One day back in the 60s, my father, a high-society interior decorator with clients like the Presidents of Cuba and Haiti, suddenly discovered that he could talk to the dead and heal the sick.
Suddenly, matching the sofa to the drapes for the rich no longer mattered as much as healing a leukemia patient. Almost overnight, my mother stopped giving fashionable cocktail parties as our house turned into a kind of Lourdes where sick people showed up around the clock for their miracle cure.
Having an amazing father did not make me an amazing kid. I was bad, doing everything that you'd expect a teenager in the 60s to be doing and more. But having a psychic father meant that he knew exactly what I was doing at all times. I felt like a baby cam was following me as I went on my nightly prowls into the hippie subculture.
So I would venture out into the incense-filled world of mind-altering substances only to return to find my father had healed someone's baby who couldn't see, dissolved a brain tumor, or healed an ulcer. But as a kid, did I care? Frankly, I was more irritated than anything to have a weirdo father who, today, would have NIH money thrown at him for clinical studies, his own line of very popular DVDs and would be a frequent guest on Oprah and Dr. Oz.
Growing up, I would come home from school, trying desperately to be a normal kid, only to find my father sitting quietly at his desk with all these charts in front of him, holding a pendulum and diagnosing someone in another state or country in just a matter of minutes.
For me, it was just my father being his crazy old self. I was not enthralled with his miracle cures, and frankly, was more interested in getting high and hanging out with my girlfriend.
What I do remember the most is being in the middle of a mundane conversation with my father about my homework or my girlfriend and suddenly being interrupted by one of his spirit guides who might have urgent news on one of my father's patients or a new healing technique they wanted my father to use on the next person who walked in the door. He would carry on these two conversations simultaneously as if we were both sitting in front of him; only one of us happened to be invisible. Of course, as a kid, you accept who and what your parents are. In my case, I accepted this behavior as completely normal.
One of the most dramatic types of healings that I saw my father do over and over again was when someone had one leg shorter than the other. Usually their hip and spine were constantly out of alignment, and they would need to wear special shoes to compensate. My father would simply have the person sit in a chair, hold their legs at the ankles so that you could see the disparity in length and call in his invisible orthopedic guy. In a matter of two or three minutes, one of the legs would silently slide back into the hip until they were both even. For the first time in their life, the person would stand up and walk around with even legs. I know, I know, you're saying "wait a minute, even a surgeon can't fix this problem." Believe me, I know it sounds totally nuts.
Back in 1981 when my father left this planet, I put all his extensive archives comprised of tape recordings of his healings and phone calls as well as thousands of pages of spirit dictation and testimonial letters from those he had healed into storage, spun the combination lock shut and walked away determined to live my own life free of nosy spirits.
Several years ago, when an agent convinced me to sit down and write WALKING THROUGH WALLS, the book of my father's unusual life, I started listening to the tapes he left behind. After the first tape, I wondered if in fact my father was psychotic and perhaps had mesmerized all of us. I was positive that I too had drunk the Kool-Aid and was hesitant to go forward with the book.
A few days later I ran into a friend of mine from high school, now a world famous doctor with a waiting list of up to a year for new patients. Since we had not seen each other for over thirty years we sat down to catch up. I told him about my book project but expressed my concern about my new feelings. My friend responded, "you're not nuts and neither was your father. While I was in medical school, I called him several times and he would heal me over the phone from chronic conditions. In addition, I saw him speaking to the spirits and had no doubt it was real. Knowing your father changed how I practice medicine."
Based on this testimonial from a high profile doctor, I continued on the project. In going through the archives, I found thousand of testimonial letters from people that my father had healed. Some of these are posted on www.WalkingThoughtWallsTheBook.com
These letters confirmed what I had witnessed as a child. My father did indeed possess extraordinary talents that hopefully, one day, will be harnessed by medicine for the benefit of us all.