5 Lessons I Learned From My Coma

October 28, 1996.  My eyes felt heavy and were tightly shut, yet I felt as if I were waking from a blurry dream. I could hear my brother’s desperate cry, begging, “Please, take care of her! Don’t worry about me—I’m fine!”

Others were insisting, “There’s not much we can do for her . She won’t make it.” I could feel the chaos around me and I gradually became aware of what was occurring. They were talking about me.

I was going to die. The memories of the crash suddenly rushed through my head. We lived far from school, and though we usually took public transportation, some friends had offered to take us home. We felt lucky and safer, ironically…until a thoughtless motorcycle driver got in the way, and my friend lost control of the car.

Upon impact, my heart felt like it had stopped, and darkness enveloped me. From the back seat, I looked through the front windshield directly up at the sky, and in a fraction of a second, I saw the most beautiful constellation of bright stars on the darkest sky I could ever imagine.

I felt like I was falling into a profound abyss.

No one was drinking or speeding or distracted, yet the car did a few full cartwheels, went across the median into the opposite lane, and smashed against a palm tree, ejecting everyone from the car.

Except for me. I was trapped.

Somehow, I was watching all of this happen. Not with my own eyes, but from somewhere above…sort of. Words fail me whenever I try to explain this. My “special” aerial view revealed the driver sitting on the sidewalk, as if in disbelief. My brother had a few scrapes here and there, but he wept, as if his heart were breaking. The guy who occupied the passenger’s seat hit his head badly, so I’m guessing he ended up having a couple of stitches.

They were all in fear, shock, and a strange kind of calm panic. I seemed unconscious to them, although my mind seemed more conscious than ever— of people’s feelings, their thoughts, of my own emotions, my surroundings, of the past, the present, and the future. I saw other vague images of noisy ambulances and could hear alarmed voices as I was rushed to the hospital.

As I came back to the present moment, I was lying on a hospital bed, unable to move, surprised to find that I felt nothing instead of the unimaginable pain I expected. I realized that night that at only nineteen years of age, I had a very slim chance of survival. I was not expected to make it through the night.

For what I know now to be 8 days, I was locked in a coma, had nineteen broken bones (16 ribs, my clavicle bone, and my jaw in three places), an oxygen mask over my mouth and nose, and a tube coming out of my side due to lung collapse. I couldn’t feel my legs or my tongue or my teeth, for that matter.

5 Lessons I Learned From My Coma

5 Lessons I Learned From My Coma:

Embrace Death Life ~ Death is an imminent, inevitable, and inescapable part of life. After experiencing just how fragile we are, how everything can change in an instant, how little control we have, I have ditched my fear of dying for a fear of not living.  We don’t have to be on our death bed to choose to embrace life, love, and legacy today… each day!  I have given myself permission to be who I am, unapologetically… to follow my joy, and live on my own terms. Are you IN?

Words Heal ~ As I lay weightless and seemingly lifeless, I could hear words that impacted, influenced, and pierced my soul. Call me weird… I believe those words kept me alive. I believe our words give life… and can take it away, too.

Your words can impact, influence, and inspire people... yourself included!

You Are Loved ~ I felt the raw pain, fear, and torture my family and friends were going through, and knew it surpassed mine by far. I discovered I was more loved than I realized. Love heals, cures, regenerates, restores, brings unspeakable peace… when demonstrated.

We Are Eternal ~ Dying was neither stressful nor traumatic. It was an insightful and peaceful event. Having an out of body experience gives you a weird perspective of what life really is. Like when my dad’s hand touched mine, and I felt it with my soul. It was definitely not a brain twitch or hallucination, it was real sense of eternity and life beyond the mortal body.

Each Day Is A Priceless Gift ~ I guess you don’t appreciate breathing a whole lot until you are unable to do it on your own for a few days. Have you thought about this miracle? I sure do more often now. I have also become more intentional and less wasteful of my time and energy. It’s interesting to think that time as we know it seems irrelevant in the spirit realm, yet it is the essence of our earthly existence. Treasure your time and use it to learn, grow, and connect with God, yourself and others. Don’t just count your blessings… savor them.

You have 86400 seconds today. Make sure you enjoy as many as you can! - Elayna Fernandez ~ The Positive MOM

I know this is kind of a loaded post. I once saw a sign that read beware of chicks with near death experiences.” I was forever transformed by the timelessness of this experience. I am bit less stubborn, obstinate, and self-centered, and I have a deeper sense of the purpose of this life and the plan that Heavenly Father has for me and those I love.

As I celebrate the anniversary of the near death experience that saved my life, I am IMMENSELY GRATEFUL for SECOND CHANCES. Everyday, I feel blessed to be ALIVE, to have the privilege to be a MOM, and have the possibility to create JOY, BALANCE, and SUCCESS as defined by my own standards.

What lessons can YOU learn from my coma? Share with us in the comment section below. Thank you in advance, love!

Elayna Fernandez - Author - 
Speaker - Success Guide to Moms and Mompreneurs
© Elayna Fernández ~ The Positive MOM

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78 thoughts on “5 Lessons I Learned From My Coma

  1. What an amazing story. To recuperate your body, mind, and soul so completely and have such a positive outlook on life after surviving such a horrible accident is impressive and inspirational. 🙂 Thank you for sharing.

