When I was two years old my grandpa died. He had a heart attack and died in the living room. I was there and my grandma said I tried to make him get up. We lived on a farm and animals die too. I had always been told that when things die they go to Heaven. I knew from Sunday school what Heaven, angels, and Jesus looked like. Grandpa was gone and life here was never the same for me. He was the fun one. He was the only one who cared more about me then he cared about what I did. I always remembered him and missed him all the time.
One day my mother went shopping and brought home a whole bunch of baby aspirins. They used to come in long strips of cellophane squares with two in each square. While everyone was busy putting away groceries I took the aspirins outside and hid behind the garbage can. I was shorter than the garbage can so I could do this. As far as I can remember my reasoning went something like this - grandpa died, everything that dies goes to Heaven (no one had told me about Hell yet) and if you take too many pills, you die so I took the pills so I could go see grandpa. In my mind, I wasn't killing myself I was just going for a visit or something. But I knew I wasn't supposed to so I did hide.
When mom found me and the empty plastic squares she didn't take me to the doctor she just put me to bed. She laid me on my back and pulled the covers up to my chin and that was strangling me. I struggled to get out from under the covers, it was like being wrapped in a giant spider web, I couldn't breathe and I was really scared. I don't think I really knew where I was then all I remember was not being able to move very good and struggling to get untangled so I could breath. Then I saw a little girl at the ceiling. I don't know who and it must not have mattered because I didn't think about it. She was dressed like they used to be in the 1800's in a long dark dress with a white ruffled apron-like thing over it. She had long wavy black hair. She looked a little older than me and she was watching me. Then I was at the ceiling and I saw myself wedged between the bed and the wall.
I remember thinking (or saying to that girl) 'Look at her - why is she doing that? If she wants out why doesn't she just go around the bed?' I felt amused by this. I did not think it was strange that I was at the ceiling, nor did I realize that she was me. I don't remember how long we stayed there. But I still remember how it felt. This is where it gets hard to tell. It was like being totally focused. Whatever I was feeling was all there was. In this life, there is always some worry in my mind - hope I don't say the wrong thing, my foot itches, hope I don't get in trouble. There is always something.
But there was nothing like that there. There was no worry, just the present moment. It was clear and it turned this life into the dream. It was wonderful but at that time, I didn't analyze my situation as I was too busy doing it, if that makes sense. So then, we were at the living room ceiling looking at my mom, sister and grandma. A comedy was on TV and my mom and grandma were laughing. Mom and my sister were on the couch and my grandma was in the chair. I saw them but I don't remember feeling any strong emotions attached to them. It was the same as when I had seen my body. They were just people laughing and watching TV. I guess at that moment it was like I was watching TV too. Kind of like when you change channels and turn into the middle of a movie. No matter what is happening, you can watch it in a detached sort of way for a minute then you move to the next channel. I was very happy the entire time and nothing fazed that.
Then we were with a man. I don't remember seeing anything else. The girl, the man and me. We thought (talked? this is hard to describe too). It was like when words scroll down a computer screen faster than you can read them. But I could keep up with all the things that were flowing into me. It was a lot of good stuff about how to treat other people and how to act here. I don't remember any of it word by word but we are supposed to be nice to each other. And I am sure it's all still inside me even though sometimes I forget to do it or accidentally don't. Anyhow, none of this seemed strange to me and through it all, I felt very blissful. I guess there just aren't earth words to say but I can still remember it. Then the man (maybe he was Jesus, he was real nice and I liked him a lot) said I had to go back. I didn't want to go and I was disappointed because I wanted to see grandpa. I remember telling him this but nope I had to go back. Then I was back in my body stuck between the wall and the bed.
Date NDE Occurred: 1961
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Uncertain My grandpa had died and I took aspirins so I could go see him Other I was suffocatingI had taken a lot of aspirin but I was never taken to a doctor and I am not sure how much aspirin I took or how much it takes to kill a small child.
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 It was like comparing being awake to having a fuzzy dream that you don't really remember. Only then I was awake and know I'm back in the dream that's confusing and not real clear.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? From the minute I left my body till I got put back into it.
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 It seemed like we discussed a lot of things for what should have taken a long time but it went really fast.
Were your senses more vivid than usual? Incredibly more vivid
Did your vision differ in any way from normal? Everything looked the same as I remember but the difference was that whatever I was looking at was all I noticed. When I saw me between the bed and the wall, I saw the bed and the wall and me. I don't remember watching for other things all the time. But that might just be because it was so long ago. But it feels like a very clear memory in my mind.
Did your hearing differ in any way from normal? I'm not sure how I heard things just like I don't know how I spoke. Words were just there going back and forth.
