Sometimes souls here long for their first-life experience, the way an old person misses the joy and wonder of childhood. But not me. My first-life experience was one I’m proud to have endured but am glad to be rid of.
In the first-life, my body tensed itself up. It writhed constantly and fought against itself. My hands would find themselves in my mouth, teeth gnawing into my flesh. My own lips were also victim to my teeth, constantly being torn up until the area just above my chin was a mess of bloody flesh most of the time.
I could not walk, my body too twisted and tied up. I could not talk, and when I did, no one understood me. Except for my cousin, a girl born into this world six years before myself. Even my mother, though she loved me very much, couldn’t understand what I said. My tongue thrust itself in and out of my mouth continuously, and it was always swollen from being bitten so often. My head rolled and moved in different directions continuously, pulling my face muscles so that controlling speech was very difficult.
Tuesday was with me almost every moment since the day I was born. Hers was the voice that soothed me during the day, hers were often the hands that cleaned and clothed me. Hers were the eyes that saw who I was underneath the twisted, damaged body. And hers was the only first-life soul that met me in my dreams.
Maybe it’s because my first-life experience was so difficult that I was granted a glimpse into the next-life, and could go there in dreams. I talked with many people there, while my body slept in my mother’s assigned tiny log cabin. My ancestors chatted with me, some of them so many generations removed from myself that they had been alive when the continents had not yet been pulled into separate land masses on the surface of the earth.
These were the conversations that affected me the most. It was entirely clear that all of humanity had the same origin, and that we were all relatives, no matter how distant. I was shown analogies and patterns. I could see how a person was formed from one round, very tiny entity , a cell, that divided to become two, and from there four, then eight and so on. From one thing came a collection of many diverse things, organs and systems all working together to form a beautiful human creature.
I could see that all human beings were supposed to work together to form a whole, but that the world was not working properly. Just like parts of my body seemed intent on harming and even destroying other parts of my body, human beings would hurt other human beings, not letting them be themselves, but wounding them continuously instead. The strangest part was that it was justified by skin color. People considered black could be owned as slaves. But there were times when the so-called white master who owned me and my family had much darker skin than mine. I stayed inside, away from the sun most of the day, and by Fall, the Master had been outside so much that his skin had been roasted a deep brown beyond my own dark tan.
I didn’t have the mental capacity to develop this thought process during the day, but in dreams, when my spirit was free to roam on the threshold of the second world, I could understand. I could see the terrible trouble people were putting themselves through, hurting themselves by damaging others, like a body that ate its own fingers.
Despite understanding this sickness, I was so happy to be alive. And Tuesday was a big part of my joy. Her soul was one of the brightest I’ve ever met. She couldn’t let it shine too bright or it would have been snuffed out, like someone pinching out fire on a wick because they are jealous of a candle’s light. She protected herself – like she covered my hands with socks and sometimes even tied them to my body so my angry mouth wouldn’t bite off my fingers.
Time is not the same in the second world as is it in the first, so Tuesday is many ages all at once from my perspective. She is young and old, single and married, and her children are young and giving her grandchildren. But her light has remained strong throughout. I still talk to her in dreams sometimes. And I continue to pray that her light, and the lights of other strong souls, will keep healing the first world, and thus all the worlds beyond.