Supernatural Medical Events | On Call with the Prairie Doc® | October 31, 2019


>>UNDERSTANDING WHY SOMEONE
HAS PNEUMONIA IS USUALLY
OBVIOUS BUT SOMETIMES WE MAKE
DIAGNOSES WITH ONLY INTUITION. IT IS HALLOWEEN AND WE EXPLORE
SUPERNATURAL MEDICINE TONIGHT,
“ON CALL WITH THE PRAIRIE DOC.”>>WELCOME TO PRAIRIE DOC
CONVERSATIONS, A PRODUCTION OF
HEALING WORDS FOUNDATION. I’M RICK HOLM AND OUR GUEST IS
MAGGIE CALLANAN, HOSPICE NURSE, AND ALSO Dr. RICHARD HOWARD
PLASTIC SURGEON FROM — WHAT IS
THE NAME OF YOUR CLINIC?>>WELL, WE’RE MOVING INTO
SOMETHING ELSE. NOW IT’S Dr.
HOWARD PLASTIC SURGERY, BODY
GARAGE.>>BODY GARAGE, PLASTIC
SURGEON, Dr. HOWARD. EVERY ONCE IN A WHILE, WE RUN
INTO SOMETHING THAT JUST CAN’T
BE EXPLAINED THROUGH NORMAL
MEDICAL SCIENCE. WE THEN MUST PUSH OURSELVES TO
LOOK BEYOND EVERYDAY EXPERIENCE
TO FIND AN ANSWER. FIRST, LET’S TAKE A LOOK AT
THIS WEEK’S PRAIRIE DOC QUIZ
QUESTION. NEAR DEATH EXPERIENCES OR
N.D.E.S, ARE EXPERIENCES IN
INDIVIDUALS WHO SUFFER DEATH FROM SOME SOURCE AND THEN COME
ALIVE AFTER A PERIOD OF TOTAL
UNCONSCIOUSNESS. THE QUESTION:
TRUE OR FALSE? THIS IS NOT POSSIBLE SINCE
STUDIES HAVE FOUND THAT 10 TO
20 SECONDS FOLLOWING DEATH, ELECTROENCEPHALOGRAM
MEASUREMENTS GENERALLY FIND NO
SIGNIFICANT MEASURABLE BRAIN CORTICAL
ELECTRICAL ACTIVITY. TRUE OR
FALSE? VIEWERS WHO CALL IN THE CORRECT
ANSWER WILL BE ENTERED INTO A
DRAWING TO WIN A SIGNED COPY OF OUR
BOOK, “THE PICTURE OF HEALTH.” EACH OF MY ESSAYS, ORIGINALLY
WRITTEN FOR THIS SHOW, COMES WITH A WONDERFUL ACCOMPANYING
PHOTOGRAPH BY DR. JUDITH
PETERSON. WE WILL ANNOUNCE THE ANSWER AND
THE WINNER AT THE END OF THE
SHOW. REMEMBER, YOU ONLY HAVE 10
MINUTES TO GET YOUR ANSWER IN! WE ANSWER YOUR QUESTIONS ABOUT
SUPERNATURAL MEDICAL EVENTS AS
SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCES, COMMENT, EVER A QUESTION, WE
WANT YOUR FEEDBACK, WE WANT
YOUR CALLS. CALL IN QUESTIONS TO
1-888-376-6225. OR SEND US AN
EMAIL TO THE ADDRESS ON THE
SCREEN. OH, BY THE WAY, HAPPY HALLOWEEN. HERE IN OUR STUDIO, PLASTIC
SURGEON, DR. RICHARD HOWARD, OF
THE BODY GARAGE, SIOUX FALLS,
SOUTH DAKOTA AND COMING IN VIA SKYPE IS
MAGGIE CALLANAN, RN, HOSPICE
NURSE AND AUTHOR OF THE BOOK
“FINAL GIFTS.” WELCOME TO THE SHOW. THANK YOU
FOR BEING HERE.>>THANK YOU.
>>THANK YOU.>>SO, MAGGIE, THIS IS YOUR
THIRD TIME ON THE SHOW.>>IT
IS.>>I THINK YOU SKYPED IN MAYBE
THREE YEARS AGO AND THEN YOU
WERE LIVE A YEAR AGO AND THEN YOU’RE BACK AGAIN
SKYPEING AND WE’RE TALKING NOW
ABOUT SPIRITUALITY.>>RIGHT.>>AND I — THE PART OF THE
REASON THAT I REALLY WANTED YOU
ON THE SHOW BECAUSE WE’RE TALKING ABOUT
SOMETHING BEYOND THAT WHICH IS
SCIENTIFICALLY PROVABLE, BEYOND THE EARTH AND INTO THE
SPIRITUAL REALM OF WHERE IS GOD? WHAT ABOUT THE HOLY GHOST? WHAT
IS BEYOND WHAT WE UNDERSTAND. AND DICK, ONE OF THE REASONS I
ASKED YOU TO BE ON THIS SHOW IS
BECAUSE OF YOUR BOOK, “BEYOND,” WHICH IS A SURGEON’S JOURNEY TO
UNDERSTAND THE TRANSITIONS FROM
THIS LIFE TO THE NEXT. SO YOU HAD AN EXPERIENCE AS A
SURGEON WATCHING PEOPLE COME
ALIVE AGAIN AFTER NEAR-DEATH
EXPERIENCES AND IT BROUGHT YOU TO WRITE
THIS POEM THAT I READ AND
ENJOYED AND I THOUGHT, BY GOLLY, YOU WOULD BE THE
PERFECT GUEST TO BE HERE. MAYBE
I SHOULD START WITH YOU, MAGGIE. THE REAL QUESTION WE’RE TALKING
NOW IS, REALLY, RELIGION VERSUS
SCIENCE, AREN’T WE? ARE WE TALKING SPIRITUALITY,
COULD IT BE REAL, ARE WE
TALKING — OR IS IT NOT?
