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Michellanea - "Getting Back to the Other Side"

I've had several experiences with this "other place" since the initial one as a child. I'm almost forty now, in the last few years I've thought about those events everyday. I constantly feel like someone who has partial amnesia, that there is apart of mind that holds knowledge about so many of life's questions, that I was taught in this other place. As hard as I try I can not remember them as I do an event that happened, but rather just a sensing. There are times when in conversation on the topic of God or the purpose of our existence this knowledge seems to spew from me as though I'm educating. I find myself wondering where did that come from, how can I know these things I say with such certainty, such a peace that this is the truth.
I was twelve years old when I attempted suicide. Life at home was anything but happy. It was Nov. 17th 1975. My father had shown me his high blood pressure medication just two days before. He kept the bottle on the top shelf of the medicine cabinet and had said to me he needed to get it refilled the next day, but by far that it was the most dangerous in the house, if one of us were to take it accidentally, it could kill us.
Sure enough the bottle had been filled when I went to look the next day. I decided that I would take them after my brother's birthday party the next evening. After the party ended I got cleaned up, dressed in my most favorite gown, comb my hair and placed it neatly into a ponytail. I remember I was not feeling frightened but sad that there seemed to be no other alternative for my family or me if any one of us were to ever be happy. It seemed like it took forever to swallow all of the pills, afterwards I kissed my siblings and parents told them I loved them, then went to my room and climbed in bed thinking I would just go to sleep and never wake up.
It didn't end up being that simple. I woke to feeling like my chest and throat were being crushed. I couldn't breathe or yell out for help. In a desperate attempt to get relief from what was happening to me I ran to my mother's bedside. She was a nurse and I thought she would be able to stop it help me breath. I couldn't tell her what I had done or tell her what I needed, but I remember vividly fighting for her to breathe air in to my mouth. It took her a moment to realize that I was in real trouble. I fought as long as I could and by now everyone in the house was awake and I could hear the kids crying and screaming in the distance behind the roaring in my ears. My mother and aunt on top of me holding me down, I started feeling dizzy and the pain started to ease. My body felt as though it was getting lighter, lifting off the floor. I remember thinking this must be how it feels when you are dying. I stop struggling, closed my eyes, and felt myself float away into unconsciousness.
It seems like only a moment or two passed before I opened my eyes. It was pitch black, my first thought was of the absence of pain and how relieved I was that it was over. The next was how black it was, I wondered if it were so dark in this place because no light existed or if I was unable to see? So I brought my hand up in front of my face, I could see it there, completely intact but absent flesh. I quickly scanned my whole being and realized I was different but very much whole, I knew everything I had always known. Looking around me I realized I was not standing on anything, there was no ground beneath my feet, no sides or corners to walk towards in this place, it was just space that went on forever. I then noticed a tiny white light far away, like a star. I had just begun to think about how I could get to it and I started moving towards it. The closer I got, the faster I was moving, the larger and brighter it became. I thought that the light was so bright it will certainly hurt my eyes, so I closed them as tight as I could and braced myself for what I thought would be an impact when I ran into it. Instead there was none, it was like floating through a thin vale, and bathed in white light.
Before I could even open my eyes, I felt this place. I have searched my whole life for words to describe the amount of love and serenity there, and none exist. I had never known what real love felt like, and I sincerely do not believe that we are even capable in this state of being. I opened my eyes a little at first, just to make sure it was ok. They did not hurt as I thought they would. So wide-eyed I began to look around me for someone, something, wondering what this place was? Wherever I was, it was the most wonderful place I had ever known, or could have ever imagined, and I never wanted to leave!
Then I heard a man gently and softly say, "You can not stay here with me". I wanted desperately to locate him, but I couldn't. I soon realized that the white light was coming from him, and he knew me. As though I had left him and he was there to greet me and explain what was going to happen and why. I immediately responded in my mind with "I do not want to leave here"! He chuckled at the determination in my response, like a parent of a child that has innocently requested something, he knows they are not ready for. I knew him right at that very moment. He loved me, no matter what I had ever done, no matter what I would ever do, that this love he felt for me would never change or diminish. It would stay forever constant, and not just for me, but for everyone, and every living thing, from all time. I knew he would never harm me; he was incapable of doing all the horrible things I was told in Sunday school.
Please don't misunderstand, he was not ambivalent about my wrongdoing. He was simply like a parent who loves his child unconditionally. He knew the reasoning behind my acts, right or wrong and he still loved me. He is also quite capable of being disappointed and firm when need be, as I would learn and experience much latter in my life.
