Child Experiencers Are Different
Newspaper headline of March 2015 reads: “Toddler dead for 101 minutes is now alive.” The news clip told of a Pennsylvania toddler who was pulled from an icy creek. No pulse. No breathing. No neurological function. Yet the child came back to life - unscathed.
Death of the very young seems somehow obscene, as if in all certainty such a thing must be a violation of God’s Will. Their stories grab us, and we hang on every detail, every word said. Yet once the full story is revealed, folks backstep . . . because in 70 to 80% of the cases, either of a near-miss, terrible fright, or total finality, the children who survive talk about what it was like to be quite alive on the other side of death . . . wide-awake alive in their mother’s womb . . . totally alive in worlds beyond this one. They describe what is called a “near-death experience.”
Child experiencers of near-death states are not like adult experiencers. Most cannot compare “before” with “after” as adults do, because they don’t have a “before” - at least not in this world. They emerge as outliers, called upon to create and invent unique ways of living and loving. Dr. Penny Sartori, in her run-away best seller The Wisdom of Near-Death Experiences, says these children lead charmed lives afterward. Indeed they do, once they figure out how to balance worlds within worlds. Stories of the smallest experiencers of the near-death phenomenon are both inspiring and troubling. Because of this, we’re taking a deep plunge in this book - to shine light on the whole picture - what we want to see and what we don’t, what can be verified and what cannot.
Chapter 16. Markers
Child experiencers typically see the dead, have conversations with angels, manifest stunning psychic abilities and future memory, see and hear what is invisible to anyone else, and know things beyond their years. Usually parents, relatives, friends, school teachers, ministers turn against child experiencers: making fun of them, telling them to shut up, claiming it’s just imagination gone wild, demeaning any notion of seeing and talking with “invisibles” or suddenly “knowing” things. To this day, some churches still brand the phenomenon as “the work of the devil.” For that reason, the majority keep it secret, repress, or tuck away what happened to them, convinced that they are somehow “alien.” Unbelievable but true: a number of retirees in this study said nothing to anyone for seventy to eighty years. When they were told they could at last say whatever they wanted and it was okay, some cried, others flooded my office with “forbidden” memories.
Learning about near-death experiences and what is typical for children is a must, not only for families but for the kids themselves. . . no matter how old they are! It is time for society to take off “the covers” to this subject. We’ve done that for adults. Now it’s time for the kids. This chapter opens that door by first giving you a general sweep of what to look for, then offering more specific “markers” to help everyone have a better sense of how child experiencers can change right away and over time.
The Pattern in General
• A serious illness or accident that occurs around birth and/or up to five years. Ask about any problems with the mother’s pregnancy, womb issues, or dreams/visions about the situation that might have been remembered or recorded. The same during the toddlerhood, nursery school, and kindergarten years.
• Marked differences in behavior afterward. The child may be ahead of or different from age mates, becoming more so as the years pass, as well as taking on a more nontraditional or nonconformist attitude. He or she may possess a charm or charisma that attracts people, animals, birds, etc. He or she may appear somewhat backward socially when young while still being unusually creative, clever, and bold. Unafraid of death.
• A pattern to their aftereffects. Some display electrical sensitivity; most a unique sensitivity to light and sound, and especially pharmaceuticals. Even though the majority go on to exhibit good health, there is a noticeable increase in numerous sensitivities and allergies. School is often a problem, but not for the usual reasons - most know more than the teacher does. Boredom is an issue.
• An almost obsessive drive to accomplish a particular task or project, as if it were their mission to do so. Most will work with no sense of time or money or recognition, yet are inclined to own a home or be aligned with unusual places or ways of living. Marriage interests them but not necessarily a traditional life.
The child’s vision of heaven or of any of the other worlds beyond death is alive with a sense of truth and realness that challenges families, teachers, and therapists. Theirs is not just a vision but an experience that both colors their sense of the life they are living and the purpose behind their life. That many repress or tuck away their experience speaks to how they are treated and whether or not they are believed . . . or even allowed to share their story in the first place.
In my work, I’ve noticed three main types of child experiencers.
1. Those who are quiet and more reserved, often aware of their mission and the commitment necessary to fulfill that mission. They are careful observers, loving, and sensitive when they feel safe - drawn to creativity and helping others.
2. Those who seem numb or “shell-shocked” by their experience and how different they are now from age-mates. More likely to be made fun of or put down by others. May turn to alcohol or drugs; prone to ignore or repress.
3. Those who act out or become angry, tend to set themselves apart. Restless, impatient, can be argumentative. May appear confused about differences between “here” and “there.” Visionary knowers. Can be pushy, energetic.