There are consequences to remembering a past life. I found this out the hard way when I was convinced that my nightly dreams of being a WWII nurse meant I should study nursing at college. I was drawn toward medicine and knew I wanted to help others.

I did well in school and had my pick of places to work when I finished getting my BSN. The only problem was that I hated working in hospitals. I didn’t like the doctors and honestly, couldn’t stand the smell of sickness. Call me despicable, but there it is.

A part of me recognized the problem. If indeed I had been a nurse in a past life, I was absolutely done with the profession in this one. In my youthful ignorance, I chose the path most remembered rather than the path of my heart.

It’s funny how life works out. My grandparents left me their 1940s house, complete with faded linoleum, wood paneling, and a crumbling pool. But it has a shed with an electrical outlet. Cans of turpentine line one shelf, old vanilla candles another, and strings of beat-up Christmas lights hang from the ceiling beams.

After my night shift ends I get a couple of blissful hours to sit in this shed clicking away at my laptop, pondering different worlds, new ways of describing love, and searching the Internet for the deadliest types of poison. My imagination runs free here, away from bright hospital lights and heart attacks.

Here, I can sip steaming mugs of the blackest coffee, watch the sky lighten to hazy purple, and pretend I’m the writer that I told my grandmother I’d be. Here, there are no limitations or guilt. I leave those at the door and fly into the unknown.

Image credit Mari Lezhava via Unsplash

This is a creative work of fiction inspired by the word prompt from

Photo Challenge #223 and MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie

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