At 11 years old, I was rushed to the intensive care unit due to a case of septicemia [a dangerous blood infection], which was the result of a bad diagnosis made by a general doctor. This doctor told my parents that I had acute gastroenteritis [inflammation of the stomach membranes and intestines], while what I actually had was a serious case of colonic volvulus [a twisting of the bowel that causes obstruction]. My parents trusted him and so I stayed for about 24 hours without treatment, fainting several times. Finally, my mother insisted I be sent to the hospital.
I have no memory of the trip to the hospital. The only thing I remember is driving there with high speed. The next thing, I can recall is all the surgery instruments aligned on a white sheet and the doctors around me in the intensive care unit. I don't know if I was awake at that point. That's where my memory of what happened at the hospital stops.
Suddenly, I was propelled at a very high speed, along a black tunnel, darker than black itself. This experience is hard to explain even though my memory of it is as vivid as if I had lived the experience this morning. I did not see any wall to the tunnel, which seems contradictory, but I was aware of being in spiral-like wormhole. I could see, in the distance, a tiny point of light that grew quickly into a glowing disc, or orb. It was emanating an incredible milky white color, yet was very brilliant at the same time, without hurting the eye. This light was radiating an indescribable reassuring calm. All my pain was gone and my only desire was to reach the light. When I arrived closer to it, I was again propelled at an incredible speed towards it. Then suddenly, I was completely stopped.
I found myself floating in a place without tangible limits, indescribable, immaculate and saturated with the essence of this absolute light, made of immeasurable Love. It is hard to explain the dimension of the experience with human words. I was an observer without a physical body, bathed in pure elation in the midst of this Love. Love so deep that all memories faded, in this misty and luminous space without border. I felt completely transcended by this immense, amnesic Love and thought I would just stay in this unknown but somehow felt familiar place. It felt even more familiar than my home on earth. I wanted to proceed further but I was not allowed. A voice that seemed like a telepathic conscience coming simultaneously from me and from the Light told me to go back. ‘It is not your time, yet’. I responded ‘I don't want to go back, please let me stay here, I am not hurting here, I feel happy here’. But the instruction was reiterated, a little firmer and was coming from this omnipresent and universal vocal ‘wave’. I was then sucked back into my body.
Going back into my body was extremely painful. I woke up with no notion of whether what had happened to me had lasted an hour or a day. I was covered with tubes and other equipment. I saw my parents behind the window and my mother was crying in my dad's arms. I then felt a tremendous sadness to be in this cold intensive care unit, in the middle of all this medical equipment. Everything seemed so superficial with little meaning, compared to my journey!
Outside, the doctor and anesthetist, covered with blood from head to toe, told my parents that I would not have made it if I had arrived at the hospital just an hour later.
This is my testimony. I told you the whole story without trying to add anything, just the reality of the story the way I experienced it.
I would like to highlight that I am usually a very skeptical person, but I have not gone one week without thinking of this experience and questioning myself on its nature. This experience has completely changed my life.
Date NDE Occurred: 1992
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes While under general anesthesia. CPR given. Grosse suspission d'arrêt cardiaque sous entendu par le médecin anestésiste.
I was placed in an intensive care unit.
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? Uncertain I saw medical equipment and doctors around me but I am not sure at what moment I regained consciousness.
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 I could possibly not remember a random dream, including every single detail, with such a vivid memory. It was not a dream in the human sense of a ‘dream’.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? In the luminous space.
Were your thoughts speeded up? No
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 no temporal reality, just an impression of high speed, being sucked into a tunnel and a sudden eternal immobility in this illuminated space.
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. Before the experience I was aware of the medical instruments and the doctors around my body, but I don't remember being awake before the surgery. I did not pay much attention after the experience, as I was only 11 years old.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. No change.
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? No
The experience included: Tunnel
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Yes [as described in above narrative]
Did you see any beings in your experience? No
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? No
The experience included: Darkness
The experience included: Unearthly 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? Yes A misty light which was extraordinarily alive and penetrating. It was also soft - not hurting the eye. It was emanating an above-human Love.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? Some unfamiliar and strange place I don't see that place as a ‘supernatural’ place as it was actually more like the place where we naturally come from and where we will go back. It was a strange place but did not seem unfamiliar. I don't have the right word to describe it.