MAGGIE, WHAT’S YOUR COMMENT?>>WELL, YOU KNOW, I REALLY
DON’T THINK IN THOSE TERMS. AS
A HOSPICE NURSE, MY WHOLE FOCUS IS ON WHAT’S IMPORTANT TO THE
PATIENT AT THE MOMENT SO IF THE
PATIENT IS HAVING EXPERIENCES THAT THEY’RE VERY EXCITED
ABOUT, THEN MY JOB IS TO LISTEN
AND SUPPORT AND TO ENCOURAGE. SO I REALLY DON’T THINK MUCH
ABOUT THE CONTRAST BETWEEN
RELIGION AND MEDICINE. I’M TOTALLY FOCUSED ON WHAT’S
IMPORTANT TO MY PATIENT AT THE
TIME.>>HAD THAT BOOK IN I THOUGHT
THREE PARTS AND IT WAS A LOT
ABOUT THE –>>FINAL GIFTS.>>THE SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCES
PEOPLE HAD WHEN THEY WERE AT
THE END OF LIFE. TELL US MORE
ABOUT THAT.>>RIGHT. IN THESE — THE
REASON I SORT OF STAY AWAY FROM
THE WORD “SPIRITUAL” IS BECAUSE EVERY ONE OF MY
PATIENTS IS A UNIQUE PERSON. WHATEVER THEY BELIEVE
SPIRITUALLY IS WHAT WE FOCUS ON
FOR THEM, WHICH IS WHY HOSPICE HAS, YOU
KNOW, CHAPLAINS AND PRIESTS AND
BUDDHIST PRIESTS. WE HAVE EVERYBODY AVAILABLE TO
OUR PATIENTS BECAUSE THESE
EXPERIENCES SEEM TO SPAN ALL
RELIGIONS. IT’S NOT UNIQUE TO CHRISTIANS
OR, YOU KNOW, WHATEVER. BUT THE THING IS HOW IMPORTANT
THEY ARE TO THE PATIENT. PATIENT TAKES GREAT COMFORT,
SATISFACTION AND PEACE IN SOME
OF THESE EXPERIENCES. WHEN THEY HAVE THESE
EXPERIENCES, THE ANXIETY AND
ANY FEAR THAT THEY HAD PRIOR JUST SEEMS
TO GO AWAY. THE EXPERIENCES ARE
VERY POWERFUL. YEAH, THEY TALK TO PEOPLE THAT
WE CAN’T SEE. VERY — WITH
GREAT ENTHUSIASM, OFTEN GREAT
JOY. IT’S USUALLY PEOPLE THAT HAVE
PRE-DECEASED THEM, THEIR
PARENTS, THEIR SIBLINGS, EVEN BABIES THERAPY LOST. AND THEY TALK ABOUT GOING
SOMEPLACE AND WHEN THEY SAY, “I
WANT TO GO HOME,” THEY’RE NOT TALKING ABOUT 102
OAK STREET. WHEN YOU SAY, IS IT
102 OAK STREET, THEY LOOK AT YOU LIKE WHAT’S
WRONG WITH YOU, YOU DON’T
UNDERSTAND. THEY TALK ABOUT BEING ABLE TO
ACTUALLY CHOOSE THE MOMENT. THEY HAVE DIALOGUE WITH PEOPLE,
PEOPLE WHO ARE HELPING THEM GET
READY. IT’S VERY POWERFUL
THINGS. IN A MORE SPIRITUAL VENT, SOME
OF THOSE HAVE EXPERIENCES WHERE THEY HAVE DRIFTED AWAY FROM THE
CHURCH THAT THEY WERE RAISED IN
AS CHILDREN, SUDDENLY NOW GOING BACK AND
GETTING THOSE SPECIAL PRAYERS FROM THAT SPECIAL MINISTER
BECOMES VERY IMPORTANT. SO
WE’RE ALWAYS ALERTED TO THAT. IT REALLY ISN’T SO MUCH WHAT I
THINK IS GOING ON. SOMETHING VERY IMPORTANT IS
GOING ON AND MY JOB IS TO
ENCOURAGE AND SUPPORT. SO I REALLY DON’T THINK IN
TERMS OF THIS IS NOT SCIENTIFIC
OR THIS IS TOO RELIGIOUS, I JUST SIMPLY SEE THE
IMPORTANCE OF WHAT’S HAPPENING
TO MY PATIENT AND TO THE FAMILY WHO’S AROUND,
YOU KNOW. THEY HAVE A LOT OF COMFORT IN
HEARING MY MOTHER IS CALLING ME
TO COME, YOU KNOW, MY GRANDMOTHER IS THERE FOR ME. YOU KNOW, MY OWN — MY OWN
MOTHER DIED WITH HER ARMS LIKE
THIS, LOOKING DOWN AT MY DAUGHTER’S
IDENTICAL TWIN BOYS THAT WERE
LOST DURING THE PREGNANCY BECAUSE
THEY WERE CONJOINED AND SHARED
GREAT VESSELS. THERE WAS REALLY NO HOPE AND IT
WAS A TERRIBLE LOSS. SIX WEEKS LATER, MY MOTHER IS
DYING AND SHE’S HOLDING TWO
SEPARATE INFANTS AND TELLING MY DAUGHTER HOW
BEAUTIFUL THEY ARE AND HOW
PERFECT THEY ARE. THAT WAS INCREDIBLY HELPFUL TO
MY DAUGHTER’S GRIEF.>>AND TO
YOUR MOTHER, AS WELL.>>THEN IT BECAME THE FAMILY
JOKE. NANA IS GOING TO SPOIL
THEM, GIVING THEM THEIR JUICE IN
WATERFORD CRYSTAL AND IT REALLY
EASED MY DAUGHTER’S GRIEF A GREAT DEAL TO KNOW THAT HER
UNBORN SONS WERE BEING CRADLED
BY THE GRANDMOTHER THAT SHE
LOVED SO MUCH.>>THAT’S A WONDERFUL STORY,
MAGGIE. [OVERLAPPING
CONVERSATIONS]>>AMAZING THINGS HAPPEN AND AT
THE TIME IT’S NOT JUST
RELIGIOUS OR SCIENCE, WHO CARES. IT GAVE MY MOTHER GREAT PEACE
AND JOY, IT HELPED MY DAUGHTER
WITH HER GRIEVING, AND ME, AS WELL, AND IT WAS
POWERFUL. SO I REALLY STAY AWAY
FROM LABELS. I JUST LOOK AT THE
IMPACT.>>RICHARD, YOU HAD A NUMBER OF
EXPERIENCES AND OF COURSE IT’S
DOCUMENTED IN YOUR BOOK. BY THE WAY, HOW WOULD YOU GET
THIS BOOK IF — IT’S NOT ON
AMAZON YET?>>IT’S NOT ON AMAZON YET BUT
YOU CAN CALL OUR OFFICE.>>AT
WHAT NUMBER (605-334-1930, AND CLAIRE WILL
HELP YOU.>>CLAIRE WILL GET
YOU A BOOK, FOR $16 OR
SOMETHING LIKE THAT.>>YEP.>>SO YOU HAD — MAGGIE
WAS TALKING ABOUT ANGELS AT THE
BEDSIDE AND I PERSONALLY HAVE HAD
PATIENTS WHO I REMEMBER A
LITTLE LADY WHO WE WERE GIVING
HER HIGH DOSES OF MORPHINE BECAUSE
SHE HAD LOST BLOOD FLOW TO HER
LEG AND SHE WAS IN HER LATE 90s AND
THERE WAS NO SURGERY TO RELIEVE
HER OF PAIN, WE JUST BASICALLY COVERED HER
WITH ENOUGH PAIN MEDICINE. THE FAMILY WAS AROUND HER LIKE
A CAMPFIRE AND SHE OPENED HER
EYES — THE NURSE JUST — WAS
OVERWHELMED WITH THE STORY. SHE WOKE UP, SHE LOOKED AROUND
THE ROOM, NOT AT HER RELATIVES
THAT WERE THERE BUT, LIKE, PEOPLE, OTHER PEOPLE THAT WERE
AROUND THE ROOM AND SAID, OH, IT’S GOING TO BE ALL RIGHT. AND
THEN SHE FELL BACK AND DIED.
[Laughter] AND I CAME IN, YOU KNOW, THE
NURSE CAME SCREAMING-DR. HOLM, Dr. HOLM, YOU’VE GOT TO TALK TO
THIS FAMILY, OH, MY GOSH. I’VE HAD MULTIPLE EXPERIENCES
OF PATIENTS LIKE THAT. ANY OF
THAT FOR YOU?>>WELL, MINE ARE A LITTLE
DIFFERENT BECAUSE I’M USUALLY
NOT THERE AT THE END OF LIFE, BUT WHAT I PUT IN THE BOOK AND
ONE OF THE STUDENTS ASKED ME
EARLIER, WHY DID YOU WRITE THE BOOK?
