Do Children Exist Prior to Conception and Birth?

Elisabeth Hallett

See Elisabeth’s site and books at Light Hearts

Do our children really exist somehow before conception? And if they do, what are the patterns that bring us together as parent and child? Personally, I would love to believe that my children were destined for me and nobody else… that I was chosen as the ideal mother for this pair of wonder-kids. And indeed many stories of pre-birth communication do support the view that our children are predestined to be with us.

An Australian woman recently sent me her story. She had two daughters, and didn’t plan to bear any more children; her husband had undergone a vasectomy following the second girl’s arrival. But six years later, the mother had a vision at the edge of sleep. Three beings in luminous robes presented her with a beautiful baby boy and told her that she was ready to have her “next child,” and that this child awaited her. The message and vision were compelling enough to lead to a vasectomy reversal-and the birth of a baby boy the following year.

The stories in last month’s column (“Trailed By A Cherub”) suggest there are persevering souls who are determined to join their destined parents. But are these arrangements hard and fast? Some experiences point to a certain creative flexibility at play in the pre-conception world. For example, a four-year-old girl told her mother that before she was born, she and Jesus used to sit together while she decided whether to be a boy in one family or a girl in another. “She said she decided at the last minute to come to us as a girl,” the mother reports, “and then she and Jesus laughed and went off to play till it was time to go.” It may not be hard evidence, but it’s thought-provoking!

When parents-to-be experience a persistent “visitor,” there is sometimes the suggestion of a time limit-a window of opportunity. Patricia was fearful of becoming pregnant, although she had powerful dreams of a little boy for over a year. While wide awake one day, she finally heard a clear message that this was her last chance to bear this child, as he had to “move on.” Move on to where? Perhaps to another prospective family?

Sharon was the mother of two small boys when she wrote, “As Daniel is getting older, we think often about whether or not we will give birth to another child. I still feel the presence of a little one ‘waiting in the wings,’ a little blond boy.” After a year of uncertainty, Sharon decided against having another child. But she mused, “I have a question as to what happens to these little guys who seem to have such a strong spirit, when you say ‘no’ to their birth?”

In researching my book “Soul Trek,” I occasionally encountered a situation where a woman felt uncomfortably pressured by the sense of “someone wanting to be born.” In one such case, a mother already had three children but was reluctantly preparing to conceive another boy whose presence she felt around her. “I’m pretty resigned that I will do it,” she wrote, “because I don’t want to get to the other side and meet this person who will tell me that I just didn’t want him to come.”

True, there are stories of pre-birth experiences that seem to suggest we’re duty-bound to bear the children appointed to us by destiny or a higher power. But other stories imply more of a give and take, a process of mutual choosing with freedom on both sides-potential parent and possible child. Such accounts can provide creative ideas for entering into this kind of conversation.

APPPAH member Mary Knight (author of “Love Letters Before Birth and Beyond”) shares her own experience. “For years, I’ve felt a little girl presence waiting patiently ‘in the ethers.’ She appears in my mind’s eye as having dark, black curly hair and brown eyes. When I mentioned her to some writer friends many years ago, one of them suggested that perhaps I was imagining a character in a future novel. In the last few years, her presence has been seen by two psychics on two different occasions-unsolicited. The last one said that if I didn’t bring her in through my body that she’d probably find another way to me-which is what I’ve told her she needs to do.

“Still, there’s a pull… and a little guilt that I’m not complying. However, I know that she wants it to be a free choice for all of us, and I just can’t bring myself to it. There is a sense of loss with this choice. I know that I am missing a precious gift. I think I should probably create and perform a ritual in which we acknowledge letting go of each other. I will promise to be ‘looking for her’ in other places throughout my life.”

A mother of two found that the persistent visits of a potential child helped her to clarify her life’s direction. “About six months after my second child was born, I became aware of another female being who wanted to be born to us. She would always appear off to my upper right consciousness and even though I love babies and nurturing, I knew having another baby would be very hard for me. I sent those messages to her with love whenever she appeared.

“I can’t remember when she stopped visiting me; perhaps four to six months later. I wanted to get back into my music and I have been able to do that now. I feel so vitalized, so excited about what I am doing now that a baby would be quite an adjustment for me. I feel that she hung around a respectable amount of time, giving me time to really think about my priorities, yet not pressuring me in any way; I believe she stopped appearing when I made a firm commitment to pursue my music again.”

