My Healing Walk
with Reiki and Anxiety
b y Kathy Milanowski
In 1993, because of an abusive marriage, I was diag-
nosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). I
suffered daily with anxiety so intense that I was bor-
derline agoraphobic. The physical, mental, and spiritual
abuse I suffered had left me in victim mode. I felt that I
had no voice. I was afraid to leave the safety of my home.
Medications intended to relieve the anxiety I could never
escape put me in a fog. I knew there just had to be tools
available to help me that didn’t leave me wandering in
In my search for healing, I came to realize that I had
been developing a relationship with anxiety for over 25
years. I felt that over that length of time, the relationship
had evolved well beyond the root source cause. I was also
well aware that after 25 years, healing would be a long
stand the content better and pass the tests. It only makes
sense that the Universe would guide me to an experiential
learning method for my healing.
Establishing Faith in Myself
My first connection with Reiki, a harmonizing frequen-
cy that is channeled by one person to another as an ener-
getic form of healing, was in 2013. As part of my journey
to relieve my anxiety, I tried a Reiki healing session. It was
such a positive experience that two weeks later, I took a
Reiki class to learn more!
In that very first Reiki class, I received a Reiki attune-
ment, which the instructor gave to provide the students
in the class with the connection to the Reiki energy. After
receiving my Reiki attunement, I felt guided by the energy
Since childhood, I’ve always been driven by my heart to reach out to others. Some call it being an empath. I believe we all hold these unique attributes, and some are just more open than others. That’s why I believe wholeheartedly that anyone can learn Reiki.
process. For me to connect with myself more deeply and
to begin my process of better health, I wanted to under-
stand the underlying energetic patterns with my anxiety.
I knew I needed to understand my unique version of anx-
iety to let go of long-standing patterns that were holding
I have understood energetic patterns since I was very
young. Reading is a challenge for me because of a learning
disability, so I have always learned best by tuning into in-
formation on an energetic level. I can feel and see energetic
patterns, and this helps me to understand what I am trying
to learn. I remember sitting right in front of the instructor
in my college organic chemistry class so I could be present
and focused on his energy as he taught—literally perceiving
the energy of his words! Just being present and focused on
the information and his delivery of it helped me to under-
to teach Reiki. My first thought was, “Who? Me? But I’m
agoraphobic!” Despite my doubts, I somehow knew that
Reiki would shower its light over me and support me with
everything I needed to be successful. What surprised me
was recognizing that I had decided to move forward despite
the doubts and truly believed that I would have the courage
and strength to begin this journey.
In my classes, I learned through Reiki that each per-
son’s energetic field is a beautiful array of layers that
perceives many things. Remembering that we are all con-
nected and that everything comes from the same creative
force, the energetic field around each person is a filter for
energy, information, and emotions that arise weekly, dai-
ly, and hourly. As we receive information, we each ap-
ply our perspective to the information, which may cause
many individual responses or emotions. Different people
may react differently to the same piece of information
based on their attitude and life experiences. They may
then hold that emotion in their energetic field based on
their reaction to it. All of that information and the at-
tached emotions can sometimes clog our filter! If a large
amount of powerful emotional energy stays in a partic-
ular area, noticeable symptoms may manifest. Reiki can
harmonize and synchronize those energies, so the infor-
mation processes more gently. If we are open to receiving
that information, Reiki has many lessons for us.
My first lesson was to find my faith in myself. After that
initial Reiki workshop, I applied what I had learned. I no-
ticed the many healing experiences and opportunities for
personal growth presented themselves to me. I decided to
put my “warrior” hat on and dove into them with all my
faith. Through these experiences, I transformed into my
true self. Once I recognized and understood the shifts hap-
pening in my life, I became more positive. I gained a better
understanding of myself and found my voice! Best of all,
I realized I was a great communicator. As I embraced the
gentle results in my life and developed a more positive out-
look, I found not only faith in myself but also faith in my
ability to understand and manage those things in the world
around me I could not control.
Forgiveness Led to Greater Trust
The Reiki energy assigned the next lesson in my heal-
ing journey. It told me, Forgive yourself, and you will develop a
deeper trust within. This guidance caused me great confusion
because I already knew that my faith in myself had grown
stronger. Then I realized that in my past abusive relation-
ship, I was a victim. Now I needed to forgive myself for ac-
cepting that victim role. By just understanding and acknowl-
edging that I was no longer that victimized person, my light
shone brighter. A result of my self-forgiveness was the ability
to decide more confidently, and this felt wonderful!
Developing this deep trust within, I realized how beau-
tiful we all truly are, and I felt empowered to offer sacred
space for others on their healing journeys. This awareness
brought great joy to my heart. Realizing I could share this
faith, this trust, this healing with others in our world, made
a significant impact on my life. I wondered if this could
be what a person feels when they align with their destiny.
This feeling was a fantastic thought for someone who once
thought they had no voice!
Less than a year had passed since my first connection
with the Reiki source, yet I knew, without a doubt, that I
would teach Reiki. With each prayer to the heavens, the
Reiki source amplified my knowing. I continued to work
on my healing, but no matter the focus at the time, I saw
the patterns of my harmonious walk. It was like a domino
effect—depression left as joy filled my life, and I slowly lost
my attachment to the old patterns that no longer served
me. As my faith and trust became stronger within, I began
to sparkle! Through the next years, I worked on the anxi-
ety and developed my skills so I could be my very best as a
Reiki guide for my students.
See the Joy in Everything
I felt joy. Everyone thought of me as one of the most joy-
ful people they knew! I argued with myself that I knew what
joy was, and I thought I was more joyous than most people
I knew. What did I have to discover in learning about joy?
