A Story of Reincarnation

I had this whole plan whereby I was going to do all this research and write this grand blog on reincarnation throughout different cultures. I thought that would have been really interesting. I still do, and maybe one day I’ll take the time to do all of that research, but for now I think I’ll just talk a little about my daughter.

When she was 8 she decided she shouldn’t ever walk on the grass again. She said she was afraid she’d kill all the ants in the grass because she wouldn’t be able to see them. I asked her why she was so worried about tiny little ants and she said that every living thing was precious, and besides, what if those ants used to be somebody’s Mommy or Daddy.

We spent a lot of time outside when she was little, getting to know the Earth and breathing in lots of fresh air. Those were some of the best days of my life. Being a parent is all about teaching our children how to live in the world, how to take care of themselves and just generally keep them alive and healthy long enough for them to become adults.

They never tell you when you’re pregnant that those tiny humans have lessons for us parents as well.

A few nights a week during the warmer months, when the weather was just right, we’d go outside, light a fire in the fire ring and just talk… or sit in silence staring at the flames leaping up. One night when she was about 9 years old she sat there staring into the fire for the longest time. It was almost trance-like. Then she said, “I think I died in a fire in my last life. I think that’s why I’m so afraid of volcanoes.”

It was such an odd thing to say out of nowhere and it really surprised me to hear them come from her.

I knew about her immense fear of volcanoes. When we first moved to Pennsylvania when she was 6, she was afraid all the mountains here were sleeping volcanoes getting ready to erupt. I had to explain to her, again and again, that not all mountains were volcanic and that these in PA. were just regular old run of the mill ridges… nothing to be afraid of.

That was 19 years ago this year and I’m still not all together sure she doesn’t still hold on to a secret fear that all the ridges will one day explode with lava.

That night by the fire she was so certain of not only a previous life, but that she’d died in some sort of fire in her sleep.

That’s a hard thing to hear… your child talking about their own death. She wasn’t super emotional about it either. It was a cold statement of fact.

It’s these moments in my spiritual life that make me understand how strong my beliefs are. I never for moment—not then or since—questioned her statement. As far as I’m concerned, my baby girl had a past life in which she died in a fire.

She has always been fascinated by fire and for a short amount of time when she was growing up I wondered if I was raising a fire bug, lol. I think she just recognized it as being an integral part of her existence.

I think that’s what happens to a lot of us. We are so inexplicably drawn to something or someone and we really can’t tell you why. I chalk those moments up to reincarnation moments… partially anyway.

There are a lot of ways we receive lessons in our lives—through dreams, conversations with people, feathers we find on the ground. I think reincarnation, or rather the remembrance of it, is just another one of those signs… another path to growth.

My daughter’s 25 now and we haven’t spoken about reincarnation or that fire in well over a decade, but sometimes I can still see that look on her face when she’s near a lit candle or a bonfire. That look that tells me that even though she may not even believe it anymore, she once understood that there are more lives than just this one.


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