The Bright Side: God’s perfect timing

Published 11:23 am Wednesday, September 20, 2023

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There is something so magical about God’s perfect timing. Just when I think I should have a say in when things happen, God reminds me why His will need be done. Waiting is all part of it. If there wasn’t anticipation and growth, why would anything be worth the wait?

Three years ago, this month, I met a woman who would change the course of my life forever. I’ve mentioned her before; her name was Cat Young, the matriarch of the Mountain Gypsies. When I found myself seated in front of her prior to a healing session, I had no idea what I wanted out of it. I was, at the time, broken. Paralyzed with fear, deprived of joy, and irrevocably defeated by my own demons – or so I thought.

In order to understand where I am now, I feel that it’s necessary to share where I was before.

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Eric and I moved to Kill Devil Hills with practically no money. We had just graduated college three months prior, working part-time jobs with very vague ideas of what we wanted to do with our lives. I was very fortunate to receive a full-time reporter position with The Coastland Times that summer, and we moved here in September of 2019. But, I would be lying if I said it wasn’t a tough adjustment.

My parents, especially my mom, did not want to see me move. They had no idea how we would make it work on an island where we knew no one and were starting from scratch. Every day when I would go to tell them how things were going on the Outer Banks, they asked when I would be moving back to Myrtle Beach to be with them. This weighed heavily on me, as I have always wanted to please my parents and make sure they are taken care of first and foremost. I couldn’t help but feel like I had disappointed them.

On the other hand, Eric was adamant that we could make it work here. He had wanted to live on the Outer Banks all his life, and his dream had finally come true. How could I take that away from him? We were managing, but I felt trapped day in and day out. A pit had formed in my stomach. I lost my appetite, was constantly battling sickness and felt like I was having trouble breathing almost every day.

November rolled around and I took time off to go back to Myrtle Beach and get my head right. I thought a few days away would help, but in truth, they made everything worse. I felt lonelier than ever when I came back. I didn’t believe I would ever experience depression before moving here, but when I returned, I couldn’t find another explanation for how I was feeling.

Things escalated quickly. With other factors in the mix, my mental health dwindled rapidly. I would scream at the top of my lungs in my car to feel anything but sad. The hospital saw me twice in six months – both because of massive panic attacks. My resting heart rate the last time I was in a hospital bed was 227 bpm. I had CT scans, ultrasounds, x-rays, you name it. Some doctors said it was my hyperthyroidism, others said it was acid reflux, and one doctor told me that I was showing early signs of MS. Medication didn’t help. I tried therapy, which helped for a few hours a day before I would go right back to a state of panic. I was to a point where I accepted that this was going to be my life forever – anxiety-ridden and ruthless.

One year after we moved, I met Cat. As I sat down for my healing appointment, she asked me a few questions as to what I was dealing with. I immediately lost it and bawled my eyes out for what felt like forever. She listened. Then she started talking to me about Christ, and how his love had never left my heart. To be honest, I hadn’t been to church or prayed to God in a long time before this session. I grew up Catholic, but stepped off the path of my faith in college and never quite returned. To hear about God again, and his unfailing, unwavering, relentless love for me gave me peace. After my session, I knew God had called me back to Him.

I went home and ran around my house leaping for joy and praising God’s name. I danced and sang and smiled. Eric, who had been my rock through everything, knew something had changed. We cried happy tears together. Everything from this point forward was different, in the best way possible.

Knowing I had to set my sights on God and His plan for me, I took my first reiki class with Cat a week later and started my journey to becoming a healer.

We lost Cat the following February to Covid, just after she had battled and defeated breast cancer. Her daughter, Tess, stepped into the role of matriarch and took me in as one of her students, open-armed. I have learned so much from Tess these past three years, and I am so happy to share that her and I will be teaching classes and offering healings next month, right here in Kill Devil Hills.

Now I get to help people just as Cat did, with God working through her to find me, and so many others. It’s a full-circle moment for me, something I never saw coming. That’s why I leave the timing of everything to God. I let Him direct my steps these days, and I thank Him every day for getting me through the toughest days of my life. They led me here. Now, God can work through me.

And yes, it was absolutely worth the wait.

Danielle Puleo is a staff writer for The Coastland Times. Reach her at