He followed with a promise to me, "It is not time for you to be here with me, but someday you will come back and can stay then." I remember beginning to feel very afraid that he was going to send me away, and I never wanted to go back to my family if it meant leaving him, this place. I remember I began to plead with him to let me stay, like any child does in a desperate attempt to convince it's parent to give in to it's wishes. His final words to me came firm but loving; "It's time"!
I was turned and sent from this place on the breath of the last word he spoke. The way was lit and beneath me black lines that were separate at first; like those on a road, but as I began to move faster over them they soon blended together. I remember seeing graves of loved ones, and I thought of my family, but all the graves were empty. At that moment I knew that life goes on, none of us really die. I felt so much comfort, knowing that all my loved ones would not just cease to exist, they too would go to where I had been.
I know that it was at this time I was shown so much more and it was explained to me, but I can't remember the moment it was taught. I can feel it; it's there within me but I can't in this state of mind grasp hold of it. I just know it to be more real and truthful then anything else in life, and it gives me so much peace now.
When I came back, the first thing I felt was the ease it took to drag this deep breath of air into my chest. I opened my eyes to a bright light above my head and a cold surface pressing against my back. There were people everywhere around me but they seemed surprised, they all started to work franticly on tubes and machines, yelling at one another to do this or get that. A man leaned over me asking me to tell him my name, if I knew where I was. He was blocking my view of the light above my head. I was wondering if that were the light I saw. After noticing the metal rim around it, I finally said my first name and told him " the hospital", He smiled and told me what a good girl I was, and everything was going to be all right. He'd look away and tell some one to go tell the family I was awake, and he would be out to talk to them soon. He just kept telling me it was all right now and I could rest. I wanted so much to go back to sleep and wake up where I had just came from. I felt so drug down in my body, my mind confused.
When I did wake again I was in another room, this time I was covered in warm blankets, my mother at my side. She stood and looked at me and I could see the anger in her face. She asked me what in the hell was I thinking? I told her what I saw when I was a sleep. She gritted her teeth at me and said that I almost died, at one point they told her they couldn't do anymore for me. Did I understand what I had done? She followed it with "when I get you home you have an ass wiping coming."
That was the defining moment for my life for many years to come. There were no hugs; no I love you, just anger, and disappointment. I spent the next four and a half years filled with doctors, countless hospitals and mental institutions for repeated suicide attempts. None producing the result I wanted. I felt hurt, angry, rejected. I had no fear of death; I looked at a day as an opportunity to possibly succeed in what I had failed in doing the day before. I got involved with drugs and alcohol, and if that didn't kill me inevitably, I would have enough courage to play games that may cause it, car wrecks, playing chicken with trains, setting myself on firer. People finally began to give up on me, and excepted that some day I would succeed.
Day's turned into years and the only thing I accomplished doing was hurting or destroying relationships with those that truly loved and cared. Although not directly responsible, my actions created reactions, and my best friend ended up dead. I walked away from many opportunities that could have meant a better life for my children and myself even now.
There were times over the years when I felt completely lost and would scream out at God to please let me die. After falling into a heap, crying myself to sleep I would dream, and an Angel, the same one each time it's happened, descends down towards me from the light and smiles at me. No words describe her beauty, she does not speak yet she tells me I am loved and that everything will be o.k.
After years of trying to destroy myself I finally came to the conclusion that for whatever reason I was not going to die, that God was simply not going to let me. And believe me, by all rights I shouldn't be here.
Then an experience occurred in my early thirties, which came out of no where. I was in the third year of intensive counseling for the abuse I had suffered as a child. The sessions had been emotionally brutal for me and I was feeling like I could not go on having to relive that pain over and over indefinitely. I was setting there one day, thinking that no matter how much I wanted to be the parent my two small sons deserved. I was simply too screwed up and they would be better off if I'd die and they could be spared having to deal with their mother for the rest of their lives.
I was setting across from the counselor listening to her tell me about how I had come so far and survived so much. I was a great mother to my sons. I had spared them the pain I knew. I felt my head getting heavy and fall backwards. I heard a roaring sound as I was lifted out of my chair and pulled very quickly towards this place in the dark where I had been as a child. Finally coming to a stop and trying to get bearings as to where I was and what had just happened. I quickly realized I was not alone, millions of others were there, all moving together like one single force. I could not see them, but I knew they existed. The movement was steady and consistent. Like a line of people just walking around in circles. I was separate from them though. then I saw the light I had seen as a child, behind and slightly higher from them. I knew he was there, watching me and waiting. Like as a child, I curious and would begin a thought, and suddenly know the answer.
