On 5/31/12, I recall being very distressed because I had relapsed on cocaine after having had a substantial amount of clean time. Almost six years had gone by since my life had become stable again. However, I was having problems in my life, specifically: family situations that had me feeling down and out and I had reverted to my old ways. I was very miserable. I recall on more than one occasion calling unto God, asking that he just take me, for I was suffering a great deal.
That day, I called my father crying, stating I literally just wanted to die. That same day, I did cocaine. A few hours afterwards, I was sitting on the toilet in my bathroom when I suddenly stood up and then jolted backwards, landing in the bathtub. I then started to have what I think may have been a convulsion. I have never had one, so I'm not sure. I knew I was in trouble because I was in the house alone, and who was going to help me? I was frightened at what was taking place. Above the tub and to my left, there was a small window. I could hear my neighbor out there walking her dog, so I reached for the window, trying to gain her attention. I was unable to control my body movements. After about twenty-plus seconds, I stopped trying, because I died.
I remember being so disappointed in myself for dying an addict. For a short time, I looked down at myself, lying in the tub with my eyes open. Suddenly, a white, almost blue, sphere/orb appeared. It seemed to speak to me telepathically, saying, ‘It's okay, we can go now.’ My faith automatically kicked in and I said, ‘God, please forgive me!’ and ‘Please, I love my wife, my kids, and my mother (whom I hadn't reconciled with). I am not ready to never see them again!’ I then had a vision of a tunnel that was pulling me closer. I prayed the ‘Our Father,’ and the ‘Hail Mary,’ and then repeated these prayers once again, nothing, it was still pulling me. I then realized it was over. I knew I had only moments to accept the Lord Jesus, who had died on the cross for my sins. I became very desperate and made another attempt, saying, ‘God, show me who you are, show me how to LOVE.’ Immediately after saying the word ‘love,’ I bounced back into my body and took a huge breath of air!
I frantically scrambled to get out of the tub, shocked at what had just happened. The earth's gravity seemed to be weighing me down and I struggled to stay on my feet as I stumbled outside. A passerby stopped and asked if I needed help. She called 911 and I was rushed to the hospital, where it was discovered I had renal [kidney] failure and a blood clot in my leg.
Date NDE Occurred: June 1st 2012
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Illness. Drug or medication overdose Clinical death (cessation of breathing or heart function or brain function)
Renal failure and deep vein thrombosis in my left leg.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Both pleasant AND distressing
The experience included: Out of body experience
Did you feel separated from your body? Yes I saw the sphere and then all other existing sounds became very vague.
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 I never felt so alert, for I had always known it was an event that would one day come (death) but I just didn't expect it so soon.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? When I saw the sphere.
Were your thoughts speeded up? No
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? Everything seemed to be happening at once; or time stopped or lost all meaning
What seemed like seconds could have been much longer, I'm not quite sure.
Were your senses more vivid than usual? More vivid than usual
Please compare your vision during the experience to your everyday vision that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. The sphere was vibrant in color.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I paid attention to every detail. I stood at attention, whereas I often have a poor attention span.
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? No
The experience included: Tunnel
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Yes I suddenly had a vision of a tunnel that was pulling me toward the sphere at a steady pace.
Did you see any beings in your experience? I sensed their presence
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? Yes A friend who had died from an overdose, I felt his presence and I knew I would be meeting with him again.
The experience included: Unearthly 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 A white, almost blue, very vibrant sphere or orb.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm This sphere was nothing I had ever experienced, and it had something distinguishing about it. It was definitely mystical.
What emotions did you feel during the experience? First, I felt disappointment and desperation; then an overwhelming feeling of gratitude when I bounced back and that precious gift: the breath of life was restored to me.
Did you have a feeling of peace or pleasantness? Relief or calmness
Did you have a feeling of joy? No
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? No
Did scenes from your past come back to you? No
Did scenes from the future come to you? No
The experience included: Boundary
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? Uncertain
Did you come to a border or point of no return? No I was begging to stay but I feel the ultimate decision was God's. Whether it was God or a mediator, I knew the ultimate decision was not mine. But by wanting to return, I knew I was putting myself in the position of accepting and dealing with life, with all its difficulties, just as it was.
God, Spiritual and Religion:
What importance did you place on your religious/spiritual life prior to your experience? Moderately important to me
What was your religion prior to your experience? Christian- Protestant Pentecostal
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Uncertain I was always rather spiritual, but now I can't help but believe in God, for now I have confirmation.
What importance do you place on your religious/spiritual life after your experience? Greatly important to me
What is your religion now? Other or several faiths pentecostal
Did your experience include features consistent with your earthly beliefs? Content that was entirely consistent with the beliefs you had at the time of your experience
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes My spiritual beliefs and my belief in God are very intense. I know for sure God is with me, for He was there at a time when I needed him most. This has led me to believe that he is everywhere at all times.
