Without any symptoms, they diagnosed me with cancer of the stomach on September 13, 2013. On October 7, they made a surgical intervention for the first time and removed my stomach, the gall bladder and part of the duodenum. Apparently the operation went well, but little by little, things started to go badly. The sutures never joined and after an interminable week, I went back to the operating room on October 14 for emergency surgery. The suture had come undone. I had peritonitis and four of the vital signs were at the highest reading evidencing that I was in a life-threatening situation.In those seven days between October 7 and October 14, I couldn't drink water or ingest food by mouth, as I still had the nasal-gastric tube. I was so thirsty and very anxious.I continually asked them to moisten my mouth with a mouthwash or a little water on the lips. The anxiety was quite bad, as they told me they would remove the nasal-gastro tube in three or four days. Then, they would let me drink a little water.After the second operation on October 14, the tube had been in for 12 days to guarantee that the area of the suture was dry. I didn't ask for water and my resignation was massive because I had been at the point of death. Afterwards, I spent time alternating between the resuscitation room and and intensive care unit. I was there almost a week, for the second time. I was lying next to a wall. I couldn't move or see anyone or except the hospital workers and my family who visited twice a day. I was lying down. I tried to picture myself in pleasant relaxed situations like being on the beach, playing golf, or in the snow. IT WAS COMPLETELY IMPOSSIBLE. I just saw myself in my only position LYING DOWN. I could never see myself standing up or in three dimensions.A result of the morphine and similar substances that they gave me, I had nightmares that always ended with an alarm and then the death of my 17 year old son.It was then, in one of these anguished situations, in which I imagined myself lying down in my bed with various companions in separate beds. When I got up, I turned around following an intense light of intense color. I was flooded with a mountain of pleasant memories; memories of the ones I love in my life passed before me. The light pushed me into a tunnel that also was of brilliant colored light, inviting me to go through. With some effort, I understood that behind the light was God. I understood that I had wasted so much of my life. With great effort, I decided to not go into the tunnel.This situation, clearly happened to me at least twice. The two times I passed into the light, according to the doctors and my wife, twice I had been at the point of death.
Date NDE Occurred: 21/10/2012
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Surgery-related Other: Fracaso multiorgánico tras intervenión quirúrgica
Multiple. organ failure after the dissolving of sutures and subsequent peritonitis.
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? No. That which I did see was as if I had left my lying down body in the bed, with the nasal-gastric tube and all the pain that I had with it and, I got up and went to the light that was down the tunnel. My body stayed there, lying down on the bed, and I was the one who arose. However, I don't remember in that moment what the doctors were doing to me, or that my material body had passed.
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 was lying down sick, without anything to do, wanting to get better, and to do it in the best possible way. I was trying to think positively but unable to do so, without any positive image to cushion my state of health. In addition, the strange thing is that it is not the pain, because generally I was not in pain from being sedated with opiates and other medication. Maybe these drugs cause bad dreams and hallucinations of the type of dream that repeats itself like the one with my youngest child.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? In the moments that I have described: being in the intensive care unit and the recovery and resuscitation unit.
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
Time had stopped. I don't know how long it really was, but it was long enough for me to go through the scenes and the influential people of my life.
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. Passing through the horizontal plane into three dimensions. From the absence of light to the brilliant light, from the negative and pain to the calm and positivity, which is absolute pleasure, and happening at such speed. Thoughts accumulate, my life passed in front of me. It was like a series of important memories of people that I have loved, accompanying me in this moment. All this makes it very difficult to stop following the light and going into the tunnel, because you believe without doubt, that at the end of it I will find God, the happiness or something marvellous. Only the will to resist, clinging to life, carried you and brought you back to this horizontal plane, to black and white, to the reality of the hospital bed, and to make you realise that once more, that you had passed through a critical moment in your sickness.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I don't remember that there was anything of importance. There were more images speaking for themselves without any need for sound. I believe they are the same.
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? No
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Yes The light was at the end of the tunnel. Although mine was not longitudinal, in a straight line, but was circular and the light was above high up, through this type of circular tunnel, and carried to the light. Absolutely peaceful. I stayed there for a time and then returned to the horizontal plane like falling from a height.
Did you see any beings in your experience? I sensed their presence
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? Uncertain There was no figure clearly standing out.
