by Connie Jo Rose
From the Seattle IANDS Website
fighting in “The War to End all Wars”, my father
Charles Rose from Danville, Illinois married Evelyn Rose Scott and
settled in her hometown of Yakima, Washington. They lived in a small
cabin, one of many built by the V.A. for returning troops. When I
was born September 29, 1947, my name was to be Joe. Dad’s order
got a little scrambled, though, so my given name became Connie Jo
At the age of 7, I contracted German measles. I became quite ill and
the worst part is that I had a very harsh, persistent cough that lasted
for days. Both of my parents had to work and my coughing was wearing
all of us out. When I was taken to our family doctor, Dr. Patterson,
my parents asked for “something to help me to sleep,” and
for this he gave them something in suppository form. At home my father
gave me one, but when he noticed that my eyes looked really funny,
he hid the medication away. Later when my mother got up from a nap
I could hear her surprise at how well the medicine was working. She searched around for the suppositories and gave me another
one. It was later discovered that the “something to help me
to sleep” was opium.
After that I was able to
hear and see everything, but I couldn’t
move. I couldn’t make a sound. Lying on the couch I watched my
mother talking on the telephone. Her face was kind of screwed up as
she indulged in the latest neighborhood gossip. Right then our neighbor
Mabel Fulks knocked and opened the front door. I watched as she stuck
her head in and said, “Oh, I see you’re busy, Evelyn. I’ll
come back later.” Somehow I “knew” with absolute
certainty that if she left, I was a goner.
Then a voice boomed at me
from somewhere “Concentrate your will!!!” Silently
I screamed at Mabel “Look at me!” Her eyes turned down
at me. Then she gasped and exclaimed “Oh my God!” That
was all I needed and I let go of my hold on life. I found out later
that my eyes had rolled up into my head and only the whites of my eyes
were showing. Mabel’s son-in-law, Monty, happened to be there
for lunch. They flagged him down and he rushed me to St. Elizabeth
Hospital clear across town. At the hospital I was pronounced dead on
arrival. I heard someone say, ”I’m sorry Mrs. Rose. There
is nothing more we can do for her. She’s dead.”
What I saw around me was
a darkness I have never seen before. It was totally black, like what
a black hole might be. Not a shred of light.
I was so frightened by what I had heard. Dead? How could they say that?
Everything was hurting, even my hair. My chest felt like someone had
hit me with a sledge hammer. My fingernails were digging into the palms
of my hands hard and it hurt! I tried saying “I’m alive!
I’m alive!”, but I was only silently screaming. I was trying
so hard that tears were streaming down my cheeks. My body was stiff
and aching. I did not want to be dead!
After an unknown length
of time I left my body and traveled back to my neighborhood to say
my good byes. It was a fast trip. I remember
zooming through the night over the roof tops. There I was hovering
over the shed and the doghouse, dressed in a nightgown. Some of the
neighborhood children who I played with a lot were below and I told
them I had to go away. They stared, curiously. Then moments from my
childhood flashed before me. I don’t remember the return trip
to the hospital.
Next I was on the table
fairly close to my body and feeling afraid, when I heard music coming
from somewhere. Except this wasn’t
music the way I think of music. If it was “music” then
I can only describe it as Heavenly. I could hear harps and flutes and
there was a melodic stringed instrument that I have yet to know on
this earth. The music wrapped itself around me and soothed me.
My Guardian Angel was floating
towards me. She was familiar from the picture that hung over my bed.
My fears disappeared and I felt very
calm. Her wings were much larger and sturdier....functional. I thought, ”Why
aren’t her wings flapping?”. Her robes were pastel pinks
and iridescent green, moving as though they were being blown by a breeze.
All of my pain and anguish faded away. In my child’s mind, I
was certain who she was, but I was still noting the differences from
my picture. There was no star over her head and she had princess or
kimono sleeves that were a rich velvety scarlet hanging to the bottom
of her dress. You might say full length, like her wings.
