Archive for May, 2011

>Once upon a time in England….

Posted by Jessica Jewett 3 Comments »


The lady in the above portrait on the left is an unknown woman of the Tudor period but largely believed to be Lady Amy Robsart Dudley upon the occasion of her marriage to Lord Robert Dudley on June 4, 1550. I believe this portrait is, in fact, Lady Amy. More accurately, I do believe and have believed for many years that I was Lady Amy in one of my previous lives. To read about my reincarnation case, please visit this page that describes it in detail.

Lord Robert Dudley

I have been rather unsettled by being aware of that lifetime for as long as I’ve known about it. I almost never talk about it openly, mainly because I haven’t made peace with it yet, but also because there is so much controversy about it that the things I remember can never be proved. The things I remember will damage Lord Robert Dudley’s reputation even more than just the whisper of a hint that he might have been involved in my death. The only solid, known fact is I was found at the bottom of a staircase at my home. How I got there has been pondered and speculated over since then. Was it murder? Was it suicide? Was it an accident? There are arguments for and against all of those scenarios but nobody really knows. There was never a smoking gun, so to speak.

It is known that Robert enjoyed an unusually close relationship with Queen Elizabeth I and harbored desires to marry her even though he was already married to me. That was enough to wound me enough that I wound still resent him now but adding everything else on top of it, I have a lot to work out before I feel any peace over it. I resent him still – the man he was then and the man he is now – and I still haven’t found it in me to totally forgive and let go. Maybe if he had been kinder to me in this lifetime, but it just wasn’t in him. So, I never really talk about it. I don’t want to sound like a bitter, scorned woman. The truth is, though, my wounds from England don’t change the truth of what I know happened in terrible detail. It’s not even really my death that I’m talking about. I truthfully don’t know if he had anything to do with it but I know he was capable of getting rid of me based on his previous behavior. I suspect that he had something to do with it.

Our marriage wasn’t always a source of bitter contention though. We were happy in the beginning, but then again, we were very young. Everybody is happy when they’re eighteen and hormones are raging and their marriage is important enough for the King of England to party with them. Robert was in jail for much of our early marriage for being involved in the plot to make Lady Jane Grey into the Queen. After Elizabeth ascended to the throne, I think that’s where things started to go bad for us. He left me alone for months at a time because he was at her beck and call. I wasn’t stupid. I knew what was happening but I kept quiet about it for the most part when he was home. If I questioned him about her, there was a lot of anger and telling me to mind my tongue and things of that nature. Looking back on it now, I suppose he was angry because he thought he was married to the wrong woman and there was nothing he could do about it and I couldn’t do anything to keep him home.

Broad example of a Tudor room.

I’ve had a recurring dream about this period. Like I have written before about it: I was seated quite stiffly and formally in a room in an old home that had timbers across the ceiling and a massive fireplace. There was a large table to my left and a man seated in front of me dressed in late Tudor attire (it originally took a bit of research to figure out what he was wearing). The atmosphere was so tense that I was fighting tears. Finally, I began to plead with the man to stay and to convince him that he didn’t need to leave again. At first, I felt as if I might have been a servant because I feared that man as much as I needed him, but I slowly peeled back the layers until I realized that I did love him at some point but it was covered over by intimidation at that time. My sense of it boiled down to (in modern words), “If he doesn’t leave again, we can salvage this mess.” The man appeared as stubborn as he did resolute in his impending departure, which seemed to break me even more. He stood, and in passing, squeezed my hand. I woke up at that moment each time feeling lost as if I forgot where I was in the present.

The parts that I hesitate to talk about usually involve physical abuse. It’s not something I can prove and there are a lot of people who still like and admire Lord Dudley, so I could make enemies with the things I say. Regardless of reactions people might have, that doesn’t change the truth. I’m one of those people who has to talk it out or write it out to make sense of any troubling issue and to make peace with it. Blogging is cathartic. Sometimes if I “blog it out” whatever dream is troubling me will go away, at least temporarily. It can’t matter to me that people might not accept that there was abuse.

The thing is, officially I had no children with him at that time, but I did. I had a premature stillborn child. There was an incident in which I had angered him somehow and I think it was at night because I was in my nightgown. I was following him. He was walking fast, trying to get away, and rubbing his forehead the way a man does when he’s angry. Then he turned suddenly and backhanded me hard enough that I slammed into a wall, which felt like it was made of stone. A medium friend confirmed this incident without me telling her about it and she filled in the blank that this incident triggered labor and I had a baby that never drew breath and it was all done away with and hushed up quickly. I wondered how it could be possible that a woman could be pregnant and have a stillborn child without history taking note of it. When I asked someone who has studied Tudor and Elizabethan history, I was told that miscarriages and stillbirths happened so much that they were often not recorded, even in upper classes. So while it’s not proven that I was pregnant once, it’s not totally outside of the realm of possibility either, especially when one considers how very little is actually known about “Lady Amy” and how isolated women were when they were pregnant.

