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Rebecca Campbell reveals how her dream house came to her in a vision about a garden

As I walked through yet another damp, poky flat in central London, I felt a familiar crushing of spirit. 

My husband and I both worked hard in good careers, but all we could afford were these tiny, soulless places with not a scrap of green space. The mismatch between these concrete boxes and my dream home was so vast, I began to think we’d be better off out of the city. 

My dream home wasn’t a figment of my imagination: it had come to me in a crystal-clear vision, and I was sure it really existed. 

It was the garden I saw most clearly. Each day as I meditated, I’d see myself lying on the softest grass, which seemed to hug me back, in a beautiful rose garden filled with colour and perfume. 

Rebecca Campbell explains how a vision of rose garden unleashed her creativity. The UK-based author says that she first discovered a love of roses in 2010

The vision was quite specific: David Austin Roses and an ancient wild rosa gallica. Petals of pastel pink, peach and lemon, with a climbing rose forming a beautiful, sprawling canopy. 

I first discovered my deep connection to roses back in 2010, when I noticed how inspired I felt around them. The rose has been used as a heart healer — physically and spiritually — for thousands of years all over the world, and I started buying myself six blooms each week, dabbing rose oil around my heart area and drinking rose tea. 

I’d been going through a difficult time. Two close friends had died suddenly, an 11-year relationship had ended and it was becoming clear to me that the life and career I’d built for myself as a successful advertising creative director was not what I wanted any more. 

It was subtle, but in this stressful time I noticed that being around roses gave me a sense of calm. 

I’d always been fascinated by the big questions of life. Spirituality and mysticism became my passions, and I immersed myself in the intuitive arts, training in sixsensory consulting, sacred plant medicine and energy healing. 

Rebecca reveals that each day as she meditated, she'd see herself lying on the softest grass, which seemed to hug her back, in a beautiful rose garden filled with colour and perfume

Rebecca reveals that each day as she meditated, she’d see herself lying on the softest grass, which seemed to hug her back, in a beautiful rose garden filled with colour and perfume

Tentatively, I started a new career on the side, writing books and leading workshops on intuition. Then, in my late 20s, I decided to devote myself to my spiritual career full-time, and eventually founded The Inner Temple Mystery School, which provides training for mystics, intuitives and healers. 

I quickly learnt how much more my own creativity and intuition flowed when I was in nature. Queen Mary’s Rose Gardens in London’s Regent’s Park was my favourite spot. 

I noticed how inspired and at peace I was amongst the flowers. I actually wrote two successful books on life purpose and intuition whilst sitting on a park bench amongst the thousands of roses. 

And then, ‘my’ rose garden started calling to me.

People might roll their eyes at the thought of a real house I’d never seen before coming to me in a vision, but the same vision kept coming for two years. It was frustrating not knowing where it was! 

HOW TO ROSE-TINT YOUR DAY 

Floral cuppa 

Start your day with a fragrant cup of rose tea and you are actively choosing to open yourself up to positive emotions. You can buy this at a supermarket, or you can dry your own petals and steep them in boiling water. Make sure you know where the roses have come from as you don’t want them to have been sprayed with chemicals. 

Anoint your heart 

Get a bottle of essential rose oil and place a drop of it on your heart each morning after your shower. Take time to smell the perfumed oil and imagine your heart opening as you do so. Ensure the rose oil is mixed with a carrier oil if putting it straight onto your skin. 

Nurture the garden 

Plant a rose in your garden or in a pot on the windowsill. Tend to it each day and use the time as a mini-meditation, and focus on what you want from life. 

And then, one morning in 2018, I woke up just knowing where it might be: at Glastonbury in Somerset. It’s a deeply spiritual town that I’d visited many times, but I’d never viewed any houses in the area. Five minutes later, I was scrolling through estate agent websites online — and there it was, ‘my’ house. A cute little stone cottage, more than 500 years old, with original flagstone floors. 

My husband Craig, an accountant, took a look and had a good feeling, too. We arranged a viewing and drove to Somerset. The moment we walked through the door, we knew it was home. 

Looking back now, I can’t believe how certain I felt. Although it had a big outside space, the garden was horribly neglected. Concrete had been poured over much of it and the rest was dry, barren dirt. But still, it felt ‘right’. 

Within 24 hours our offer was accepted, and a few months later we were in. We immediately set about creating my dream garden, and slowly brought our dead patch of ground back to life. With the help of a local gardener, we planted 20 new rose bushes and learnt how to care for them. 

With pinks and peaches, yellows and whites, bushes and climbers, we attempted to recreate my rose garden vision. And each day, as I witnessed their fragrance and beauty, I felt my heart open a little bit more. 

Locals would stop and share their appreciation for the ‘return’ of the garden. We smiled and nodded, not really knowing what they meant. 

Then, more shoots started to sprout from the barren earth, revealing incredible climbing roses, honeysuckle and jasmine. Ancient rose bushes, which must have lain dormant for years, took over the entire front of the house. Each week, it seemed like more flowers came back to life. 

As roses flourished all around me, I began studying their mystical, symbolic and healing powers. I learned that the rose is an ancient flower reaching back more than 35 million years, with fossilised remains being found in Asia, Europe and North America. 

Almost every religious tradition seemed to have a sacred feminine figure associated with the flower, from the Virgin Mary to Venus, the Roman goddess of love. 

Eventually, I began to write a book on everything I had learnt about roses to help others connect with their sacred energy. Every day, my spiritual practice incorporates taking a moment to meditate with the flowers.

To accompany the book, I also produced an oracle deck — rosethemed spiritual cards, a little like tarot, which are used as a tool for self-reflection; a quick way to tune into your intuition and help you make decisions. 

Then, something astonishing happened. The day that I was to submit my manuscript for The Rose Oracle Guidebook to my publisher, we had a different gardener come to cut back the climbing rose that had got into the gutters on the roof. 

As we chatted, he told us that when he was a boy he’d helped his dad tend this very garden — and how happy he was to see it return to its original condition, with owners who loved it as much as the lady who lived here then did. 

He said that although the house and garden had been neglected for years, two decades earlier, this lady had treasured them and people all over the town would come to admire her roses. 

Each year, she’d go to the Chelsea Flower Show to see the David Austin rose display and return with a new one to plant. 

And back then, the name of the house was . . . The Old Rose Cottage. No wonder, from the moment we walked through the gate, it felt like home. 

As the roses began to bloom, our family did too. Within a month, I was pregnant with my son and a couple of years on we’re expecting a girl. We haven’t yet decided on a name, but Rose is top of the list. 

I still believe it was the garden that called me here — and I feel profoundly grateful that the roses found me at last. 

  • The Rose Oracle: A 44-Card Deck and Guidebook (Hay House, £19.99). 

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