WELL, PEOPLE GAVE ME THEIR
WITNESSES AND I FELT COMPELLED TO PUT THEM DOWN AND GET THEM
OUT AND THEY WERE PATIENT OF
MINE WHO WERE TELLING ME ABOUT SOMETHING THAT HAPPENED
EARLIER OR AT ANOTHER TIME. DIFFERENT THAN WHAT MAGGIE WAS
TALKING ABOUT BECAUSE SHE’S
ATTENDING THESE PEOPLE IN THE HOSPICE AND THEY’RE AT
THE END OF LIFE, BUT I’M
GETTING THESE STORIES FROM
PEOPLE THAT ARE — HAVE BEEN THERE AND COME — IT
MIGHT HAVE BEEN YEARS AGO AND
ALL OF A SUDDEN, FOR SOME REASON, THEY DECIDED
TO CONFIDE IN ME THEIR STORY
AND THE CIRCUMSTANCES ARE — IT IS LIKE THEY’RE SHARING A
GREAT SECRET BECAUSE THEY’RE
NOT GOING TO TALK ABOUT THIS.>>SO WHAT WERE SOME OF THOSE
EXPERIENCES?>>WELL, THE FIRST MAJOR ONE
WAS A LADY DESCRIBED AN
OUT-OF-BODY EXPERIENCE AND I WAS DOING MY CARDIO
THORACIC SURGERY ROTATION, I
WAS A RESIDENT, AND SHE’D HAD SURGERY THE DAY
BEFORE AND THIS IS BEFORE THE
DAYS OF ANGIOPLASTY AND BALLOONS AND STENTING AND ALL
THIS STUFF, EVERYBODY HAD THEIR
BREAST BONE OPENED UP AND THEY DID BYPASSES AND
STUFF, AND SHE HAD HER SURGERY
THE DAY BEFORE, SATURDAY MORNING, I’M ON CALL,
WALKING THE ROOM IN THE ICU AND THE BED IS STRIPPED AND
IT’S FLESHLY MADE. I GO, OH, MY GOSH, SHE DIED IN
THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT AND
NOBODY CALLED ME. I TURNED AROUND TO LEAVE THE
ROOM, FIND THE NURSE, AND THE
PATIENT IS SITTING THERE IN A CHAIR SIPPING ON SOME
BROTH. NOW, THIS IS LESS THAN
24 HOURS AFTER HAVING YOUR BREAST BONE
— SHE’S OFF THE VENTILATOR –>>TREMENDOUS RECOVERY. THAT’S
INCREDIBLE.>>I SAT DOWN. I’M LITERALLY LIKE, WHOA. HOW
YOU DOING? OH, PRETTY GOOD.
HAVE YOU HAD MUCH PAIN? OH, IT’S A LITTLE SORE. SHE
FINALLY ASKED ME, WHAT KIND OF
SAW DO THEY USE? DOES IT GO UNAND DOWN OR AROUND
AND AROUND? IT GOES UP AND
DOWN, LAST A LITTLE GUARD, GOES UNDERSTAND THE BREASTCONE,
WHY DID YOU ASK? WELL, THAT’S
THE LAST THING I REMEMBER. OH.>>HOW GOOD WAS YOUR
ANESTHESIOLOGIST? WOW.>>YEAH,
I SAID, DID YOU HAVE ANY PAIN? OH, NO, I DIDN’T HAVE ANY PAIN.
I COULD JUST HEAR IT AND FEEL
IT AS IT WENT THROUGH MY CHEST. I GO BACK AND ONE OF THE THINGS
ABOUT ANESTHESIA IS TO TAKE
AWAY YOUR ANXIETY AND I ASKED HER, DID YOU HAVE
ANY FEAR? AND THAT’S WHEN THE
WHOLE ROOM CHANGED. AND SHE LOOKED AT ME AND SHE
DESCRIBED ABOUT 30 YEARS
PREVIOUSLY, SHE HAD BEEN IN A
CAR ACCIDENT. THIS IS A PLACE IN THE MIDDLE
OF, LIKE, 1965. FOR EVERYBODY OUT THERE THAT
THINK THE AMBULANCE IS GOING TO
COME, THE PARAMEDICS ARE GOING TO BE
THERE, NO. IN 1965, YOU WERE IN A CAR
WRECK, THEY KIND OF SCOOPED YOU
UP AND HAULED YOU –>>THE FUNERAL DIRECTORS DID
IT.>>THE FUNERAL DIRECTORS,
EXACTLY RIGHT, THEY SCOOPED YOU UP, HAULED YOU
TO THE HOSPITAL, THERE WEREN’T
ANY TRAUMA CENTERS OR ANYTHING ELSE AND THEY BRING
THIS LADIES IN AND SHE’S IN
THIS TERRIBLE CAR WRECK, SHE’S GOT A — A PUNCTURED LUNG
AND BROKEN BONES AND ALL THIS
KIND OF STUFF AND SHE’S NEAR DEATH AND SHE
FINDS HERSELF LOOKING DOWN, AND
SHE’S VERY COMFORTABLE. I SAYS, MY GOODNESS, IS THAT ME
ANY LOOK TERRIBLE AND SHE WAS
HYPER ACUTELY AWARE OF EVERYTHING THAT WAS GOING ON
AND WHAT THEY WERE DOING TO
SAVE HER LIFE. AND THE LONGER SHE WAS THERE,
THE LESS ATTACHED SHE WAS TO
HER BODY. SHE DESCRIBED PEOPLE COMING AND
SHE COULD — AS SHE GOT CLOSER, SHE RECOGNIZED, THESE WERE ALL
PEOPLE THAT HAD PASSED ON AND
THEY WERE COMING, THEY GOT TO CERTAIN SPOT, THEY
STOPPED. SHE WANTED TO GO TO THEM AND
THEN THIS INDESCRIBABLE
BRILLIANCE, WHICH SHE KNEW WITHOUT A DOUBT
WAS THE LORD, GOD, WAS OVER
HERE AND SHE KNEW SHE HAD TO GO HERE BEFORE SHE
COULD GO THERE AND THEN SHE
REMEMBERED, SHE SAID, SHE LOOKED AT THE
LIGHT, SAID, LORD, I CAN’T COME
YET. I HAVE THREE LITTLE GIRLS AT
HOME. SHE WAS WIDOWED, I DON’T
KNOW WHY BUT SHE WAS WIDOWED, THERE WAS NO ONE LEFT TO TAKE
CARE OF THEM. BOOM, BACK IN HER
BODY. THAT’S WHEN THE PAIN STARTED.
SINCE THAT DAY, Dr. HOWARD, I
HAVEN’T BEEN AFRAID OF ANYTHING. AND I WALKED OUT OF THE ROOM
GOING, WHOA, THAT WAS REALLY
AWESOME. I CAN’T WAIT TO HEAR SOMETHING
ELSE LIKE THAT. I NEVER HEARD
ANOTHER EXPERIENCE RELATED LIKE
THAT. I’VE HEARD SEVERAL DIFFERENT
EXPERIENCES BUT NONE EXACTLY
LIKE THAT. BUT THAT WAS A VERY POWERFUL
TIMEFRAME I SPENT WITH HER AND
IT WAS THE ONE TIME I SAW HER.>>WE NEED TO HEAR A LITTLE BIT
MORE OF THOSE WHAT ARE CALLED
N.D.E.s, NEAR DEATH EXPERIENCES. MAGGIE HAS A NUMBER OF THOSE, I
HAVE SOME, TOO. JUST A FASCINATING WAY TO
EXPLORE THINGS ON THIS
HALLOWEEN NIGHT.>>BEFORE LAPSING INTO A
SEVEN-DAY COMA, NEUROSURGEON
DR. EBEN ALEXANDER COULD NOT RECONCILE HIS
KNOWLEDGE OF NEUROSCIENCE WITH
ANY BELIEF IN HEAVEN, GOD, OR
THE SOUL. HE HAS NOW WRITTEN A BOOK ON
THE EXPERIENCE AND BELIEVES
THAT DEATH IS NOT THE END OF PERSONAL
EXISTENCE BUT ONLY A TRANSITION.>>SO WHEN I WENT INTO COMA,
THAT MORNING OF NOVEMBER 10TH, I WENT IN PRETTY MUCH AS A
MATERIALIST NEUROSCIENTIST WHO
WAS VERY CONFUSED BY THE BRAIN-MIND CONUNDRUM AND
IT TURNS OUT THAT WHEN I CAME
OUT OF THAT, AND ESPECIALLY OVER THE TWO
MONTHS FOLLOWING MY JOURNEY AND
TRYING TO PUT IT ALL TOGETHER, BECAUSE MY BRAIN WAS ABSOLUTELY
WRECKED FROM THE EXPERIENCE,
BUT THAT WAS THE REAL BEAUTY OF
IT. SO I WANT TO TAKE YOU THROUGH
THAT WHOLE PROCESS. SO IN THAT JOURNEY, IN THAT
COMA THAT BEGAN ON NOVEMBER
10TH, 2008, I WOKE UP WITH SEVERE BACK
PAIN, SEVERE HEADACHE. ANYONE WITH ANY MEDICAL
KNOWLEDGE WOULD HEAR THOSE TWO
TERMS AND IMMEDIATELY THINK
MENINGITIS BUT IT WAS SO RAPID THAT THE
DOCTOR WAS ALREADY OUT. WITHIN A FEW HOURS OF SYMPTOM
ONSET, I WAS HAVING A GRAND MAL
SEIZURE AND WAS BASICALLY GONE FROM
THIS WORLD FOR THE NEXT WEEK. AND THINGS WERE VERY DIRE FOR
MY FAMILY AND FOR MANY OF THE
FRIENDS WHO KNEW ME. I WAS TAKEN TO THE HOSPITAL
ROOM, EMERGENCY ROOM SEIZING. IT STARTED WHEN I CALLED THE
EARTH WORM’S EYE VIEW. THAT’S
MY FIRST MEMORY OF MY DEEP-COMA
JOURNEY. IT WAS LIKE BEING IN DIRTY
JELLO, DEEP UNDERGROUND. I HAD STRONG FEELING OF ROOTS
OR BLOOD VESSELS ALL AROUND ME.