As she came closer, I noticed
she was looking right into me. She was beautiful, and familiar and
shimmering warmly. Her hands were at her
sides and she slowly drew them up to enfold me. Several feet away,
she stopped floating. Her hands moved to wrap me up in an invisible
but wonderful silky cocoon. My Guardian Angel was speaking to me, but
this was more like communing, because her lips were not moving. Looking
right into my eyes she said, “You are beautiful, you are perfect
and you are SO loved!” She wrapped me up in pure Unconditional
Love and let me know I was going with her.
My Angel and I both rose
from where we were, and she gave me an image of our destination,
a place that I “knew” was The Garden.
I could see that it was not just a garden with flowers and trees, but
that it was also a place where all of my needs would be taken care
of. There were beings there and I felt Unconditional Love come from
them to me even though we hadn’t even arrived there yet! It was
blissful. I had never felt so enraptured in my entire life. I was going
Home! I basked in this glow. No worries or strife. All thoughts of
my earthly home that I had earlier wanted to cling to vanished.
Then I heard my mother’s voice troubled and pleading, ”But,
you have to do something!” My Angel held up her right hand and
signaled to me to stop. Then she communicated that I had to go back,
that I had things to do on earth. I felt dejected, rejected and alone.
She said she would be watching over me. I could see my cold, stiff
body lying on the bed. I did not want to go near it. But it was as
if a cord like a bungee cord yanked me back. I slammed into my body.
I can say now, I know why a baby cries at that moment of birth.
A young intern refused to accept that the efforts to revive me were
futile. He put an oxygen
mask on me, but I reached up and pulled it
off because I did not want to be revived! Then I lapsed into a coma
in this world that seemed so devoid of warmth. I was in and out of
the coma for five days. Sometimes I could hear things around me in
the hospital and occasionally I glimpsed my surroundings. They were
frightening and grim. I was in intensive care, but I was also isolated
because of my German measles and fears of my contagiousness. My new
home was a large glass cubicle, with an oxygen tent inside. Everyone
had on full white gowns, masks and gloves. I knew I was human, but
I didn’t think they were. Things were done to me but no one ever
talked with me.
Finally, one day, a red
haired nurse asked me: “Are you awake?” I
answered “Yes.” Then she asked “Why won’t you
open your eyes?” I said “Because, then I won’t be
there!” She took off her cap, gown and gloves and picked me up.
Then she held me in her arms while she sat at the desk and did paper
work. It was the only human touch I had felt in that inhumane land.
This was a Catholic Hospital in the 50’s. I desperately wanted
caring human contact but my parents were not allowed to see me. My
father said later that if he had known then that he had a right to
see me, as he knows now, he would have knocked over any doors and nuns
who had been in his way. He had grown up an orphan and was aware of
the need for human love. As it was, my folks were made to sit on hard
backed chairs for days on end and they said later that they acted like
good obedient people who followed the nun’s orders.
When I was finally released
from the hospital I found the neighborhood children and told them
about what I’d gone through. I remember
Terry and his sister both saying in awed voices that they had seen
I wish this could have been
a “Happily Ever After” ending,
but it was not to be. The lack of human affection at this critical
point in my life, combined ironically with my being separated from
the Unconditional Love of the spiritual realms, caused me for many
years to withdraw from people. For at least 10 years I also suffered
the effects of the brain damage caused by high fever. I had to relearn
how to walk and to talk. At school I experienced taunting and abuse,
but I held onto memories of my Angelic encounter and it gave me strength.
That encounter was more vivid and real to me than anything I had experienced
in this world. I shared it with my sister but then locked it away inside
me from everyone else. Eventually I earned my Liberal Arts degree with
a Psychology minor. In following years I received my LPN license and
went on to work in nursing homes.
By this time I knew that what my Angel had told me was true. I did
have things to do. I pushed pills, changed bandages and did reams of
paperwork. But most importantly I shared my Angel story on company
time. Many times I found people dying alone. I would take their hand
and tell them the way it was with me. Those were some of the most blissful
moments of my life. The smiles and sighs were music to my heart.
IANDS is a wonderful group for me. It is so exciting to meet people
who understand the path I have trod and my purpose, which is to share
the Unconditional Love given so freely to this child. I hope that you
find inspiration in my words and pass them on.