Best place to start is in order. Prior to car accident, my friends and I were out freewheeling in some dunes in Miami. My boyfriend (who four years later became my husband) and his friend were drinking a few beers and I had two or three wine coolers. Boyfriend's friend was driving so he just had two beers. I didn't get really drunk, just light-headed. It was late by the time we headed home. I'd worked all day plus had gone for a long run earlier. My job was athletic so I had to stay in shape. I was pretty tired and laid down to nap in back seat of jeep for the long drive home.Next thing I remember I was walking with a guide, who I later came to understand was an angel. Everything around me was filled with a beautiful glowing light. I was experiencing such feelings of joy and awe and overwhelming glory was surrounding me. How do you describe such a thing with mere words? My guide was talking to me and explaining certain things to me. I don't know how long this all went on for or how long or far we walked because the passage of time as we know it really had no place in this realm. Eventually, sooner or later, who knows when, we came to an area that was filled with what appeared to be many church pews filled with people praying. My guide/angel told me these people were all praying for me.At that time, and I don't remember exactly how I knew, I became aware that some/most of these people praying were not currently alive. I did see some people I recognized from my life that were still alive. I truly felt those prayers as a very strong force right then and there. Right up until months after I'd gotten out of the hospital. I know during that time my main purpose was explained to me and I was also told that I would not remember much about that until the time came for it to be carried out. I remember being told I must go back now, because I had things to do. Then I remember coming back to my body and waking up in the hospital.When I woke up, I had no memories of my life as an adult though my family was there and explained to me how old I was and that I'd been in a coma. I had no memories past being about five or six years old at that time, but all that started coming back to me fairly quickly with therapists and family. Photographs especially helped me start remembering pretty quickly. I remembered my near death experience very vividly though. My family kind of just passed over it at that time like it was just some crazy dream I had (this was in 1985 so I don't think there was much sharing about that type of experience at the time, at least not with my family.)
Date NDE Occurred: 'August 25, 1985'
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Accident. Direct head injury Clinical death (cessation of breathing or heart function or brain function)
I was thrown from a jeep, died, was resuscitated by a bystander and then was taken to a hospital where I understand, from what I was told, that I slipped in and out of life several more times as I was operated on. Then, I was in a coma for several weeks.
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? Yes Mostly the praying described earlier. Those scenes were described to me months later by several different family and friends. Also, I was later shown pictures of some of the people I had seen praying and singing with at the time I was gone. It was verified that some of them were family members I had never been shown pictures of before.
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 felt, really felt, so much more. My senses seemed so alive. It was so much more real than anything else I've ever experienced before or since. Oh, I forgot to mention the music before! It was glorious and surrounded me at all times I was there, yet it was never too loud. It was just always there and it was just so natural and necessary for it to be there.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? While I was walking and talking with the angel/presence that accompanied me, right up until I was told it was time to go back for now.
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
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. It was much sharper.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I just remember the constant beautiful music. Sometimes my guide/angel seemed to be communicating, talking with me directly in my head, without spoken words.
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? Yes, but the facts have not been checked out
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Yes But I'd describe it more as a passageway.
The experience included: Presence of deceased persons
Did you see any beings in your experience? I actually saw them
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? Yes Family member, but I'm not sure about that now.
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 beautiful, rich, calming glow seemed to surround everything. It is rather hard to describe, actually.
The experience included: A landscape or city
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Awe, peace, happiness, and more.
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
The experience included: Special knowledge or purpose
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything? Everything about the universe Or at least my pitiful capability for understanding as a puny human. Many things were explained to me by my angel/guide. When I came back to my body, I was told that I may not remember all I was told but that I would feel it if/when it was needed. I just let the knowledge come to me.
The experience included: Life review
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 my personal future Can't really describe it right now, people are waiting on me to finish this.
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 I really have no further time to describe it right now.
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 At that time my religion cold be described as "if it feels good, do it" and I was somewhat into the occult and dabbler in devil worship also. My parents had taken us to church off and on as we were growing up, but father was in air force so it wasn't always regular, nondenominational, and we frequently moved-every 1-2 years till my father retired. Once he'd retired really didn't attend any church unless we traveled to visit grandparents. By that time I had become an atheist.
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes I've come to understand so much more by just having faith and believing what's been shown me, not what society pushes people to believe.
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 After I recovering enough to get out of hospital, I had a very strong need to start attending church again and to make sure I was baptized-knew it was very important. Sometimes since that NDE I start "forgetting" what I now know to be true-but God just gives me another little reminder "tap" and I remember whats important...
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 Because I was an atheist at the time. Have to go, people waiting on me.
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 Sometimes it seemed as though the being was communicating very clearly with me without actual spoken words as we know them.
Did you see deceased or religious spirits? I actually saw them
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.)? Uncertain Not sure about the being I was with or all the people I saw praying.at the time wasn't sure if the presence I was with was an angel or Jesus...
During your experience, did you gain information about premortal existence? Uncertain Hard to concentrate and remember at this time because now I'm late!
During your experience, did you gain information about universal connection or oneness? Yes So many, all things connected, but out of time to explain more at this time.
Did you believe in the existence of God prior to your experience? God does not exist
During your experience, did you gain information about the existence of God? Yes A big, resounding YES, but I Don't have time for a complete answer this morning.
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 Will be glad to, at another time when I haven't already been sitting here three hours trying to finish this.
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Are not meaningful and significant
During your experience, did you gain information about the meaning of life? Yes At least my personal purpose-more description next time.
Did you believe in an afterlife prior to your experience? An afterlife probably does not exist
Do you believe in an afterlife after your experience? An afterlife definitely exists Yes Was told that it was my choice to go back or stay and go on-but no time to finish describing right now.
Did you fear death prior to your experience? I slightly feared death
Do you fear death after your experience? I do not fear death
Were you fearful living your life prior to your experience? Slightly 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 Don't really remember at this time, can't concentrate 'cause I'm so late and have to finish this or will lose it all.
Were you compassionate prior to your experience? Slightly compassionate toward others
During your experience, did you gain information about love? Uncertain Don't remember at this time for reasons mentioned above.
Were you compassionate after your experience? Moderately compassionate toward others
What life changes occurred in your life after your experience? Large changes in my life I will have to some other time.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes Yes I seem to look deeper inside people near me now. Not so much the persona they attempt to display. There is much more but I have to finish this up now.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes Words are very inadequate.
How accurately do you remember the experience in comparison to other life events that occurred around the time of the experience? I do not know how my remembrance of the experience compares to my remembrance of other life events at time
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? Yes, several. I will have to discuss them another time.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes Many varied reactions. This is something I'd like to describe a lot more, but I am out of time for today.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Yes I only had vague information. It wasn't much.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real It seemed like most real thing around me at time, though I didn't get acknowledgement from family at the time for the most part.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real I do not have the time right now; this has already taken me two hours. I type really slow. I will answer another time.
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? Not at this time. People are waiting on me to finish. But there is more.
© 2014 NDERF, Jody Long & Jeffrey Long, MD. All Rights Reserved.