At first I did not leave this realm. I could see my ambulance stopped on the side of the road while the paramedics were working on me because I had bled out and had no pulse or breathing function. The Life Flight chopper had been grounded due to fog. Suddenly I found myself inside the car, which my husband and my brother were driving to the hospital. My brother was holding a gun and was telling my husband if I didn't make it, that he was going to kill him, as well. I was screaming at my brother, 'NO! NO!' but he could not hear me. Then the fog parted over the interstate and only the interstate where the ambulance was. The ambulance driver later compared it to the 'parting of the Red Sea' in the story of Moses. I was then aware of being whisked away in the arms of a being I could not see. I knew I was being carried by a being and that this being had no physical body nor did I. Below, I saw a beautiful island-like city that was glowing with vivid color. There was no sun in the sky; the island city just glowed all on its own. I could 'hear' a voice inside my head expressing great sorrow. I thought it was my dad but quickly realized it was not. I attempted to speak. I 'mouthed' the words 'I'm sorry.' The paramedic that was working on me later said he saw my lips move even though I was not breathing, and so he slapped me really hard. Then I started breathing again and showing a weak pulse. Later, in surgery, I left again. This time I was in a cold, cave-like tunnel with water running down the walls. I looked ahead down the tunnel and an awful heat hit my face, taking my breath away, choking me. I could see people reaching out of the bottom of the tunnel for me. I remember wanting to give them a drink of the water that was running down the walls but I was told I could not. Then I was told that I was not going to die now, but that I had been shown both sides of the afterlife and it was up to me to choose which place I would eventually go to. I realized I was being given another chance. When I awoke in the Intensive Care Unit, I signaled for a pen and paper because I was on life support and could not speak. I asked for my brother, the one who had been in the car with my husband. Neither of them had arrived yet. I never told anyone why I had wanted to see him. Later, after I had recovered, he told me about threatening my husband. It was exactly what I had witnessed in my out-of-body experience.
Date NDE Occurred: 4/24/2002
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Accident. Drug or medication overdose. CPR given. Clinical death (cessation of breathing or heart function or brain function)
It was a reaction to a combination of prescription drugs I had taken. I had become delusional and while loading a handgun for 'protection,' I had accidentally shot myself in my left abdomen.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Both pleasant AND distressing
The experience included: Out of body experience
Did you feel separated from your body? Yes The paramedic witnessed my attempt to say 'I'm sorry' while I was not breathing and had no pulse. My brother confirmed what I had seen happen between him and my husband on their ride to the hospital. I still have never told either of them that I already knew. Now they can read this story!
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 The highly charged telepathic voices in my head. The feel of the being's arms around me even though I could not 'see' anyone there. It was a 'high energy' like state. I knew EVERYTHING that was happening to my physical body but I could not feel it, nor did it matter to me.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? While looking at the glowing city and while looking at the wet walls of the tunnel. These scenes are 'burned' into my mind to this day.
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
Time had no meaning. My awareness did not feel 'present-time.'
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. The reaction to the medications had rendered me temporarily blind in 'real life.' I could see very clearly during my experience.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I did not 'hear' with my ears during the experience, only inside my head.
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? Yes, and the facts have been checked out
The experience included: Tunnel
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Yes Cold dark with wet walls. It was going downhill to a very disturbing place.
Did you see any beings in your experience? No
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? Yes I was allowed to feel the pain of family members and friends. This is why I felt such overwhelming sorrow at the beginning. I saw the paramedic working on me. I saw one of my brothers in the car with my husband. Although I never really saw my husband, I knew that was whom my brother was talking to.
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 The light from the 'city' had no visible source. It glowed.
The experience included: A landscape or city
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm Yes, two distinct places. One was a glowing island-like city that was extremely attractive in all ways. The other was a tunnel with cold, wet walls leading downhill to a very unattractive place.
The experience included: Hellish imagery
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Extreme sadness at first. I felt everyone else's sorrow all at once. Then upon hearing the 'Voice' and telling Him that I was sorry, I felt extremely relieved and happy.
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? No
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? Scenes from my personal future The entire experience was about my future. I was given a second chance at life to decide where I would go when I died and stayed dead. That's what the 'Voice' told me.
The experience included: Boundary
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? Yes There was no physical structure; the being carrying me would only go so far. The 'Voice' said I could not go any farther.
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 As above.
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- Other Christian Had been raised Church of Christ(Orthodox)but was not attending at time of accident.
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Uncertain My religious beliefs matter a lot more now. I study obsessively.
What importance do you place on your religious/spiritual life after your experience? Greatly important to me
What is your religion now? Christian- Other Christian Obsessed with reading scripture & researching Christianity
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 was told all my life that God doesn't speak to or have any contact with mankind anymore. Well, He did me. I may have been technically dead but He knew I was not going to stay that way. I was also taught that you would have no memory of loved ones after death. I did. I will say however, the further I went into my experience the more the thoughts of loved ones left behind diminished. I firmly believe I was given a warning to do better. This was also something I had been taught that does not occur.
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes I now have the belief that we will suffer the consequences of causing other people pain. No matter how justified we may feel or think we are. It just is not acceptable.
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 I was being carried by a disembodied being that I could feel holding me but could not see. I 'heard' a voice telling me how much sorrow would be caused by my untimely death. I was also made to feel all of this sorrow all at once. This prompted my reply of 'I'm sorry.'
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? No
During your experience, did you gain information about universal connection or oneness? Yes I felt as though there were many people all around but they had no physical presence. I describe it like "we were all as thoughts in a great mind".
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? Yes He was the "voice" inside me. I was sure once He made me to feel everyone's sorrow. No human could have done that.
