Jonathan M's Experience

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Experience description:   

I had gone to the beach with a high school friend, Randy, his sister Christine and their mother. I was swimming with Christine far enough from shore to not be able to touch the ocean floor. She swam back to shore as I stayed out to swim a bit longer. I began to swim toward the shore when a large wave struck me from behind. I panicked as I was thrown about and finally driven hard into the ocean floor. I was knocked out for about 5 seconds when I opened my eyes I found myself resting on the ocean bottom about 6 or 7 feet  below the waves. I could see blood in the current coming from my nose and could taste blood in my throat. I was laying on my stomach and had a fistful of sand in each hand.

I began to relax and watched the sand slowly slip through my fingers and back to the ocean floor. What had been total panic only seconds before had given way to an overwhelming feeling of peace. The cold ocean felt warm and comforting suddenly, and I was thinking about how easy it would be to die.  I was feeling like I was leaving my body, yet not losing consciousness. Suddenly I was seeing my life in brief flashes. Then I was standing in my friend Randy's kitchen watching his mother in tears as she talked to my parents on the phone. She felt totally responsible for my death and was grief-stricken. I could hear her say how sorry she was, that if only she would have been watching or had seen me go under it wouldn't have happened. She was crying much and I felt  horrible for her. I suddenly realized I had to live and didn't want to do that to her.  I had endured a difficult childhood with mental health issues and abuse. Quite frankly,  I was ready to let go and die.

Within that moment, I pulled my feet under me, planted them in the sand and pushed off toward the ocean surface. I came out of the water and immediately back into the panic of trying to catch my breath. It was odd how everything seemed to go backwards from panic, to calm and back to panic again. I was almost taken under again by another wave then I could see Christine on the shore screaming and running back into the water toward me. I made it to the shore with a badly-bloodied nose and welts on my face and chest. Christine told me she saw me go under and became scared when I failed to surface right away. I went back to our towels on the beach and Randy's mother looked at me very concerned because of my scrapes and bloody nose, but never really found out how close I came to giving up on life. I tried to play it down a bit in front of everyone, but knew I just came very close to death and felt changed by it.

Any associated medications or substances with the potential to affect the experience?     No

Was the kind of experience difficult to express in words? No

At the time of this experience, was there an associated life threatening event?          Yes

Was knocked unconscious while swimming in the ocean

What was your level of consciousness and alertness during the experience?           Was unconscious for only a few seconds then I was awake.

Was the experience dream like in any way?   No

Did you experience a separation of your consciousness from your body?     Yes

Did you hear any unusual sounds or noises?           No, only the sound of the waves above me.

Did you pass into or through a tunnel or enclosure?          No

Did you see a light?           No

Did you meet or see any other beings?           No

Did you experience a review of past events in your life?    Yes, A quick review of my life.

Did you observe or hear anything regarding people or events during your experience that could be verified later?          Yes, Described above

Did you see or visit any beautiful or otherwise distinctive locations, levels or dimensions?           No

Did you have any sense of altered space or time?   No

Did you have a sense of knowing, special knowledge, universal order and/or purpose?    Uncertain

Just knowledge of great sympathy for my friend's mother if I had died.

Were you involved in or aware of a decision regarding your return to the body?       Yes

Not wanting to hurt anyone or cause pain due to my death.

Did you have any psychic, paranormal or other special gifts following the experience that you did not have prior to the experience?         Uncertain

Since then I've had lucid dreams on a regular basis. And predictions of future events through dreams

Did you have any changes of attitudes or beliefs following the experience?   Uncertain

How has the experience affected your relationships? Daily life? Religious practices? Career choices?       A great appreciation for the fragile nature of life.

Has your life changed specifically as a result of your experience?         No

Have you shared this experience with others?         Yes, Mixed

What emotions did you experience following your experience?  Shocked that I was so willing to consider death as an option

What was the best and worst part of your experience?      Just a good change of perspective.

Following the experience, have you had any other events in your life, medications or substances which reproduced any part of the experience?         No

Did the questions asked and information you provided accurately and comprehensively describe your experience?               Yes