I was six years old in 1967, very bright, and had to have my tonsils out because of constant infections. In the hospital, I was wheeled in a crib with my leg tied to the rail so I would not fall. When I went into the very big surgery room (I was very small, so it was very big), I was laid on a flat-looking bed, and the ceiling had lights coming down from it. A woman, who was not a nurse, was very sweet and assisted me. She asked if I wanted some lipstick on, which I think back then they put Vaseline on a person's lips that are going to have surgery. She put a mask over my mouth and nose after the doctor came in, who was a man with dark hair. I remember falling asleep. Then I looked down and saw myself on the surgery bed. The doctors and nurse were frantically doing something to me. I thought that was very strange and was very curious.
I remember seeing me as being very small in a white gown and they were doing something to my mouth. I did not know what they were doing. I was distracted by something over my right shoulder, it was warm, and I wanted to go there. It was like sunshine (I really remember the warmth, but a comfortable warmth-like comforting warmth). So I went there and remember people, but in a way that I knew that they were there and smiling and glad I was there. I did not really know these people (feel as though they were relatives - I have seen photographs, especially my grandmother who died when my mother was six months old in a car accident), and I felt very, calm and comforted. Then someone was holding me by the hand telling me I have to go back. The person was very close to my body and I knew it was a man, and he was very kind. I was watching my body and what they were doing, and I kept saying I did not want to go, but he said I had to, and I said okay because I somehow knew that it was connected to my mother (I did not know her mother had died when she was a baby - I was only six).
I woke up in my body and my throat hurt. My mother told me later on in life that I had stopped breathing from the surgery for about ten minutes. I do not know if I ever told her about my experience, but she said I was different after almost dying. Interesting enough, I am exceptionally different from the rest of my family. I feel the deepest connection and closeness to God and my experience even as a child, and have been the only one to continually practice my faith (I am Jewish), even in the darkest times of my life, and there have been many, have had faith in God. I am not afraid of death at all, and feel connected to people who are knowingly going to die in the form of a celebration, not sorrow, except for my grandmother's death, because I knew where she was going and very much wanted to go with her.
I am also the only one in my immediate family who always felt empathy, even as a small child, for the people considered the underdogs in life, and became a Special Education teacher as my contribution to the world. I also have always donated my money to charities and given away my stuff, even as a child, to those who need it without expecting anything in return. I just knew it was right and I was put in my body to do something in life. I knew not to abused alcohol or drugs, although my siblings have. Although my family was and still is prejudiced against African-American's and anyone different, I never was and had many friend of all types. I directly, for some reason, attribute this directly to my near-death experience, although I do not know why. I am almost fifty years old, and still remember everything as though it had just happened in detail. I also have only told a few people of this experience, because most just think I am crazy, so I do not talk about it, but consider it a very important part of my life that I carry with me continually.
Date NDE Occurred: 1967
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Surgery-related Clinical death (cessation of breathing or heart function or brain function)
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? I do not know, I was very young and am not sure what the question means. Maybe when I was watching my body before and after the near-death experience.
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
I think so. I explained everything in my experience in my story. I do not know exactly where I went since I have never been there since. Again, maybe children's experiences are treated differently by whoever or whatever was involved in my experience, as not to frighten them.
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. Don't remember, but I did not think so.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I do not believe so, because I heard normally, but it did not really seem as though people were talking words but probably were, except for the man, but I felt that the people were welcoming and I knew what was happening the whole time and was happy.
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 It was something warm and there was a beginning and an end to it, but I do not know if it was specifically a tunnel, at least that is not what it felt like. Maybe children are different.
Did you see any beings in your experience? I actually saw them
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? Yes Explained in my experience above.
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? Uncertain There was a lot of light, but not 'a' light.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm I do not know what is meant by this questions, but I explained it all in my experience above.
What emotions did you feel during the experience? It was the most wonderful feeling and I have strived to feel that again in life, but nothing compares to it.
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 I had not had much of a life at six to review. I also sensed their presence. There were many people, or what I thought were people, since they were deceased.
Did scenes from the future come to you? Scenes from the world's future Only six. In question 33, I did not want to come back to my body, so I guess it was involuntary.
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 'Not sure, I was only 6.'
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes Even though I was very young, I had a deep relationship with God and would pray and felt safe. This was not the custom of my family.
What is your religion now? Moderate Jewish
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes Even though I was very young, I had a deep relationship with God and would pray and felt safe. This was not the custom of my family.
The experience included: Presence of unearthly beings
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? Uncertain I do not know exactly, but I always had a good sense of right and wrong and what God wanted me to be like. I was not raised like that, and my siblings did not turn out like that.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Uncertain I was very young, however, I am certain I would have accepted my families strange beliefs and values if I had not had this experience. I also knew truth and was able to 'read' people easily.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? No
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? Uncertain I feel I have but do not talk about it.
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? All was significant.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes I do not know about the time before I told someone or who it was, but the few I have told I saw a reaction of uncertainty about whether I was telling the truth or not, because who actually goes around telling people about their experience? Also, it was so personal; I did not want it tainted at all by others' insensitivity.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? No I was only six.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real Definitely real. As a small child, it was more acceptable because I, as well as other small children, do not know any other way and have not been exposed to others' views or experiences.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real Definitely real, because it was.
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 wonder what type of person I would have been if I had not had this experience as a very young child. I found it a positive experience for preparing me for a world that can be very harsh.