to accelerate one’s personal and spiritual evolution makes it highly sought after in the metaphysical world, both for its life-altering capabilities and as a catalyst for drawing in Light to aid in Earth’s healing.” ~ [Simmons, 262][Simmons/Warner, 30-32][Hall, 187]

“Moldavite is a powerful aid for meditation and dream-work, as well as increasing one’s sensitivity to guidance, intuition and telepathy, and the ability to understand messages sent from higher realms.”[Simmons, 262-263][Megemont, 126]

Together, or wearing separately, the fluorite and the moldavite stones create such an amazing sense of well-being! Some people may say that it’s simply the placebo effect induced by reading materials, but I would dispute that because I know what I feel and I cannot deny that. Things that would have bothered me in the past, now have no affect on me at all. I just let them “roll off my back”. My mental clarity has greatly improved and the beautiful, warm energy that I feel surrounding me, the Universal connection… beyond words! It’s all so inspiring!!

Life is a blessing, live it to the fullest!

Love & Light, my friends! ~ Sheila

 

 

 

 

Get a copy of my novel, The Spirit Within on Amazon!

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Twitter: @sheilarparker.

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Facebook: Sheila Renee Parker – Author

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Instagram: @sheilareneeparker

~ Art by Sheila Renee Parker available at: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sheilarenee-parker.html

~ Sheila Renee Parker on YouTube: Sheila Renee Parker

 

 

 

 

My fluorite choker layered with my moldavite pendant.

 

 

TGI…. the Weekend!

Happy Saturday, one and all! Have a fab weekend and as always…. Be blessed! 💋

Life Is Beautiful ….. So, Keep Shining! You are definitely loved!!!!

 

 

 

 

Get a copy of my novel, The Spirit Within on Amazon!

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Twitter: @sheilarparker.

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Facebook: Sheila Renee Parker – Author

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Instagram: @sheilareneeparker

~ Art by Sheila Renee Parker available at: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sheilarenee-parker.html

~ Sheila Renee Parker on YouTube: Sheila Renee Parker

 

 

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“The Haunted Swamp”

Ahhhh…. The Haunted Swamp. Nefarious place or a peaceful location? I guess that’s up to the individual and their experience.

Recently, my husband and I checked out a place called Bear Creek Swamp located in Prattville, Alabama. It was nearly a three hour drive that we took early in the morning to attend our son’s football game that was scheduled to occur later that night. The reason why we left so early was because my husband and I had already researched the city of Prattville, which was founded by industrialist and architect, Daniel Pratt in 1839. We love historical places so we took the opportunity to look around!

Upon our research, we looked for areas known for paranormal activity. That’s when my husband stumbled across some online articles about Bear Creek Swamp, also referred to as “The Haunted Swamp”. What he shared with me were some pretty interesting things. We read about ghostly sightings of Confederate soldiers, Creek Indians, early settlers, and even an apparition of a woman desperately in search of her lost child that will lash out at anyone who repeats three times, “We have your baby!”

People have even made reports of seeing floating orbs and phantom car lights that chased them down the road, that’s if their vehicles didn’t stall without plausible explanation. Yep, some say that their cars have actually “died” and wouldn’t start back up while encountering the freakishly paranormal activity of The Haunted Swamp.

Also, sightings of none other…. the big, hairy beast himself, Bigfoot! His echoing howls have been heard by various people claiming the validity of this creature. Oh, and we dare not leave out the elusive, legendary Chupacabra whose sightings have been reported as well.

And as if all that wasn’t enough to make one want to become a nail biter, there’s the Creepy Doll Graveyard where 21 porcelain dolls were found on top of bamboo stakes back in November, 2014. Who or what was behind this macabre creation? Who knows? The origin of such a morbid finding has never been discovered, or revealed.

Now, in finding Bear Creek Swamp, it seemed like it took my husband and me forever before we finally found it. Of course, we used our GPS and it sent us to a bridge that crossed over Bear Creek on Alabama State Route 14. We knew that wasn’t the exact location mentioned in the articles. Keep in mind, we weren’t able to find any road signs about Bear Creek Swamp, but did that stop us from our search? No way! We were determined to see what all the hype was about with The Haunted Swamp!