The experience included: Unearthly light
Did you see, or feel surrounded by, a brilliant light? An unusually bright light
Did you see an unearthly light? Yes I have previously told you. After the circular tunnel, there was light and my intention and effort wasn't anything other than to get to it.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm Yes it was. A place where there was nothing bad. Everything was light and happiness. Absence of pain, which made it very difficult to take the decision not to remain there, and return to the hospital bed.
What emotions did you feel during the experience? An enormous pleasure and great happiness. Even today, I remember and, of course, it makes me believe excitedly that God or happiness, or another third experience exists after physical death.
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? I felt no longer in conflict with nature
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything? Everything about myself or others Everything became one, and showed me the reason to be. Everything was in harmony.
The experience included: Life review
Did scenes from your past come back to you? I remembered many past events Clearly. I saw my life in images. Just positive flashes occurring from my infancy. From when I was a boy in the park in Huesca, from my age as a boy in Zaragoza, with my friends at colleges and the neighbourhood. Of my adolescence, of my wife, when she was my fiance and later my wife, she was my best support. Of my friends, my children, and my family. Also isolated situations pleasures (skiing, playing golf, on the beach ...). All very, very pleasant situations.
Did scenes from the future come to you? No
Did you come to a border or point of no return? I came to a definite conscious decision to return to life I have already described this previously. Of course, it was difficult, from my state of absolute peacefulness, consciously (from my unconsciousness) to decide to return to the real world as seen from the bed in Intensive Care.
God, Spiritual and Religion:
What importance did you place on your religious/spiritual life prior to your experience? Slightly important to me
What was your religion prior to your experience? Christian- Catholic
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes I am more religious and go to the church more often.
What importance do you place on your religious/spiritual life after your experience? Moderately important to me
What is your religion now? Christian- Catholic
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
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes A greater religiousness and belief that there is life after death.
Did you seem to encounter a mystical being or presence, or hear an unidentifiable voice? No Actually,no. However, there was nothing of the body; the light was something ethereal and very pacifying.
Did you see deceased or religious spirits? I sensed their presence
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? Uncertain I think the link is just that: The light at the end of the tunnel.
Did you believe in the existence of God prior to your experience? God probably exists
During your experience, did you gain information about the existence of God? Uncertain I identified the light with God but without any basis at all.
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? 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? An afterlife probably exists
Do you believe in an afterlife after your experience? An afterlife definitely exists Uncertain I think so. That the place I visited wasn't in this life. That it was the anteroom of another life, a life of complete happiness and peace.
Did you fear death prior to your experience? I did not fear death
Do you fear death after your experience? I do not fear death
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? Not fearful in living my earthly life
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? Uncertain Maybe the light, the peace, the peacefulness that is there, maybe a prize for having overcome this earthly life. I don't know.
Were you compassionate prior to your experience? Moderately compassionate toward others
During your experience, did you gain information about love? Yes Absolutely. My loved ones and my good moments and happiness were the only things that came to me. Otherwise than the nightmares, of which I had a lot.
Were you compassionate after your experience? Moderately compassionate toward others
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? No
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes It's like a dream and although in those moments, everything has a perfect and central plot, sometimes it wouldn't. I could dream about that which should happen, and then it becomes difficult to describe a framework of a structure, central and separate. The ideas, thoughts, and the memories come all at once and they are difficult to tell apart.
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 less accurately than other life events that occurred around the time of the experience.
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? Both the circular tunnel as that of light I saw, as I was leaving the pain and the flight to God and Happiness. (The Light).
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes From the moment, I found myself well enough to tell it. Everyone wanted to listen to it with attention and respect; irrespective of whether they believed or not.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Yes The father of a friend saw his daughter that had passed away and this gave him peace, knowing that she was well, with God, and enjoying another life.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was probably not real Real as if tangible, I don't think so, I didn't leave the Intensive care bed, where I was. However, spiritually, yes, I believe I was on a higher plane and in the presence of someone or something sacred.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was probably not real Now, from the perspective of three years later, I think that it could have been a dream but I resist the temptation to look at it from an absolutely rational point of view.
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? Yes Many daily events make me think of it.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? I think it is detailed enough. They should reread it with a spellcheck. There are a few spelling mistakes (such as 'aber' instead of 'haber').
© 2014 NDERF, Jody Long & Jeffrey Long, MD. All Rights Reserved.