My now husband was driving down a country road and did not see that there was a dead end on the road, that dropped about seven or eight feet down, and then there was about a four foot wall of dirt. We were in a convertible and he drove fairly fast at that time, so when he saw it he braked but was afraid of flipping the soft top convertible, so we still hit the embankment at about 45 miles per hour. I was not wearing a seat belt as this was in 1970 and we didn't have them, so I was thrown into the rear view mirror and then the windshield, broke them, and my head came back through into the car again. I also hit the dash with my chest and abdomen very forcibly.
The next thing I remember was that they had dragged me out onto the ground and I was very wet, I thought with rain, but it was blood. Another passenger in the car said my boyfriend kept saying, 'Please don't die' and I kept telling him just remember I love you, because I didn't want him to feel guilty when I died.
A passenger ran three or four miles into a small town and tried to call an ambulance, and called his friend, a high school coach, who brought him back to the scene. The coach checked my vitals, and said I wouldn't make it if we waited for an ambulance, and they put me in his car and drove me 30 miles to the nearest emergency room. My only memory of the ride is my boyfriend saying, 'Please don't die' as we sped to the hospital halfway there.
I don't remember anything else until I saw myself below, on the emergency room table, with people working on me. I was always interested in medicine, so I said, 'Oh, a blood transfusion, who is getting that?' A voice said, 'You,' I didn't see a face, but my questions were answered, and I wasn't at all concerned about the bloody person on the table being me. I was thinking what a weight had been taken off my shoulders and how I had never felt so good or peaceful, when I realized they were trying to put me back INTO the body on the table, and I tried to fight them off. Then suddenly I was back.
Date NDE Occurred: 'October 18, 1970'
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Accident. Direct head injury. Clinical death (cessation of breathing or heart function or brain function) 'The doctor said when I arrived in the emergency room about 1 hour after the event, I had no pulse or blood pressure.'
I assume you mean was something medically wrong, and yes, I was bleeding to death.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Entirely pleasant
The experience included: Out of body experience
Did you feel separated from your body? Yes I don't remember hearing them, but I could see them working over me from up by the ceiling.
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
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? When I was hovering over the emergency room table.
Were your thoughts speeded up? No
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? No
Were your senses more vivid than usual? No
Please compare your vision during the experience to your everyday vision that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I couldn't see who was talking to me, but I could see what was going on in the room.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. All I know is when I asked, I heard answers.
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? No
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? No
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 I just know someone I didn't see was answering me, I don't know who it was, or if it was male or female or even if it was someone I knew. I just know someone was there.
Did you see, or feel surrounded by, a brilliant light? No
Did you see an unearthly light? No
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? No
What emotions did you feel during the experience? I was happy and peaceful and didn't want to return to my body.
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 no longer in conflict with nature
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
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 I don't know if this applies, the medical staff brought me back against my will. I didn't really see any border.
God, Spiritual and Religion:
What importance did you place on your religious/spiritual life prior to your experience? Not important to me
What was your religion prior to your experience? Christian- Catholic I was a non practicing Catholic teen.
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes You don't have to belong to a church to be a good person or have an afterlife.
What importance do you place on your religious/spiritual life after your experience? Not important to me
What is your religion now? Unaffiliated- Nothing in particular- Religious unaffiliated I haven't gone to church in about 35 years, other than the very odd Christmas or Easter Service years ago.
Did your experience include features consistent with your earthly beliefs? Content that was both consistent and not consistent with the beliefs you had at the time of your experience I had quit going to mass and in the Catholic church at that time that was a pretty bad thing, so I was surprised that I appeared to be in heaven.
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes I valued people more.
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 There was someone with me, but I don't know who, they were answering me. This was 42 years ago, so I don't remember all the exchanges.
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? No
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? No
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? No
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Are meaningful and significant
During your experience, did you gain information about the meaning of life? Yes To some degree. Afterwards I thought that most things we worry about in life were pretty petty and unimportant.
Did you believe in an afterlife prior to your experience? An afterlife definitely exists
Do you believe in an afterlife after your experience? An afterlife definitely exists Yes The fact that I was looking down at own body told me that we do not cease to exist after death.
Did you fear death prior to your experience? I greatly feared death
Do you fear death after your experience? I moderately fear death
Were you fearful living your life prior to your experience? Slightly fearful in living my earthly life
Were you fearful living your life after your experience? Not fearful in living my earthly life
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Are 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? No
Were you compassionate prior to your experience? Moderately compassionate toward others
During your experience, did you gain information about love? Uncertain Only that life can be taken in an instant and we should value our loved ones more than most people do. I'm not sure that this question applies to me.
Were you compassionate after your experience? Greatly compassionate toward others
What life changes occurred in your life after your experience? Moderate changes in my life The one strange thing is that three different times, I had a very strong premonition that a close relative was going to die. They all three did die in the next few days. I told my sister-in-law that for some reason I knew I would never see her again, I told several other people this that week. She was 47 years old, and died of alcohol poisoning a few days later. My brother had his third heart surgery at 47 and when he phoned to tell me he was having it, I just KNEW he would die from it and he did. My 63-year-old stepfather who was healthy and busy was talking to me and I suddenly had a horrible feeling he was going to die, and asked him how long his mother lived. A few days later, he had a stroke and died suddenly. I think I see these things because of my NDE.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes Yes I have been happily married 40 years because we treat each other like there may be no tomorrow. I highly value my children and grandchildren.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? No
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 In the 42 years it has started to be less vivid.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? Yes The one strange thing is that three different times, I had a very strong premonition that a close relative was going to die, and they all three did in the next few days. I told my sister-in-law that for some reason I knew I would never see her again, I told several other people this that week. She was 47 years old, and died of alcohol poisoning a few days later. My brother had his third heart surgery at 47 and when he phoned to tell me he was having it, I just KNEW he would die from it and he did. I hadn't thought that the other two times. My 63-year-old stepfather who was healthy and busy was talking to me and I suddenly had a horrible feeling he was going to die, and asked him how long his mother lived. A few days later, he had a stroke and died suddenly. I think I see these things because of my NDE. I also think that my grandfather came to me as a little boy, after he died, and just stood by my bed glowing in the dark. The sister-in-law, who I had the premonition about, may also have come to me, as shortly after she died, I saw a white being in the evening walk through my living room. It did not look like a ghost, it looked like a person with a sheet over them, it looked solid, and this time I had not been sleeping like when I saw the little boy.
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? It is reassuring to know that friends and relatives who have died can still have a happy experience in the afterlife.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes I remembered it a few days after it when I was home from hospital and had a nightmare, and woke my mom up because I was screaming. She came in and I said, 'I thought I died in the accident!' She said, the doctor told her I had no pulse or blood pressure when they brought me in, and it was a miracle I was alive. It came back to me, and I told a few people years before I saw a book come out about it. Some are very interested and others mean and rude. I have had people who lost a loved one and heard about my experience tell me it reassured them.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? No This was in 1970; years LATER I saw a book that described my experience pretty well.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real It made me not feel bad for people who died, but for their families.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real It just happened, period.
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? No