It started as a typical beautiful sunny day in April. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky. I was at home with my mom and newborn son (who was eleven days old). My older son was at the sitter’s house and I was getting ready to go to the grocery store. With this being my second child, I seemed to be ready to go back to my normal routine of life. I wanted to do normal things like driving my car to the store. Only this time my mother and I discussed that she didn’t want me to drive because it was too soon after giving birth. She drove and insisted that we put our seat belts on, which I do anyway. We put my baby in the back seat, behind the driver side, because of a seat belt malfunction on the opposite side.
We started driving towards the store and listening to the radio. There was an annoying heavy metal guitar solo playing. At the same time, we reached to turn the volume down and we laugh. While we were waiting for a light to turn green, I decided to put on my glasses. The light turned green and my mom pulled out into the street we were turning onto.
At that split second moment, my entire life was turned upside down. I went to another place and time. I was not wearing what I call street clothes. A series of events occurred to me in this place that I speak of. I lost time and when I became conscious, I was in my car, my glasses in my lap, my seat belt still one, and my right hand down by my side with the palm facing up. Those were the first things I saw when I opened my eyes, and they are of big significance to the rest of the story. Next, my mom was convulsing next to me and wasn’t responding to my calls for her. My newborn son was on the floorboard of the backseat screaming and crying as loud as he could.
Not being in my right mind, I took my seat belt off and got out of the car. I was wandering around in this zombie-like state. People were running up to me and asking if I was all right. I wasn’t able to respond to them. Like the lights are on, but nobody’s home. Oh yeah, let me tell you, the day was Wednesday around 11:00 a.m., and by the time the ambulance arrived, my mom was airlifted to the hospital along with my newborn son. I was taken to the hospital in the ambulance, and the paramedic was asking me the usual questions. What is your name? Do you know what day it is? My response was Salena, and it’s Saturday. I asked where were my mom, my newborn (Stephen), and my other son (Xander).
They wouldn’t answer. When I started asking for my other son, they started thinking that they had missed another child at the site of the wreck. So I truly didn’t know what day it was anymore, and was obviously out of it. So that’s the background of it all. Now to the really interesting parts. After living at the hospital for two months with my mom in intensive care and my child in children’s intensive care, my mom eventually passed away. My son, thank the Lord, is now seven, can walk and talk, and has a wonderful mind.
I started remembering this dream that I had. I couldn’t remember when I had this dream. I am one of those people that can remember dreams. I dream in color, I dream of events that haven’t even taken place yet, so for me to remember a dream and all of its details but not remember when it was dreamed was very strange. So let me tell you about this ‘dream.’
I opened my eyes and the first thing I saw is that my right hand is next to my side, palm up, and in some sand. I notice that I was not in regular street clothes. I was in a natural colored burlap and or sackcloth material robe. As I wake in this ‘dream’ I notice that I am somewhere that I’ve never been before. A desert-like area. Not believing where I was, I decided to test myself by taking the sand on the ground next to me and running it through my fingers. I could actually feel the grains of sand fall through them. Still in shock at not knowing where I was, I decided to explore my surroundings. I got up off the ground.
I had my back against a stone building and my head was hanging down. So looking around I noticed that there were people in the distance all wearing the same thing that I was wearing. Curious as to what everyone was doing and just the whole experience in general, I started to make my way over to where they were. As I got closer to them, I noticed a crowd of people surrounding one people. They were crying and moaning. As I started to take a better look, these people and everything around me started to move slower. But not me.
These people were worshipping this person that they were crowding around. I wanted to get to the front and see who it was. As I made my way through the crowd, they took notice of me and I noticed the look on their faces. They looked at me as if to be saying, ‘who is she, and where did she come from?’ So I got to the front and realized they are worshipping the Lord. It was like I could see his face, I could just feel his presence, and he’s speaking over the crowd to everyone. He points me out and asks me to come forth to him, and I do.
