blinkstar.gif (494 bytes) Michelle Dillon

I was eight years old. I am diabetic and I had gotten the chicken pox. Any illness is dangerous for a diabetic and this one was terrible as it went into many complications. Anyway, I was taken to the hospital and put on all sorts of IVs and drugs and whatnot. I only half remember that part of it. It is less real than dying.

I remember the nurse coming in and telling me to eat my supper and I couldn't, I mean, physically could not. I couldn't control my hands. I couldn't keep anything down that they forced down me. I couldn't even answer her and she got mad and threw a piece of candy at me. (I don't know the why of any of that, but it doesn't really matter, either.) And the next thing I know, I am looking down at me and I see IVs in my legs and my left leg is bent half way and the sheet is over the right side of me. The room is green and there is a brown spot on the ceiling. And I see the candy and me and I don't care. It isn't me, you see, for I am "here." And I turned away and was (flying or floating or ????) and it was soft and smelled wonderful.

And then I was Home and I knew it was Home and I wasn't afraid. I saw lots of people I knew, some of whom I've since met, and a lot of whom I knew were "related" but that wasn't what mattered. What mattered was that I KNEW them and they KNEW me and we hadn't said a word. Or, well, we had, sort of, only not SAID. But I have never since been involved in such a joyful welcome, being loved, totally loved.

Let me break a moment. Words sort of confuse me because words don't MEAN anything anymore, not really. They are just poor vehicles of communication and can't possibly MEAN anything real. I hope that makes sense.

Anyway, then "He" came to talk to me and I don't know his name and I don't think names mean anything anyway; but I know him. I knew him forever. And he held my right hand and we walked and it was beautiful only it wasn't "heaven" and I knew it. But it was. I don't know. It was somewhere that I knew and was comfortable in.

And we walked (not exactly on foot, but ... I don't know, we walked or traveled, I guess) and he "knew" many things and I understood, only it was more like, "OK, I knew that once and now I remember it." And I was happy for the first time in my eight year old life. And nothing hurt and no one made fun of me and I was LOVED. And I mean LOVED - not tolerated - not compared - only I didn't think about it that way. I just knew I was HOME and I was LOVED. And I was HAPPY.

We walked a long time (only not really I guess, for they told me it was just minutes) and I can still feel him hold my hand. And we got to the edge of ??? and I was relieved. I knew I was going Home. Only then he turned to me and I saw his face which was - not beautiful - way beyond beautiful. It was way past perfect. It was - I don't really know, but I can still see him and it's WAY beyond. It was love, LOVE, not (I'm very frustrated, I can't explain it) worldly, but LOVE as it looks in the flesh. And he smiled at me and I smiled back and knew I was loved. I KNEW I was LOVED. I KNEW it. I can't explain that. It's more than thinking someone loves you. It's more than loving your children. It is LOVE. And I knew it.

And then his hand loosened and I grabbed on tighter and he told me I had to go back and I said, "I'll stay here with you."

He smiled again and I knew I would be back (that makes no sense, but that's what I knew, because I knew I was loved and I loved).

And he said, "You have work to do, you have to go back."

And I grabbed with both hands and I was terrified and I shrieked (that's not it exactly, but sort of, shrieking without saying a word) NO!!!!!!

And I was back in the "mist" and I thought I was smothering. And then I was stuffed like a sausage and it hurt so bad you can't even explain. And I "woke up" and that piece of candy was there, in my hand, which it hadn't been.

I spent the next 20 years being so bloody angry at everything and everyone. I was intolerable to my mother (who never liked me afterward. I don't know for sure if she liked me before or just tolerated me) and I hated everything. The doctor said I needed a psychiatrist. For what eight year old (9, 10, 12, 15, etc.) child wants to die? But the folks never took me, thankfully.

I always "knew" things and knew things I couldn't. Like I knew a lie no matter who told it and I knew what was in boxes that I couldn't see and I knew people who wouldn't know me back. I don't know if that has a name, but it's just that I knew things I couldn't possibly know and it really freaked people out when I'd tell them what they were thinking. Or to do something when the other person had just thought of it and not said it yet. I learned not to freak 'em out as it just got too much to bear.

One thing that I'm sure is tied to this, I have LOTS of trouble with time and it's not that I'm stupid (I have an IQ of, well, I could qualify for Mensa), but time MEANS nothing. And it just didn't and doesn't click for me. I nearly flunked that part of school because it just wouldn't make
sense to me.

Almost exactly 20 years later, I was divorced, alone in the apartment, and having a diabetic reaction, and went Home. I'll be real honest. I wasn't taking care of the diabetes because I just wanted to go Home and knew that this was a short step to getting there. Anyway, I got to go Home for just a moment and he loved me and I knew it. And I knew I had to go back and finish and, I don't know how to say it, I knew him many things (hurt, pain, anger, hate) and he knew me many things. And when I returned, I was different somehow. As in for the first time in 20 years, I was happy. I felt safe. I felt loved. And I knew I would go Home but that I had things to do and knew some of them. Lots of times before I knew things, like I knew 10 years before it happened that I would be in a certain apartment and while it can be explained - as in, I just made a point of getting the apartment, it wasn't that because I knew the apartment and I had never before set foot in the building. And after I came back the second time, I knew many things that would happen. And now, lots of times I know things like when someone is dying and how they will die and I feel dead pictures sometimes. (The worst one was "being there" when an old friend was shot by her husband and then hearing about it the next day and knowing the details. I'd never "been there" for it before, but have since.)

And this is an interesting side note: my diabetes, which had always been very brittle, is, well, I don't know what exactly to say because the doctors tell me continually I'm dying. Seventeen years ago they gave me six months. But anyway, I have NO diabetic symptoms at all. None. Although the weakening heart may be exacerbated by it, I can't say. But the heart is what kills most of my family, so I can't believe it's diabetic heart, not altogether anyway. I was even told by a doctor that I was lying about how long I'd had diabetes because I have no symptoms.

But I know that my time now is limited and I'm not only joyous that I'll be Home again, but I know that it's MY TIME and so I get to stay when I make it next time. I have often wondered if it would be exactly 20 years again, which will be in 3 years.

Well, as I read this, it is a very poor rendition of things and I don't know how to make it "right" so that it says what it really is. Words don't exist.

Michelle Dillon


"Of all the teachings in the world, the greatest is love. And of all the lessons of the NDE, none is greater than the importance, indeed the primacy, of love." - Dr. Kenneth Ring

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