To learn all the aspects of the emotion of joy, I spent over a
year in prayer and action. Without my connection to Reiki,
I would have never considered what I now recognize as my
various perceptions of joy. I realized it is always possible to
look deeper, even if our minds think we can’t!
While there are several examples, the memory of the re-
alization of one particular perspective of joy is strong. I felt
guided to spend eight hours doing hard labor in my gardens
to learn joy. My body was aching, and I was not in the
frame of mind to accept joy even though I love gardening.
Only when I experienced the blissful moments of beauti-
ful connections with the Earth, could I temporarily forget
about my aching body and joints. After the required eight
hours, I went inside to wash up and then returned outside.
The weather was perfect, and my yard was beautiful. As
I looked around, I felt the joy so intensely that I cried. I
couldn’t hold back the tears! I now understood a new per-
ception of joy in its purest form.
Your Journey with Passion Will Be Promising—Follow Your Heart
After working with Reiki for some time, the guidance and
lessons became strong enough that I could not ignore them; I
must allow myself to embrace passion fully.
One day, soon after I received this guidance, I was walk-
ing outside in my beautiful yard. As I approached my fam-
ily working in the garden, my seven-year-old son ran up
to me and handed me a stone. He said, “Mommy, this is
what Daddy just dug up from the yard, and he gave this
to YOU!” As I opened my hand to look at the stone, I saw
that the word “Passion” carved into the surface. What a
delightful path I’m on. I continue on my journey, awaiting
guidance for the next step.
As I began walking with Reiki, I noticed myself viewing
it like it was a gym membership. I had it, and I knew it was a
great tool with which to work in my life, but in all honesty,
I wasn’t showing up every day at the “gym.” As a Reiki stu-
dent, you are to give yourself daily treatments as a way for
you to exercise that “muscle.” I didn’t understand the im-
portance of it as I finished the class. Still, several months lat-
er, Reiki guided me to understand the importance of taking
time for myself when I received a diagnosis of diverticulitis,
a painful intestinal inflammation.
We had just moved to Wisconsin, and I didn’t have any
local support other than my immediate family, but I had a
tool—Reiki! In the times between the bouts of pain, I prayed
for help and gave myself Reiki. I would place my hands di-
rectly on my body in different positions and started feeling
the Reiki penetrating heat throughout my whole being. I felt
great relief, and this showed me how essential a daily self-Rei-
ki treatment is for continued health. This daily practice now
helps to keep me balanced and healthy.
In establishing an ongoing regimen of daily self-treatments,
which I enjoyed so much, I was developing a deeper connection
with Reiki with each session. When my mind was quiet, I knew
many of the concerns I had before I found Reiki had changed.
I wasn’t nervous during the day. I left the house more often and
enjoyed myself. I learned to trust in myself and my future. My
victim’s past healed, never to haunt me again.
When we juggle so many things, for so many people, we
often forget those golden moments that we need to develop a
more profound sense of connection with ourselves. But they
are patiently waiting there for you to experience if only you’ll
look for and focus on them. Maybe you’ll feel the results of a
deeper love for yourself or more trust in your intuition. Per-
haps the busy mind will relax and listen to the heart a little
more. That happens to me. My mind slows down, and I listen
to the rhythm of my heart, and the wisdom shared with me
each morning as I perform Reiki on myself.
My walk with Reiki has had its challenges and triumphs as
I partnered with it to work on my anxiety, and more impor-
tantly, my relationship with me. Your relationship with Reiki
will not be the same as mine—it is your own. I hope that in my
story, some common threads can guide you to find what you
need. I hope it inspires your light to grow and develop within
you. The most significant realization on my walk is that we
are always cared for and deeply loved. My responsibility was
to be willing to open up and invite in the Reiki source.
Reiki guides us, and its frequency is incredibly nurturing.
When I need anything—refueling, recharging, regenerating—
if I reach out for the guidance, I am gently given the under-
standing of how to provide this for myself. As my relation-
ship has developed with the Reiki source, so has my connec-
tion with me. I have unlocked more possibilities than I ever
imagined possible. I have been able to create a more profound
sense of trust and love with my whole being. My physical,
emotional, and spiritual layers have softened and let go of
what no longer serves me. I have learned faith, trust, joy, pas-
sion, love, courage, strength, focus, compassion, security, and
I rediscovered my voice. Hallelujah!
Since childhood, I’ve always been driven by my heart to
reach out to others. Some call it being an empath. I believe we
all hold these unique attributes, and some are just more open
than others. That’s why I believe wholeheartedly that anyone
can learn Reiki. Being a Reiki practitioner does not guarantee
you will have a perfect life. My life is not perfect, but Reiki
helps harmonize what transpires in my energetic field to allow
me to live my best life.
Reiki opened me up so I could develop a connection to all
parts of my being, allowing me to proceed with my life and my
destiny in a brighter light. I’m not 100 percent free of the anx-
iety, but I’m walking my healing path, and it feels awesome!
I see the light; I am the light; I sparkle with joy and love!
Kathy is an ICRT Licensed Reiki Master Teacher
of Usui/Holy Fire® III Reiki and is a registered Holy
Fire® III Karuna Reiki® Master Teacher. Her studies
have included Jikiden Reiki® Okuden, All Love-
Sekhem/Seichim Reiki, and she is a Holographic
Sound Practitioner, Akashic Records Reader, works
with crystal grids and enjoys Earth studies and other healing modali-
ties. Kathy specializes in children, animals, and illnesses, offering in-
dividual and group events at her beautiful studio, and other locations.
You may reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
© Reiki News Magazine 35