I distinctly remember back to my freshman year of college when one of professors used the expression “in a past life.” She was telling a story involving her days as a young telephone operator. I understood what she meant – how the years of experience and change had divided her life into distinct eras. But I had yet to experience the same for myself.
The expression stayed with me. Crossed my mind from time to time. Today, 12 years later, I have come to fully realize it’s meaning first-hand.
In a past life I worked in a daycare, with a first grade class that I loved.
In a past life I was in another relationship, and envisioned a different future.
In a past life I planned to be a veterinarian who specialized in large animals.
In a past life I took karate and might have been able to round-house kick you in the face.
In a past life I was a smoker, first Marlboro Lights, then Parliament Lights.
In a past life I was a college freshman, having the time of my life.
Those who know me know I like to reminisce. I enjoy the thought of life eras. But in a way, I think my viewpoint of this notion is quite different than my professor’s. It seemed she very much divided her current self from those past eras. As if those memories of herself could have belong to someone else’s life. My eras are very much my own. They all have made me the person I am today. Instead of isolating my current era from those of the past, I embrace them, call upon them for reference, and continue to learn from my previous self.