One of the reasons I started my website is that I wanted a place for women to come together and dream. We women need to know that we don't have to hang on to an old dream that has stopped nurturing us -- that there is always time to start a new dream. This week's story is about one woman who suppressed her psychic visions for years in order to fit in, but wound up being able to use her gift to solve crimes later in life. -– Marlo, MarloThomas.com
By Lori Weiss
Like many children, Kristy Robinett had what her parents would refer to as imaginary friends. Friends who would join the family for dinner and make themselves at home on the couch. The problem was, of course, that no one else could see them, so it wasn’t unusual for someone to accidently sit on one of them – at which point, Kristy would let out a startling scream. It all seemed like child’s play, and something her parents even went along with for a while, until at the age of three, Kristy repeated something one of her friends had to say.
“I saw a lady who told me she was my great grandmother,” Kristy explained, “and she said that I should let my mother know that my grandma was going to die and she needed to be prepared. At three years old, I didn’t really understand that dying was a bad thing. So when my grandparents were over for a visit, I said, ‘Grandma needs to leave now, she’s going to die.’
“I got a spanking and from that moment on, if I was talking about my friends and I saw my mother give me that look, I’d go into the closet and talk to them.”
Six months later, Kristy’s grandmother did die and before the funeral her mother asked her how she knew. Once again Kristy explained her great grandmother’s appearance and that she showed her angel feathers. Her mother turned to her and said softly, “I see crows”, and then went inside the house, sobbing.
“It wasn’t something we ever discussed again,” Kristy said with a hint of sadness in her voice, “and not long after, my mother marched me down to the local Lutheran school, hoping they could put some God into me. But as I sat there in class, the teacher’s father, who had passed away, kept bringing me messages he wanted me to share with her. I ended up in the corner a lot. It was hard to answer questions about bible stories, with this man ranting on and on. My parents weren’t very happy about that either.”
But there was one family member who was supportive -- her mother’s father. Kristy’s grandfather was her protector and never questioned the things she claimed to see and know.
“He died when I was seven,” Kristy recalled, “and at his funeral I saw him leaning up against a tree, smoking. I ran up to him thinking there must have been some sort of mistake and he said, ‘Kristy, I’ve died, you have to take care of Mom. I know what you are. I was sensitive too.’ And then he gave me a hug and walked to his grave site and disappeared, just like something you’d see in a movie.
Over time, Kristy tried desperately to turn the volume down on the voices that would come to her. She stopped going into the closet to talk with her friends, simply deciding to keep them there -- locked away, where no one would judge her or give her “that look".
“I still knew things though, which was helpful, because after college I worked in human resources,” she laughed. “I knew who to hire and who to fire, and if someone was faking a back injury so they could go to a baseball game! But it also helped me guide people. I couldn’t tell people their dead mother was saying she was sorry she made them become an accountant when they really wanted to go to nursing school, but I could guide them down a path that I knew they’d be happier on."
“But I wasn’t walking my own walk. I was being the cheerleader, waving my pom-poms for everyone else, but I wasn’t doing what I told everyone else to do.”
Until one day Kristy realized she could no longer quiet the voices around her or her own. Secretly she began giving readings at a metaphysical center -- a center that just happened to be around the corner from a police station. And the officers would come in from time to time, to see if she could discreetly give them some guidance on a case. Once they knew they could trust her, they began sharing her name with colleagues across the country.
Story continues below slideshow.
Kristy was only three years old when she first communicated with spirits.
When Kristy was a little girl, her great grandmother visited her in spirit to tell her that her maternal grandmother would pass away soon. Sadly, less than six months later, her prediction came true.
Kristy stands beside the tree that her grandfather's spirit leaned on during his funeral. There he told Kristy to take care of her mother and that he had been sensitive too.
Kristy felt stifled in her job at a conservative public school. Though it gave her the means to support her children as a single mother, the school was intolerant of her desire to work on psychic detective cases.
When this article on Kristy's work appeared, she was still working in human resources. The article didn't include her last name, so her coworkers were curious if it was about her, but Kristy never revealed her secret.
Law enforcement officials and attorneys often reach out for Kristy's help. She writes down her visions and impressions to assist with unsolved cases.
Kristy travels around the country to help locate the bodies of missing people. Here is one account of her visions pertaining to the Ashley Howley case.
Kristy travels around the United States and helps locate bodies of those involved in active and cold criminal cases.
Here, Kristy tunes into the spirit world to talk to a young woman who had passed away in a fire, along with a few of her children.
Kristy met Chuck on a blind date, and was thrilled that he was accepting of her career as a spirit medium. The couple became quickly attached, and Kristy's mother told her that it was the happiest she had seen her in years.
Even though many consider Kristy's profession depressing, she finds that having a positive attitude about her work helps.
Kristy hates the stereotypical definition that people think of when they hear the term "medium." Every year on Halloween, she dresses up as a fortune teller to mock these misconceptions.
Both of Kristy's kids, Connor and Micaela, share their mother's gift.
Kristy's marriage to Chuck blended their two families together. None of the kids are thrilled with her profession -- it means they can't lie or sneak out, since Kristy will know what they're up to.
This is the interior of Kristy's office. She calls her business "Tangled Wishes," because she feels like her customers have their dreams and aspirations tangled up. Kristy's job is to help unravel them.
It was at that point Kristy says that she also began receiving more visits from people who had died in violent crimes and wanted to bring peace to their families. She compared the scene in her living room to a line one might encounter at the DMV – but she was the only one who could see it. And according to Kristy, a young woman named Ashley came to her.
“She told me her name and that she’d been kidnapped and murdered,” Kristy recalled. “Her family thought she was missing and she wanted them to know the truth. I didn’t have much information to go on, but I started Googling and put in the words Ashley, missing, about 20 years old. That’s when a Crime Stoppers photo came up and the picture was identical to the girl who had been standing next to me. Her name was Ashley Howley.
“I struggled with what to do, but I knew when I saw the picture that I had a hit. I emailed Crime Stoppers and said, ‘I swear I’m not crazy, I’m a psychic medium and I’d like to help the family.’”
That email led not only to the family, but to a metro park near Columbus, Ohio, where Kristy drew a map for park rangers showing them where she believed they’d find Ashley. She had been missing for four years.
“At that point they asked me for my driver's license. I had never been to the park before. I had never even been to Columbus before, but the information I had was so specific that they thought I might be connected to the case.”
Eventually, Kristy led the family and the park rangers to the exact location where she believed Ashley was buried -- what she didn’t know, was that it was within sight of a home Ashley’s boyfriend had occasionally lived in. The rangers then released rescue dogs and they led them to the very same spot.
Yet nothing could be done. Unbeknownst to Kristy, the police had believed all along the boyfriend had been involved, but they needed evidence that could hold up in court. So they refused to break ground -- until months later, when he was arrested -- suspected of murdering his mother and her boyfriend. That’s when he took them to Ashley’s body, encased in concrete, in the very plot of land Kristy had led the rangers to.
Today, Kristy continues to work on criminal cases, but only when police officers or private investigators agree to collaborate with her, so that families aren’t left with information they can’t act on. Otherwise, she limits her “detective” work to her Livonia, Michigan office, where she uncovers messages from those who’ve passed on -- often guiding clients to the path they were meant to be on -- only now she’s happy to tell people why she’s so confident they’ll succeed.
“So often we’re our own worst enemies,” Kristy said. “I think so many of us are afraid to follow our hearts because of what people will think. I spent a lot of time punishing myself over a gift I was given. But now that I’ve stopped hiding who I really am, I’m so much happier."
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