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? No
The experience included: Presence of deceased persons
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 The girl at the ceiling looked about six to seven years old. I have no idea who she was. She looked like someone from a hundred years ago by her clothes, long dark dress, frilly white apron, dark wavy hair that went below her shoulders. She was nice and she stayed with me. She seemed to be neutral and didn't really tell me anything but I followed her. When we watched my body, she was the one I commented to about it. She led me into the living room and took me to the next place. The nice man I liked was an adult. I never got to see his face; he was just there, a man giving me knowledge.
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? No
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm When we were with the man I don't remember where we were. it was like we were in a giant space with no floor or top or sides. It was not white.
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Amusement, curiosity, peace, joy, determination, disappointment and that total peace and love was always there under all the other feelings.
Did you have a feeling of peace or pleasantness? Incredible peace or pleasantness
Did you have a feeling of joy? Happiness
Did you feel a sense of harmony or unity with the universe? I felt united or one with the world
The experience included: Special Knowledge
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
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 none- bible stories
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Uncertain I hadn't really formed any religious beliefs of my own when this happened all I knew was what I had been told and I believed that. I guess I learned that when you die not everybody has wings and is all shiny and blond.
What is your religion now? Moderate I don't belong to any organized religion
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Uncertain I hadn't really formed any religious beliefs of my own when this happened all I knew was what I had been told and I believed that. I guess I learned that when you die not everybody has wings and is all shiny and blond.
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? Yes That this is the test, we need to pass it by being nice to people. Everything belongs to God, we need to appreciate the things he gives us, the animals and earth, the people, and that we need to help them pass the test too - and I needed to let them know not to be afraid to die and that they would see people who had died again. We need to love everybody and follow the golden rule was what it was all about.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes I don't remember before really but I am sure that if I hadn't gotten that knowledge I would have been a completely different person and all my relationships would have been different.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes The things I felt and the total absence of any negative thoughts or feelings.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? Uncertain I don't remember much from before but I have always been able to 'see' through my animals' eyes if something bad happens to them when I am sleeping. If they die when I am not there I usually know it even if I am awake. I know when bad things happen to my children too. And before my oldest son told me, I knew I was going to have a granddaughter and his wife did have a girl. One time some religious men were visiting me every week trying to convert me and get me to join their church. I studied the books they gave me and compared them to the Bible. One night I had a 'dream' or a visitation and words came into me really fast like they had come from that man and I was told why the two missionaries were wrong and where the Bible and they differed - I understood that I needed to stay far away from them.
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? The way I felt all the while I was there. The knowledge I got from the man.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes I didn't really think about it much when I was little because I just took for granted that everyone knew there was a God, a Heaven and that we lived after we died. People talk about these things all the time and I thought they 'knew' it like I did. My mother didn't seem interested and my grandmother didn't realize that I was coming from a whole different perspective than her abstract one. It wasn't until I was working in a nursing home when I was about twenty years old and came across a copy of life after death that I realized that it was a special gift. I have tried to help people when someone they loved has died if they seem open to this. And I have tried to tell other people that we don't need to be afraid of death but I don't know how effective I am at making people feel better.
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. I just always knew it was real and I never questioned the reality of it.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real. I have had years to think about this and these are the conclusions I have come too. First, I was not over four years old and at that time I had a very limited imagination and limited life experiences to draw on. When I took those baby aspirins, I fully expected to see grandpa, Jesus with a halo, giant shiny pearly gates, green grass and angels with wings and harps, lions napping with lambs. All the things they show little kids in Sunday school pictures. So if it was a hallucination why with my child's brain didn't I see any of those things? Second, I have had plenty of dreams since then and I must admit a hallucination or two. That was neither of those. That was real and this is the dream hallucination. Third, it has never faded like my other memories. Forty-three years later, it's still there. Why is this memory different? Fourth, the things they said and the way it was delivered to me were things I was unable to make up at that age. I understood things that were way beyond my years then and even now, but it was all perfectly clear at the time.
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? Uncertain The closest thing is when the missionaries were visiting me and I had the dream that told me what all the Bible said and why what the missionaries said were wrong. It came in really fast words and I understood it all. I guess it lasted about fifteen minutes but I was told things that would have taken hours in this time.
Is there anything else that you would like to add about your experience? I think it made my life a lot easier in ways. My parents, grandparents and my daughter had all died by the time I was twenty-three. Knowing I would see them again is all that kept me going. But in other ways, it has made some things harder for me when I was little and to an extent even still. I didn't understand that everyone didn't know how to treat others and when they did mean things it was really upsetting to me. I needed someone to explain to me that just because I knew something was wrong other people might not know that and they might not be able to do what was right in some situations. I have figured out that I shouldn't take all these things so personally and I don't know if we can all be judged by the same yardstick. I think little kids that have this experience need people to make sure they understand that it is not common and help them deal with the ways it makes them different from so many other people. That's not quite right but that's the best I can say it.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? If you could just do the 'Vulcan mind meld' - but aside from that you need to leave answers for people who had the experience before they started school and before they had a religion.