Aftereffects According to IANDS: I wish that I had a copy of this particular list of aftereffects of NDEs. The information would have helped me integrate my experience into my life a bit easier. IANDS researchers claim that 80% of experiencers are forever changed because of their experiences and break the phenomenon down into psychological and physiological changes. I knew I was changed the minute I woke up from surgery because I cared much more about the spiritual world than the material world. My future plans were immediately altered. Mostly, I knew that I wanted my final life review to contain several moments where I helped others. I wanted to live a life where I was connected to many people, even if I could only help them in small ways. Before my NDE, I was not a bully or mean person, but I was materialistic, fearful, and judgmental. I saw how my own fears and insecurities vanished with a connection to purpose and to the divine love of God, and I wanted other people to experience this love and sense of purpose as well.
My Aftereffects: I made a YouTube video about some of the aftereffects of my NDE including a more spiritual outlook and a knowing that I was immortal soul in physical form, continued out of body episodes, psychic displays, universal love for everyone, kundalini surges and electrical sensitivity which affected the functioning ability of technology and wrist watches.
Psychological Changes: In the video about aftereffects I spend a lot of time on the sudden development of psychic abilities and spontaneous OBEs. My spirit form seemed loosely connected to my physical form for a few years after the NDE and any memory of physical trauma or sensory overload could cause me to pop out of form. Additionally, there were personality reversals such as going from mostly introverted to definitely extroverted, as well as relying more on feelings than rational thoughts.
After the loss of my father, I realized that I could communicate with those in the afterlife. An apparently less-addressed aftereffect is what Holden (2013) termed spontaneous mediumship experiences (SMEs) based on her anecdotal observations. You can watch her talk about this phenomenon here. SMEs are a subset of after-death communication. Some NDRrs are able to communicate with other people’s loved ones in the afterlife and give them messages. I recently wrote about one instance of this type of communication in this post.
Timelessness is not something I discussed in the video, but I am sure I seemed a bit spacy to many people. I could happily watch a bird in a tree for thirty minutes and be fully entertained by the beauty of small moments in life. I was simply happy to be alive and enthralled by my senses. I did not feel a need to rush; rather, I felt a deep need to fully connect with others and enjoy my life. I do not see this trait as a negative. There were so many people I observed once I was back in Austin who seemed rushed, stressed, and upset about the details in their lives. I wanted to give them some of my peace, but sometimes my smile was returned with an annoyed frown.
Physiological Changes: In the video, I discuss my energy and my effect on the functioning of technology. Although I did not read about how many NDErs could not wear watches, after blowing out four watches in a very short amount of time I knew this change had to be tied to my NDE. My logical mind wondered if being revived during surgery somehow added extra electricity into my body, but on another level I knew this change must be a spiritual change. Perhaps the timelessness I felt could simply not reside next to a watch continually keeping time.
In the video, I forgot to describe a physiological aftereffect about a year after my NDE. When I returned to Austin to finish my senior year of college, I was ecstatic to be back in town. My energy level was extremely high, and a friend and I were walking along a small neighborhood street. The street lights began to flicker on, and as we walked under the first one, the light exploded. We laughed and kept walking, but the second light also exploded. I told my friend that I thought my NDE caused me to have these types of experiences. My friend said that the lights were probably installed at the same time and were simply going out. I wanted to believe what we were experiencing was a coincidence, but we walked under the third light this light exploded loudly and glass flew in our direction. A little startled, we moved to the other side of the street. The next few lights flickered as we walked by, but did not explode or go out.
Many Changes: There are too many changes to list, but my life was definitely altered after my NDE. Though I did not always see auras, there were moments when I would see a purple light around a particular musician playing in a band or a soft pink light around an especially sweet, loving person. I did not want to seem odd or too different from my friends by talking about these experiences, and I wanted many of the abilities to be toned down so that I could simply live my life and accomplish goals.
In many ways, these changes after my NDE are a blessing. I have an easier time of integrating a very different type of knowing than the rational, straight-forward way of approaching the world, and I encourage other NDErs and those who are awakening to read about ways to integrate these abilities into your day to day lives.