This was my first involuntary (as you might have guessed by the title already) 'lucidventure'. And eventually it is the event that brought me on the path of APing, and - last not least - also brought me here into forums and communities of like-minded people just as this one.
This event might be categorised by some as a 'classic' OBE taking place within the larger frame of a "kind of" NDE, but not quite, as you will see below.
In September 2009, I went to the hospital for a necessary rectification of the nasal septum. It is a harmless everyday routine operation done generally for respiratory health improvement (no, it's nothing cosmetic!). Nevertheless, this surgery demands a full narcosis and the tracheal intubation and mechanical ventilation (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tracheal_intubation http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mechanical_ventilation), which means your air system gets paralysed so you don't breathe for yourself anymore.
I remember the preliminaries well, including being brought into the surgery anteroom and having to wait there, already a bit sedated in the hospital bed. Then a small-talk with the surgeon. Then into the surgery, being lifted onto the table by the staff, getting all the medical gear on your arms and being put to the machines, then s.o. put the breathing mask over my face from behind, telling me to take 1-2 deep breaths, and so was falling asleep after a few seconds. All routine. Business as usual.
Official medical and scientific theory says that under controlled anasthesia you are supposed to be in 'deep sleep' and only gain consciousness a long time after surgery again in the wake-up/recovery room.
So much for the theory. ;-)
I gained consciousness. I was lying in a bed. (So far, so good, according to theory...). But it was the bed of my childhood room. So I thought for a few seconds. Then I corrected my mistake after a while. I saw machines, gadgets. Immediately I knew where I was again. I was in the surgery.
I was not lying on the table. I seemed to be hovering - a bit above my (physical) head, as it seemed. I was at my "head side" but it seemed that I was a bit more lifted, I however don't remember seeing my body at all (I never looked there, though). I saw everything in colours - so vivid, intense, vibrant, warm and lush - colours that I never saw before (and never after, so far!) on Earth. I just looked from the left side (with all the gadgets) to the right where I saw the chief surgeon doing some routine measure on a kind of handlebar (as it seemed, but don't know exactly what it was) next to or at the side of the operating table.
But there was more: I read his thoughts!
And even that is not enough to describe it, because maybe I actually "was him" in that short moment, too. I was expressing sth to me - the guy on the table - which I also was - strange, huh?. What "he" "said" was this (not in words or literally - just in a seemingly telepathic expression, an entire instant thought bundle directed towards me, and coming from me alike - yeah, I know how that's weird ... It wasn't words to be heard or even grasped, just information entangled with feeling/emotion. I only paraphrase it here, clad into words, to convey the meaning (emotionally as well as content-related):
"Hey, everything's alright, chap, don't worry, it worked well and we are ready now."
But actually, I was far from being worried anyway!
I was in an UTTER STATE OF BLISS like never before in my life.
It must somehow be what the mystics talk about. Ultimate well-being, vibrant with life and happiness, it is beyond expression, it is not happiness we experience as humans, not even when drugged (I suppose). The vivid unearthly colours seemed to envigorate (but on the other hand also be an expression of my) permanent joy, too. And one more thing: It felt like home. I cannot express it better. It's this feeling of being home, secure, in the right place at the right time - all as the ultimate expression of happiness. I felt "home" in spite of still receiving the 'visual' input from the surgery. That is bliss. Home. Also Love, of course. But in the end, there was and is no difference between the two for me. Love is Home. Home is Love.
Unfortunately (for me then) it did not last too long. The whole scene took (in my perception) only a few seconds. Then the situation changed and my perception / consciousness switched to a completely different scene, but still in the surgery.
The bliss was gone. There was only soberness and neutrality. Nothing negative, but nothing positive either. The colours were gone, too. The picture I saw was blurry, like a big-pixled graphic movie with low resolution. The colours rather dull and neutral.
And my position was changed. I was hovering a little above but much further away, almost at level with the heads of the medical staff in height, but approx. 6-8 metres off. I would even not discount the fact that I 'saw it all through a wall'. The scene was quite mundane. The surgery team around the table and the chief surgeon bending over towards the patient (me?) and moving something there. Not more, nothing spectacular. No mind-reading, colours, bliss, clear vision ... all gone. This scene also lasted for a few seconds only.
Then it was over. I was there where I should have been after 'falling asleep', in the wake-up room . I heard a nurse in this room telling me in a loud voice to breathe through my mouth - of course I had to, since the nose was full of stuff (tubes and medical dressing material) from the surgery.
Comments / Afterthoughts
A few days later, I got to ask the surgeon if there were complications with my operation. His answer was a predictable no. But he almost became a bit tight-lipped and was suddenly pressed for time when I brought forward the topic of my narcosis. I also had heavy and large bruises on my right arm. Asking nurses and the visiting doctor (1 day after the surgery) about this resulted then in statements such as "this can happen" (possibly from those tightened monitor armbands you get put on, so they told me).
Anyway, I don't think I was "really" in danger of losing my life, so it was not a 'real' NDE at all, moreover since I did not experience one of the other usual elements (tunnel to another dimension, life review, meeting with angels, relatives etc.).
However, this marvellous Total-Bliss-Experience indicates to me that it wasn't a "usual AP"-experience either, which I can now in hindsight confirm with some more 'astral experience' gathered in the meantime. I now assume that I could have been in a "higher" spiritual body then. Or probably a guide was with me and giving me this experience of "love" and security, and bliss?
Another assumption regarding the cause: As you stop breathing for yourself, maybe your subconscious or body/cell/atomic consciousness gets aware of the missing vital activity and you feel like you are dying a "little" or "partial death". That is of course just a wild hypothesis to explain what exactly triggered my out-of-body and mystical experience.
I also wonder about the 2nd scene so completely different. Was the surgeon already attendig to another patient and I really was 'remote viewing' this (already from the recovery room)?. Or - if it was me on the table - was this scene taking place even before the other one, as it looked like the first scene was the end of the surgery while the second scene seemed to show a surgery still under way. So probably I just remembered / experienced them in reverse order (and what is time in these experiences anyway? ).
Well, I guess I might have to wait til this lifetime of mine has ended until I receive the final and assured answers to these questions.
Another interesting thing (in hindsight): the anticipation of my "astral portal": the childhood room that only recently became a kind of "leitmotif" for many of my lucadventures (you will see in following adventures that it pops up again and again). Only until I read my notes again recently, I had almost forgotten that it 'featured' already in this first landmark lucidventure.
More to come.