As I am doing that, he starts to ask me to do something, and I notice these people are shocked that I came from out of nowhere and I am standing next to ‘Him.’ Just as I heard what it is that he wants me to do, I wake up, and I don’t know what it is that he wanted me to do. Now to back up a little bit I gathered with what I have told you so far.
Once I had gathered this much of my experience, I started going down to many different churches and different backgrounds of churches. I sought many different elders’ guidance as to what all of this meant, and no one could tell me. I was starving for the answers that would have been close to seeming right, but still, nothing. In desperation, I put all of this on a backburner in my mind, just trying to live the rest of my life and pick up what little pieces I had left of it.
About one year later, I was going to bed. As my head hit the pillow, in my mind, was this bright, white light. Like a lightning bolt in my mind, and I remembered the rest of the dream. I had been asked by the lord to speak to others about the Lord. Yes, even today when I tell this it seems crazy to me. As crazy to me now as when he asked me when I was there wherever there is or was. And I remember my reaction to what was being asked of me. ‘Who am I to do this? What makes me special? And how could I possibly talk to anyone about the Lord or these events when I myself don’t know the whole Bible in its entirety?’
But, as I remembered this, as I was going to go to sleep, I shot out of my bed and was alert. Unfortunately, at the time I had no one to share what had just happened to me with. So I started studying harder than ever to learn as much as I could about those things. I didn’t have much knowledge of things other than that my whole life I had felt close to the lord. I was saved, and started remembering the small details. I was even able to draw my surroundings in this experience to help deal with or make sense of it all.
As I was drawing one day, I started remembering that in the wreck I distinctly recalled how my hand was laying when I opened my eyes. That’s what made everything crystal clear to me. It finally made sense to me. That’s why I couldn’t remember when I had the dream, and that it wasn’t a dream at all. It was real, and that I had felt the sand and everything in this experience was as real as sitting in front of someone. As real as being able to touch them and smell them and feel them. I had gone somewhere else. How I woke up in this dream state was exactly how I was positioned in my car at the time of the wreck. Talk about scary. Sorry if this is long, but I felt I had to give details, because that’s how I was able to put this all together.
Date NDE Occurred: 'APRIL 16, 1997'
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Accident 'Life threatening event, but not clinical death' I was in a severe car accident.
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 It was real. I could feel and touch things, and my clothes were not my own.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? Disoriented.
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? Everything seemed to be happening at once; or time stopped or lost all meaning Also a definite loss of time, too. What seemed to be at least a couple of hours when I came too and found myself in the wreck had to have been only one to five minutes.
Did your hearing differ in any way from normal? Just the weeping and moaning in slow motion from the people around me in that place.
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Yes I was in a desert-like area. Everyone dressed the same way, in natural sackcloth robes. There were stone buildings.
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? Yes
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 Smell, touch, and hearing were the same. As I reached the crowd of people their movements started to slow down, but mine didn’t.
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Confusion, even though at the time I was perfectly fine in the dream state. I had no injuries there, and no thoughts or recollections of the fact that I had just been in a wreck. I had never experienced this before. I felt lost, not in my own element.
The experience included: Special Knowledge
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? No It was like I was taken back too soon. As if someone pulled me out of it even through there was no one close to me trying to wake me at the time.
God, Spiritual and Religion:
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes My outlook on life is totally different.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes After the experience, I was in such a state of shock when becoming conscious that I suppressed the entire event until I was able to consume the immediate events. When I did come to, I got out of the car and started to walk around in a zombie-like state.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? No I’ve always had a tiny bit of intuition, insight, and foreshadowing of certain events. Even things that I have never done before.
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? The best was going to another place and sensing the Lord’s presence.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes Every chance I get, and I don’t care what response I get. I know what I experienced and whether they understand it or not doesn’t matter. Because it was for me to experience. A gift from above. And I was the only one in the wreck that didn’t have any serious injuries. I was just ‘knocked unconscious.’
Is there anything else that you would like to add about your experience? One day I will write a book concerning these things and other things as well.