After giving blood I was seated at the refreshment table and drinking a coca cola. I felt a little sick in my stomach. The lady who was watching the donors at the table was a retired nurse volunteer. She asked me if I was OK. I said no. She rang a little bell and a Red Cross nurse came over. She looked at me, and then called for a wheelchair. She asked me to stand up and sit in it. I did so and thought 'I am so glad to sit in this chair and know I am surrounded with professional people who are trained to take care of me'. I felt exhausted and deeply relieved to sit down. It then seemed I was in some other place. There was a lot of wind there and the wind made a lot of noise. I saw that I was in a tunnel. I seemed to be floating through the air, propelled by the wind. I was very calm. There was no sense of worry or fear. I was willing to go where this wind would take me. I heard someone calling my name, 'Nostra, Nostra', very loudly and urgently. Whoever was calling me evidently was in deep trouble and needed my help. Also, since they knew my name, it must be a friend of mine. I had to go back and help this friend. I opened my eyes and saw a strange man there, which I was quite confused by. He was almost in my face, and on his face was the biggest grin I ever saw. He sat back but he still radiated happiness. He had on a white coat, though I knew that he was not a doctor but one of the blood technicians. Later I realized he knew my name because of the tag on my shirt. Before I gave blood I had been working as a donor assistant, and the nurses asked us to put these name tags on so they could get our attention if they needed help and we were not making eye contact at the time. We had another one pasted to our back. The blood technician left and the head nurse started taking my pulse, then my blood pressure. She said 'nothing yet' and sat down beside me. She told me 'we will wait awhile'. She asked me how I felt. I said I was tired. She looked a bit unusual to me, not exactly her usual persona of calm, unflappable nonchalance. It dawned on me that perhaps I was the cause of the change in her, but for some reason I did not question her about anything. She wanted me to converse with her though, and to tell her what had happened to me. She seemed to want to know what had led up to this occurrence. I told her what I had been doing working with the blood donors, and various incidences where this person or that had had minor problems or fears and how I had tried to help them. Then she said she had something she had to tell me. She said while I was unconscious I had had some minor 'jerking'. This was meaningless to me but still I did not question her. I did sense that it had a significance to her and that she thought it was dangerous. She began to ask me about physical problems I perhaps had leading up to this day. She wanted to know exactly how I was feeling prior to this day, and any problems that I might have had. I told her I was going into menopause and was skipping periods, but I just had a period a couple of days before I gave blood. It was a very heavy period, much heavier than normal. I told her that I did not think it was anything that should preclude me donating as a period is not an illness. She told me not to donate again for at least a year, and kept me there at the bloodmobile center until my blood pressure and pulse came back to normal. I obeyed her orders and resumed donating one year later. Nothing like that has ever happened to me since that time.
Date NDE Occurred: July 1990
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Uncertain Other: I collapsed after giving blood at a Red Cross donation center in the basement of Liberty Baptist Church. I had no pulse, no registering blood pressure and was ''jerking'' while I was unconscious according to the nurse who spoke to me upon my revival.'
It sounds as if the nurse thought I had a life threatening event. I was never personally in any fear of my life, even when I was in the tunnel.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Wonderful
The experience included: Out of body experience
Did you feel separated from your body? Uncertain
I lost awareness of my body
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
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? I felt a blackout hit me when I sat down in the wheelchair, but returned to consciousness almost immediately. I heard the very loud noise of the wind first, and then became aware that the wind was moving me. Next, I saw that I was in a tunnel. I was fully conscious all the time. There was no dulling of the senses. The fact that I was floating and moving through this tunnel was exhilaratingly.
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
My body did not seem to exist. I was floating through the tunnel.
Were your senses more vivid than usual? Incredibly more vivid
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? Yes, and the facts have been checked out
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Yes The tunnel had a lot of wind and noise from the wind. It was larger than my body so that it did not constrict me in any way. There was plenty of room for the wind to push me through it. There was some light in the tunnel so that it was not dark and I could see in it. It was not a bright light. I saw no light at the end of it.
Did you see any beings in your experience? I actually saw them
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? No
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? Uncertain There was an ambient light around me so the tunnel was not dark. I was nowhere near the end of the tunnel when the voice called me back.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm The tunnel was a beautiful, distinctive dimension even though I was only in it briefly.
I should say I think it was briefly, I really do not know how long it was.
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? I do not remember feeling separated from my body but I do feel that I returned to my body when I came back (voluntarily) from the tunnel.
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
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything? Everything about the universe
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
The experience included: Boundary
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? No
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
God, Spiritual and Religion:
What was your religion prior to your experience? Conservative/fundamentalist
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? No
What is your religion now? Conservative/fundamentalist
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? No
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
Did you see deceased or religious spirits? I actually saw them
Concerning our Earthly lives other than Religion:
During your experience, did you gain special knowledge or information about your purpose? Yes I believe I am a kinder person. I feel more connected and empathetic to other people. I quit trying to get people to recognize my abilities so much. I find more joy in my friends and family.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes I love more deeply and have less stress. I forgive more easily.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Uncertain It is easy to detail what happened leading up to my collapse and after my return to my body, but it is difficult to explain how I felt when I was in the tunnel.
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? The tunnel was the central part of my experience, plus there was the indescribable sensation of floating in the wind.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes It was several weeks later that I related the experience to my husband. He did believe me. He tried to dissuade me from donating blood again. He did not succeed. He was not influenced by my experience. I have related it to at least two other people. They did appear to believe me. At least one of these people did seem to be awed by the experience.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Yes I had heard of this phenomena and read some NDE experiences. I was uncertain whether it was a truly a religious experience or purely a physical reaction of the body shutting down. My experience was not as deep as the ones I read about. I attribute this to the technician calling my name. Still, at the time, I really felt that this was my decision whether to go back on not. I don't think anything I read influenced my experience. I do think now that it is a rite of passage into the next world, and not just a shutting down by the body.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real It has been 19 years since this experience. I know I have a poor memory that has plagued me since a child, but I have never forgotten anything that happened to me that day.
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? No
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