Past Life Pair of Jeans / by grace mcgrade




Time is not linear. The past, present and future are happening simultaneously, non-linear, in a loop or maybe a spiral- continuously bringing us back to things we haven’t understood. Sometimes trauma, or relationships, where the characters change, but the stories remain the same.

When we talk about past lives, I forget that they are not actually behind us, the same way time is not a straight line. Past lives are really happening simultaneously with each present moment, and the decisions we make have ramifications and ripples on those lives too..and vice versa. Sometimes, in distinct moments I can feel those ripples, like whispers. I can feel the relationships between events folding in and out of space and time with perfect impossible geometry. In stillness, I can have flashes of lucidity and feel resonances of other timelines.

I can be retracing footsteps in old locations and feel like I must be running into old ghosts of myself, trapping translucent memories with breathless wonder. I could be driving down a highway and think, this car could be a horse, or even a spaceship- and maybe in another timeline, it is.

Why do some decades or objects, cultures, or ancient texts hold a sense of familiarity? Why are we drawn to the things we are? Are they pathways to past lives or merely avenues for expressing individuality?


I have been told my various mystics that I was a dolphin in a past life, and an Queen of an intergalactic race known as the Pleiadians, and a witch who was burned at the stake. Also, that it’s my first incarnation as a human? It’s very easy for me to get wrapped up in these stories, or assign egoic meaning to them- but no one ever seems to get told they were a garbage man in a past life, or worked at a 7/11, or anything like that. Those possibilities are more likely. Everyone I’ve spoken to about past lives were grandiose things, like Cleopatra, or Jesus, or Abraham Lincoln.. Seems a bit strange and presumptuous, but my generation isn't known for it’s humility. This is like some new, twisted form of plagiarism. Soul plagiarism.

I cannot explain why some people seem to arrive in this world with a sense of knowing and belonging, and why others seem to gasp, grapple and sputter until the very end. Why some elderly retain the appearance of a child and why some children seem to have come in with shrouds of age. Regardless, we are all comprised of the same energy, the same luminous source material- just compartmentalized in the form of human individuality. If you are going to take credit for the lifetime of someone else, you may as well decide on just about everyone- as separation in and of itself, is an illusion.


Nevertheless, my life seems to have reoccuring themes and patterns, images that circle around until I can understand them. I am intoxicated by the fictitious draw of the past and future. Time hangs above our shoulders, atom-thin, like an inescapable net that compels us to be anywhere but in the present. We are all obsessed with the past, peering into our phones, drawing inspiration from old decades and romanticising simpler times. Predicting our demise.

I’ll admit I find comfort in old things.The future is uncertain, branching out in front of us at the speed of light, into trillions of fragmented possibilities. There is fixed stability in old books, stone sculptures, antique slip dresses, and latin script. Memories are fragile, and life is brief, but these objects that have outlived us all, retain a quality of magic.


Sometimes, I can sense chains of events before they occur, purely based on the  paranormal phenomenon of pattern that existence follows. Relationship dynamics that seem to play out on a loop, with different characters but sometimes even the same setting...The daunting familiarity in new people who always end up being impactful. I feel more secure when domestic trivia doesn’t distract from tarot or astrology, when I can decide on a timeline and ground myself in a predictable future. Otherwise it feels like the endless array of possible outcomes is overwhelming, so many apocalyptic potentials looming over our heads in the form of pixelated predictions. All of this is so silly, because realistically, quantum physically, the past present and future are happening simultaneously.


Before I realized that time was a construct, I lived in a sickly and confined version of reality. It is a real miracle, that in this blip of time, this miniscule thread on the tapestry of life, I have had the chance to exist in a time of such flux and change. Now when I enter room, it seems like atoms and astral dust race to keep up with my perception, quivering, glimmering and not quite certain. I sometimes wonder if anything really exists, or if reality is just a malleable substance to be toyed with, subject to our beliefs and expectations.