In another recurring dream, I stood in a bedchamber wearing what I supposed to be like a nightgown but I don’t know if that’s the right word. I reached for a candle on a table and I noticed discoloration on my wrist peeking out from the sleeve. I pulled the sleeve back and saw a series of bruises along my forearm as if I had been grabbed and wrenched violently. The man from my previous dream who I later discovered was Robert went through my mind. I went to a wall where a mirror hung. One side of my face appeared slightly battered. Despite the fear and intimidation rushing into me, I also experienced feelings of relief that he was gone, mixed with the longing and mourning for the man I had married.

Depiction of Amy on the stairs.

Being a battered wife in a time where there was no help is harder to cope with for me than being pushed down a flight of stairs, or falling down a flight of stairs, or whatever happened. Like I said, given his violent eruptions at that time (he was not always violent though), I do think he was capable of doing something drastic if he was determined enough to marry Elizabeth. I encountered Robert again in this lifetime. I fell in love with him instantly and it made me angry much of the time because he was stringing me along and made it seem like he was unhappy with his fiance. I never did anything inappropriate with him but our relationship was magnetic, dark, complicated, and my nightmares of violence and intensity became so much more frequent and intrusive in my life when he was part of it. It was like my subconscious was throwing red flags at my conscious mind telling me to run for my life. He has not improved the condition of his soul at all. He’s still a womanizer, a liar, a manipulator, and he never takes responsibility for his own actions. We severed ties with each other when things got too weird and intense. I know now that I am not going to be able to fix him. Only he can fix whatever broken part of himself that makes him treat women the way he does.

I still can’t be anywhere near staircases without feeling a rush of terror and impending doom. The weird staircase phobia has been in me since I started toddling around as a little girl. People in my family used to make fun of it until I realized why I was so fearful. Thankfully they stopped making fun of me. Even though I know why I get panicky on staircases now, I still haven’t overcome the fear, especially when there are turns in the steps. I freeze up and close my eyes until it’s over. It’s a very bizarre feeling to be somewhere typically very harmless but have thoughts chanting in your brain like, “I’m going to die. I’m going to die. I’m going to die.” I don’t even like sidewalk curbs. It takes a split-second to fall down a set of stairs, but when it’s the end of your life, that split-second takes an eternity and opens big wounds on the soul that turn into phobias later. One day I will manage to overcome it all. Cutting ties with that man was a huge step in the healing process. We will have to work out our issues in a future lifetime but it’s not going to happen in this one.

Read More

>A worthy Memorial Day cause

Posted by Jessica Jewett 1 Comment »


This is the face of your ancestors. He’s a young Civil War soldier. No matter what war your ancestors fought, they all went into it as innocently and bravely as this young man. Many of them never came home.

While you’re guzzling beer, barbecuing, and sitting by the pool with your families and friends, please remember that Memorial Day is not just a party and a day off work. This is a day on which we are supposed to stop and remember the men and women who “gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”* Put down the beer and find someone in the military or a veteran in the military and say thank you. Find the graves of your ancestors who fought for their country and lay flowers for them. Donate to battlefield preservation before it’s all eaten up by commercial development.

One might think my bias towards the Civil War makes me ignore other soldiers on Memorial Day but the truth is Memorial Day evolved because of the Civil War. It is estimated that somewhere between 620,000 and 700,000 casualties were tallied in that war of a total fighting force of approximately 3 million soldiers. If you do the math, that is roughly 1 casualty per every 5 soldiers (in NKOTB terms since a lot of you know me because of them – 1 New Kid of the 5 was likely to have been killed). That is roughly 20% of all soldiers becoming casualties. That is roughly 155,000 casualties per year over four years. In 1860, there were 31,443,321 citizens and slaves populating the US, which translates to roughly 10% of the population in active combat. America has not seen numbers like that in any war since the Civil War. There were more casualties in the Civil War than in every other American war combined to date. Think of 9/11 happening about five or six times per year over four years. That was what it was like to live during the Civil War. That is why Memorial Day evolved.

Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, in his General Order No. 11, and was first observed on 30 May 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. The first state to officially recognize the holiday was New York in 1873. By 1890 it was recognized by all of the northern states. The South refused to acknowledge the day, honoring their dead on separate days until after World War I (when the holiday changed from honoring just those who died fighting in the Civil War to honoring Americans who died fighting in any war). It is now celebrated in almost every State on the last Monday in May (passed by Congress with the National Holiday Act of 1971 (P.L. 90 – 363) to ensure a three day weekend for Federal holidays), though several southern states have an additional separate day for honoring the Confederate war dead: January 19 in Texas, April 26 in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Mississippi; May 10 in South Carolina; and June 3 (Jefferson Davis’ birthday) in Louisiana and Tennessee.**

Memorial Day flags at Arlington National Cemetery.