I HAD NO BODY AWARENESS AT ALL. I WAS JUST A SPECK OF
PERCEPTION, ABLE TO WITNESS AND
KIND OF RECORD AND OBSERVE, AND THAT’S WHAT HAPPENED. AND
IN THAT EARTHWORM-EYE VIEW, IT
WAS VERY MURKY AND AS I SAID BEFORE, I HAD NO
LANGUAGE, NONE OF MY EARTHLY
CONCEPTS REMAINED SO EVEN THOUGH I HAD NO
LANGUAGE, I COULD STILL WONDER.
WHAT, HOW, WHERE, WHO? WHAT IS GOING ON? AND IN THAT
ENVIRONMENT, I NEVER REALLY GOT
A FLICKER OF RESPONSE. BUT THE GOOD NEWS IS, EVEN
THOUGH I COULDN’T REMEMBER
MOMENT TO MOMENT BECAUSE WITH
THE DAMAGE TO MY BRAIN, ANY KIND OF TIME FLOW OR
ANYTHING WAS NOT BEING RECORDED
BUT I DIDN’T STAY THERE
FOREVER. I WAS RESCUED. ON MY JOURNEY IN THAT
EARTH-WORM-EYE VIEW, THERE CAME
A SLOWING SPINNING PURE WHITE
LIGHT WITH A MUSICAL MELODY THAT
OPENED LIKE A PORTAL UP INTO
THIS RICH, VIBRANT, ULTRA-REAL
REALM THAT I CALL THE GATEWAY V. AND THAT HAD MANY EARTH-LIKE
FEATURES. I WAS A SPECK OF
AWARENESS ON A BUTTERFLY WING. THERE WERE MILLIONS OF OTHER
BUTTERFLIES FLOATING AND
SPIRALING IN VAST FORMATIONS AND BELOW US WAS THIS VERDANT
VALLEY, VERY FERTILE, LUSH,
FILLED WITH GROWTH AND LIGHT. NO SIGN OF DEATH OR DECAY, ALL
OF THE PLANT LIFE VERY RICH AND
GREEN, TEXTURES, BLOSSOMS, BUDS, FLOWERS, EVERYTHING
OPENING, INCREDIBLE RICHNESS,
AND BELOW THIS BUTTERFLY VIEW INTO THIS VALLEY, THOUSANDS OF
SOULS DANCING BETWEEN LIVES, AS
I PUTS IT IN MY WRITINGS WEEKS
LATER, TRYING TO RECORDS ALL THIS, ALL
THESE BEAUTIFUL SOULS, AND LOTS
OF JOY AND MERRIMENT AND I REMEMBER SEEING CHILDREN
PLAYING AND DOGS JUMPING,
INCREDIBLE FESTIVITIES, AND IT WAS ALL BEING FUELED
BECAUSE UP ABOVE WERE THESE
SWOOPING ORBS, PURE GOLDEN ORBS
OF LIGHT, AND VAST FORMATIONS, EMANATING
CHANTS AND ANTHEMS AND THESE
INCREDIBLE HYMNS.THIS IS YOUR PROGRAM AND YOUR
QUESTIONS ARE KEY TO THE
DIRECTION OF OUR DISCUSSION
TONIGHT. THIS IS AN UNUSUAL PROGRAM.
CALL IN YOUR QUESTIONS TO
1-888-376-6225 OR SEND US AN
EMAIL TO [email protected] THAT’S A FASCINATING STORY. HIS
BOOK, IT’S CALLED “PROOF OF
HEAVEN,” AND I THOUGHT THAT’S A
LITTLE BIT OVER THE TOP. I MEAN, IT’S JUST LUSH, VERDANT
VALLEY AND GOLDEN ORBS AND ALL
THAT BUT WHEN IT CAME DOWN TO
IT, THE END OF HIS BOOK, HE’S
TALKING ABOUT CONSCIOUSNESS AND
HOW A NEUROSURGEON CANNOT
EXPLAIN — WE DON’T KNOW ABOUT NEAR-DEATHS
EXPERIENCES, WE HAVE NO IDEA
WHY IT WORKS. SOME PEOPLE SAY IT’S JUST A
LACK OF OXYGEN TO THE BRAIN
THAT’S DOING THESE THINGS BUT HE SAYS, THAT DOESN’T
EXPLAIN IT BUT WE DON’T
UNDERSTAND WHAT CONSCIOUSNESS
IS. THE VERY IDEA THAT YOU AND I
ARE LISTENING TO EACH OTHER OR
CONSIDERING THE CONCEPT OF OUR
OWN MORTALITY OR MORBIDITY. SO, MAGGIE, WHAT’S YOUR COMMENT
ABOUT EBEN ALEXANDER? I THINK
YOU’VE EVEN MET HIM, HAVEN’T
YOU?>>I’VE MET HIM, YES. I THINK
HIS STORY IS WONDERFUL AND IN
THE WORLD OF N.D.E. NEEDED AND
EBEN ALEXANDER FOR THE WORLD TO SORT OF PERK
UP AND PAY ATTENTION BECAUSE
QUITE A LOT OF PEOPLE HAVE
N.D.E.s, AND THEY’RE NOT UNDERSTOOD AND
THEY’RE USUALLY LABELED AS
BEING WEIRD OR CRAZY, AND WHEN SOMEBODY AS CREDIBLE
AS A NEUROSURGEON ON TALKS
ABOUT HIS, THEN THE WORLD SAYS, WOW, THIS
IS REALLY SOMETHING, AND SO IT
WAS — YOU KNOW, I’M SORRY THAT AN
EVENT HAPPENED THAT FORCED HIM
TO HAVE AN N.D.E., BUT I THINK HE WILL DO A GREAT
DEAL TO EDUCATE PEOPLE WHO HAVE
BEEN RESISTANT AND N.D.E.s ARE
VERY COMMON. I THINK ABOUT — WHERE — YOU
MENTIONED 17%, LAST FIGURE I
HAD WAS ABOUT 20. NOW THOSE ARE THE PEOPLE WHO
ARE WILLING TO TALK ABOUT THEM.
