“I love you mum, and you dad. I’m sorry for anything bad I’ve ever done and thank you for everything.” Mum hugs me for the last time. I can feel time slowing down, the beating drum of my heart stops and I close my eyes. Everything is black and I can feel nothing.
But then, gradually, I sense my whole body floating to the ceiling. ‘Oh my goodness’, I think to myself, ‘I’m on the journey to heaven. Quick! I must stop it; I know there is a way back down the ladder to the living.’ I try to wave my arms around but I have no limbs of any sort. I focus my mind on climbing down the ladder. Step by step, panic is rising, ‘I’m never going to make it.’ My mind is in a whirl. ‘Concentrate,’ I tell myself, ‘think about each tiny movement and each part of the spirit that you are.’ I begin to see, I have the use of my eyes, but I see only darkness.
I hoped my plan would work, I’ve always known that when I die I would try to cheat death and come back to life. Over the seemingly never-ending time in my confining hospital bed, I have been running the plan through my head. Mum would force a smile as other visitors gave pitying looks in my direction. Yet I would be off in my own world, developing my plan so that by the time I died, I would be prepared to steal death’s trophy of life. My confidence doesn’t last long though, a searing light blinds me. I was worried the gateway would be opened in advance; it will be harder to resist going to heaven than I thought.
I focus on the ladder again, but the sound of beating wings distracts me. A wave of bliss flows over me and I find it hard to escape the desire to float up to heaven. Yet I know I must not go and I struggle with the urge to relax and let go. I now have the sense of some hands. I move them down to a lower rung; they start to feel more like my own. Moving my hands one after the other down the ladder, I start to descend. I have made it out of the dazzling light, I could laugh and cry.
Slowly but surely, I regain control of my body. I rush down the ladder and back into the real world. I open my eyes and out flow tears of joy. “I love you mum.”
“I love you too darling; we thought we had lost you. But you came back.”