We traveled down a couple of paved roads that were near the bridge, but quickly knew that we were still in the wrong spots. My husband and I were just about to give up when we passed a dirt, gravelly looking road. He said,  “Hmmm…. wonder if that was the road?” Getting tired of driving around I asked him, “Wanna go back to see?” He was like, “No, uh huh… let’s just keep going.” But when he said that, I could tell that he really did want to go back to see if that old road was the correct one. “What would you do if you were me?” I asked him. “Go back.” He said without any hesitation.

That’s when I found the nearest place to turn our car around. I’m glad we did because once we turned down the old road, we were in awe of our surroundings! We weren’t even a mile away from Alabama State Route 14 when we noticed the swamp that was on both sides of the road. It was lush and green with a beautiful serenity about it! It was a road that appeared not traveled much and had very few residences on it. The entire time we were on the road, not once did we encounter another vehicle. It was absolutely quiet there. The only sound we heard was from a small, man-made drainage culvert. Trees were all over the place, moss was abound and I couldn’t resist taking some of the beautiful moss home. (The next day I put the moss into a crystal bowl and added some tiny, white wire lights to create a stunning coffee table centerpiece. One word…. “Gorgeous!”).

While going down the road we did stop and get out of our car a couple of times. Did we experience anything ghostly or otherworldly? Did we see our beloved Bigfoot and/or  Chupacabra? Nope! Didn’t see anything, hear anything, nor smell anything of the sort. (Smell? Why would I say that?? Because Bigfoot has always been known to have a foul odor about him. Poor guy…. you’d think that with all the water around there that he would take a bath every once in a while. 😉 )

Everything that we researched basically had supernatural activity at night. We didn’t stay there until nightfall because the main reason why we were in Prattville was to attend our son’s football game, which was far more important to us. So, that’s why we visited Bear Creek Swamp during the day.

What we did experience at The Haunted Swamp was tranquility and beauty. It was like stepping back into another time as we made our way down the unpaved road. No sounds of the hustle and bustle of a nearby city, no streetlights and buildings. Only vibrant green scenery and tall trees surrounded us. The occasional breeze that blew off the water was cool to our skin, taking away the humid, August day’s heat.

I was raised as a country girl, so I found myself extremely comfortable there. It made me reminisce the times when I was growing up on the old road that I did with my best friend. Together, she and I were always finding our way down hidden trails that passersby often forgot about.

My husband found himself reminiscing as well. He loved the place, too. We will happily go back at the next given chance!

 

 

 

 

Get a copy of my novel, The Spirit Within on Amazon!

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Twitter: @sheilarparker.

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Facebook: Sheila Renee Parker – Author

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Instagram: @sheilareneeparker

~ Art by Sheila Renee Parker available at: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sheilarenee-parker.html

~ Sheila Renee Parker on YouTube: Sheila Renee Parker

 

 

 

My artwork titled, “The Haunted Swamp”.

The Haunted Forest 3

(“The Haunted Swamp” ~ Digital artwork by Sheila Renee Parker. Prints available at Fine Art America!)

 

 

(The coffee table centerpiece that I created using the moss from “The Haunted Swamp”.)

 

 

Feeling Blessed!

Happy Friday!! It is a fabulous day, indeed! Just got back from my morning jog and I am feeling extremely pumped, ready to get the day going with lots of motivation flowing through my veins!

 

Want to remind you all how amazing you are and that you are true inspirations who definitely rock!! Thank you for all your positive energy that helps make each day blessed! 💕

 

~ Massive Love & Light….. Sheila 💋

 

 

 

Took this photo while on my morning jog…. Look at that gorgeous sunrise!! 🌞

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Spirits Are Everywhere!

Yep, that’s right! I firmly believe that.

Ever get a feeling that you’re being watched? It doesn’t necessarily have to be a bad or terrifying feeling, just one when you know that you’re alone, but still…. you look over your shoulder because you swear that someone is there watching you? We all get that feeling. I know that I do, my whole life. And no, I am not crazy. lol.  But I’ve always felt the presences of things. Ghosts, spirits, entities… whatever you want to call them, they are there. It’s not paranoia either. Trust me, I’m not paranoid about anything.