>>YEAH.>>LOTS OF PEOPLE FEEL, BECAUSE
THEY’VE BEEN LABELED WEIRD OR
IT WAS ANOXYIA OR IT WAS DRUGS, WHATEVER, WHATEVER, IT WAS —
IT SHUTS THEM DOWN AND THEY
DON’T FEEL SAFE TO TALK ABOUT
IT. SO WHEN YOU HAVE SOMEBODY
CREDIBLE, LIKE Dr. ALEXANDER,
THEN IT GIVES THEM PERMISSION
TO COME FORWARD, TOO. BEFORE I WENT INTO HOSPICE, I
WAS 17 YEARS IN CRITICAL CARE
AND CERTAINLY PARTICIPATED IN A
LOT OF RESUSCITATIONS, AND BEING THE NURSE, I WAS
ALWAYS LEFT BEHIND TO SORT OF
CLEAN UP, YOU KNOW. C.P.R. IS MESSY AND NOBODY
WORRIES ABOUT HITTING THE TRASH
CAN, IT’S JUST, YOU KNOW, SAVE THIS LIFE, AND I REMEMBER
ONE EVENING, THE CAFETERIA WAS
CLOSING FOR DINNER AT 6:30 AND THIS WAS LIKE 10 AFTER 6:00
AND IT IS RESUSCITATION WAS
SUCCESSFUL AND THE ROOM WAS A
MESS AND SO I STAYED BEHIND WAITING
FOR THE PATIENT TO GET A ROOM,
A BED ON I.C.U. AND THEN I
WOULD TAKE HIM UP TO I.C.U. AND I’M TIDYING UP THE ROOM,
YOU KNOW, AND I’M HUMMING AND
SUDDENLY HE WOKE UP AND I SAID,
WELCOME BACK. AND HE TOOK HIS FIST AND
PUNCHED ME SO HARD, IT ALMOST
KNOCKED ME OFF MY FEET. AND I WAS SO TAKEN ABACK, AND I
SAID WHY? AND HE SAID, YOU HAD
NO RIGHT. I WAS IN SUCH A
WONDERFUL PLACE. YOU HAD NO RIGHT TO BRING ME
BACK TO THIS. AND WAS FURIOUS
WITH ME. AND MY ATTITUDE WAS, I MISSED
DINNER FOR YOU. [Laughter] EVERYBODY ELSE WAS GETTING
DINNER AND I WAS CLEANING UP
THE MESS. BUT I WENT BACK TO SEE HIM ON
I.C.U. ABOUT THREE DAYS LATER
AND HE RECOGNIZED ME AND HE
SAID, YOU WERE ONE OF THE ONES THAT
WAS PUNCHING ON MY CHEST
BECAUSE I WAS INVOLVED IN THE
RESUSCITATION. AND I SAID, YES, I WAS. AND HE
SAID, I’M SORRY I WAS SO ANGRY.
I SAID, IT’S FINE. AND HE SAID, TELL THE DOCTOR
WHO LOST HIS WRISTWATCH THAT
IT’S UNDER THE BROAD LEG OF THE
TREATMENT TABLE IN THE EMERGENCY ROOM, WHERE HE
WAS RESUSCITATED. AND I WASN’T AWARE THAT A
DOCTOR HAD LOST A WATCH BUT I
WENT DOWN AND I SAID TO THE
DOCS, I SAID DID ANYBODY LOSE A WATCH
AND ONE GUY SAID YES, AND I
SAID WAS IT ABOUT THREE DAYS
AGO, MAYBE WHILE YOU WERE
RESUSCITATING SO AND SO, AND HE
SAID IT WAS AROUND THAT TIME,
YEAH. AND SO I SAID, WELL, LET’S GO
IN THE TREATMENT ROOM AND LOOK
BECAUSE HE TOLD ME YOUR WATCH WAS UNDER THE LEG OF
THE TABLE. NOW, MIND YOU, HE
WAS CLINICALLY DEAD AT THIS
POINT, RESUSCITATION HAD NOT BEEN
SUCCESSFUL, WE STILL DIDN’T
HAVE THE BLIP, BLIP, ON THE
E.K.G. MACHINE, WE WERE REALLY WORKING HARD TO
SAVE THIS GUY. WE WENT INTO THE
TREATMENT ROOM, MOVED THE TABLE AND THERE WAS
HIS WATCH. NOW, HOW WOULD A PERSON
CLINICALLY DEAD BE ABLE TO SEE
DOWN TO THOSE OF US WHO WERE ACTIVELY RESUSCITATING
HIM, TO SEE THE DOCTOR’S WATCH
FLY OFF, HOW WOULD HE HAVE KNOWN THAT?
YOU KNOW, THERE’S SO MANY
THINGS LIKE THAT, AND N.D.E. EXPLAINS A WHOLE LOT
OF IT BUT PATIENT ARE NOT
NECESSARILY HAPPY TO BE
RESUSCITATED.>>YOU KNOW, I — THIS IS AN
INTERESTING CONCEPT, TOO, THAT ONE COULD SAY, OH, WELL, WE’RE
TALKING MUMBO JUMBO, MAGICAL
STUFF BUT IF YOU’RE A PERSON
WHO BELIEVES IN GOD, IN MY MIND, THAT IS BY
DEFINITION SUPER NATURAL. IT IS ABOVE WHAT WE UNDERSTAND
AND BELIEVE, THAT IS
SCIENTIFICALLY PROVEN. IT’S NOT
PROVEN.>>THAT’S WHY THEY CALL IT
FAITH.>>THAT’S WHY IT’S
CALLED FAITH. SO, MAGGIE’S STORY ABOUT A NEAR
DEATH EXPERIENCE, YOURS, AS
WELL. ANYTHING TO ADD TO THAT,
RICHARD?>>THAT WAS — WELL, NOT ONLY
DID I HAVE A COUPLE OF
EXPERIENCES THAT WERE GOOD IN
MY BOOK, THERE WERE A COUPLE THAT WERE
BAD.>>YEAH, I WAS GOING TO
ADD, YOU HAD SOME SORT OF BLACK
STORIES. LET’S HEAR THOSE.>>BLACK
STORIES. UM… ONE OF THEM WAS ONE OF MY
PATIENTS THAT CAME IN AND HE
WAS QUADRIPLEGIC, IN A
WHEELCHAIR, AND I IMMEDIATELY THOUGHT HE
WAS JUST — I MEAN, HE’S GOT A
PONY TAIL, HARLEY DAVIDSON HAT
AND I’M GOING, WELL, HE’S PROBABLY HAD A WRECK
ON HIS MOTORCYCLE AND NOW HE’S
QUADRIPLEGIC IN A WHEELCHAIR, HE HAD A PRESSURE ULCER,
NEEDING SURGERY AND HE WAS
INTERVIEWING ME TO FIND OUT HOW
I WOULD TAKE CARE OF THIS AND HE EVENTUALLY
DECIDED I SHOULD TAKE CARE OF
HIM. AND I GOT TO KNOW HIM AND HIS
WIFE QUITE WELL AND HE WAS A
HARLEY GUY BUT THAT’S NOT WHY
HE WAS IN THE CHAIR. IT WAS AN INDUSTRIAL ACCIDENT
AND HE — AFTER YEARS OF CARING
FOR HIM, AND I ACTUALLY DID
HOUSE CALL TO CHECK ON HIM AND AFTER YEARS
AFTER TAKING CARE OF HIM, THEN
HE TOLD ME ABOUT THE DAY OF HIS
INJURY, AND IT WAS A FALL. BROKE HIS NECK ON A RAILROAD
AND HE SAW HIS GRANDMOTHER. NOW, HIS GRANDMOTHER WAS THE
ONLY PERSON THAT HE HAD ANY
RESPECT FOR. HE HAD A VERY –>>TOUGH –>>– TOUGH –>>
EARLY LIFE.>>HE GOT HIT BY
HIS FATHER ONE TIME AND BROKE
HIS JAW, NEVER GOT IT FIXED. THAT KIND
OF TOUGH LIFE.>>THAT’S NOT A
GOOD LIFE.>>THOUGH. AND HE SAW HIS GRANDMOTHER AND
HE WANTED TO GO TO HER AND SHE
LITERALLY CAME AND SAID, YOU CAN’T COME HERE. YOU’LL
NEVER MAKE IT THE WAY YOU ARE.