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? Yes I know there is another 'life' when we leave this one. I know there is a Being that can choose to give us another chance, or not. I know that the important thing is not so much what we do, as it is what we do that affects others. We cannot be a 'stumbling block' to other people. We cannot cause other people pain, or we will feel it ourselves someday.
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Are possibly meaningful and significant
During your experience, did you gain information about the meaning of life? Uncertain I don't know if it was meant for everyone or just me. I felt like I had a purpose and that was to spend the rest of my life being very careful how I treat others and do as much as possible to understand and forgive because I cannot begin to know the whys and what
Did you believe in an afterlife prior to your experience? I was uncertain if an afterlife exists
Do you believe in an afterlife after your experience? An afterlife definitely exists Yes The entire experience was to show me what would or could happen to me for eternity after this earthly life. If I did well, I could go to the beautiful place, if I did not do well, I would go to the end of the tunnel place.
Did you fear death prior to your experience? I moderately feared death
Do you fear death after your experience? I do not fear death
Were you fearful living your life prior to your experience? Greatly 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 possibly 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? Yes It was made very clear that we will be punished for the sorrow that we cause others.
During your experience, did you gain information about life's difficulties, challenges and hardships? Uncertain Just that awful feeling of sorrow that I felt that came from everyone that would suffer from my demise. Note: this was not MY feeling. I felt whay THEY were feeling.
Were you compassionate prior to your experience? Not compassionate toward others
During your experience, did you gain information about love? Yes That I was definately loved by more than just family and friends on this earth. There are beings somewhere else that love me too.
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 During the first year, I tried to forget what I had seen. Sometimes I tried to drink it away, but that just seemed to make it more vivid. I stopped drinking or taking anything stronger than aspirin and then started to feel at peace with the memory of it. I started to feel like I had been given a gift of great value, spiritually. My husband thought I was crazy, so I divorced him. Now, I'm happy with who I am, all by myself. Large changes in my life.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes Yes I can no longer feel individual love. Like man and wife kind of love. I feel the same love for everybody. I treat them all the same. I do not date or have any intimate relationships.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes There ARE NO WORDS WORTHY to explain the FEELING of the whole experience.
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 I have no memory of my life 4 days prior to this event. My first memory is of the gun shot, at the local hospital I told my Mom that my stomach hurt. Then my "journey" begins. The next memory after my "journey" is "asking" for a pen & paper in the ICU so I could write my brother's name. NOTE: I have 3 brothers and the one I saw with my husband during my experience was the only one I asked about.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? Yes I help the dying feel better. Since my experience, I have lost both parents and an uncle and they all told me that they were not afraid of dying when I was with them.
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? I wish I knew why I was given another chance. Not everyone is. The entire experience was to show me what would or could happen to me for eternity after this earthly life. If I did well, I could go to the beautiful place, if I did not do well, I would go to the place the tunnel was leading. God was the 'Voice' inside me. I was sure of that once He had made me feel everyone's sorrow. No human could have done that.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? No
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Yes I had heard of them. I thought you saw pictures of your life flash before your eyes. I had never heard of anything like what I experienced. So, no, my knowledge of NDEs did not have anything to do with what I experienced.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was probably not real At first I thought the experience was probably not real. I looked at it as a dream. At first I did not WANT to believe it was real, because that meant that the awful place at the bottom of the tunnel was also real.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real I know it was real. After it would not leave my mind for a very long time, I started asking people questions about things I had seen happen while I was 'out.' Turns out all of the things did happen just as I had seen them during my experience. Word for word, my brother told me of his threat toward my husband while they were on the way to the hospital. Word for word, the paramedic told me of seeing me 'mouth' the words 'I'm sorry' as I remember saying them to the 'Voice' in reply to the sorrow of others that I had felt. I asked if there was a tunnel that went from the chopper landing spot, down to the trauma center. It doesn't exist. The doctor I had asked about it then wanted to know what I had seen and I just turned away from him. He said to me, 'don't be afraid of whatever it is you saw, just know you're not the only one.' I wish I had confided in him because he seemed to know I was hiding something. This doctor also told me the answer to something that had bugged me. My experience had two parts at two different times. Why? How? The doctor said they had 'lost' me again during surgery. They had to do open heart massage to start my heart again. I still have the scar where they ripped open my chest.
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? I felt as though there were many people all around but they had no physical presence. I describe it as 'we were all as thoughts in a great mind.' That awful feeling of sorrow I felt that came from realizing everyone that would suffer from my demise. [Note: this was not MY feeling. I felt what THEY were feeling.] That I am definitely loved by more than just family and friends on this earth. There are beings somewhere else that love me, too. It was made very clear that we will be punished for the sorrow that we cause others. I had been told all my life that God doesn't speak to, or have any contact with, mankind anymore. Well, He did me. I may have been technically dead but He knew I was not going to stay that way. I had also always been taught that you would have no memory of loved ones after death. I did. I will say, however, the further I went into my experience, the more the thoughts of loved ones left behind diminished. I firmly believe I was given a warning to do better. This was also something I had been taught that does not occur.
I have no memory of my life four days prior to this event. My first memory after my first NDE was of the gunshot. At the local hospital, I told my Mom that my stomach hurt. Then my 'journey,' which happened during my surgery, begins. The next memory after my 'journey' is 'asking' for a pen and paper in the Intensive Care Unit so I could write my brother's name. I have three brothers and the one I saw with my husband during my experience was the only one I asked about.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? You could ask 'Was the experience in the day time or at night?' I believe this is relevant, because my experience was at 11:00 am. But the sky was dark during my experience outside this realm, except for the glow from the city. While I was looking down on the paramedics working on me in this realm, the daylight corresponded to the correct time, 11:00 am. I would like to know why this is.
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