Some accounts even offer glimpses of the alternate routes a child may take, when the answer turns out to be “no.” Anne lives in a community of families with shared values. Early in their marriage, she and her husband decided to remain childless. “Around the time that the whole question got settled,” she recalls, “I became aware that someone was hovering around me quite often, hoping that she could be born to us. One day, as I was walking through the woods, the presence became much stronger than usual and it was almost as if I could see her-for it was clearly now a she. It would be an exaggeration to say that it was a vision of any kind. It was more like a clear picture in my mind. She wasn’t pretty, or even cute in the usual sense. But she was very interesting looking. She had lots of character in her face, and dynamic greenish eyes, a largish nose, dark curly hair. Very mischievous and looking very strong willed.

“I spoke to her definitely, telling her that I could see she would be great fun to be with and it would no doubt be a joy to be her mother. But it really wasn’t in the plan for us to have any children at all. So I suggested to her that there were many other fine families around the community that she could join. And if there was any particular reason she wanted to know us, we could still be part of her life. Shortly after this, I didn’t feel her around any more.

“Recently, it occurred to me that a certain girl in our community may be the same soul. Not because I have any particular affinity with her, but because she resembles the girl I saw in my mind and also because the personality she is apparently exhibiting-which is quite forceful and unusual-reminds me of the child that I met in my mind.”

A prominent psychologist has questioned the value of sharing personal stories that suggest pre-birth communication. He asks, “How much of this is wishful thinking or fantasy, combined with a modicum of intuition, and a certain level of inner processing that provides images and inner dialogue?” His point is well taken and sounds a valid note of caution; yet I’m persuaded the subject is worth pursuing in spite of such factors. Our colleague goes on to say, “The main question is what can be meaningfully learned from all of this?”

Perhaps to say “we learn” is not quite right. These stories can change us. They free the imagination to explore what was once an absolute void before the beginning of life. They allow us to guess at possible patterns in the mystery of relationships. On this frontier, our vision of reality may “shapeshift”.

More intimately, they’ve changed the way I see my children, bringing a certain grace of gratefulness. From time to time I find myself thinking — even saying aloud-“Thank you for coming to our family.” The possibility that they might as easily have joined some other set of parents is a humbling one. Consider the surprising conversation with her little boy that one mother recalls:

“When Brett was between three and four years old, he was very angry with me one day. He said, ‘I hate you, Mommy. You weren’t even my first choice for a Mommy.’ I somehow managed to stay centered and asked, ‘Who was your first choice?’

“It was a woman from the Philippines but she was already taken.”

Editor’s Note: Special thanks to Mary Knight for her story.

For more information about her book Love Letters: Before Birth and Beyond,

Carol Bowman for a short quote from her message board at Children’s Past Lives; contributors to Soul Trek, and Light Hearts.

Please join in exploring this frontier. If you have had experiences that suggest communication before conception or before birth, please consider sharing them through future installments of this column.

You can reach the editor by email or write to Elisabeth Hallett, P.O. Box 705, Hamilton, MT 59840

Brief Book Review

Sarah Hinze: Coming From the Light: Spiritual Accounts of Life Before Life (Simon & Schuster, 1997).

It is often said that when the time is ripe for a new idea, it will occur to several people at once.

Unknown to each other, Sarah Hinze and I both gathered stories of pre-birth and pre-conception contacts over many years. Her book, initially published as Life Before Life, has been revised and reissued in a Pocket Books edition as Coming From the Light: Spiritual Accounts of Life Before Life (Simon & Schuster, 1997). The new edition is enhanced by an Afterword by Sarah’s husband, psychologist Brent Hinze, Ph.D., in which he draws comparisons between near-death and pre-birth experiences and analyzes the aspects of a “typical” pre-birth contact.

Sarah’s approach is deeply spiritual and reverent. She presents more than thirty inspiring personal stories from parents and adoptive parents, describing connections with their children before conception and during pregnancy (or the pre-adoption period). Sarah’s own experiences are perhaps the most remarkable of all, told in the moving first chapter. It opens with the words, “My interest in life before life is very personal. Before each of our nine children was born, I sensed that he or she was preparing to come to earth.”

Excerpts of this lovely book can be read online at Sarah’s website.

INVITATION: Please join in exploring the mysteries of communication before conception. If you have had such an experience, please consider sharing it here! You can contact me by e-mail at or by letter: Elisabeth Hallett, Box 705, Hamilton MT 59840.