YOU HAVE TO GO BACK. SO HE WENT
BACK. AND HE KIND OF HELD THAT VERY,
VERY QUIETLY, AND HE DID
EVENTUALLY — HE DIED AT A
YOUNG AGE, HIS MID 50s AND I REMEMBER
AFTERWARDS GOING I WONDER IF HE
EVER MADE THAT BUT, ON THE
OTHER HAND, IN THEIR LIVING ROOM OF THEIR
HOME, THERE IS A FOUR-FOOT
PICTURE, PAINTING OF THE PICTURE OF
JESUS WITH THE LAMP, BEHOLD A
KNOCK AT THE DOOR HAVE THE>>AND THAT CAME AFTER THAT
EXPERIENCE WITH HIS GRANDMA.>>THAT CAME AFTER THE
EXPERIENCE WITH HIS
GRANDMOTHER, SO I –>>SO IN THAT SENSE, THERE IS A
REASON TO BE A GOOD PERSON IN
YOUR LIFE.>>THERE IS.>>THERE IS A GOOD REASON.>>
THERE ARE A LOT OF OTHER
EXPERIENCES THAT I THINK ARE
IMPORTANT. YOU KNOW, WE’VE LOOKED — ONE
OF THE THINGS THAT I FIND I
CONNECT TO THE SPIRIT OF THE PEOPLE NEXT TO ME IS
WHEN WE’RE SINGING. I HAVE AN ACAPELLA CHOIR THAT
SINGS TO HOSPICE PATIENTS EVERY
TUESDAY, OR MOST TUESDAYS, AND, YOU KNOW, WHEN YOU’RE
SINGING WITH A GROUP OF PEOPLE,
HYMNS THAT EVERYBODY KNOWS AND IT’S ACAPELLA SO IT’S TOTAL
LISTENING, YOU ARE BLENDING AND
YOU LISTEN AND YOU BLEND, YOU LISTEN LOUDER THAN YOU
SING, AND THERE IS A TIME WHEN
YOU FEEL THE SOUL OF THE PEOPLE THAT ARE
IN THE ROOM SINGING WITH YOU. I REALLY BELIEVE THAT — AND I
WOULDN’T PROBABLY HAVE SAID
THIS WHEN I WAS IN MY 20s OR
30s, BUT THERE IS A HOLY SPIRIT THAT
IS WITHIN US, IN MY MIND, AND
WE — YOU KNOW, NEAR-DEATH EXPERIENCES AND
THOSE STORIES ARE VERY
REASSURING TO ME BUT THE MOST
REASSURING TO ME, THING THAT HAPPENS TO ME EVERY
TUESDAY NIGHT IS TO SING WITH A
CHOIR.>>OFTEN THERE IS AN INTIMATE
CONNECTION ASSOCIATED WITH
SINGING — I DIDN’T REALLY THINK THIS WAS
GOING TO COME UP WHEN I STARTED
THAT STORY. BOTH IN THE AUDIENCE AND EVEN
MORE ACUTE IN THOSE WHO ARE
SINGING. AND THIS MAY PRODUCE AN OVERALL
FEELING OF WELL-BEING FOR
EVERYONE IN THE ROOM. [Laughter]♪ I COME TO THE GARDEN>>YOU CAN JUST TELL HOW MUCH
BETTER IT MAKES HER FEEL THIS
MUSIC. ♪ YOUR LIGHT WILL SHINE, SHINE,
BEHIND, HALLELUJAH, LETS IT
SHINE WITH THE GLORY OF THE LORD ♪ GO ON AND SHINE, SHINE,
SHINING, HALLELUJAH, YOU ARE
FILLED WITH THE GLORY, ♪ YOU ARE FILLED WITH THE
GLORY, YOU WILL SHINE WITH THE
GLORY OF THE LORD WHOO HOO?>>IT’S THE BEST FEELING IN THE
WORLD WHEN YOU CAN HEAR SUCH
GOOD MUSIC.>>IT BRINGS SOMETHING TO YOU,
DOESN’T IT?>>YES, IT DOES, IT MAKES YOUR
HEART FEEL GOOD. ♪ GOD BE WITH YOU UNTIL WE MEET
AGAIN>>I DON’T MEAN — THAT IS NOT
BRAGGING, THIS HAS BEEN SUCH AN
HONOR TO SING — WE HAVE 15 TO 30 PEOPLE THAT
SHOW UP ON A TUESDAY NIGHT AND
WHEN THEY CAN, THEY APPEAR OUT
OF THE BLUE, YOU KNOW, ONCE EVERY TWO MONTHS
SOMETIMES AND IT’S SUCH A JOY
TO DO IT. YOU HAD A STORY ABOUT MUSIC IN
THE OPERATING ROOM.>>WELL,
IT’S A TAKE-OFF ON THAT. MUSIC DOES LIFT THINGS UP AND
ESPECIALLY AROUND CHRISTMAS,
SINCE I’M THE BOSS IN THE O.R., I CAN PLAY HYMNS, THAT’S NICE.
BUT I DON’T HAVE ANY MUSICAL
TALENT, I LIKE TO LISTEN TO
MUSIC BUT ONE OF THE THINGS, YOU
KNOW, LIKE SOMETHING HAPPENS TO
ME IN THE OPERATING ROOM FROM
TIME TO TIME. I’LL HAVE A — SAY A TRAUMA
PATIENT, WE’RE TRYING TO PUT
THINGS TOGETHER AND I’M JUST
STRUGGLING TO TRY AND, LIKE, PUT A TEAR DUCT BACK
TOGETHER AGAIN ON A
FOUR-YEAR-OLD FROM A DOG’S
TOENAIL THAT CAUGHT IT AND TORET AND WORKING ON THAT, IT WILL BE
3:00 IN THE MORNING AND THEN
SUDDENLY I TRY EVERYTHING, I
DON’T KNOW — AND THIS LITTLE VOICE SAYS, WHY
DON’T YOU DO THIS? AND I’LL GO,
WELL, THAT’S A GOOD IDEA. AND ALL OF A SUDDEN, OH OH —
>>IT’S THERE.>>IT’S THERE.
[Laughter]>>THERE ARE SOME THINGS THAT
WE DON’T UNDERSTAND.>>CORRECT.>>MAGGIE, ANY COMMENTS,
RESPONSES TO THE MUSICAL THING
THAT WE SHOWED?>>I THINK IT’S WONDERFUL MUSIC
OPENS A CERTAIN PART OF THE
BRAIN IN WAYS THAT WE DON’T — WE’RE NOT ABLE TO WITHOUT THE
MUSIC. WHEN I WRITE MY BOOKS, I WRITE
IT TO FLUTE MUSIC, JAMES
GALWAY, ACTUALLY, AND I JUST PUT THE SAME C.D. ON
AND IT PLAYS REPEAT, REPEAT,
ALL DAY LONG BUT I FIND WRITING SO MUCH
EASIER AND I THINK IT’S SORT OF
RELAXES SOMETHING, MAKES YOU — MAYBE IT IS A SPIRITUAL THING,
I DON’T KNOW, IT MAKES THINGS
FLOW SO MUCH BETTER. NO, I THINK MUSIC IN HOSPICE
UNITS ARE USED, TOO. WE HAD A HARPIST THAT WOULD
COME AND PLAY MUSIC AND I
REMEMBER ONE GENTLEMAN WOKE UP FROM A NAP AND SAID, DID I
DIE? HE COULD HEAR THE HARP
MUSIC. ANYWAY — TO, I THINK MUSIC IS
TERRIFIC AND I’VE HEARD YOUR
CHOIR AROUND A DEATH BED. ONE OF YOUR NURSES CENTER ME A
TAPE, RICK, IT WAS SO MOVING,
IT REALLY WAS, SO, NO, I THINK
MUSIC IS GREAT. [FEEDBACK]>>I CAN’T GET
THROUGH MY SINGING WITHOUT
WEEPING. IT JUST TOUCHES MY
SOUL. BUT I WANTED TO BRING MAGGIE’S
BOOK UP, YOUR WONDERFUL BOOK,
“FINAL GIFTS” IS ONE THAT I’VE
READ. I HAVE NOT READ THE NEW ONE OR
THE OLDER ONE BUT THE “FINAL
GIFTS” IS A MAGNIFICENT TOME, AND THAT’S IT, THAT’S THE ONE.