I wanted to know why they had not entered the white light as I had when I died? I soon knew they could not, their existence was one between these two separate places. In this place you know all truths and the purpose of life, yours and all others, The pain their choices had created while here, the crimes against self and others. Their suffering is unimaginable.
My heart ached for them, but why was I here? I suddenly saw my sons before me and instantly I felt this indescribable pain. My mind became acutely aware of the suffering born out of my choice of self-destruction. For my sons, those who knew me and those I'd never meet. I knew then this would be my existence, this place of knowing my real worth, how my act ions were like stones tossed into a pond. They rippled out crossing over the entire surface of the earth, forever affecting and changing the face of it. In this place I would see and feel everything I had ever done, could have been. In this place I will know the truth of all things, and be unable to change anything and everything I was or created.
I don't know if the biblical hell exists, but I can tell you the suffering here was worse then any description I was ever given. To me this was hell enough. Created out of our own selfish choices. God had no need to create a place to torture us for the waste and destruction we had committed. We had enough to torture ourselves with.
The pace of those there began to move more quickly, like they knew I was there. I sensed I had stayed to long and now I was becoming apart of this place. I wanted to leave, and expected just the thought would free me from it, yet it did not. In a panic I looked back towards the light and I knew I was being given a choice. I could stay, but I would have to exist knowing what I had created. If I choose to return, I was not to ever attempt my own destruction, that in doing so, I was committing the ultimate crime against self, against the purpose of this life, against the wisdom of God.
God was teaching me a lesson about my carelessness, about the impact I have on all of life, that he was the creator, but I above all else had the power of choice to govern my life my destiny.
In that very moment I realized the truth of my worth, my responsibility to life, to all those I exist here with, as well as the stark reality that I would never attempt such a selfish act as my own death again. I looked at the light one last time and pleaded for my release, and that I would never do this again. then as quickly as I had come to this place I was sent back. I returned to find my counselor in a panic, she had already run to get help and had just returned. She told me latter she thought I had set there and died.
Both times I explained in detail what I had experienced to the first people I saw after returning. As a little girl the whole event was to never be spoke of. The counselor told me of others who have given accounts of some of the same things I have described, but could not explain why it happened to me, under the circumstances.
I can only simply say that this last experience changed the course of my life. How I see myself, how I perceive life, mine and that which exist around me. I find myself honoring the totality of my life to this date, good and bad. I know now that it took every moment that I have existed, every experience, every choice made for me to know what I know and be able to do good with it. That life is a gift! I know now that I have been given the opportunity to experience, and grow, and reach the best of myself, then give that to the world.
To understand and except I can not escape fallibility, nor can anyone else because in it I, we learn the difference between right and wrong, love and hate, what is good and what is real evil. We learn what we are capable of creating or destroying and finally that when I know the differences, my choices will define my life here.
I don't know what the souls in the dark place had done in their lives to have ended up in this horrible place, or what will happen to them inevitably. I sense that at some point they too enter the light, but I know not when or what must come to pass before that moment. I do know that I have and will commit enough pain in this lifetime that I too should be convicted to this place. And yet I also know, that God knows me, as well as all of my life choices and the sometimes-horrible consequences they created, and still he has promised me I will return to him someday in the white light.

There are some very simple truths that I know, That this being , God, or what ever you choose to know him by is not unapproachable, he is not to be feared. His love is forever constant and consistent; it does not fluctuate due to our choices. I learned my perception of God and his presence in my life was not based on a relationship of me being told who he is and this is what he expects, but rather my personal relationship with him. I can speak to God as I speak to my best friend. I thank him for all my gifts; I ask him "What was that about" when I don't understand something? I get angry and I yell for answers when I don't understand bad things that happen, mad that he did not intervene when I know he has power to. But then I know I could not be as great as he has made me capable of being if he intervened. He put inside of me everything I would need to rise to the best of myself and then gave me the power to choose. I don't go to him with my problems, I use my mind he gave me to search for a solution. I do not blame him when horrible things happen that I can't begin to understand, wait for his reply. I always come to the same conclusion, It is not I who has created this thing you dislike but rather your ability to choose.
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