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? I felt love, peace, happiness, and wellbeing.
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? No I never thought of that.
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? No
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? Unaffiliated- Atheist parents athés non pratiquants
aucune éducation religieuse
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Uncertain I am an atheist but am now doubting and I remain open to any possibility!
What importance do you place on your religious/spiritual life after your experience? Greatly important to me
What is your religion now? No comment Se pose depuis des questions quotidiennes sur ce que j'ai vécu il y à 20 ans !
Did your experience include features consistent with your earthly beliefs? Content that was entirely not consistent with the beliefs you had at the time of your experience étant enfant et ayant des parents athés je ne suivais pas de catéchisme ( à ce moment) , n'avait pas de référent ou de schéma préconçu, j'avais certes entendu parler de la religion mais n'y accordait aucune importance et ne me faisais aucune idée d'un paradis ou autre
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Uncertain I have always been very respectful of life, nature and the world that surround us. But since that experience, I feel I need to live the most respectful life possible, but I have a hard time accepting bad behavior of others.
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 A telepathically omnipresent voice, in the sense that it was resonating from everywhere, and was non-human. It was internal and external, like a voice ‘wave’.
Did you see deceased or religious spirits? No
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? Uncertain je savais que j'existais ici dans ce lieu , mais la voix en me faisant comprendre que je devais repartir m'a rappelé finalement et implicitement ( ou m'a fait prendre conscience) que j'avais existé avant d'arriver là sinon je restais dans ce lieu un amnés
During your experience, did you gain information about universal connection or oneness? Yes l'unicité d'une "lumière amour primordiale" Omnipotente et Omniprésente
Did you believe in the existence of God prior to your experience? God probably does not exist
During your experience, did you gain information about the existence of God? No
Do you believe in the existence of God after your experience? Unknown
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? No
Did you believe in an afterlife prior to your experience? Unknown
Do you believe in an afterlife after your experience? Unknown No
Did you fear death prior to your experience? I greatly feared death
Do you fear death after your experience? Unknown
Were you fearful living your life prior to your experience? Not fearful in living my earthly life
Were you fearful living your life after your experience? Slightly 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? Greatly compassionate toward others
During your experience, did you gain information about love? Uncertain Je ne peux pas avoir la prétention de comprendre l émotion immense que j'ai ressentie et si elle peut être comparée à notre sémantique du mot amour
Were you compassionate after your experience? Greatly compassionate toward others
What life changes occurred in your life after your experience? Large changes in my life Since my experience, I am in constant quest. I want to know what I experienced and if it was a prelude to death and what death is. I saw and experienced something that my intellectual mind resists. I am living a duality between belief in life after death, and the earthly reality of a scientific explanation of the state of death itself.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? No
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes I can't find the right words in the human language that could describe accurately the extent of what I have experienced.
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 more accurately than other life events that occurred around the time of the experience cela s'est passé il y a 20 ans et c'est hier pour moi , j'ai oublié beaucoup d'autres évènements marquants depuis mais celui ci est gravé à vie !
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? The experience is a whole that cannot be divided. It is the experience of my life and can’t be translated with limited words meanings.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes Not immediately. I remember sharing it with my mother who did not take the story of a child seriously. Later on, when I heard that other people had lived similar experiences, I told the story to my sister who became very interested in the topic. But in general, I have buried the experience and even my mother does not remember me telling her about my experience.
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 probably real I say ‘probably’ here, because I buried the experience deep in me, without ever forgetting it. I was only 11 years old and did not have the reasoning of an adult.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real As there are many testimonies from individuals and scientists that I’ve read about.
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? Uncertain I once had the impression to leave my body and enter my sister's room - but the difference is that, in that case, I can't tell if it was a dream or not. My near-death experience was definitely not a dream. It was a real experience; I am totally convinced of it.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? It would be interesting to have a glossary with the extraordinary words that people who’ve had near-death experience, use to explain their experience. This would help other people express the emotions felt during their own near-death experience. It would help us provide a more accurate testimony. But then, it is provided these words exist. I personally don't know any that would describe the specific emotions I felt.