The moment I died, I drifted into a state of endless nothingness. I didn’t see my body as I departed. I didn’t see any bright lights. One moment I was living, and the next—I simply wasn’t.
It’s hard to explain to someone that hasn’t experienced it. You hear stories of people who have departed for a few moments, and then are brought back to life. They claim that they fought death off, by screaming to the light at the end of the tunnel, “Back you devil! I’m not ready yet!” And maybe that’s what happened; maybe they were about to go and didn’t. Everyone goes a little differently. But the trip afterwards—that is the same for everyone.
You don’t have a body anymore. You don’t even really have a physical sense of being, you just simply are. You co-exist with the darkness, it envelopes you, and time ceases to be.
I sat in the darkness for a great deal of time. Years must have passed—that’s what it felt like at first. I contemplated what had happened. I knew I was dead—this was not shocking, shockingly enough. I was at peace with that. The details were fuzzy. I could not remember how I had died. The harder I tried, the quicker the memory ran away from me, until there was nothing left. I was beginning to forget my own name.
Suddenly I’m 16 and I remember my first kiss. Her name…gone, but her lips were soft and she had fiery hair. Suddenly I’m 32 and standing in the rain, crying as my father’s casket is lowered in the ground. The casket is green. He hated green. I’m running now, I’m riding a bike, I’m staring out the car window and I turn to my wife who has a blurry face and now I want to cry but I realize that I can’t cry, I simply don’t have the eyes to cry.
I became frustrated. I wanted to see again, I wanted to breathe again, and quietly a voice sprang into being, and somehow even without ears I heard it, faintly…
“Remember your form.” It whispered, volumes of melancholy etched in it.
I tried to cry out “I can’t, I don’t remember how.” But my voice was gone, it had gone when I had died.
A small ball of light flickered to life in front of me. I became confused—I should be blind.
“Your prior form—a deception. Remember the illusion.” The voice whispered again.
I concentrated–picturing a hazy form, and remembered fingers, fingers that had grasped things strongly. They erupted from my arms, long gangly arms that matched legs, and feet—feet that had carried my body many miles. With a sickening pop, my head planted itself upon wide shoulders. Tussles of brown hair, unkempt and shaggy grew follicle by follicle upon my head, a scraggly beard growing upon my face, and green eyes expanded into place. Teeth, stumpy and white grew to sharp points in my mouth, and suddenly I gasped for air harshly—even though in this impossible place, there couldn’t have been air. My hands found my face—but I couldn’t feel anything, I was numb.
“The illusion is complete.” said the voice, a hint of pride in it.
I looked around with my fresh eyes, but all I could see was the ball of light. I reached out with trembling fingers.
“Now…hang on. This is the first time I’ve ever done this, and I really, really don’t want to lose a spirit in transit.”
Suddenly, there was a dazzling amount of light around me, erupting in various shades and hues. It was blinding–I could see stars. I could see the northern lights—a vast ocean below me, coarse and blue.
“You will feel a slight pressure. This is normal.”
I tried to speak, but I hadn’t found my voice just yet. The ball of light came closer, and for the first time since I had been—where ever this was—heaven or hell— I was scared.
It brushed my hand gently, and with a gripping pressure, I was yanked forward with such force that I found my voice finally, crying out in surprise.
Colors merged into a blur, I was moving faster than light, my eyes should have been stinging from the wind but there wasn’t any wind that I could feel…and then my feet found solid ground with a hard thunk. I reeled backwards and forwards nearly losing my balance, but the ball of light whizzed around me and caught me around the chest.
“Don’t worry, I got you.”
It moved me gently up, and when I finally looked at my surroundings, my mouth dropped open.
“Welcome to the Hall of Spirit Transit.”
To be continued.