Island Girl, Medium, and Healer
Wendi Murrell is passionate about the healing arts and her daughter, Lylah Love
Originally from London, Wendi Murrell landed on Nantucket Island 20 years ago for vacation. Her love of the island and its healing environment has kept her there ever since.
She established White Glove Services of Nantucket, a high-end property-management company. Five years later, she began to develop her true passion of healing health by opening Nantucket Healing Through Hands, a wellness clinic specializing in Reiki, energy work, and reflexology. On January 11, 2013, at 11:11 p.m., Murrell became a Solo Mom to daughter Lylah Love.
Q: How are things on Nantucket?
A: As the saying goes, “It’s as hot as Satan’s butthole.”
Q: You practice the “healing arts.” What does that mean?
A: I’ve been trained in all four degrees of Reiki (a Japanese healing art where life-force energy is guided through the laying of hands in order to promote healing and relaxation). The intrepid side of things grew into practicing meditation. I do readings for people, sometimes with Tarot cards. And now I do medium.
Q: What is “medium”?
A: Since I was really young, I knew there were “others” around me. When I was called upon to do Reiki for people who were dying, and they could not speak, I found I could hear what they wanted to say. And I could tell their family members. My mother had passed away, and I felt like she was saying something, so I developed this. Someone sits opposite me, and I read for them. Sometimes there is a sick person present, sometimes I do “transition” (helping people through death), a person might want to know about someone who’s crossed over, or sometimes it’s just someone who wants to know about their love life.
Q: What made you decide to pursue this as a career?
A: There are only so many voices you can take in your head before you go, “OK, I need to address this.” I carry a lot of other people’s stuff and find if I don’t relieve it, it causes a lot of anxiety and stress. I started developing what was going on in my body to get it out and also protect myself.
Q: How did you become a Solo Mom?
A: My baby daddy—we just hooked up one night. For the first time ever, I had drunken sex. He didn’t want to know about the pregnancy in the beginning. For the first six months of the pregnancy, I was alone. But now we have an amazing friendship. He has her two nights a week and financially supports her. Looking back, I thought I wasn’t going to have any kids. And the universe said otherwise.
Q: Did this impact your career?
A: I’d planned to go to various weekend workshops to enhance my healing practices. But I couldn’t for two years because I had nobody to look after her. My family is not here, my friends had loads of kids of their own, and I didn’t want to leave her. So I put my workshops aside and lost a lot of business. I took a loss that first year. I still can’t do evening appointments or Sundays because it’s my only work-free day with her—so my passion has been put to the wayside.
Q: Why did you name her “Lylah Love”?
A: I wanted her to know she is loved. I didn’t feel I was loved during my pregnancy. I didn’t love myself the night of the conception. I wasn’t taking care of myself. So I wanted her to know she’s wanted and loved.
Q: Are there resources that help you?
A: My two best friends help me. They have seven kids between them—Irish girls, they pop them out like piglets. I was also mindful to not pass her around between too many people. Last year I insisted her dad take her for two overnights a week so I could have a life. And sleep. On the nights I didn’t have her, I would eat really well, shower really well, and sleep really well.
Q: Was there a defining moment that drove home you were raising a child alone?
A: I was really ill, and I didn’t know how to protect her from my illness. I couldn’t put her with anyone. Her father was on a trip on the other side of the world. It was just us, and we had to fight the bug together. We went to the ER, and the doctor took care of us, but when we got back the dog had gotten it. Poo everywhere! And I thought, “We’re just one household, and we have to stick together.” Of course this makes me think, “What if I die in the night? What is she going to do?” I worry about that.
You need to show her how to dial 9-1-1 and try not to overthink it. Just take care of business. We Solo Moms are practical. When Armageddon hits, it’s the single moms who will rise up and save humanity. We are resilient!
Q: Does island life present any specific challenges?
A: Travel! The island hospital does not have infant or toddler care outside a regular doctor. So if Lylah has a doctor’s appointment at Boston Children’s Hospital at 9:00 a.m., we have to go the night before and stay at a hotel. It can cost about $300 to $500 to get off for a night. Thankfully, we only had to do it once.
Q: What are you most proud of as a Solo Mom?
A: I don’t think of myself as solo. I see myself as a single, strong warrior with a child on my back, a force moving forward together no matter what chaos is going on. I don’t like to call myself single because I don’t feel alone. I’ve got so many wonderful people who help me.
Q: What’s your favorite solo parenting tip?
A: On a lazy day, I’ll call another single-mom friend to bring her kid over. My kid hangs out with her kid, I hang out with her, and we have a mother-daughter playdate.
Kathleen Laccinole, ESME’s Dating Resource Guide, has penned numerous films and parenting books but is best known for producing the highly lauded Greta, age 20, and William, age 16.
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