I will start by saying that prior to the event, I was diagnosed with a condition called IGA Nephropathy. Berger's disease is an immune disorder that affects kidneys. The week prior to this event, I had been on a hunting trip in Patagonia. While on this trip, I became very ill. I had a rough plane flight home, especially without kidney function. The doctors believed that my over active immune system had gone through the roof, and my kidneys failed because of this. At the time, I just thought that I had eaten something bad that was causing all the nausea. Anyway, two days after hunting, I returned home. I still had not gone to the doctor. It had become very difficult to breathe.
In my infinite wisdom, I diagnosed myself has having severe bronchitis. I began using store-bought inhalers, which made things much worse. I got to a point that I could not climb the stairs in my house, and if I laid down I could not breathe. My chest was full of water, when I eventually ended up in the hospital. They drained twenty-seven pounds of water out of my chest cavity - my heart had no room to function. The night that I had my experience, I was very frustrated. I was extremely tired and wanted very much to lie down. I hadn't been able to lie down for two days. Eventually, I decided that I would lay down regardless of what happened. I thought I had situated myself in a way that I could get air into my body. I was wrong.
I'm not exactly sure what happened next. I did not have a tunnel experience or an OBE. I was suddenly on the side of this absolutely unreal beautiful hill. A woman who I knew waked me, but I don't know her from earth. I can't explain it, other than I have known this person forever. She was happy to see me. I never felt so safe or at peace. I knew that whole area. I could have sat on that grassy hill forever and just talked with this lady. She was so nurturing. That is the only way I can put it. Once I felt oriented, I knew everything was as it should be. It's tough to explain. I knew of my earthly existence, my family, and friends, but really did not care. I honestly felt like I was home.
This lady and I sat and talked for a while. I am not sure if we used our mouths or not. All I do know is that it was bliss. This experience was more real than me sitting here typing this.
At the base of the hill, what looked to be a quarter of a mile away was a small carnival-like place. It looked like something out of a Norman Rockwell painting, with infinitely more color. I asked if we could go down there and she said absolutely. I can still remember in detail the look of the sand and gravel road we walked down to get there. When we arrived at the carnival place, she told me to wait, that someone wanted to speak with me. Coming out of the carnival and through the entrance was my kid sister Allison. I have never been so happy; I could not stop crying with joy. Allison had passed away in 1992 at the age of twenty-three from a brain aneurism. She was in Med School at the time with a very promising future. It was devastating for us. When Ali, approached me, I really knew I was home. We sat at a little table outside of the carnival talking for what seemed like forever. She was so wise and calm.
At one point, she asked me, 'Would you like to get a hot dog?' There was a little stand next to the ticket booth. So, we got a hot dog. She told me to enjoy it, because I would not be having these anymore. I did not understand at the time, nor did I care. However, I would later come to realize why she said that. With my kidney disease, I have to be on a super low protein diet, which means I am a vegetarian now. She always used to joke about how much I loved hot dogs, and in this perfect universe, I was able to eat my last one with her. I know this may sound stupid, but it had much meaning to me.
After what seemed like an hour, I asked Ali if we could go into the park. In a kind of loving way, she told me that I was not allowed to go in. It was not my time to stay there, and that the carnival would always be there for me, but not now. I understood what she was saying, but was terribly upset, because I knew what she was getting at. She told me to walk back up the hill with the lady, and she would explain. We said our goodbyes, but inside I had a great understanding that it was not forever. She went back into the carnival area.
I began to walk back up the hill with this wonderful lady. As we approached the top, I remember distinctively asking her what this was all about and how did everything work. She told me she wanted to show me something. At the top of the hill was a group of people. There were about ten or fifteen people sitting in a circle. They made room for me and asked me to sit. We all joined hands, and at that moment, I could see out of the eyes of every one of these people, without confusion. It was such a transfer of love and total bliss. I could tell that they cared about every aspect of me unconditionally. It was if we were all the same person. I cannot describe how that feels.
At this point, the lady I was with, told me to come with her. We walked away from the crowd. She told me I must go back to my family, that my time would come one day, and that there was no need to rush anything. I started to argue. I, in no shape or form, wanted to go back. However, I came to an understanding. She told me to lie in the grass.
The next thing I knew, I was on the floor of my house choking with my wife standing over me. I was taken to the hospital. My blood pressure was 210 over 190. I was fixing to have a heart attack and my lungs were full of fluids. I spent the next week and a half in the hospital. Never once did any bad news from the doctors affect me. I knew I could not loose, no matter what. It took me about a couple of months to get over that experience. Although, I remember every detail of it, some of the emotion has gone. I cannot wait to go back, but I do know it has to be on the right terms.
Date NDE Occurred: 'October 22, 2007'
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes 'Stopped breathing. Kidneys failed, chest filled with water. Congestive heart failure.' 'Life threatening event, but not clinical death'
How do you consider the content of your experience? Wonderful
Did you feel separated from your body? Uncertain
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 felt it throughout the whole thing.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? I felt it throughout the whole thing.
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
There was a sense that you had all the time in the world. That time did not matter.
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. Much wider field of vision.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. Only in that every sound was perfect.
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 As a non-relative, a lady that I know I have known forever.
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? No
The experience included: A landscape or city
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Mainly unconditional love, total acceptance, and a wonderful sense of security.
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
The experience included: Boundary
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? Uncertain
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? Moderate At the time of the experience is absolutely believed in God. I attended a Methodist church on a semi regular occasion.
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? No
What is your religion now? Liberal 'I view religion much differently now. I don't just believe there is a God anymore, I know there is. I think I attend church now more for the people and not the process.'
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? No
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 With the group of people, I knew that we are all connected.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes I feel I'm much more patient and realize the importance of relationships.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes
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? Seeing my sister and the fact that I recognized this place.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes I shared it with my wife and best friend. But it was nearly a year later.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Uncertain Had seen a few TV specials regarding it.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real I view it as the ultimate reality. It's wonderful.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real Not sure why, it seemed more real that everyday life. I miss that place terribly, and know that one day I'll be back.
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? No