-Lynn J 2016-07-01 20:26:01

My 23 year old son dated a very sweet girl for over a year when he was 21 – 22. I adored this girl. They stopped dating although they do remain friends. He has been with a new girlfriend for about six months now, and they seem very serious about pursuing a future. Two months ago I dreamed that I was entering my mother’s house, where I grew up. My mother still lives there on her own now, as a widow. In the dream it seemed that my son owned the house, and my mom was nowhere to be seen. I suppose she had passed away and my son had purchased her home. I entered the house with my car keys in my hand and set down a few shopping bags, which seemed to contain children’s gifts. Just inside the doorway there was a little wooden table and chairs, toddler-sized. A beautiful little girl, approximately 3 years old, was colouring at the table while waiting for me to arrive. Her little rubber boots were standing by the door as if I was supposed to be taking her somewhere. The girl shouted “NANA!!!!!!” and jumped on my lap while I was setting down the bags. She was so very real. I could smell fresh Johnson’ baby shampoo in her hair, and feel the soft touch of her baby skin .. like silk on a newborn. She sat on my lap and was so excited to see me. This girl was so beautiful. She looked like a “baby version” of my son’s first girlfriend, combined perfectly with some of my son’s features. I don’t think I could willfully imagine such a realistic combination of two people. The little girl snuggled into my lap and I was stroking her hair. I could even feel the texture on the back of her sweatshirt. Then she looked deep into my eyes. Her own eyes started looking huge and eternal like the universe. Suddenly, part of my subconscious realized that I didn’t have a grand daughter (in real life), and that I didn’t even know her name. I felt embarrassed asking my own granddaughter what her name was, so I didn’t. Instead, I asked the girl “What year were you born in again, honey?” I knew deep down that it was currently 2016, so I asked her “Were you born in 2015?…. 2014? …. 2013? ….. 2012??” I made it sound like a game. All the while this girl just laughed and kept saying “No, silly!!!” and shaking her head with a smirk on her face. I counted all the way back to the year 2000 before realizing there was no way the girl was 16 years old. Then I stopped counting the years backward and a revelation seemed to come to me. I said, “Oh, I get it! You were born in the future!!!” The little girl covered her mouth with her hands as toddlers will do when laughing, and erupted into endless giggles and little snorts as if she was keeping a big, funny secret from me. She nodded between giggles, then put her finger over her mouth as if to say “shhhhh” — again like we were keeping a secret. I woke up with an intense feeling of love and connection. I still yearn for this little girl. I know the smell of her hair, her voice, her eyes, her giggles. I have no reason to believe that my son will reconnect with the girlfriend who resembled this child. They now live 200 miles apart and they are both dating other people. But, in my heart I am sure that this child will be born. It was beyond “real”. The dream happened on April 13, 2016, and I have a very strong premonition that this child will be born on April 13 of a future year, as a daughter to my son. This vision implies that I will have a great role in her life, perhaps caring for her while her parents go to work. I can’t wait to meet her again!! I did not mention this dream to my son, but the other day my son said “I’d love to own Grandma’s house one day”. His grandmother’s house was the one in the dream, where his little girl lived and waited for me to arrive.

    -raychel 2018-04-08 20:54:46

    plz will u msg me if it does happen ,I do believe u has a vision dream ,I hope it comes true ,the future is undecided and ur son could get back with this girl ,maybe u could work some magic and arrange for her to visit when hes about ,maybe it was a sign that ur help is needed….I hope to hear from you xxx

-Jessica Hynes 2016-02-10 21:05:44

I had an interesting experience with my second child. Everything I have researched about this has seemed to have happen in the dream state. My experience happened in real time. My husband and I were watching television and we saw a small form silhouetted in the doorway. I leaned over to my husband and said “Look its Connor.. shh,. I think he is going to try and scare us” (Connor was my, at the time, two year old son.) Well this child quietly, walked from my side of the bed to the end of the bed where he seemed to duck down.. it was then I noticed the bed of curls gathered at his neck.. I sat up and peered over the bed and the child was gone. I turned to my husband and said.. I think we just saw a ghost, that was not Connor. My husband got up and looked under the bed, and then went to check on our son, who was sound asleep in the other room. He was flabbergasted, as was I. I told him, half jokingly, “Well, if we have a baby boy with ringlets we know he visited us this night.” Fast forward a year.. I give birth to a baby boy.. a year later..that baby boy, Liam, has a head full of curls, and not only that, but toddled just like the child we saw in the room. He came to visit us shortly before I got pregnant with him. Both my husband and I witnessed it and looking at him now, he is two, there is no doubt in my mind that this is the child I saw that night, as he is about the same age. We are truly blessed. 🙂 Thank you for sharing the article. Namaste.