>>THAT’S THE NEWER COVER –>>
SO TELL US MORE ABOUT THE BOOK,
WOULD YOU, MAGGIE?>>SURE. BACK IN ’89, I WAS NEW
TO HOSPICE AND FOR A YEAR
WORKED WITH ANOTHER NURSE, PATRICIA KELLY AND SHE WAS
FAMILIAR FROM N.D.E. FROM AN
EXPERIENCE SHE HAD WITH A NEAR
DROWNING. I WAS FAMILIAR WITH N.D.E. FOR
ALL THE RESUSCITATION AND WORK
IN THE EMERGENCY ROOM, AND WE HAD LUNCH TOGETHER
ACTUALLY AT A TABLE WHICH IS
UNUSUAL FOR HOSPICE NURSES, IT’S USUALLY A SANDWICH WHILE
YOU’RE DRIVING FROM ONE HOUSE
TO THE OTHER BUT THIS DAY WHICH HAD LUNCH
TOGETHER AND ONE OF US SAID, YOU KNOW, I’VE GOT A PATIENT
WHO’S TALKING ABOUT THE CAR, IS THERE GAS IN THE CAR OR
WHERE IS HIS LICENSE, IS IT
TIME TO GO? DOES HE HAVE TO PAY TOLLS, AND
I SAID, WELL, THAT’S REALLY
INTERESTING. I SAID, YOU KNOW, I’VE GOT A
YOUNG MOTHER IN MY TERRITORY
WHO’S DYING AND SHE’S VERY WORRIED ABOUT
PACKING, MAKING SURE SHE HAS
ALL THE THINGS THAT SHE NEEDS, AND WE WERE
LOOKING AT EACH OTHER, I THINK,
WONDERING IF WE COULD CONNECT — BOTH OF US THOUGHT THAT WAS
IMPORTANT AND SO WE FINALLY
TALKED ABOUT IT AND DECIDED THAT IT REALLY WAS, SO WE
STARTED TO CATALOG THE STORIES
AND THE THINGS THAT WE’D HEARD. SO I TELL PEOPLE, IF YOU WANT
TO WRITE A BOOK, YOU START WITH
RECIPE CARDS, AND EACH LITTLE STORY HAD A
RECIPE CARD OF ITS OWN. THINGS THAT PAT REMEMBERED FROM
PREVIOUS NURSING THINGS, THINGS
THAT I REMEMBERED FROM THE E.R., BUT MOSTLY, THINGS FROM
HOSPICE, CONVERSATIONS,
SITUATIONS, THAT WERE UNUSUAL
AND, YOU KNOW, THE INTERESTING THING
IS WHEN WE LOOKED AT THE
PATIENT’S CHARTS, NOTHING WAS
CHARTED ABOUT IT. BUT WHEN WE TALKED TO THE
NURSES, IT WAS LIKE CANDIES
TUMBLING OUTS HAVE A JAR. THEY HAD STORIES AND STORIES
AND STORIES BUT THEY HAD NEVER
CHARTED THEM BECAUSE, YOU KNOW, IT’S NOT REALLY SCIENTIFIC AND
GOING BACK TO WHAT I SAID
EARLIER, IT COULD BE THE MOST IMPORTANT
THING TO YOUR PATIENT,
SCIENTIFIC OR NOT, SO IT IS
IMPORTANT. SO, ANYWAY, WE HAD ABOUT 200
RECIPE CARDS. WE ARRANGED THEM
ON THE FLOOR, THIS WAS IN NOVEMBER, AND IT
WAS LIKE, OH, MY GOODNESS, ALL
THESE PEOPLE ARE TALKING ABOUT
GOING SOMEWHERE. ALL THESE PEOPLE ARE TALKING
ABOUT SEEING PEOPLE THAT WE
CAN’T SEE AND THESE PEOPLE ARE TALKING
ABOUT A BEAUTIFUL PLACE THAT WE
CAN’T SEE. AND THESE PEOPLE ARE TELLING US
WITH THEIR BEHAVIOR AND THEIR
WORD THAT THEY SEEM TO
UNDERSTAND THAT THEY’RE DYING SOONER THAN
WE THINK SHE AND THEN THERE
WERE OTHERS THAT WERE WAITING
FOR PERMISSION, AND TO MAKE A LONG STORY SHORT,
THE BOOK WROTE ITSELF BECAUSE
OF THOSE RECIPE CARDS, AND, YOU KNOW, WE WROTE AN
ARTICLE FOR THE AMERICAN
JOURNAL OF NURSING, IT ENDED UP BEING THE COVER
STORY AND THAT JUST OPENED THE
FLOOD GATE. WE WERE HEARING FROM NURSES ALL
OVER THE WORLD SAYING I’M
HEARING THESE THINGS, I’M
SEEING THEM, TOO. WE DID A LITTLE WORKSHOP FOR
OUR STAFF, THE WORD SPREAD, WE
WENT TO NEARBY HOSPICES, EVERYBODY SAID WE NEED A BOOK
AND, BASICALLY, THE SKELETON OF
OUR PRESENTATION BECAME THE SKELETON OF THE
BOOK, WHICH IS NOW IN TEN
LANGUAGES. AND SO IT PROVES TO ME THAT,
NUMBER ONE, PEOPLE ARE DYING
ALL OVER THE WORLD AND, NUMBER TWO, THEY’RE HAVING
PRETTY REMARKABLE EXPERIENCES
THAT EASE THEIR ANGUISH AND
THEIR FEAR, AND HAVE WONDERFUL MESSAGES
THAT HELP THEIR FAMILIES
GRIEVING THEIR LOSS. SO THAT’S
PRETTY MUCH THE STORY.>>THAT’S WONDERFUL, AND JUST
THE STORY OF HOSPICE, AND THEN
THE PART IN THE END WHERE YOU TALK ABOUT HOW TO
HELP SOMEONE THROUGH THAT FINAL
— THAT FINAL TIME. Dr. HOWARD, LET’S HEAR ABOUT
YOUR COMMENTS AND RESPONSES TO
HOSPICE AND/OR END-OF-LIFE — FEAR OF DEATH AT THE END OF
LIFE.>>OH,>>I’M THROWING A
CURVE BALL AT YOU.>>IT IS A BIT OF A CURVE BALL
AND NOW I HAVE TO GET PERSONAL
BECAUSE I DON’T HAVE ANYTHING — THE STORIES — I MEAN,
EVERYBODY — EVERYBODY LIVES IN
MY BOOK. IT’S NOT A –>>END
OF LIFE.>>IT’S NOT AN END-OF-LIFE
THING.>>BUT YOU DID LOSE YOUR
WIFE TWO AND A HALF YEARS AGO.>>YES, ABOUT TWO AND A HALF
YEARS AGO. LOIS HAD A VERY RARE
CANCER THAT, IF SURGERY WORKS,
GREAT. IF SURGERY DOESN’T WORK,
THERE’S NOTHING THEY CAN DO FOR
IT AND WE TRAVELED TO M.D.
ANDERSON AND THEY SEE 60 PEOPLE A YEAR
THERE WITH THIS AND SHE ELECTED
NOT TO DO ANYTHING, WHICH IN RETROSPECT, I HAVE TO
HONOR THAT. LOIS WAS VERY
SPIRITUAL, VERY ACTIVE IN BIBLE
STUDY, FELLOWSHIP, SHE WAS A LEADER
BUT SHE WAS STILL EXTREMELY
ANXIOUS. AND ON HER LAST DAY, SHE WAS
COMATOSE FOR ABOUT SIX OR SEVEN
HOURS, GET A PHONE CALL — PHONE RINGS, I PICK IT UP AND
IT’S HER FRIEND LINDA. I HAVE
TO TALK TO LOIS. I SAID, WELL, LINDA, I’LL PUT
THE PHONE UP TO HER EAR, YOU
CAN TALK TO HER. DON’T EXPECT HER TO TALK BACK,
SHE HASN’T BEEN — AND PUT THE
PHONE UP TO HER EAR, LOIS, THIS IS LINDA, AND MY
WIFE, WHO HAD BEEN LEANING OVER
LIKE THIS SUDDENLY, FOR SIX HOURS, SEVEN HOURS,
RAISES HER HEAD, OPENS HER
EYES, SMILES, LOOKS AROUND,
LISTENS TO LINDA. IT’S LIKE, OKAY. I TEXTED MY
SON AND SAID, YOUR MOTHER IS
LUCID AND HE WAS THERE IN ABOUT
FIVE MINUTES. AND WE HAD ABOUT HALF AN HOUR.
