I have Crohn's disease and had just survived a coma. I was still very sick but had checked myself out of the hospital against doctor's advice. Within a week, my lungs were so filled with bacteria and fluid, there were noticeable white flakes coming out of my mouth.
A condition upon my leaving the hospital was that I see one of my blood specialists within the week of leaving, or they would have had me court ordered to stay. In trying to fulfill this agreement, I went to that specialist's office for a late morning appointment. The medical building is located across the street from the hospital.
I was so sick, I would periodically stop breathing and would lose track of time. It subsequently took me four hours to get from the underground parking lot to his office that I believe was on the third floor.
When I made to his office, I had obviously missed my appointment. When I was rescheduling, the nurse at the front desk asked if I was okay. I said I was sick and just needed to rest. I did not want to go back into the hospital.
The stop breathing episodes continued on my way back down to the parking lot. I remember sitting on the floor between stairs for unknown amounts of time. When I finally made it to the garage, I couldn't go any further, and my car was just several feet away (yes, I was driving). I just sat Indian-style in the middle of the parking garage.
I remember people coming out of the building and through the parking lot just tripping out over me, some laughing. Eventually, someone called an ambulance. When the paramedics arrived, they did not know what to make of me. They thought I was psychotic or deranged. I guess I had called my husband during this with my cell phone, although I don't remember doing so. I had just handed the phone to the paramedic.
Then I was instantly in another place. There was a warm glow or ambience around me that was so peaceful, so full of awe and love. I was surrounded by, a part of this warmth. It was bright, but did not hurt my eyes. I don't actually recall having eyes since I knew who I was but had no form. I felt I was contained in something, but I could not see walls. It was the most wonderful feeling of bliss and euphoria, something of which I have a hard time explaining with words. I felt I was connected to a whole, like I was home again. It seemed to be some sort of energy is the best way I can describe it.
Then I seemed to be traveling, soaring over snow-capped mountaintops, as an eagle would do. I got this distinct impression. It was magnificent and beautiful. Suddenly I was in the paramedic truck. There were paramedics around me, inserting an IV and had placed a breathing bag over my face. It was like I was looking at them from a distance. I remember one had very blond, short hair. I felt nothing physically, as though I was an observer. And then I felt a rush back into my body. I felt every fiber of my body come alive. I felt every nerve in my body come alive as though I was poured back into my body. I felt the intense pain of my sick body again. The pain was so intense in comparison to the euphoria I had just felt. Again, this coming back into my body is something I have difficulty explaining in words. I was awake just long enough to remember this, and then I lapsed into my second coma.
Date NDE Occurred: February 2004
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Illness Clinical death (cessation of breathing or heart function or brain function)
Severe aspiration pneumonia. I have Crohn's disease and had just survived a coma. I was still very sick but had checked myself out of the hospital against doctor's advice. Within a week, my lungs were so filled with bacteria and fluid, there were noticeable white flakes coming out of my mouth.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Wonderful
The experience included: Out of body experience
Did you feel separated from your body? Yes
I clearly left my body and existed outside it
How did your highest level of consciousness and alertness during the experience compare to your normal everyday consciousness and alertness? More consciousness and alertness than normal As above.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? Immediately upon entering the warm ambience, and then again as I was souring over the mountain tops.
Were your thoughts speeded up? Incredibly fast
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? Everything seemed to be happening at once; or time stopped or lost all meaning
Were your senses more vivid than usual? Incredibly more vivid
Please compare your vision during the experience to your everyday vision that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. In that there were times that I was seeing things, such as the paramedics, from afar, which is not normally how I see things.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I don't recall hearing anything at all.
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? Yes, and the facts have been checked out
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Uncertain I felt I was contained, but I did not see walls.
Did you see any beings in your experience? I actually saw them
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? No
The experience included: Light
Did you see, or feel surrounded by, a brilliant light? A light clearly of mystical or other-worldly origin
Did you see an unearthly light? Yes It was not so much a light as it was a warm, inviting ambience that enveloped me. I was a part of it.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm Snow-capped mountains, souring ovber them like an eaqle.
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Glee, awe, peace, love, euphoria.
Did you have a feeling of peace or pleasantness? Incredible peace or pleasantness
Did you have a feeling of joy? incredible joy
Did you feel a sense of harmony or unity with the universe? I felt united or one with the world
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything? Everything about the universe
Did scenes from your past come back to you? My past flashed before me, out of my control
Did scenes from the future come to you? Scenes from the world's future
The experience included: Boundary
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? Uncertain Again, I felt like I was contained, but I could see no walls.
Did you come to a border or point of no return? I came to a barrier that I was not permitted to cross; or was sent back against my will
God, Spiritual and Religion:
What was your religion prior to your experience? Liberal Atheist
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes I absolutely believe there is a power greater than myself, a higher power. Prior to this, I was an atheist who truly wanted someone to convince me God was real.
What is your religion now? Liberal Spiritual
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes I absolutely believe there is a power greater than myself, a higher power. Prior to this, I was an atheist who truly wanted someone to convince me God was real.
Did you seem to encounter a mystical being or presence, or hear an unidentifiable voice? I encountered a definite being, or a voice clearly of mystical or unearthly origin
Did you see deceased or religious spirits? I actually saw them
Concerning our Earthly lives other than Religion:
During your experience, did you gain special knowledge or information about your purpose? Yes I felt connected, like I was home again. I felt a part of the whole. I felt unconditional, tremendous love.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Uncertain I am much more open to religious views now, but I still maintain the same relationships with people as I did prior to this experience.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes The utter awe, peace and euphoria I felt, and the experience itself.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? Uncertain I have always had dream premonitions, and these seemed to become stronger after this experience.
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? What is especially meaningful to me in my experience is the love I felt and the feeling of belonging. I went from being an atheist to a true-believer in a higher power.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes I remembered my experience shortly after awakening from my coma. I told my husband, some nurses and eventually my doctor about this. I've subsequently told my family and others who cared to listen.
The reactions to this have varied. My family, who are atheists, tells me there are scientific explanations for this, such as the brain firing when dying. Others say it could have been medications, of which I was not on any at the time. And yet others have been truly thankful and inspired by my story.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? No
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real It was undeniably real to me. It was not a dream or anything induced by the brain firing or from medications. I can't explain why I know it be to absolutely real, but I just know.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real It was undeniably real to me. It was not a dream or anything induced by the brain firing or from medications. I can't explain why I know it be to absolutely real, but I just know.
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? No
Is there anything else that you would like to add about your experience? I would just like to add that I wish everyone could experience what I did and that everyone could feel what I felt. If they did, we would have a peaceful world.