I was 2 years 7 months old at the time. What I remember is fairly simple; but was almost embedded in my brain. This was more than a typical memory. For instance, when I would try to think of my earliest memory over the years, I never thought of this one because it was so different from a typical memory.
I remember being under water. I saw a brilliant light above me, and colors that were radiating around it. The colors were very beautiful and nearly indescribable. It was extremely peaceful, not a single worry in my mind. I had no desire to leave and wanted to stay right there and keep watching this.
I do not remember anything before or after this. I have no memories of any struggling or troubles breathing or anything negative. Over the years, I attributed the bright light to the sun, the radiating colors as being ripples in the water, and the peacefulness and indescribable nature as an early, unusual experience as a young child. I was probably a teenager when I first heard my father recount the story of the time that I nearly drowned because my foot was stuck in rope underwater. When I heard the story, I was able to connect my experience with that incident. But, I didn’t think much of it.
Last year, I read Proof of Heaven, by Eben Alexander who was a neurosurgeon that did not believe in NDEs, yet he had an incredible one. I still did not think about my experience. Then earlier this year, after reading an article about near death experiences from a scientific perspective, some of the key points from the article helped me put the pieces together, like elements of a very strong memory, bright light, and extreme peace. I then asked my parents and brother for more details. My mother had a picture from that day, which fortunately had a date of July 30, 1972.
I was with my father, older brother, and perhaps some other adults/children at the time. We were at a pond and I walked into the water. My father was watching, and let me walk until I was deep in the water. He was likely assuming I would stop or turn back. According to him, my head quickly went under the water. He came over to get me. But when he pulled me out, he could not get my head out of the water. He went under the water, and realized that my feet and legs were somehow tangled in rope left there to keep a dock or boat in place. He said the water was murky. He came up for air, and tried about 3 times before he finally rescued me. From his statements, it is likely that I was underwater perhaps 20-40 or more seconds.
My brother, who was about four at the time, vaguely recalls the incident. He remembers a dock or rowboat. He also remembers that it seemed quite serious from his perspective, but that I did not need to be revived.