Ever since I can remember I’ve seen shadow people, been touched by spirits, heard and witnessed things, been visited by deceased loved ones in dreams, smelled odors and fragrances without any plausible explanation…. and so on, and so forth…. (not to mention how my “Angel Radio” is always on, but that’s another topic totally not related to ghosts, etc. My ability of angelic communication is on a different level all together for me.)

When I was a teenager, the house I lived in, I swear the presence of my deceased grandmother was felt on several occasions, and not just by me, but by others as well. Did that mean that our house was haunted? Definitely not! I never considered that, not for even a single moment.

A few years ago my husband and I, along with our younger son, lived in an apartment. My husband told me that he once saw a purple orb-like light there in one of the rooms. While living there I actually felt light touches, like a small child’s hand softly press against my arm. Did that mean that we feared that our apartment was haunted? No way!

And nearly four years ago we began the search to buy a home. Here’s the uncanny part…. my husband and I both looked at a listing of different homes, separately without looking at them together. We did this because we wanted to see if we were drawn to the same place without the influence of the other while looking. After we both made our choice, we showed each other which house we liked. Wanna know what? We both were drawn to the same exact house! The house was nearly twenty years old, had previous residents who obviously didn’t take proper care of the house and needed desperate painting in all the rooms throughout the brick home. It sat on almost a whole acre of land with lots of trees around it.

We decided to call our friend who’s a realtor so we could go look at the property located on the edge of town. As soon as we neared the address, right before pulling into the driveway, we started getting this intense feeling. It’s kind of hard to explain, but it was one where we literally felt like we were home, like it was speaking to us. I know that sounds insane, but it’s the truth. My husband and I felt so drawn to this house that we knew that we had to get it no matter what. It was a HUD home and a complete ass pain to get regardless of the fact that we were approved for the home’s mortgage. (Advice: if you are interested in purchasing a foreclosed home, be prepared to go through lots of red tape, just sayin’.) 

Anyway, four months later we finally got the keys to our home and immediately started on the renovating. One day while my son and I were gone to school and work, my husband decided to take the day off so he could do some painting on the inside. When I got home he told me that he could feel a presence watching him from a corner in one of the rooms he was in. I then told him that I felt a presence there as well, an older female one. Also, I heard a male’s voice quietly say “Hey”  in my right ear when I was all by myself on the other side of the house. And since then, we continue to feel their presences, but nothing malevolent. We believe they’re simply observing us. Why? Who knows. Maybe because they’re curious… perhaps bored…. but whatever the reason is… we coexist. My husband and I respect the spirits.

Recently, my husband bought some paranormal investigative equipment so we can start conducting our own paranormal investigations. (Ever since we got back from visiting The Bellaire House, my husband has been pumped about wanting to start investigating the paranormal even more, which has me even more excited as well!!) So with that being said, with the new equipment, he and I decided to attempt communication with the spirits that we have felt in our home. We were given the names of Isabella and Bryce. Isabella is the presence of the older lady that we felt. She feels warm and caring and Bryce seems like “he’s just hanging out”. Nothing bad at all.

What equipment did we use while communicating with our spirits? A Spirit Box SB 11, 2 KII EMF Meters and a flashlight (for flashlight responses, which is actually my favorite technique, as simple as it is.)

Do we think our home is haunted? No, we don’t! Again, nothing malevolent has ever happened in our home. And as far as the spirits go, no one has ever died in the house. So, where did the spirits come from? Excellent question! But my point is this, for as long as the beautiful Earth has existed, and for as many people who have died since the beginning of time….. not all of them have crossed over to the “Great Beyond”. So, where are their spirits? I believe here…. all around us. Meaning that spirits are everywhere!!

Keep in mind, I am an empath. I would have very easily picked up on negative entities if any lurked around our home. I believe in using sage to help keep the property cleansed and I practice white magic. Also, I call upon my guides and angels for white light protection because I am extremely protective of my family. Like I always say, positive vibes only!

Protect. Project. & Promote all that is good and good will always come back to you!

 

 

 

 

Get a copy of my novel, The Spirit Within on Amazon!

