It was around the first of June in 1966 that I took a lethal dose of Phenobarbital, then went to sleep reading my ex-husband's grandmother's Bible that she willed to me after she died three month's earlier. Her notes alongside passages in Proverbs referred to my then husband's evil traits horrified me because I knew she knew what his flawed character traits were. I was staying in my in-law's house in Amarillo, Texas and was facing a divorce I didn't want.
The next thing I remember is hovering above my head in an ambulance and watching two male attendants work quickly on my body - I wondered why I couldn't hear the siren. Then I turned around 180 degrees and saw my ex-husband's grandmother standing in a long white gown holding a beautiful bouquet of daffodils - they were gorgeous, as was she - she was in her twenties or thirties and I couldn't get over how beautiful and YOUNG she looked. I felt she communicated in some way that if I took the bouquet of flowers (which reminded me of my own grandmother - daffodils were her birth flower and always her favorites), I could leave with her - that she would take me somewhere. I looked back at my body and perhaps at this time is when I re-entered - because the next memory I have is waking up in a hospital room five days later, feeling like I'd failed, that I was 'still here' and a nurse's aide came in to comfort me. I told her about the experience, described the attendants and she looked frightened and left the room. A few minutes later, a nun came in and told me to forget it and that I was 'crying alone' - she was rigid and not comforting and left me to fend for myself. I felt very confused, and angry that I didn't choose to leave.
I grew to understand I had work to do here. I have worked in the psychology field and also done many years of hospice service which allows me to support and comfort survivors, the patients and staff in a unique way - although I have never told about my experience in a profession capacity - rather it's what I bring by helping folks interpret/process their dreams, feelings, fears. The experience added depth to my being and hopefully, I have made a difference to those confronted with their own departure from this earth experience.
Date NDE Occurred: 'June, 1966'
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? No Suicide attempt Other 'Not sure, but was told it was clinical death'.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Mixed
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? Normal consciousness and alertness All of it.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? All of 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
Were your senses more vivid than usual? Incredibly more vivid
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 I exited through the top of my head and saw my body on the gurney in the ambulance and saw two attendants working hard on my chest and puling curlers out of my hair. I turned to the opposite direction and saw my former husband's grandmother (who had died three months earlier) standing in what looked like a bridal gown holding yellow daffodils out to me in outstretched hands. I knew if I accepted them, I would go with her and I had to choose to stay or go.
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? No
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? I was confused, conflicted - drawn to the person handing me the flowers and I KNEW I had the CHOICE to go with her (accept the flowers) or go back into my body. I don't remember making a conscious decision to stay (return to body) but I apparently did.
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
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 Christian Science
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes Just added to their depth.
What is your religion now? Liberal Nondenominational - metaphysics
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes Just added to their depth.
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 just knew it was surreal having the dead grandmother appear as a young woman and I identified with my own grandmother because her birth flower and favorite flowers were daffodils. So it was confusing. I knew I had to choose.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes I 'see' others differently - have ever since. I realize we are immortal and that we are all fulfilling some role or roles on our paths.
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 have always been psychic. Don't know if it increased, but I certainly embraced it more after the experience and allowed it to be present in my life instead of suppressing it.
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? The daffodils may have reminded me that my grandmother was alive and that I wanted to see her - the fact that I could CHOOSE to live or die was and is significant.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes I shared it with the aide/nun in hospital five days after the event and they each were frightened, rigid and curious and tried to talk me out of what I knew, but could not refute what I saw and heard inside the ambulance. Have no idea if they were later influenced by my sharing my experience or not.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? No I only knew what I experienced. I didn't have a label for it at that time nor knew what the experience was except that I assumed I had a purpose/lesson to complete. It led me into a field of psychology study and work - until I learned of Raymond Moody's work - then everything made sense and was put into a framework that I could understand.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real. As soon as I was conscious, I knew, understood, that it was a real experience. Can't explain it any more than that.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real. The older I get the more real the experience is - it has always stayed with me and my memory is one hundred percent clear about the time leading up to it, during and afterward as I healed.
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? It has completely removed the fear of death - put it in perspective - especially as I've gotten older. The event may have happened forty years ago, but it is as real to me today as it was then. I began journaling and wrote about the experience after as well as my dreams, etc.