we were in the back seat of their big Buick, David and i.... on our way to see David's brother's family 45 miles from our hometown. i had a bad feeling even before we left, but shrugged it off.
we were crazy to listen to him and venture out that day, regardless of how pushy and controlling he was. the roads were nearly glare ice with patches of snow covered areas... common in the north country in winter but nevertheless dangerous.
he was driving way too fast and my grip on David's leg in the backseat was white-knuckled and hurting him... but i couldn't let go as i was too scared in the car. we fished tailed a few times when we hit slippery areas and i thought my heart was going to pound out of my chest.
every time a car came head on towards us i prayed our cars wouldn't collide. i could tell David was afraid too, he was as pale as the snow. you couldn't say anything to the driver though, he would take offence, get angry and drive even faster just to prove he was in control of it all.
the 45 mile distance we needed to go was comprised of steep hills, flat areas, and several one lane bridges over rivers. after all, these roads were originally carved through Indian country in the Adirondack mountains of northernmost New York State...
we were going up a steep hill which curved like an S before arriving to the downside of it. and at the bottom was a bridge over the river prolly 500 - 1000 ft. below. the big Buick started sliding and fishtailing because he was going too fast. he put his brakes on, losing control, causing wider fishtailing which resulted in spinning around of the car as if we were on a tilt-a-whirl at a fair.
all i could see was the fastly approaching bottom of this road and the one lane bridge that awaited us. David and i were huddled in the back seat scared shitless. at this point, everything seemed to be in slow motion in my mind... the squeezing of David's leg, and the thought this might be my moment to die.
the car was spinning out of control now, heading for the bridge. i just knew we would go off the road as we neared the bottom.... i prayed to god, and it was at that very moment that my whole life passed before me. i cannot explain it clearer except to say that every SINGLE memory, via smell, taste, sound, feeling, awareness, and understanding of my entire life up to that moment flashed through my mind.
i relived each and every moment as if i were back in the original time. it felt the same. it smelled the same. the experience was exactly the same. but it all occurred in the few seconds it took us to get to the bottom of the road. and i was witnessing it from the back seat of this car i thought i was going to die in.
suddenly we came to an abrupt stop. we went flying up against the back of the front seat. David and i landed on the floor but we were not hurt, just stunned. the driver and his wife were under the dash as much as people could be without sitting on the engine, but they were not hurt either. as we checked each other for injuries, my body felt like jelly and i was still thick in the feelings i had of my life passing before me. i couldn't even speak.
in a few split seconds i went from reliving every life moment i experienced as far back as i can remember to being slammed abruptly into the cold seat in front of us, and i wasn't dead. OHMYGOD i wasn't dead!
we got out of the car and went around to the front of it to see what had stopped our spinning down the hill and what prevented us plunging to the icy river below. we stood there in disbelief. there was only one guard rail approximately one foot long on either side of the one lane bridge.
the car's furthermost left side curve of the bumper was parked up against the guardrail post in such a way that an inch either way would have bent the metal and allowed us to plunge down below. the bumper wasn't even dented from the crash. i don't know how long we all stood in the cold staring at it in disbelief.
it had to be an act of god that we didn't die that day. god had to have taken the car and placed it exactly right on the guardrail where the post was, to keep us from going over. there couldn't be any other explanation than that.
it took me a long time- in fact years- to tell David what i experienced and i know he couldn't comprehend the depth and meaning of it as i wanted him to. he thought i had just been very scared. of course i was, but i KNOW what i experienced and for so many years i let his words trick me into believing i imagined it. but i did not. it really happened to me exactly the way i describe it now.
some critics say the "your whole life flashing before you thing" is just a rapid firing of the neutrons in the brain as it shuts down to die... but i don't believe that.
1.) obviously, i didn't die....
b.) if my brain really had begun to shut down cuz it thought i was going to die, what made it start up again when i didn't?
the brain cannot just turn itself on and off like that. i don't believe anything i have ever read in medical books can support that theory. i will always believe it was and is a spiritual phenomenon of a near death experience..