I don’t know if there is any definitive truth about reincarnation; I only know what I have worked out and resolved for myself. Which is that it was my choice—on a soul level—to own my connection to the person I felt an undeniable and substantiated soul attraction to.
I mean, who decides this, if not us?
The fact is, for someone like me who has always had what might be called an over-active imagination, who realized in her mid-thirties that she could have been anyone who lived before, simply by imagining it, there was no simple answer.
I did, however, once attend a past-life regression session. I went to the group session instead of the private one because (a) it was half the cost, and (b) I wanted to see what I thought of the practitioner before I went one-on-one. The upshot was, I saw myself as a maker of stained-glass windows for Gothic cathedrals in the Middle Ages. This fit in quite well with my current occupation as an artist—one who creates windows to the inner world. My thinking at the time was, okay, it made sense, it was interesting, but the knowledge didn’t really add anything to my life or change it.
The group was regressed twice, and the second time I saw myself as a bus driver, driving a busload of passengers who got on and off at various destinations. I was happy with that vision, as it signified I was no one special, just the driver of a bus, and therefore my ego had not gotten in the way.
It was only later that I realized bus spelled backwards is sub, and what I was really doing was taking people on an inner journey. A journey perhaps, to their deeper selves. To what lies beneath. Because that’s the place where I myself was in those days. That’s where I was also going, towards the book I would begin to write over a decade later, when I would take my readers with me on the journey. A journey through my inner world. My sub-world. The world beneath the outer world. My paintings had already done it for me, yet no one other than myself really understood their meaning.
Okay, there is that. And then there is the factor of my life-long desire or purpose to be needed. It formed the basis for all my attachments. It was the reasoning behind my choice of partners. It can be said that I was happiest when I gave birth, and suddenly there was this new-born who needed me as no other. Nurturing him and caring for him put everything else into perspective, and I knew my purpose on a primal level that would forever be unmatched by my artistic accomplishments.
But time passes. Children grow up. And my need to be needed eventually found its way to the young girl I had left behind many years ago—not in another life, but in this one. She was me, my own dis-owned self. I had painted her a couple of years after the past-life regression. She was submerged under water, a girl who was drowned but alive, waiting to be fetched to the surface. Waiting for me to need her enough to go back and find her. Bring her back into my life. I had abandoned her when we were seventeen, because it seemed better to drown than to live through my reality at the time.
Though I located my dis-owned self before I brought a new soul into this world, I did not explore the issue. When I had time later, I did. When my son began to outgrow his need for me, I drifted back to the girl I left behind. I used words this time. Whereas before I had painted her picture and brought her to life in that way, this time I ensouled her in language. In words and story that brought the painting to life, and brought on an unexpected result, yet not one that was totally surprising. My connection to Petra Hutcheon, the young girl was killed during World War II when the Nazis shot down her plane over the Bay of Biscay.
Maybe Petra needed me. Maybe she needed me to remember her. And I would, too, once I remembered the self I left behind…
It’s a long story, a fascinating one to me, how I connected to the girl who was killed six years and six months to the day before I was born. It’s in my book, The Nancy Who Drew: The Memoir That Solved A Mystery. And in my book trailer.
So here’s what I like to think. I like to think that Petra and I connected during those six years after her death and prior to my birth. We made a deal. A pact. We had an agreement. I agreed to resurrect her somehow. Whatever it took I would do it. She would not be forgotten. I would bring her to life again. Through me, but her name, her being would be brought forward with me, into the future.
I didn’t have to think of myself as her in a past life. All I had to do was to keep my soul agreement. An agreement that went beyond the portals of so-called death.
I don’t know that this is the truth of reincarnation for everyone, but it feels right for me.
© Nancy Wait 2012
Nancy Wait is the author of The Nancy Who Drew (2011)