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Twitter: @sheilarparker.

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Facebook: Sheila Renee Parker – Author

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Instagram: @sheilareneeparker

~ Art by Sheila Renee Parker available at: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sheilarenee-parker.html

~ Sheila Renee Parker on YouTube: Sheila Renee Parker

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Light Will Always Prevail”

Even when it’s cloudy the sun continues to shine.

Clouds cover the sky on a humid summer day, passing by with their random forms and patterns. And yet, beaming high above, the sun radiates its rays for all to see. Just witnessing this was so awe inspiring to me. Why? Because I saw it as a beautiful reminder that regardless of what we go through in life, light will always prevail.

Writing about and researching the paranormal, there’s always talk about the darkness and shadows. But what we have to remember is that regardless of how dim things may get, they cannot exist without the Light. There is a magnificent balance between the two. As I always say, “I love the Light as much as I love the Dark. It’s such a beautiful balance.” And I sincerely mean that.

We all go through our moments, good and bad. It’s up to us on how we perceive things. Remember, a positive mindset can do a world of wonders.

I’ve often been asked, “Sheila, how are you always so positive?” Well, the truth is… I’m not. I have my moments just like anyone else does. For example: when something happens and it absolutely irks me, I’ll be like “OMG, seriously?!?!” And trust me, I’ll say a couple of “choice words” about it, but then I have to remind myself to just let it go. Whatever it is, does not have power over me. I have power over me. I am in control of my life and whatever happens, whether it’s good or bad, is because it is meant to happen. I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. We are never given more than what we can handle. But again, it is based on our perception on how we see things. Do we accept things as a lesson that will help us to grow and become stronger, better individuals or will we let things drag us down and consume us? We can either accept things constructively or destructively, the choice is ours. If we choose constructively, then we can embrace the experience as a lesson that will teach us to be wiser with a more positive outlook. However, if we choose destructively, we do so with a negative mindset, therefore becoming cold and bitter towards the situation. Subsequently, allowing the latter to control us. I repeat, the choice is ours. Constructively or destructively. Positive or negative. A positive life brings forth strength and happiness while a negative life results in weakness and misery.

When I was younger, I was actually more negative than positive. I would often look at things with a scowled look on my face, angry and wrapped up in my own little world. I would let things control me and still question, “why?”. And then one day I woke up. A co-worker once told me that no matter how some people may try to bring us down, we should always smile at them. I questioned her reasoning and she replied, “Because if you let them get the best of you, then they win. And if you do that, you let that person have power over you. But, by smiling at them, regardless of how hard they try to be rude, you let that individual know that they can’t control you.”

It may sound like simple advice, but I have carried that with me for twenty years and the older I get, the more it makes sense. I guess with age comes wisdom? Whatever it is, it continues to resonate with me and I find myself sharing my former co-worker’s advice quite often. (If you’re wondering what I used to do, I worked for a law firm serving subpoenas for a living and would often get a lot of attitude from people when I served them. Even though it wasn’t my fault why they were being subpoenaed to court, I was the middle person and the one who they hated. I must admit, the job did help me develop a tough skin, though.)

Keep in mind when you encounter someone who’s having a bad day, remember this….. don’t take it personally. And if you can, help them have a better day. Even if you just give them a smile. You may not think they deserve it, but I promise you, the simple gesture of a smile can brighten someone’s day more than you know. It can literally speak volumes. Pay it forward! Also by doing so, you continue to help yourself grow by incorporating a positive life into your daily routine. Your positive light can be the seed that manifests brightness into the world. How amazing is that, right?! You are a beautiful beacon of radiance! You glow and so does your magical smile! 🙂

Keep shining, my most awesome friends!

~ Love & Light, Sheila

 

 

 

 

Get a copy of my novel, The Spirit Within on Amazon!

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Twitter: @sheilarparker.

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Facebook: Sheila Renee Parker – Author

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Instagram: @sheilareneeparker

~ Art by Sheila Renee Parker available at: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sheilarenee-parker.html

 

 

 

 

(Here is the photo that I took of the sky that inspired me to write this article. ~Sheila Renee Parker)