Lorette C NDE
Edited for clarity by Judy Shea 6/23/11
I had been in cardiac arrest for 18 minutes. I heard a doctor say, "Five minutes until cerebral death." Another one said: "It's already too late." As for me, I had no doubt that my brain was still functioning, that I wasn't dead. I said to myself that I would move one finger, as proof that I was still alive. When I tried to move it, I could not. And I no longer felt or heard anything. Then I understood that my body was inert. Everything was profoundly dark, an intense darkness. But not the same dark as one sees in a hermetically sealed room. It was an infinite darkness. The next moment, a pack of hounds arrived. It was as if they came through the wall from the room next door. They were excited and seemed uneasy. They were short-legged and completely black. Yet I could clearly see these black dogs in the black darkness. They were baying and advancing towards me. I saw them while I was still lying down. Without moving, and with my head facing straight up, I could see them with an all-encompassing field of vision, advancing from the side. I understood that my suicide attempt had brought me into their presence, and that I would stay in darkness without seeing the white light. I told myself this was perfectly normal. The hounds could have appeared frightening to me, yet I was not afraid. I was completely at peace, though disappointed at not being in the light. But I understood. The dogs circled me - still baying (but still without any sound.) Then suddenly, my partner, who had died in 2008, was there, looking at me. He was like glass. I could clearly see each of his features in complete transparency. He looked wonderful. He had regained his rounded cheeks (hollowed out when he was ill). He wore glasses, but not his latest ones, I didn't know why he was not wearing his usual glasses. These must have been an old pair, I thought. He was smiling, and he was right next to me.
The dogs fell back and stayed back. I no longer was aware of their (still silent) baying. I looked at my partner, he smiled at me. With his right index finger, he tapped his cheek. Asking for a kiss. I told him ( without opening my mouth) that I couldn't move, that though he could move about, I could not. Imprisoned in my body. Then he asked me to put my head on his shoulder. In a flash I found myself with my head on his shoulder. I didn't know how this happened, but I had achieved it with great facility. We were just fine, together. The dogs had completely vanished, not a single one was left. Then I saw a parade of photos. Of him and of me, on a boat. Yet I had forgotten these detailed memories, of these moments captured in these photos. And, as the photos passed before us, I remembered each of those moments. I felt as though I had become a bit drowsy, with my head still on his shoulder. Then, we separated. We were not on the ground, we were floating. He placed his hands on my shoulders, smiling at me gently, a serene smile. Then, delicately, he pushed me away. I remained in a very deep coma (in which the doctors did not know whether I would survive) for six days. But I have no idea how long those moments lasted. Time does not exist there. Or anyway, it is a measurement which is of no account.
Was the kind of
experience difficult to express in words?
Uncertain. Yes, and
no. What makes it difficult to express is the nature of the details for which no
word seems appropriate. Also, it was difficult to depict truly the real vision
of the situation. What words can be used for the description of non-material
At the time of this experience, was there an associated life threatening event? Yes. My heart had stopped beating for 18 minutes.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? Throughout, from beginning to end.
How did your highest level of consciousness and alertness during the experience compare to your normal every day consciousness and alertness? Normal consciousness and alertness. Throughout, from beginning to end.
Did your vision differ in any way from your normal, everyday vision (in any aspect, such as clarity, field of vision, colors, brightness, depth perception degree of solidness/transparency of objects, etc.)? Yes. The blackness was intense, yet I could see the black dogs perfectly in all that blackness. I saw in an exact way my friend's face, glasses, individual characteristics, though he was transparent. It was as though he were made of glass. The room could be seen (through him) in all its contours, all the textures - and with all this, he was exactly as I knew him. My field of vision was total. I could see all around me without turning around.
Did your hearing differ in any way from your normal, everyday hearing (in any aspect, such as clarity, ability to recognize source of sound, pitch, loudness, etc.)? Yes. It was total silence. I saw the dogs barking, but no sound came from their mouths. As for my friend, he spoke through my eyes and I replied in the same way. He did not open his mouth, he just smiled. As for me, I spoke to him with my mind and he "understood" and grasped what I meant. We spoke in a natural way but with our minds. Now, I cannot understand how I did it! But during the experience, everything seemed normal.
Did you experience a separation of your consciousness from your body? Yes
What emotions did you feel during the experience? At first, when I saw the dogs, I told myself they were going to carry me off and it wasn't good. That I would be excluded from the light. And yet I felt at peace. I knew that suicide is not allowed. I had to bear the consequences of my acts. Also, I was not surprised to see the dogs appear. When my partner arrived, I had a feeling of fulfilment, protection, tenderness, love, serenity, and peace. It was as if time did not exist.
Did you pass into or through a tunnel or enclosure? Uncertain, I don't know how to describe it. Everything was incredibly dark, and when the dogs came on the scene, they seemed to come out of the darkness. They appeared directly and "entire" in their form, as though they had passed through a screen or a canvas backdrop (invisible because of the same degree of darkness.)
Did you see a light? No
Did you meet or see any other beings? Yes, the black dogs. They were imposing, but short-legged. Then my partner. The dogs communicated voicelessly that they had come to get me. My partner and I communicated through our minds. We spoke without moving our lips. He asked me to put my head on his shoulder, but I told him I did not know how to move, that I was "nailed to the floor." Yet I then found myself with my head on his shoulder. He said his farewell, and with his own hands sent me back where I had come from. There was never any sound.
