A journey back in time…
I’m Diane Nicholson. I’ve had several past lives, as I believe we all have. I remember many of them, but one was to shape the events that unfolded in this life-time too…
The first time I came here aged around 20, I cried most of the way back to London in the car. The pull to come back refused to leave me. I couldn’t watch a Scottish film or documentary without crying or feeling overwhelm and recognition. I felt that my ties to Scotland, to Culloden in particular, ran deep in my soul.
One year later in 1989, I bought a new home here. This home was being built on a plot of land right on the edge of Culloden Woods and mid-way between Culloden House and Culloden Battlefield. Everyone told me that I was crazy to leave a well-paid job in finance in the City of London to move 570 miles north to the Highlands of Scotland. I was afraid, of course I was, but to me, not coming felt crazy. I had no idea why, I just had to come here.
The first place I worked when I moved here was at Culloden House Hotel. I didn’t know it at the time, but this was where the Jacobite troops gathered the night before the battle. Far more was to follow…
I’m South African by birth, and moved to Ireland, Wales, London and then here to Scotland aged 22. My family have never had any ties with Scotland. However, ten years after moving here my mother called me and asked “Are you sitting down Di?” I said yes, and she proceeded to tell me that she’d had a professional family tree done, and my direct ancestors on her side of the family were living right here in Culloden, not just Inverness, but Culloden, at the time of the Battle in 1746. They absconded and left for Ireland directly after the battle. The family tree traces my mother’s family through those centuries to present times.
When I moved to Ireland aged 9, I had a natural affinity for Gaelic. For a young South African girl newly in an Irish school, I came top of my class repeatedly in Gaelic. I had no idea why, as I had no such affinity for any other languages. Somehow, Gaelic seemed to pass a language barrier with me.
I remained in my home in Culloden for 17 years until 2007 when I met Andy. The way we connected was so perfectly timed and synchronized, it felt like something greater than us.
The story of how Andy and I found one another while thousands of miles apart, then met just one week later, made the national press. I moved to Warwickshire to live and work with him, and he moved over from Austria where he had been working for 2 years.
I had found my soulmate, but my heart yearned for Scotland. Through those 5 years away from the Highlands I could not bring myself to sell my home in Culloden.
In 2013, something amazing happened. I was able to move back into my Culloden home; this time my soulmate came back with me. This was something I would never have believed possible, but it proved to me that dreams really can come true. He brought me home to Scotland, but neither of us realised at the time that we were in fact both coming home. I can’t even begin to express the joy I felt at being back in the Highlands again.
For years I wasn’t able to remember specific details of my past life in Scotland, which was strange because I’d had no problem remembering other lives in other places. Still, I intuitively knew that I had lived here, and that it had been as a man, yet clear recollection remained hazy. I would visit certain places and feel a strong recognition that I had been there before, but in a very different capacity. I would feel such a deep sadness in certain places that I didn’t know how to explain to the people I was with why tears were rolling down my face. I was able to list all the places I knew I’d been connected to, whilst having no such recognition or feeling with other places.
I started to remember my past life in Scotland
Then, after a series of quite incredible co-incidences over a short period of time, everything fell into place. The moment it dawned is ingrained in my memory. From there, like a domino effect, each piece of the puzzle unfolded one by one. I came to remember my life here. I remembered who I was, who I am. I was a Jacobite and fought in the Battle of Culloden. I remember it clearly, and many other things about my life in the Highlands. All of the places I’d visited that held memory for me were indeed places I had been. I spent weeks in a state of awe as everything began to sink in.
So much tied together that it’s left me humbled by just how immense our journeys really are, and by just how strongly our intuition and inner-knowing can guide us. It’s left Andy feeling the same.
The birthmark on my body is precisely where I was wounded in that battle. I’ve always been weak in that area of my body, and now I understand why.
The craziest thing of all… Culloden is not a large area, so it’s very likely that I would have met my own ancestors when they lived here.
Andy lived here in Scotland during that lifetime with me. He did not fight in the battle of Culloden. However, I was present in another lifetime and country when he did fight in battle, and it was devastating to see. I carried a great deal of pain with me because of that, yet until I’d been able to understand and heal that pain, I hadn’t known why I’d had such strong responses when I’d seen similar situations in the movies or on the news, or why I held such a fear of losing him again. It allowed me to release those fears, and the freedom and peace I feel as a result is immense.
Our souls and journey have been entwined for many lessons on one incredibly beautiful journey. It is too long a journey to explain in much more depth here…
I believe that we all have these journeys. Mine has guided me home to heal the past; a healing that needed to take place. Now that I can remember, I have been able to heal and understand in far greater depth who I am. So much makes sense to me now.
From the first week we began Outlander: The Past Lives Experience, we began receiving emails from people all over the world, who felt a similar connection to Scotland. We have helped many to remember their past life in Scotland too.