People usually ask me what they can do when they read my Memorial Day blogs. I approach this in two ways.

1.) I encourage people to adopt a soldier serving overseas today. I have done this many times and I use now. I was using but there are allegations now that it’s a scam so I jumped ship with them.

2.) Battlefield preservation is a must. Nearly 20% of Civil War battlefields have already been destroyed by commercial and residential development. Only 15% of Civil War battlefields that still exist are actually protected by the National Park Service. We cannot depend on the government to protect these hallowed places. Organizations like the Civil War Preservation Trust have been working for years to protect what remains of Civil War battlefields but they need our help to do it. Please go to to read about how you can help protect our heritage and make donations.

*Source: the Gettysburg Address by Abraham Lincoln, 1863.

Read More

>My art

Posted by Jessica Jewett 4 Comments »

>People seemed to respond the best to my art in my last blog, so I thought I would show all of the pieces that I have saved on my computer. Most people were exposed to my art a few years ago while I was working on a portrait of Jonathan Knight as a gift, which he still has as far as I know. Some people thought I was making it up, that I wasn’t really working with my mouth, that it was really my brother doing it, etc. Yeah, I heard about you. You know who you are. So I had my brother take pictures while I was actually doing the work. To dispel any doubts, here you go.

Blending Jon’s forehead.

Still blending Jon’s forehead.

There you go. If there are still any doubts, I will post a video. There’s nothing I hate more than being called a liar or a fraud!


Artistic talent runs in my family. My mother and father were both professional quality artists. My brother is too. The same goes for my paternal grandfather and I was lucky enough to be sent some examples of his paintings after he died. Here are two of them.


Study of Renaissance art.

For me, I was trained by my maternal grandmother first in drawing and watercolors beginning when I was about 4-years-old. She taught me figure drawing, perspective, light and shadow, etc. I was drawing and painting before I was reading and writing. I did a watercolor when I was 6-years-old of a silhouette of a wheat field in sunlight that was hung in Shriner’s Hospital in St. Louis, where I grew up, and my grandmother entered me in several local art contests. I guess she was a little bit of a stage mother about it.

As I grew up, I broke away from her teaching a bit because she was all about nature, whereas I much preferred portraiture. I was much more comfortable with and better at people in my work. I developed myself into a charcoal artist and pretty much abandoned watercolors by the time I was about 10-years-old. I had no formal training until I was in high school. My art instructor was a professional artist and really worked with me on developing my strengths. He wanted to see me become a professional portrait artist and he was hoping I would go to the Chicago Art Institute but I could not afford the tuition. It was in high school that I learned to use professional quality colored pencils and acrylic paint. Some of my pieces were exhibited in traveling galleries and a museum director said I shouldn’t accept anything less than a $400 fee for my work.

Since high school, I have made some money doing portrait work but this is not the eighteenth and nineteenth century where portrait artists could actually support themselves in their profession. Interest in art just isn’t there anymore. I’m living in the wrong century! Now I use art as a creative outlet as opposed to trying to earn a living. I still feel most comfortable with charcoal work but I have begun teaching myself oil painting this year and I find that very easy as if …. wait for it …. I have been an oil painter in previous lifetimes.

Here are examples of my work that I have on my computer.

An unfinished stage of the Jon portrait.

Jonathan Knight. Charcoal on paper. (Camera washed it out.)

Lying Girl. Charcoal on paper.

The Goddess. Colored pencil on paper.

Lovers. Charcoal on paper.

Africa. Acrylics on canvas. (Sorry it’s blurry.)

Kevin Richardson. Charcoal on paper. (Sorry it’s blurry.)

Cruising Couple. Commission. Charcoal on paper.

Venice. Acrylics on paper.

Freehand Flower. Watercolor pencil on paper.

Civil War soldiers. Page from my sketchbook. Charcoal on paper.

Civil War soldier. Page from my sketchbook. Charcoal on paper.

Native American Lovers. Colored pencil on paper.

Maine. Colored pencil on paper.

Scarlett and Rhett. Unfinished. Charcoal on paper.

Woman. Page from my sketchbook. Charcoal on paper.

Dreaming Images. Page from my sketchbook. Charcoal on paper.

So there you have it. My portfolio is like 12-years-old and being held together by duct tape so I don’t feel much like digging for other pieces right now. All of my old sketchbooks are in storage too. I’ve been doing studies of Impressionist painting this year since that is my favorite artistic movement, but I’m not an Impressionist painter. I’m more of a Realism or Neoclassical or Rococo painter.

Here is my current project.

My current project.
This is what it will look like. I’m studying Monet.
Read More