Did you seem to encounter a mystical being or presence, or hear an unidentifiable voice? I heard a voice I could not identify I can't describe it. It was unfamiliar to me.
Did you see deceased or religious spirits? I sensed their presence
Did you encounter or become aware of any beings who previously lived on earth who are described by name in religions (for example: Jesus, Muhammad, Buddha, etc.)? No
During your experience, did you gain information about premortal existence? No
During your experience, did you gain information about universal connection or oneness? Yes I felt one with the sphere. The voice I heard seemed unfamiliar yet some things continue making me believe it was similar to mine. Not sure I could explain it
Did you believe in the existence of God prior to your experience? God definitely exists
During your experience, did you gain information about the existence of God? Yes I know for sure that god exist. The word love was the last word I said. I later realized my wife had recently put a bible quote in the bathroom that states love is patient,love is kind ,love endures all love things. This to me was no coincidence. It is almost like god knew this was goin to happen and she was driven to place this frame there.I never payed this word love much attention.what exactly drove me to even ask god to show me how to love. Since then the word love has a whole different, more profound meaning
Do you believe in the existence of God after your experience? God definitely exists
Concerning our Earthly lives other than Religion:
During your experience, did you gain special knowledge or information about your purpose? Yes I know I died and yet my spirit continued. I have detailed memories of the event and I vividly recall every emotion I felt. I know for sure that God exists. The word ‘love’ was the last word I said. I later realized my wife had recently put a Bible quote in the bathroom that said ‘Love is patient, love is kind, and love endures all things…’ This, to me, was no coincidence. It is almost as if God knew this was going to happen and so my wife was driven to put that framed quotation there on the wall where I would see it. I had never paid much attention to this word ‘love.’ I don't know what exactly drove me to ask God to ‘show me how to love.’ Since that time, the word ‘love’ has had a whole different, more profound, meaning to me. I felt one with the sphere. The voice I heard seemed unfamiliar, and yet it keeps occurring to me that it was similar to my own voice. (I'm not sure I can explain that.) The word ‘love’ stands out so much, for it was the last word I said before taking a huge gasp of air back into my lungs: the breath of life. My purpose is to share my story with as many people as possible.
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Are possibly meaningful and significant
During your experience, did you gain information about the meaning of life? Yes I became extremely aware if this was the life I chose I have to accept all the difficulties that come along with it
Did you believe in an afterlife prior to your experience? An afterlife probably exists┬
Do you believe in an afterlife after your experience? An afterlife definitely exists Yes I know I died yet my spirit continued. I have a detailed memory of the event and recall every emotion vividly that came with it
Did you fear death prior to your experience? I slightly feared death
Do you fear death after your experience? I moderately fear death
Were you fearful living your life prior to your experience? Greatly fearful in living my earthly life
Were you fearful living your life after your experience? Moderately fearful in living my earthly life
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Are possibly meaningful and significant
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant after your experience? Are meaningful and significant
Did you gain information about how to live our lives? No
During your experience, did you gain information about life's difficulties, challenges and hardships? Yes
Were you compassionate prior to your experience? Moderately compassionate toward others
During your experience, did you gain information about love? Yes The word love stands out so muchfor it was the last wor I said before taking a huge gasp of air back into my lungs.the breath of life
Were you compassionate after your experience? Greatly compassionate toward others
What life changes occurred in your life after your experience? Large changes in my life For one, I have since remained clean. I continue to be grateful, as I go over this experience in my mind several times a day. I have since become much closer with my family and things have gotten much better. I am currently in a happy place in my life. Large changes in my life.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes No Things are a lot better. I am a lot more patient and calm.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? No At first I was in shock but after waiting a day and speaking with doctors to rule out any unconsciousness or hallucinations, I realized that what had happened was definitely real. But it was going to be difficult to explain it to others.
How accurately do you remember the experience in comparison to other life events that occurred around the time of the experience? I remember the experience as accurately as other life events that occurred around the time of the experience
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? Uncertain A similar experience had happened to me in the past. Not as real to me as this one, but afterwards, I felt some weird things: like animals being extremely friendly with children I had never met, knowing me and saying my name. I believe I had been close to death at that time, also. But I never saw a sphere like I did this time or had that understanding of love.
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? All about love!!!!
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes The next day, I started talking about it. After talking with a chaplain and fellow church members, I came to a realization about what had happened.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Uncertain I had heard some things and I was open to it, but never imagined I would have an experience, myself.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real It was overwhelming at first. It took a little time to take it all in.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? Yes During the time of the dystonic reactions, I soon found myself at a place called St. Rita's in the Bronx, NY, from where it is said Mother Theresa's bloodline was, or still is, as a nun. Some things took place there, that I would like to discuss if I am contacted.
Is there anything else that you would like to add about your experience? Love!!!! God is love. To know love is to know God. First and foremost, loving Him and loving myself. I know I died and yet my spirit continued. I have detailed memories of the event and I vividly recall every emotion I felt.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? All was good.