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'Psychic Kids' Peri Zarrella says it's nice if more people 'hold space for a reality that they might not feel comfortable in'

In an exclusive interview with MEA WorldWide, Peri speaks about near-death experience, past lives, and the universal energy that binds us all together

Science has taken astounding leaps over the past century and a half, but the fact remains that there are still innumerable aspects of life, and death, that we do not yet fully comprehend and which seem beyond the realm of reason.

Take, for example, the paranormal and the supernatural. Throughout humanity's existence on the planet, tales of otherworldly beings and mysterious apparitions have been quite prominent. They're littered across fables, myths, and legends that have been passed on from generation to generation, persisting in a day and age where logic and skepticism reign supreme. You could say that these were a product of someone's overactive imagination, but, at what point do you take the sheer number of these accounts into consideration and entertain the possibility that there might just be something to it?

It's a question A&E's 'Psychic Kids' explores through the eyes of children who seemingly have an innate ability to sense the paranormal and supernatural in the every day and the mundane.

The series, which first launched in the summer of 2008, has returned for a fourth season after a gap of many years and sees the kids who featured previously now taking up the mantle of mentor and guiding a new generation of gifted children. 

MEA WorldWide (MEAWW) had the opportunity to speak to one of these mentors, Peri Zarrella, of her psychic abilities, how she came about them, her experiences with the paranormal, and where she's planning to head from here on out. Peri appeared on the show as a psychic kid in 2010 when she was 15 years old.

Peri first started experiencing the paranormal after a near-death experience when she was just 8-years-old (Source: Instagram)

Peri's first brush with otherworldly spirits came when she was just eight-years-old. After being hospitalized in a grave condition, her family feared that she would not survive. As per Peri's own admission, she too accepted that her time had come.

But life had other plans. In her near-death state, Peri experienced the surreal. "I felt like my energy was being pulled or kind of like sucked out of my body and pulled into an energetic channel," she revealed. "So, it was moving towards what I like to call white light or universal energy."

She said the experience was in line with that of most who end up walking the thin line between life and death, but that at no point was she scared. "It felt very nice," she said. It felt like all my baggage or all the hard part of being a human were falling away and it was just me and my authentic form moving towards the light."

When she woke up from her comatose state, her life had changed.

Something inside her had clicked, and all of a sudden, Peri found herself imbibed by an intense intuitive ability. She was seeing lights around people that were different auras, she was hearing voices, and she was having visions.

She was still a little girl, however. The tsunami of new information she had been bombarded with was proving to be quite overwhelming. In her words, she said she had become a beacon for the restless spirits of the world; that they were attracted to her like moths are to a flame and wanted her to free them. 

"It [the near-death experience] put me in a challenging realm of energy because I was around a lot of energies that were suffering," she said. "They wanted my help. They wanted to ride in the elevator of my energetic channel and move into the white light."

One particular spirit, she revealed, was traumatizing. It was one that had followed her from her past life.

"I think after my near-death experience, my past lives were very present and available to me," she explained. "I was very aware of them, and I had one past life where I ended up drowning as a little girl."

"There was a person in that past life. Mr. Smith, who was watching me drowning and laughing," she continued. "And that energy came back to me and it was really scary and disturbing."

Peri attributed resolving the issue to her mentor on 'Psychic Kids' a decade ago and said she learned how to "turn off" her abilities so she could protect herself from the more malevolent entities. It was also on the show that she realized that she was not alone. That there were others like her struggling from the same problems.

So, when she got a call from the show and was asked to help other children like her, she immediately knew that she had to accept because she could give them advice that she wishes she had at their age. 

"My goal was to help people who had intuitive abilities and were struggling because they recognize that there aren't a lot of resources out there for those people and they're at risk for being misdiagnosed with other disorders," she said. "I didn't want that to happen. I was for protective of that."

Peri graduated from Columbia University's Master's Degree Program in Clinical Psychology and Education from the Spirituality Mind Body Institute (Source: Instagram)

'Psychic Kids' isn't the only way that Peri is trying to help others either.

Having graduated from Columbia University's Master's Degree Program in Clinical Psychology and Education from the Spirituality Mind Body Institute, she is now trying to utilize her education and experience to deepen the understanding of energy as the common thread that links the past, present, and future.

She and her business partner, Lauren Chapman, have established a guided integration program that involves guided insight and guided intuition in a bid to harness spirituality as a new form of holistic healing.

But despite her undisputed credentials, there are still those who question the validity of her experiences.

Peri told MEAWW that being a skeptic was natural because people were always predisposed to rejecting an idea that challenges the framework that they have become attached to, and which they use to see the world and themselves. She said she had gotten her degree to change these perceptions.

"At the root of it, I wanted to bridge spirituality and science in a different way so I could talk to more people and I can have more language to describe some of these things and open up the conversation a little bit more," she explained. "So, when there are skeptics, I like to ask them how they feel and just talk them talk to them through it and have an open-minded approach."

"It always feels nice when someone can hold space for a reality that they might not feel comfortable in," she continued. "I think that if we can all try to listen more and be a little bit more open-minded then I think more people will share and more people will feel like they have opportunities to heal."

"Whenever I've had someone who can just listen to me and be curious instead of critical. I've been able to you know, navigate my life a lot easier and I hope that people can be kind in that way."

New episodes of 'Psychic Kids' premiere on Wednesdays on A&E.