Meridian Industrial

A BUSINESS IN THE CARDS

3/1/2019 | Stephanie Trombley

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When you step into A Wondering Spirit for the first time, it’s easy to feel enveloped in the warmth and positive energy of the location. While walking through the door reveals bowls of crystals, racks of jewelry and shelves of candles, A Wondering Spirit is more than meets the eye. A tour of the expansive location reveals classrooms, a tarot card reading section and a salt room.

Six months after opening the doors to their Shaker Road location for the first time, shop owners and happy couple Wesley (Wes) and Sheila Crouch are reflecting on where their business has gone and where on its journey it will go next.

Both Sheila and Wes said they have felt spiritually inclined since childhood. Sheila is a gifted medium and has been reading tarot cards for over twenty-five years. She now reads them at A Wondering Spirit. Wes has been teaching Reiki for over twenty years and is a Reiki Master.

Wes expressed that combining his spirituality with Sheila’s has formed a wonderful partnership. “When we work together, it’s amazing. We clicked on a spiritual level.”

The business wasn’t something the couple was planning for as they reached retirement years, but a 2017 visit to Nova Scotia proved it was fate.

The couple shares a birthday month, and a trip to Nova Scotia felt like the perfect way to celebrate. “For our birthdays, we decided to get a card reading. This was unusual because usually when I’m up there, I go to my normal places to buy my crystals and I usually get a massage and treat myself with things like that. But this time, we decided to treat ourselves and get our cards read,” Wes said.

When Wes was ready to go home after a long day, Sheila felt compelled to walk to the bottom of a hill she saw. “I felt like I had to go there. When we got to the bottom of the hill, there was a holistic store and when I got to the register, there was an ad for a woman who had her readings in the shop, but we had missed her by a couple of days. The cashier gave me her phone number,” Sheila said.

The woman visited Wes and Sheila at their cottage to conduct tarot card readings. The message she had for the couple was shocking.

“She would get three different card decks. On the first deck, she said ‘Everything is going well, but you will have a choice to make. The guides will give you a choice to make.’ So I asked her what it would be and she said, ‘I don’t know what it is, but it will hit you in the face and it will be so obvious, you can’t miss it. You can either do it or not do it, either way you’ll be okay.’ She said it would be either by the end of 2017 or Spring 2018 and I would know what to do,” Wes said.

Wes continued, “I’m not too good at listening to my intuition, so I knew this would be a challenge. I asked for more details and she said, “Your kids are going to think you’re crazy, people around you are going to think you’re nuts, and Sheila is not going to want to go into this full throttle.”

The tarot card reader told Wes that the choice would be something he’s always wanted to do that he had been too worried to do before. “All three decks said the same thing. I’m not a tarot reader, but they were pretty spot on. Statistically, that was pretty impressive. I left there feeling good and realized I had some really big choices to make,” Wes said.

It wasn’t long before Wes began to wonder when the message would present itself. “I started getting these intuitions and images while meditating. I started getting more and more intuitions and paid attention more,” Wes said.

It was after Sheila discovered a shop specializing in crystals and spirituality items that Wes finally found out what the message would be. “I’m usually the antenna. I usually have people come to me or I go to them. There was a place on my Facebook page I kept seeing pop up. I went to check it out and thought it was really cool. I came home and said, ‘Hey Wes, you have to come to this shop,’” Sheila said.

Although admittedly hesitant at first, Wes agreed to go to the shop with Sheila. As Wes was observing crystals, he said he had an intuition that someone would be asking him an important question. “I’m walking around to see if someone wanted to ask me a question, and nothing happens. We go up to the cash register and the guy says to me ‘I’ve been watching you in the store. Do you want to buy my store?’ Energy rushed to my head, it was like someone slapped me in the face,” Wes shared.

Sheila said she thought the owner was kidding.

While they have not yet purchased the business, Wes said that he plans to. “I thought we were just going to buy one [shop.] But I hear a voice say three,” Wes said.

“After that, I realized this lady was spot on and knew what she was talking about,” Wes shared.

Wes is a Martinsville, Virginia native, while Sheila hails from Worcester, Massachusetts. The pair resides in Hampden, but consider the store’s location a second home. “We started searching the area for where we wanted to be. We looked in Somers, but it didn’t feel right. We looked at this location and it was a complete disaster. We had to build everything. Sheila loved the place. She said the energy felt really good and said, ‘This is our home,’” Wes said.

With artwork on the walls and crystals in place, the owners have settled into A Wondering Spirit. “Instantly, I felt like we belonged here and we were home,” Sheila said.

The shop offers a retail space, classes, tarot card readings, and their Himalayan salt room. Himalayan salt is said to have a positive affect on health and wellbeing. Classes such as “Energy/Reiki Share,” “Introduction to Tarot,” and Power Down Yoga” are taught to help promote spiritual journey and wellness.

A Wondering Spirit has developed a team of experts in various subjects to bring knowledge and skills to the shop. The staff includes magical practitioner, tarot reader and clairvoyant Sarah Washington, tarot reader and intuitive Camron Ayaz, Shamanic practitioner and certified hypnotist Christian Covert, massage therapist Kathleen O’Connor and integrative nutrition health coach Maria Martin.

A selection of crystals, jewelry, candles and books are for sale among other items to help guide customers through various wellness paths. A Wondering Spirit also features products from local artists including jewelry, crafts and artwork.

“It’s been hard. It’s a lot of work and a full-time job. You go home at night and feel like ‘I made a difference today.’ You feel like you help people and they come back,” Wes shared.

Wes and Sheila said they have a goal of helping people unplug from their cell phones and plug more into life.

“Everybody these days are so busy on their phones. Talk to people and communicate with each other. We learn from each other on so many different levels. I always tell people I am the student as well as the teacher. We learn something new every day. It’s a gift,” Sheila said.

Wes shared, “We don’t want people to look down, we want them to look up. Think about it, you’re always looking down. Kids today are always looking down. We want them to look up and beyond themselves, not down. We’re trying to spread the love. Our true mission is to raise vibrational level.”

With a large salt room, toasty stove and bar where staff intend to blend custom juices, A Wondering Spirit is a welcoming shop that feels more like a family’s home than a store.

“When you get that feeling, and see people and the energy you release, you can feel it. There’s no place where people can go and feel safe and talk about these things without being judged,” Wes said.

The couple intends to bring many new offerings to the shop in the coming months, including herbs and handmade wands. “We are looking to bring in a whole line of herbs for the Craft. We are only into light stuff, not dark stuff,” Sheila shared.

“We want to be a toolbox. Whatever you need, you come in and we have it,” Wes said.

Although Sheila and Wes admit they had intended to retire, helping customers with personal growth leaves them with a sense of fulfillment.

“We help people from the inside out. Anywhere you are on your journey, we can assist you,” Wes said.

Retirement may have been the plan, but opening A Wondering Spirit was in the cards, and the happy couple couldn’t argue with that logic.

A Wondering Spirit • 169 Shaker Road, East Longmeadow • 413-224-1008
For more information on upcoming classes and products, please visit www.facebook.com/awspiritonline

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