Phil S.

I had gone to Josephine Falls with my wife and daughter for a swim. It was a place we often visited. One of the attractions of this place is a natural waterslide that is smooth rock for some 10 meter depending on water levels. This allows a swimmer to slide down and splash into the deep pool at the end. My 11 year old daughter and I were continuously riding down this slide on our bottoms and then swimming underwater to the exit point at the side, which meant climbing up a series of rocky steps to ride the slide all over again. We got more and more adventurous. I rode the slide several times on my feet like a skier, until the last time when I somehow slipped and hit my head. I never felt or experienced the impact because I entered the pool as usual; underwater in a splash of bubbles. As the bubbles cleared and I began my underwater swim towards the side of the rock pool, things had changed; the pool seemed to go on forever! None of this was disturbing in any way; in fact it was just the opposite. A serene relaxing feeling overtook me as I drifted through the water effortlessly without any need for breathing. It was peaceful and beautiful with the patterns of refracted sunlight dancing upon the sandy bottom beneath me. The water was clearer than it ever could have been in reality. It seemed as though I could see forever ahead. I cannot recall any sound at all even though in reality the sound of running water is very evident in the pool. Then a peculiar thing happened. I had the odd experience of being under the water gently drifting along, but at the same time looking down from some distance above the rock pool, seeing the people sitting on the rocks surrounding the pool. After some time, I was still drifting under the water when I saw an object far ahead which I was approaching. As I got closer I could see it was a female form wearing a flimsy white flowing garment. As I approached closer, I recognized the person as my older sister Diane who had died of cancer, 13 years previously at the age of 28. There was no surprise in meeting her, and in some way, that I can’t describe, she was different than I had known her in life. She was more radiant and fairy-like perhaps, but it just seemed ordinary to meet her that way. She beckoned with one hand for me to follow her and I did without any thought for where we were going: much like a couple of kids playing a game. We swam for what seemed like ages through the light-patterned, almost shimmering water. After a while, she headed upwards. I followed her. Suddenly, that entire world collapsed and I was spluttering, gasping for breath, trying to see, but there was only blackness, something grabbing hold of me and then I could feel the slippery hardness of the rock wall and a helpless dizziness. After several minutes, I regained a confused sort-of vision and could function enough to assist in my own removal from the running water via the rocky steps. The two young men who had dived into the pool to help me, and to whom I am forever grateful, had their arms around me holding me against the rock face. They and my wife had been in much distress after I had not surfaced as usual and could not be seen below the pool’s surface due to the disturbance of the running water. When I had broken the surface waving, they had dived in immediately to assist. I was driven to our family doctor where I was diagnosed with severe concussion and head lacerations from the impact of the fall. I had no serious physical after effects from the incident.