It was a Wednesday night August 2005 when I was rushed to emergency due to chronic abdominal pain and vomiting thought to be pancreatitis. My bowel had burst, my lungs collapsed and my kidney’s failed. I was wrapped in ice due to my soaring temperature of 42 degrees Celsius and no blood pressure. My body was pumped full of fluid which caused retention and my weight soared from 65-140kg within one week. It literally ripped me apart. The pain was so excruciating that my body started shutting down. I went blind and could not speak.
The exhaustion I felt was tremendous. It was as if a heavy wet black blanket was suffocating me. Moving and speaking were extremely difficult. I never cried, that was simply because I didn’t have the energy. I had peritonitis from a de-functioned limb comprising most of my small bowel from the pancreas and duodenum, which had become twisted and had a perforation. I also had intra-abdominal sepsis due to carious collections. I had chronic immunological deficiency secondary to malnutrition. I developed multiple opacities in my lung fields, which were thought to be due to fungal infection. The surgeons operated to leave an open laparotomy wound down to the deep facia. My belly button was on the left side of my body, my entire stomach open for 9 months (the wound is still currently open at the top) and I could see about 5cm into my body. I have currently been in three induced comas and have had 8 major surgeries.
Within two days of being in hospital, I was put into an induced coma and my parents were informed that I had 48hrs left to live unless I had surgery. The percentage of survival from the surgery was extremely minimal due to numerous complications.
During the coma I could hear and feel, however I could not respond. I remember trying with all my energy just to lift my eyelids but my body would not co-operate. The exhaustion was overwhelming. It was during the coma that I experienced a white mist pass through the top of my head and work its way slowly through my body. It was a warm feeling and I remember thinking ‘it’s cleaning me, this light is cleaning every cell in my body’. It stopped at my heart and spent some time there before it continued through my body. The next thing that happened I believe was while I was on the operating table. After consultations with my surgeons they have admitted that it is not medically possible that I am alive. They informed me that my heart never stopped beating and they were sure I wasn’t going to make it through the surgery or even through the recovery.
I remember being in a valley. I would always get upset at funerals when I heard Psalm 23 ‘Even though I walk through the valley of death, I will fear no evil for thou art with me’. I saw a sandy pathway and black jagged rocks either sides. The rocks were the blackest of the black; they reached high into the heavens as if there was no ending. The only reason I could see these rocks was because there was a light that was in the valley. It turned the darkness into light. I had no body but I could see a man dressed in a brilliant white robe. His clothes were as bright as a lightning bolt. Light and love radiated from him and drenched me in absolute euphoria. His love for me was so overwhelming that I could only look at him in absolute awe. It was like being dunked into the Pacific with water rushing inside and outside of you, absolute saturation, every cell soaked in His love. He was walking towards me while holding the hand of a young girl. I knew that the little girl was me. Suddenly I was inside the little girl and could see through her eyes. I turned my head and looked up at Him. He was looking down at me with such compassion and love. His eyes revealed such a purity, a holiness, emotion beyond human capability. I knew that no human had the capacity to feel even a speck of the enormity of his love. I was His child and he loved me. He then spoke to me, not through words but through thought. ‘It’s not your time yet’. It was then that I came back. When I awoke one of the first things I said was ‘I can see! I can see! It’s as if scales have fallen from my eyes’. My mother who is a nurse responded with yes, I know that you can see. It wasn’t the physical seeing that I was referring to, it was the spiritual. It was if a curtain had been placed across my eyes due to a traumatic incident that happened when I was 18. It affected every part of my life. The way I acted, the way I spoke, the way I viewed relationships and the world had all been infiltrated because of this one event. I had felt dirty and harboured feelings of guilt due to what happened. I had thought that God could not look at me. I had felt that I was never good enough. Through this event, I was able to see into my own heart. I was able to see myself as God sees me. Laying on my hospital bed with tubes covering my body, an open would of 40cm X 40cm, hair falling out, skin peeling off my eye lids, water retention exploding me to a hefty weight of 140kg, I felt beautiful. I felt so beautiful, so pure, and so clean! This is how God sees me. I was able to forgive people in the past. I had previously thought that by forgiving someone was ‘letting them off’. I now realise by not forgiving them that you are bound to them. So many realisations and truths were brought to light. I experienced another 2 comas, the second in which I saw hell. I didn’t sleep for 3 days in ICU after the visions I saw. You will have to contact me to find out about that one! They actually had to tie me to the bed during that coma as I was trying to pull all of my tubes out which would have resulted in death.
I was in a wheel chair for ten months, dropped down to 55kg in four months and was anorexic (I’m 175cm tall). I vomited up to 30X a day for about 10 months, which was extremely painful with an open wound. I have lost a lot of hair, have numerous scares, am still in recovery and due for another major surgery because the wound is infected and has developed a sinus. There were times that I wanted to die. I am not afraid of death anymore. We are all here for a certain time to do God’s will. I can confidently say that even though I have been told I may never recover fully, I am a walking miracle. A miracle both medically and cured from past hurts. I believe that I will fully recover. The doctors are amazed at my progress. I am back teaching highschool 3 days a week which is exhausting, but hey, I’m teaching!
I am glad that I went through all the pain, it was worth it. The doctor’s thought I would die from the pain, they are still shaking their heads. I would go through it all again, just to see His face. Just to experience His love. The miracles that happened during that time, and I have only touched the surface in this recount have cemented my beliefs in the Christian God. The only God.
“Carolyn” carolynbrough2003 AT@ yahoo.com.au