  2. Wow, what an amazing story. Thank you for sharing it! Its amazing that you were able to take away something so postive from something so devastating and negative…hence your name i suppose. I love your list by the way. Great stuff. Very inspiring.

  3. What great lessons to share from this experience. Your story makes me think back on an accident I had . I wasn’t in a coma and luckily did not sustain any severe injuries but it was a major car accident and i was rushed to the hospital unconscious. I think it reminds me that each moment is a gift and what a gift we are to others.

  4. Oh my goodness, I am happy that you survived to tell this tale. Scary to see first-hand how fragile life really is.

  5. You will definitely look at life a lot different now. thanks for sharing your experience that we may remember how life fragile is and that there is a lot more to be appreciated!

  6. Wow. This is incredible. I can’t believe you went through that, and can retell. Absolutely amazing. Life is for sure a lot different now I’m sure especially how you view things and deal with everyday!

  7. You are a beautiful soul! I was so happy to meet you and your family at Niche. Hope our paths cross again. I was in a terrible accident myself years back, and I thank the stars above I am okay.

  8. Oh wow, I can’t even imagine going through something like that! The 5 lessons you are shared are inspiring. Sometimes I need the reminder that each day is a gift and that I need to live my days to the fullest.

  9. I could not imagine how hard this must have been for all of you. It is crazy what the human body can go through and yet it keeps going.

  10. It’s always so wonderful to read someone who has gone through this and has made a miracle or it! Beauty from Ashes is one of my motto’s! you live it! Great job!

  11. I truly believe each day is a gift. We should be thankful for every day that we have. I lost my husband three years ago suddenly. You never know when it will be your last day with your loved ones. Hug them everyday and tell them you love them.

  12. This surely was a loaded post. I’m happy that you were able to make it out of your coma. You are truly one strong woman and those life lessons are something that we all need to be aware of.

  13. Thank you for sharing this post. I have severe chronic pain and it has taught me a lot but I don’t always push myself when I probably should. It has taught me to enjoy the small things and celebrate the small things.

  14. I’m very glad you shared your touching story. And it’s good to know people unconscious really can hear you when you talk to them; though I always suspected that was true.

  15. Such an amazing and inspirational story! We do not know what each day will bring so we should make every second count and cherish those around us. Thank you for sharing!

  16. It’s amazing how tragedies or almost tragedies can change a person whole perspective on life and everything it encompasses. I am glad you found a new purpose for your self and you took the opportunity to reflect and make the changes you needed for yourself. You were meant to be here and perhaps someday you’ll be lucky enough to find out why! 🙂

  17. I’ve lost two loved ones in car accidents and two friends in motorcycle accidents and one friend who was a pedestrian and killed by a car. You are lucky to be alive! Coming from near death, myself…there is nothing more powerful to remind you to LIVE…we only get one shot! Fascinating!

  18. This the most wonderful near death experience I have ever read. It is in such detail and such wonderful word. This says to me not to waist time and energy on people, places, and things that do not matter. I only want positive in my life.

  19. OMG. First I am so happy that you did make it and were able to be here and share your story with us. Embracing life is so very important because you never know when it will be cut short.

  20. COMA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DO YOU KNOW WHAT IT FEELS LIKE TO BE PUT IN A COMA EVERY SINGLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BLOODY DAY DARREN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! PALMER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DO YOU KNOW WHAT ITS LIKE TO BE A WITNESS TO THIS BLOODY TRAIN WRECK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THAT YOU CAUSED AND YOU TAKE NO RESPONSIBILITY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! FOR DO YOU KNOW WHAT ITS LIKE TO HAVE YOUR MIND AND HEART STOLEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! FROM YOU TO LIVE IN A WORLD WHERE YOU ARE A CHARACTER IN A BLOODY CARTOON SHOW BE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! POSITIVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I TRY TO BE BUT HOW CAN I WHEN I AM CURSED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! TO LIVE IN A WORLD WHERE NO1!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! CARES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! NO1!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! UNDERSTANDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DO YOU KNOW WHAT IT FEELS LIKE TO WANT TO COMMIT SUICIDE EVERY BLOODY DAY TO NOT HAVE 1 SECOND IN THE DAY TO RELAX!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! TO BE ATTACKED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BY A FORCE THAT DOES NOT EVEN REMEMBER ITS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OWN BLOODY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! NAME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LETS ALL GATHER AND HEAR A STORY ABOUT THAT POSITIVE TIME WHEN WE WERE AT PEACE AND AT BLOODY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  21. Wow… share often.. Noone should “beware”.. I can’t tell you how often as a nurse I have said ” We don’t know what he/she can hear so please share and talk and encourage them.. I believe it makes a difference” . Now someone is telling me it does !! Thanks !!

  22. Hi Elayna,
    I am fascinated by stories like yours, because they inspire me to be more fully present. I got chills while reading your story, and I appreciate the reminder that there is more to life than what we often are able to see. I appreciate the lessons you shared. Thank you for sharing your story.

    ~Christina

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  27. Elayna~I knew nothing of this horrible experience you had. I am sorry you had to go through that, but you definitely came out not only okay, but a renewed , improved version of your old self. God along with your spunky nature He gave you did this transformation. Maybe that is how you can be such an inspiration to so many others. God bless you, my dear. Thank you for all your support and love, and thank God for YOU!!!

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  31. This story still gives me chills and i am forever blessed to have gotten to spend a small amount of time with you. You have left a mark on my heart that I will be forever grateful for. XOXO

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