It was toward the end of the second year of college in 1972. I was a single parent who was going through a messy divorce and putting myself through school to be a counselor. I had three children, ages three, four and five, was carrying a full course load, running a boarding house and had a job as a group home parent on the weekend. By the time March came, I had run myself into the ground and became sick. I had pneumonia, mononucleosis, and pleurisy all at the same time.
I was in bed with my illness while one of the borders looked after the children for me. I don't know if my experience happened during the day or night. I just remember being so very sick that I couldn't think of anything and didn't care what happened to me. I just lay there almost like a zombie.
All of a sudden, I was out of my body and in a tunnel. The tunnel was smoky grey and there was a man I had never seen before standing beside me. He was holding my hand and dressed in a priest's outfit. I was fully aware that I was dead and that the man was there to take me to wherever I was to go. But, I couldn't understand why a Catholic priest had come for me as I knew no priests, and was not Catholic.
Anyway, we started to move up the tunnel and we were up far enough to see a dot of light at the end of the tunnel. Just then, a voice came down to us and the words were directed to the man beside me. The voice said, 'Take her back, it is not her time.'
The 'priest' responded by saying, 'But, she died.'
Then the voice came back down and said, 'Take her back, she has much left to do.' The next thing I knew, I was back in my body on the bed. Throughout the whole experience, I didn't feel any fear or confusion. I was quite content to follow this man even though I had no idea who he was.
Sadly, it isn't much of an NDE, but that's all that happened. One year later, I had an STE experience. I sometimes wonder if I had that experience to make up for the fact that I didn't get to go to the light and learn from it.
Date NDE Occurred: March 1972
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Illness Other 'I was at home, very sick, think I died but no proof.'. I was very sick with pneumonia, mononucleosis and pleurisy.
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 lost awareness of my body
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 seemed to be more observant and aware of every little thing. Like for example, in the tunnel it seemed that the sides were filled with deep grey roiling smoke. As if I was caught in a hollowed out cloud at night.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? From the moment I left my body, until many days after I returned to my body.
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 felt like we were there a long time, but have no idea how long it took.
Were your senses more vivid than usual? Incredibly more vivid
Did your vision differ in any way from normal? I never thought of this before now, but yes my vision was much sharper as if I could see every molecule that made up the smoke in the tunnel if I had wanted to.
Did your hearing differ in any way from normal? I say yes because of the voice that came down from above. A clear, bass man's voice had great authority to it. The fact that I could hear it so clearly, as if the person who owned the voice was right beside us, and yet it was so very far away.
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? Yes The tunnel was like a smoky, dark grey cloud that swirled around us.
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 There was a 'priest' that was my guide up the tunnel.
The experience included: Darkness
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 Well, technically I did. But, it was just a pinpoint of light very far away.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? No Sorry no.
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Again, I haven't thought of this point and feel a little silly about that. I felt that all was as it should be. That was the main feeling. As I didn't see the light at that time, I didn't feel the feelings that go with that. However, since the experience I feel blessed to know that there was a continuation after death.
Did you have a feeling of peace or pleasantness? Relief or calmness
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? Yes But only because we were told to turn back.
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 'Do not belong to a church, but have strong spiritual belief within me.'
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Uncertain This experience was so short that it didn't have a huge impact on me. However, my STE experience had a giant impact and changed my life.
What is your religion now? Liberal I have studied many different religions.
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Uncertain This experience was so short that it didn't have a huge impact on me. However, my STE experience had a giant impact and changed my life.
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? No
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Uncertain Well, I have always tried to be a good person, so that didn't change. But the knowledge that we continue on really helped me to be more aware of others.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? No My STE was hard to express, but not this experience.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? No
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? I was raised by an atheist and did not know what to expect when I died. This experience taught me that I was going to continue on and that there was no need to worry.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes The next day when I was suddenly all better.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? No There was no information at that time that I knew of.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real. I don't have any proof that it happened. I was at home sick and there was no one around. But, I believed it was real, because it felt so real at the time.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was probably real. I must admit that over the last thirty years the experience has faded in my mind. I know it happened, but wonder if it was a hallucination from being so sick. Then again, I did get well very quickly after that.
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? Once I read about NDE's I felt a little cheated for a while because I didn't get to go to the light. Now, I am more patient.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? No the questionnaire is quite complete. Thank you.