First Encounters: Patricia Scanlan and Aidan Storey

‘It was as if we’d always known each other’

Firm friends: Patricia Scanlan and Aidan Storey.Photograph: Cyril Byrne  Firm friends: author Patricia Scanlan and healer Aidan Storey. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Firm friends: Patricia Scanlan and Aidan Storey.Photograph: Cyril Byrne Firm friends: author Patricia Scanlan and healer Aidan Storey. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

 

Patricia Scanlon is an international bestselling author. Her 19th novel, ‘A Time for Friends’, was published recently by Simon & Schuster, 25 years after her first, ‘City Girl’, written when she worked as a Dublin librarian, topped bestseller lists. She is also series editor of ‘Open Door’, an adult literacy series. From Dublin, she lives in Clontarf.

It was very strange the way Aidan came into my life. It was in 2004, about a year before I had a big back operation. I had just finished writing a book and I was wrecked. A woman had sent me a manuscript to look at and was asking me about my back. She said, you really should go to Aidan Storey, he’s a great healer. I rang him: he was living in Palmerstown at the time and I’m thinking, oh God, I’m going to have to drive across the M50. He was making the appointment, then stopped and said, hold on, I’m being told that you’re not able to drive, I’m going to come to you.

I was so touched that he’d go to all that trouble to come to see me, it was such a kind thing to do. And that is the essence of Aidan, his kindness. I was so grateful, because he has waiting lists for appointments.

I was a bit nervous, I wondered what will this man be like: I opened the front door, we smiled at each other and it was as if we’d always known each other. We just gabbed and gabbed and he did a beautiful healing. I had had Reiki before, so I wasn’t a stranger to healing. I believe in past lives and so does Aidan; it was as if we’d always known each other. We now have a deep friendship.

I had my back surgery – when you say healing, it’s not physical healing, it’s mind/body/soul. Then I had a hysterectomy and Aidan came and stayed for a couple of days, to support me. His clients had been asking him to write a book and I said, while you’re here, just write something down. What a story Aidan had to tell. Even though he’d told me about being abused as a child at school, when I read it I cried for my lovely friend. I knew straightaway that his story would help so many people.

What I love about Aidan is he has always recognised that a gift has been given to him, that it’s not him, he’s humble about it; that’s why I was drawn to Aidan, he always says the healing comes through him, not from him.

Now we mind each other – it’s mutual: Aidan minds me very very well. And I love his partner Murtagh very much too.

Last year was very stressful, I really needed time to write my book. They brought me down to their house in Kildare and Aidan would come into me before he went to work with grapes and chocolate. I just needed that time. Murtagh’s lovely: we all had a great trip to Seville last year.

My recent book A Time for Friends is my 19th. I’m very lucky in that usually halfway through one book, I might get an idea for the next one and once I have an idea, I’m happy.

I still enjoy writing very much although I do think of retirement. But the banks took my pension so maybe I’m meant to go on writing. And I’d like Aidan to write another book, I’ve been after him now for a few years.

Aidan Storey is a Reiki master, angelic healer and spiritual therapist. ‘Angels of Divine Light’, his memoir about how the presence of angels sustained him when abuse in a Christian Brothers school ruined his childhood, became a bestseller in 2009 and is now being published in the US. Originally from Dublin, he now lives in Co Kildare, with his partner, Murtagh Corrigan

I knew of Patricia: I grew up in a house with four sisters and my mother, who all read her books. And I’d seen her being interviewed on the Late Late Show a few years before we met and something had really drawn me to her. I was petrified coming over but as soon as she opened the door, she gave me a big embrace. It was around 7pm, we started chatting and at about 11pm I said, I think we’d better start the healing. Patricia and I say, it’s old souls meeting again, that’s our explanation for our deep friendship. 

I never intended writing a book, that was part of the conversation the first night we met. When I stayed with her after her hysterectomy, Trish had been going on and on about me writing this book. I eventually sat down and thought, I’ll just write a few chapters and then she’ll see I’m not a writer. I didn’t give her what I’d written until I was going home; then she sent me a text to say, it’s really good. 
 
Trish guided me through that book so well; I would never have been able to write it without her. She didn’t only do it for me, she does it for so many other people. She’s just so generous. I’m still shocked by the book’s success. 
 
I was around four when I remember first seeing angels – I wasn’t upset because my mum had said, your angels will look after you. So I thought it was quite normal. The angels came back into my life in my late 20s, early 30s after I’d gone through a very bad time. I did some Reiki and that opened up everything for me. Everyone who knows me says I was always doing healing because people always came to me to tell me their problems. This is now my full-time work. I’m based in Kildare but work all over the country and abroad too. 
 
I know people are sceptical about angels but I’m not here to convince anyone. I tell my story, do what I do, and if they want to come to me, they can. 
 
My partner Murtagh and Trish love one another; I’m so happy they get on. Murtagh and I are together four years, married – in a civil partnership – for three of them. Hopefully, we’ll be getting married again this year – hopefully, there’ll be a landslide. I want everyone to go out and vote Yes in the referendum. 
 
I do encourage Trish to come down to the Curragh, she needs an escape. I don’t think she will ever retire, don’t think her fans will let her. She’ll say “I’m going to retire, I’m not writing another bloody book”, that’s when you know she’s coming to the end of a book. And then she comes up with the idea for a new book. 
 
Trish is one of the kindest people I’ve ever met, she’s also very good fun. The way she helps people may not always be fully appreciated. She’s done so much for young writers and she has really never been recognised for that. 
 
Series concludes

 

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