Did you experience a review of past events in your life? Yes. We shared moments and memories from our life together. Very clear images, very precise memories, with details that I had actually forgotten. It was a bit like looking at photos you have never seen before, when you have forgotten about the moments they represent. And when you see them, the memories come back to you and make you smile. We shared these memories with an immense serenity, with respect and in a silence which was calming but intense. I had my head on his shoulder throughout.
Did you observe or hear anything regarding people or events during your experience that could be verified later? No
Did you see or visit any beautiful or otherwise distinctive locations, levels or dimensions? Uncertain. I found myself in another dimension, I don't know which, but one which was totally non-material.
Did you have any sense of altered space or time? Yes. Space was infinite, time did not exist. We shared many emotions, but I am quite incapable of knowing whether this lasted 5 minutes or much more. My death lasted 18 minutes. Afterwards, there were 4 cardiac arrests during a profound coma lasting 6 days.
Did you have a sense of knowing special knowledge, universal order and/or purpose? Yes. I felt that I had to come back and continue my path. As for knowledge, I know now that there is a life after life. I have seen love, serenity, peace. I saw no suffering.
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? Yes. I was in an infinite dimension - a time without limits. There was no longer any physical structure. My partner could move freely through space, that is, without any ground. As for me, I could not move at first, but then I found myself with my head on his shoulder, so that I was no longer lying down. I was at least sitting, I am not really certain. But I moved within infinity.
Did you become aware of future events? Yes, I became aware that my life was going to change profoundly, in a good way. That I had just turned around 180º but was still going forward, anyway. This knowledge changed my state of mind profoundly; however it has only been 2 months since I had this experience. So far, I have no concrete examples to cite to back up my sense of profound change. Watch this space.
Did you have any psychic, paranormal or other special gifts following the experience you did not have prior to the experience? Uncertain. I feel that I am "seeing" future things. It is odd but I feel things profoundly. Two examples: 1) In the hospital, I came across a man, and we talked. As we were speaking and I was looking into his eyes, I suddenly saw an image. It was him, dead. He saw on my face that I seemed in shock, but I said nothing about it to him. He was there for a medicated rehab program. The day he was discharged, he confided to me that he had hepatitis C, with his liver in a critical condition. 2) I dined last evening with a girlfriend. She has been in remission from cancer since February 2011. She was there in front of me, and I saw the sickness in her. It seemed to me that the cancer was back. I asked her if she still had tests to be done. She replied that her latest results were not good: "It's sprouting up again." she said to me.
Have you shared this experience with others? Yes. I stayed in hospital 5 weeks. During this time, I spoke about it to a nurse, in compete confidence, asking her not to talk to the doctors about it. I also told my mother and a girlfriend. They reacted very calmly. I told these people because I felt I could trust them. I don't know whether they believed me, because I had spoken to them while I was still in recovery, and I think they would not have wanted to upset me at that time by making any negative comments.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Uncertain. I had vaguely heard tell of it, without really believing it. No one in my circle had had one.
How did you view the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Right away, I saw the experience as probably real. A little later, when I went over this experience in my mind, I knew it was really true. No resemblance to a dream. And then in the next weeks, I was completely at sea. Was it a dream? A reaction to medication? Morphine? I had a lot of questions which were to remain unanswered. For 5 weeks I sought eagerly to know if it was a dream, or reality. And then all of a sudden, all questioning ceased, I knew it was not a dream, that it had all really happened.
Were there one or several parts of the experience especially meaningful or significant to you? Yes. My partner died 3 years ago. The doctors told me my mourning was of a pathological nature, that I was not making any progress with it. When I came around, my mourning was over with.
How do you currently view the reality of your experience? Now I see the experience as definitely real. I see it as the greatest opportunity that life has afforded me. It is hard to believe, very profound, and it has answered all my questions. I look on this experience as the last meeting I have had with my partner. And also it is strong proof that love is carried through the veil - this love that has given me such rare and precious moments.
Have your relationships changed specifically as a result of your experience? Yes, though it's still a bit early, I can say yes. I know it, I feel it.
Have your religious beliefs/practices changed specifically as a result of your experience? I have become a firm believer. I pray to God and the Virgin each morning. I thank them for this gift and ask for their protection. I intend also to go to confession with a priest to obtain forgiveness for my sins and for the act of suicide, which is so forbidden by the Bible.
Following the experience, have you had any other events in your life, medications or substances which reproduced any part of the experience? No. But there again, I repeat that it is only 8 weeks since this happened.
Is there anything else you would like to add concerning the experience? Now one thing is certain - I will never be aftaid of my death again. Of course, I'm scared of suffering, but I await the life beyond with serenity. And now this makes me appreciate, all the more, each moment and each day which passes. It is also surprising how some people see me. Now they find me "luminous and radiant." They are absolutely disconcerted by what comes from me. Yet they are not aware of what I have been through. This makes me smile inwardly, as I know what I have experienced, and I tell myself that maybe I have brought back a part of the non-material spark into this physical world. This leads me to believe that the two parallel worlds join together at times.
Did the questions asked and information you provided so far accurately and comprehensively describe your experience? Yes. But I would like to add something. I have three people near to me who have found me... changed. One said, "You are luminous, it's unbelievable!" Another: "How luminous you are." (with an air of doubt.) The third, "You are radiant!" The last one is a great believer and from the tone she took, I understood that she knew.
Are there any other questions we could ask to help you communicate your experience? Filling out the questionnaire, I realized that sometimes several of the proposed replies were applicable. But only one box can be ticked. I think, too, that to explain oneself properly, there should be a space for amplification in one's own words on ALL the questions. It has been the case here that I needed/wanted to expand on a "yes," or a "no."