-jenny 2015-05-27 16:18:53

when i was 11 i woke up one morning and it was the weekend so i didn’t get up right away. i was staring at the ceiling for about 10mins just thinking and then i turned my head to the side and saw a lil girl probably around 6 to 8 years old. tan in a white dress and white flowers on her head and she was just looking at me. i was in shocked and for about 20 seconds i just looked at her she smiled and i rubbed my eyes because i couldn’t believe it. and when i looked again she was gone but i was left with a beautiful feeling. a warmth i can not explain. i wasn’t scared it was a feeling of well being something i never felt before and years passed and at the age of 17 i had a daughter. for years i didn’t think about what happened but now my daughter is 7 and she looks just like the little girl i saw that day. i googled this several times and most people talk about having dreams but i was actually awake and it was soo real and so beautiful. I just cant explain it.

    -Anna - Tony's Assistant 2015-05-29 6:13:05

    Dear Jenny – Thank you for sharing such a touching experience in which I believe you met “more than your future child”.
    You wrote: “I googled this several times and most people talk about having dreams but I was actually awake and it was soo real and so beautiful. I just can’t explain it”.
    What you experienced was your dream process breaking through into waking consciousness; so it is “waking dreaming”.
    I like to quote a small part of Tony’s experiences:
    “The more I observe this process, the more it seems to me that past cultures used it, but did not recognise it as being an extension of the dream. They considered such movements and vocalisation or intuition as being the work of God, Spirit or spirits. (I am not disagreeing with it being a holy experience at times, but want to stress that through understanding its connections with the dream process, one can avoid many pitfalls and misunderstandings.) It was violently crushed in some ages, being so feared. In our own culture, which has a fairly recent record of terror and persecution regarding any spontaneous expression of the unconscious, we are only now beginning a wider exploration of its potential. Having closely observed the very direct connection between the process of dreaming and the experience of ESP, religious experience, spontaneous healing, racial memory and cosmic consciousness, it seems the dream, and especially this conscious lucid dreaming, is one of the richest areas to explore.
    See and
    Anna 🙂

-Ashley 2013-12-11 2:37:15

I am now 7 months pregnant and fully believe I met the spirit of my child 3 years ago in both dream form and in the presence of a little girl in my house. I had a feeling from the start of this pregnancy that I was having a girl and I knew her personality completely. I am in fact having a girl and have been decorating, buying clothes and books and planning in a style that is totally opposite of my own personality. I’ve heard of children with past life regretion or claiming that they chose their parents or of parents having dream of being pregnant before know it but I’m curiouser if anyone has ever heard of this before. I truly feel like I’m carrying an old soul that I know very well.

-Clairissa 2013-11-23 5:04:11

Hello ! My name is Claire and i am trying to piece together a dream that i have had. About a week ago in a dream i had a vision of a child and i saw what my child and what she would look like and bit of her personality. My mother told me she dreamed of fish and my sister told me she saw my face more than 3 times on some women who had babies. I am in my second year of college and am definitely trying to enjoy life and not have any kids before the right time. My guy and i are actually refraining from sex for personal reasons and we have never had sex without condoms. I can not come to a conclusion and would like some help with configuring an answer.

    -Tony Crisp 2013-11-24 14:05:13

    Claire – Well, your dream is probably really showing you what you baby would be like if and when you have it. The fact that your sister saw you face at least three times connected with women who had babies seems to be a clincher.

    But you have read the piece about babies appearing prior to conception, but in some of the cases babies wait for years, but if the wait goes on too long then their choose other parents. It depends on whether there is work for them to do in the world that are linked with events in their future or whether they want to be born in your family.

    To quote from Edgar Cayce; “The fact that man’s body is a speck of dust on a small planet leads to the illusion that man himself is a small creation. The measure of the soul is the limitless activity of mind and the grandeur of imagination. No soul takes on flesh without a general plan for the experi¬ence ahead. The personality expressed through the body is one of many that the individuality might have assumed. Things other than pattern concern the soul in its selection of a body: coming situations in history, former associations with the parents, the incarnation, at about the same time, of souls it wishes to be with and with whom it has problems to work out. In some cases the parents are the whole cause of a soul’s return-the child will be devoted to them and remain close to them until their death. In other cases the parents are used as a means to an end-the child will leave home early and be about its business.”


-Jean Beever 2012-09-16 22:04:21

I don’t know if you would be interested in my Son’s experience of life before birth. he talked about being a black slave from the age of 3yr.old until he went to School, then never mentioned it again.
The things he said was not something he could have known at that age.

-Jean Beever 2012-09-16 21:57:48

Are you interested in the story of my Son’s experience of his life before Birth.?
Just after he was 3 yr. old he looked at the palm of his hands, and said ” you know Mummy before I came to you my hands were like this but the rest of me was black. ” as I know he had never seen a coloured person I was a bit taken aback.and often after that he talked about his life as a slave.

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