I’ve been thinking a lot about premonitions recently. I don’t claim any understanding of how we can know things in advance. But it is more and more obvious to me that we do. And that we should listen. Of course, that’s easier said than done.
Last week my sister and I both received ‘intelligence’ of sorts about my mum. My sister dreamt that my mum was in a lot of pain and distress. The dream was so vivid it woke her (often a sign of a premonition). The next day I was at a conference in Brooklyn and kept feeling that something was wrong with mum; nothing as clear or vivid as my sister’s premonition, just this prickling sense of distress and something not being right. The next day we found out that mum had been in intense pain for two days. My sister got mum to the hospital and fortunately the doctors think it is not serious, just a muscular issue of some sort.
How does this invisible highway of information work? Is it universal consciousness? Or is it, as some scientists believe, that time isn’t linear and everything that has happened or will happen is present simultaneously, so we can glimpse through the layers into the future? Call it intuition, premonition or even a vision. I feel it is important soul information that downloads to help us, especially at key junctures in our lives.
The book Signs, Visits And Premonitions From Loved Ones Lost On 9/11 recounts how many of the 9/11 victims had premonitions before the disaster. Some had nightmares, others an eerie sense of foreboding that lasted anywhere from a day to months. Very few acted on their intuition. But one man did. Barrett Naylor had such a strong feeling he shouldn’t be in the city that day that he returned home. He worked in the World Trade Center and his premonition meant he survived 9/11. Even more extraordinary, an identical premonition in 1993 meant Naylor survived the earlier WTC bombings too.
One of the most extraordinary pieces of ‘knowing’ happened to me the day Laura was rushed to Beth Israel Hospital after her gynecologist found a suspicious lump. I remember sitting with Laura in the consultation room as a top cancer doctor said: ‘There is an 80 percent chance this is cancer. But cervical cancer is the easiest to treat (a fact I knew from friends who’ve had the disease).’ He added: ‘It could just be some kind of benign growth or cyst.’ His words were intended to reassure us, but I knew immediately this was serious, life threateningly serious. And I also knew with great clarity what I would do; that I would give up my job to look after Laura and that we would move in together. It was as if the path lit up before me.
I’ve wondered since if ‘this knowing’ came from a soul pact with Laura. Being with Laura on her final journey felt in some way like my destiny. Two weeks after Laura was properly diagnosed I emailed my sister to say: ‘I feel as if I’ve been preparing all my life for this’. Of course I was hoping that my role was to help save Laura. I was wrong. Laura didn’t survive. But perhaps we only see in part; the path lights up only so far, to help us take the steps we need to take.