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Natural Awakenings Atlanta

Sudden Awakening Changes Everything

Prior to 1999, Tammy Billups had what many would describe as the American dream. She was top biller and senior partner in a national recruiting firm. But a few months after turning 40, grief would repeatedly bring her to her knees.

Her mother’s death prompted her to question everything she believed, and her mind began to open to new truths about what happens after death. At the time, she shared her home with three cats. A few weeks after her mother’s burial, her beloved calico cat, Khalua, died of cancer.

The day after Khalua’s death, Billups says, she could suddenly see and feel energy all around her, in and around everything, including departed souls. Billups refers to her experience as a “rude awakening.” Like having a mask ripped off, she says, she could see layers of soul as clearly as most see flesh.

Simultaneously, repressed memories of a terrifying and abusive childhood emerged: memories of the abuse that she and many animals suffered at the hands of men, and her mother’s role in it.

“Most people that have a spiritual awakening do it slowly, and they have help. It happened so suddenly for me,” says Billups. “It was frightening. I didn’t know what to do with it.”

Not long after, her other two cats, Vasi and Bailey, died. Through it all, she felt lost and broken.

She turned to the Roswell Center for Integrative Therapy for assistance, and found psychotherapist and energy practitioner, Susan Martin. After one session of therapy, Billups felt significantly better. She left the session knowing she wanted to help others feel the way she felt in that moment.

“I wanted people to know less suffering, to feel more love in life,” says Billups. “I wanted them to know the feeling of being connected to pure, divine love.”

Billups continued receiving therapy and began her course of study in interface therapy, a form of subtle energy healing, and bioenergetic therapy, a modality that acknowledges pain and stress anchor in the body due to psychological stress or trauma.

Billups began as a practitioner for humans. After one year of practice, she wondered if animals could be treated the same way. She practiced on her animals and those of her friends. She found that not only can she treat animals with bioenergetic healing, but they also respond faster.

“Animals are not attached to things. They don’t question the process. They aren’t questioning the validity of the work,” says Billups. “They simply relax and allow it to happen. It works beautifully. The energy field of a four-legged is just as complex as that of a two-legged.”

Billups believes that man and animal are gifts to each other, and that allowing a connection with animals helps both the human and the animal to evolve and to heal.

“Man and animal are one. They are our mirrors,” says Billups, who now lives with two cats, Sundance and MaiTai. “Animals are potentially our greatest teachers. I wouldn’t know unconditional love without them.”

Billups is a certified interface therapist, founder and operator of Roswell, Ga.’s Sundance Healing Center, LLC, author of Beyond the Fur, editorial board member and columnist for the Conscious Life Journal. For more information about Tammy Billups, visit

Atlanta-based Lucretia Robison has been a bodyworker for 20 years and a licensed massage therapist since 2003.

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