Past Life Regression is based on the idea that our past experiences affect our current lives. I went to a well-known therapist in the field, Norton Berkowitz Ph.D., to find out more about my own past lives in the hopes of healing from various physical and emotional pains. What you are about to read is the story of a life I once led.
(This is the third post in the series. For more info on past life regression and the hypnosis process, check out the first installment, "She Never Came Back," and the second, "A Cold and Bitter End.")
This time when I looked down at my legs and feet, I was wearing clothes that could have come out of my own closet at some point -- faded jeans, platform sandals. My hair was long and my toenails were painted a baby blue.
How old are you? Dr. Berkowitz asked.
20 years old, I answered.
What year is it? Dr. Berkowitz wanted to know.
1970, I answered.
I was a 20-year-old woman in 1970, somewhere in the U.S. I didn't stop to figure out my precise location because everything was happening so fast. It was evening, just after sunset -- the sky was dusky violet, not yet pitch black. Still, it was too dark to see my surroundings clearly or even the faces around me.
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I was in the back of a van, sitting in between two guys who were around my age. They were stoned or maybe drunk, but I wasn't -- I was pregnant. I cradled my belly with my hands as the van bounced along. The bumpy ride was making me uncomfortable.
Suddenly the van stopped. We were in an empty parking lot behind what looked to be some kind of convenience store. In the windows there were cigarette advertisements and signs for milk ($1.05), eggs (62 cents), and bread (49 cents). The guys sitting next to me scrambled out of the van; there were two more in the front. I was the only woman. I watched them through the window. The two I'd been sitting in between were trying to smash the back door lock -- I could see a chain and hear banging noises. One of them was laughing. The driver stepped forward and shoved the guy who was laughing -- he was scared and angry. He was also, I realized, my baby's father. I remembered that he told me not to get out of the van under any circumstances, but I jumped out anyway -- I couldn't let him beat up his buddy. As soon as he saw me he stopped and yelled. "Get back in the van!"
But just then another car pulled up, a black sedan of some kind. More men were piled inside than seemed possible. Instant chaos. There was shouting, some kind of argument about somebody getting ripped off and drugs and payback and why you think you can mess with my family's store? Then there was a deafeningly loud pop, followed by a split second of surreal silence ... then there was running, men running, shoving past me. Then there was darkness.
What happened next? Dr. Berkowitz asked gently.
The images were blurring together, I felt dizzy. I was lying on a hospital bed, trying to sit up. A white hot light was shining in my eyes; I could make out shadowy faces in standing over me. Surgical masks, the smell of rubbing alcohol. A sharp pain. The baby wasn't ready, it was too early. They took her away.
And when did you die? Dr. Berkowitz asked.
The same year, I said. I saw a needle, a spoon. My arm limp. I overdosed, I said. I wanted to die ... it was my fault about the baby. I should've stayed in the van. I never should've been with that guy in the first place.
Did she go into the light when she died or is she still with you? Dr. Berkowitz asked.
She's still with me, I said.
Where is she?
She's behind me, I said. She really feels bad for bothering me, she says she's sorry.
It's time to guide her to the light, said Dr. Berkowitz.
Unlike William, this woman (I never knew her name) took my hand right away. We moved together towards the warm white light. Someone was waiting there. A little girl.
Who is it? Dr. Berkowitz asked.
It's her daughter, I said. The little girl was laughing and smiling and I saw her mother scoop her up in her arms before the light enveloped them completely.
So now comes the part where you're probably wondering how this story relates to my life today. Actually it explained something I've been wondering about for years -- why, when I was pregnant with my daughter almost 12 years ago, I was absolutely terrified -- irrationally so -- of losing the baby. My pregnancy was normal by all accounts, but the fear was so intense it would wake me up at night. At the time, I chalked it up to hormones and an anxious personality. Now I get what was really going on.
Stay tuned for the next installment of Stepping Into My Past Lives, when I revisit a less-than-happy childhood.
Have you ever wondered about your past lives?
Image via Beatrice Murch/Flickr