I was driving home one night in March 2000. The last thing I remember is waving goodbye to a friend, as I was driving away. Then I was in total darkness. No fear, no pain...just nothingness. It felt embracing and calm. I have never felt such a sense of peace almost euphoria. I could feel myself sinking deeper and deeper into the blackness. I was more than happy to go with it. I was aware of the intensity of the feeling and was allowing myself to sink, deeper and deeper until I realised what was happening.I was dying or more precisely, I thought, if I kept going further, I was going to die. At the time the feeling of euphoria was so intense that I was happy to go. I had absolutely no fear. I cannot describe the intensity of the calm, the peace and all the while being aware.
What jolted me was the thought, "What about my family?" How would my "going" impact them. I did not want to leave this "place" I was in, but from somewhere else, I could feel a struggle starting to emerge within me.
From here the situation gets a bit confusing. I remember arguing to go back (that is to live). I was being told it was impossible or it couldn't happen; somehow I was too injured or it just couldn't happen. My overwhelming anxiety for my family was making me fight and struggle against the "sucking in feeling" of the darkness. These were not verbal conversations going on but rather a dialogue I sensed in my mind.
The will to fight became more overpowering. I had made the decision to go back, away from the black. The sensation is difficult to describe. I had to make a choice, live or die. I remember a sensation of the darkness rushing away from me and all of a sudden taking in a deep breath. It was as if someone had been holding my head under water and I gasped fiercely to take this first breath in.
That's when I regained consciousness. Everything around me was visually crystal clear and vivid. I had no idea where I was or what had happened. I was in an extreme state of confusion. I could hear voices around me and see lights. I felt very groggy and disorientated. I kept lapsing in and out of consciousness.
Apparently, as I was driving through an intersection, a 40-ton semi-trailer went through a red light and hit my car on the driver's side. I was trapped in the car. I remember very little about this. I do remember being very scared and the fight/flight response kicking in. Unfortunately, I couldn't move because I was wrapped in metal.
I cannot fully explain my experience. I do believe it was a miracle of some sort. I was kept in hospital for observation. I had a fractured collar bone and lots of bruising. I remember a feeling of strange happiness and detachment over the following months. Everyone that saw my car could not believe I had survived the accident with only a fractured collar bone. I wish I could fully understand what happened to me.
The injuries I sustained were not life threatening. However, at the time of "the darkness" I believe I was dying and had to fight to stay alive. Obviously, I can't say what would have happened if I had just let go and gone into the darkness.