Alula has been doing her best impression of Damien from the Omen these last few weeks. And when I say ‘impression’ I mean that she follows the method acting school of thought.
Being Ubud, most people’s first response when I appear weeping before them, pouring the valium down my throat is – ‘Have you taken her to a Balian?’
Not – Have you taken her to see a therapist? Have you taken her for ice cream? Have you spoken to her teachers? Have you tried Supernanny?
But – Have you taken her to a witchdoctor?
And that’s not coming from the Balinese, that’s coming from the ex-pats – most of whom I count as friends and who aren’t the typical blissninny you find here – but practical, sensible, intelligent people with real stories about their own freaky experiences.
Hell, I’ll try anything at this point I thought, and what harm could a little opinion be? And I am a believer in some aspects of spiritual healing (though have never tried a witchdoctor before it must be said). So I emailed a Balian recommended to me and asked what he thought.
The Balian told me that two demons were squatting on Alula’s astral plane.
Yes you read that right.
Two demons. Squatting. Astral plane.
I mean where do you go with that? Other than to the dictionary to make sure you’ve understood properly? And then to the bathroom to lie down on the cold wet tiles clutching a bottle of vodka?
Suddenly I’m Mia Farrow in Rosemary’s Baby.
So the Balian says he’ll do a clearing (I think that’s the polite terminology for exorcism…oh the irony. My child actually is possessed! Apparently.).
OK, I say to the guy. I mean why not? I’m also trying Omega 3 fish oils, lavender sprinkled on her clothes, a no sugar diet, approaches from ‘The Explosive child’, daily massages and lots of love and hugs. Having someone chant some words on top of all that sounds fine to me. I’m open to most things these days – except perhaps staring into strangers’ eyes and sending them the love of the universe. And it beats electro-shock therapy right? And thirdly, in this lurid list of self-justifications – what if, just what if, it might actually be true? I You’d be breaking out the holy water too believe me…
And guess what? Alula woke up this morning for the first time in about six weeks and told me in a sweet voice ‘I love you mummy.’ There were no screaming battles, no devil faces, no rages. She was placid as a lamb.
Maybe it’s the lavender. Maybe she just woke up in a better mood. Maybe she’ll flip out again later, or maybe Rosemary should have taken her baby to a Balian.