AND IT WAS THE MOST AMAZING
THING TO SEE THE ABSOLUTE PEACE
ON HER FACE. I HAD NEVER SEEN HER SMILE
LIKE, THAT I HAD NEVER SEEN HER
FACE LOOK LIKE THAT AND I’M QUITE CERTAIN SHE WAS
ALREADY IN HEAVEN LOOKING OUT. IT WAS KIND OF LIKE, OH — AND
SHE TRIED TO MUMBLE SOMETHING
BUT SHE WAS VERY DISCONCERTING IN THE WHOLE THING SO YOU GOT
THIS BEAUTIFUL SMILE AND AT THE
SAME TIME HER LUNGS ARE
RATTLING, SHE’S TRYING TO BREATHE AND
EVENTUALLY SHE JUST RELAXED AND
IT WAS LIKE HER WHOLE BODY JUST
COLLAPSED. AND HER HEART KEPT GOING FOR
ANOTHER THREE, FOUR MINUTES,
BUT AT THE VERY END, SHE WAS THE MOST PEACEFUL I’VE
EVER SEEN.>>I THINK THAT THE PROBLEM IN
THE WORLD, AND MAYBE THAT’S
HUMAN NATURE, BUT WE ARE TERRORIZED WITH THE
CONCEPT OF DYING. UNTIL MAYBE WHEN WE GET AS OLD
AS YOU AND ME, NOT MAGGIE’S
AGE, SHE’S MUCH YOUNGER BUT, YOU KNOW, THERE IS THIS THING
ABOUT FEAR OF DEATH.>>
ABSOLUTELY.>>THAT IS — WHAT DO YOU SAY
TO PEOPLE WHO ARE FRIGHTENED OF
DEATH?>>WELL, IF THEY’RE FRIGHTENED
OF DEATH, THERE IS A REASON. THE CORE ESSENCE OF MY TEXT,
WHEN YOU GET TO THE END OF IT,
IS THAT — AND I’M DOING THIS STRICTLY
FROM A CHRISTIAN WORLD VIEW BECAUSE THAT’S MY ONLY WORLD
VIEW I’VE GOT BUT GOD IS REAL.
HEAVEN IS REAL. ON THE FLIP SIDE, SATAN AND
HELL ARE REAL, AS WELL. AND THERE’S ANOTHER BAD STORY
IN THERE THAT KIND OF POINTS
THAT OUT. SO I THINK THAT PEOPLE THAT —
AND I HAVE A STORY IN THERE
ABOUT A GENTLEMAN WHO WAS EXTREMELY ANXIOUS AT
THE END OF HIS LIFE, WHEN I WAS
IN THE NURSING HOME, WHEN I WAS AN ORDERLY IN A
NURSING HOME. THEY REALLY NEED TO BE
COUNSELED AND KIND OF BE PUSHED
IN THAT DIRECTION.>>YOU KNOW, WE’VE GOT SOME
QUESTIONS ACTUALLY THAT CAME IN
JUST IN THE LAST MINUTE. THIS CALLER FROM HOT SPRINGS
WORKED AS A NURSE AND BELIEVES
NURSING STUDENTS SHOULD RECEIVE MORE EDUCATION
ON END-OF-LIFE CARE. SHE RECOMMENDS THE FINAL GIFTS
BOOK BY MAGGIE CALLANAN, THAT EXPLAINS THE NEEDS AND
COMMUNICATIONS OF THE DYING. I
THINK THAT’S WISE. I HAVE A MILLION TIMES. THERE
IS ANOTHER 2013 PHIL AND FAMILY
WATCHED MOTHER DIE, HE CONSIDERS IT TO BE A GIFT
FROM HER AND A GIFT HE GAVE TO
HER BECAUSE SHE WAS SO — SHE WAS CLOSE TO THOSE WHO
LOVED AT THE TIME OF HER DEATH. AND THEN ONE COMMENT, THE
VIEWER’S DAD HAS PASSED AWAY
AND ONE OF HIS REPEATED ACTIONS ON HIS DEATH BED WAS REACHING
HIS ARMS UP BUT THEN HE’D COME
BACK DOWN AND WOULD THIS BE SOMETHING
MEDICALLY BASED OR A SPIRITUAL
ACTION? ACTUALLY, WE HAD ONE OF OUR
CAMERAMEN, BRUCE, JUST TOLD US
A STORY ABOUT HIS MOM WHO HAD BEEN SO ILL AND THEN
SUDDENLY, WHO HAD BEEN
BED-RIDDEN FOR SO LONG SUDDENLY
SAT UP, WHICH WAS BEYOND HIS BELIEF
THAT SHE COULD DO THAT, LOOKED
AROUND THE ROOM AND THEN PASSED
AWAY. THERE ARE A VARIETY OF
EXPERIENCES LIKE THAT. YOU
KNOW, SO, MAGGIE, WE’RE RUNNING
OUT OF TIME. I HAVE A COUPLE MINUTES. 30
SECONDS, MAGGIE. CAN YOU COME
BACK WITH ANY FINAL POINT?>>WELL, I THINK, TOO, YOU NEED
TO PAY ATTENTION TO THE
BEHAVIOR OF PATIENTS AND I WARN MY FAMILIES, DON’T
LEAVE THEM WHEN THEY’RE IN A
COMA, THEY CAN WAKE UP JUST AS
Dr. HOWARD’S WIFE DID. WE HAVE A TERM FOR THAT, IT’S
CALLED MINI RESURRECTIONS WHICH
I THINK IS CHARMING. AND IT’S USUALLY TO ACCOMPLISH
SOMETHING. CLEARLY Dr. HOWARD’S
WIFE WANTED TO TALK TO HER
FRIEND AND HAVE ANOTHER FEW MINUTES
WITH HER FAMILY. VERY TOUCHING. THAT MUST HAVE TAKEN ENORMOUS
ENERGY TO WORK HER WAY BACK OUT
OF COMA TO DO THAT. BUT YOU HAVE TO BE CAREFUL
BECAUSE, YOU KNOW, PEOPLE SAY,
MY FATHER FELL OUT OF BED AND
DIED. ACTUALLY, TURN IT AROUND. WHOSE
VOICE WAS CALLING HIM TO COME? WHOSE HANDS WAS REACHING FOR
HIM AS HE CLIMBED OUT OF BED. MY FATHER WOULD HAVE DIED
FALLING OUT OF BED BUT IT WAS
THE SAME THING, YOU KNOW, HE WAS BUSY GOING ON HIS
JOURNEY AND THEN THEY END UP IN
A LUMP ON THE FLOOR AND THE
FAMILY BLAMES THE FALL. SO THERE’S SO MUCH GOING ON AND
WHAT I WOULD SAY TO PEOPLE WHO
ARE ANXIOUS, NO MORE. READ EVERYTHING. THERE ARE GOOD
BOOKS OUT THERE.>>I GOT TO GO, MAGGIE. I LOVE
YOU.>>I LOVE YOU, TOO.>>
THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE.>>THANKS, Dr. HOWARD.>>THANK
YOU, RICHARD.>>AND NOW, FOR THE WINNER OF
TONIGHT’S PRAIRIE DOC QUIZ
QUESTION. THE QUESTION: TRUE OR FALSE?
THIS IS NOT POSSIBLE SINCE
STUDIES HAVE FOUND THAT 10 TO
20 SECONDS FOLLOWING DEATH, ELECTROENCEPHALOGRAM
MEASUREMENTS GENERALLY FIND NO
SIGNIFICANT MEASURABLE BRAIN
CORTICAL ELECTRICAL ACTIVITY. ANSWER: TRUE, THIS ISN’T
POSSIBLE ACCORDING TO CURRENT
FACTS. HOWEVER, THIS TOPIC IS BEING
CAREFULLY AND SCIENTIFICALLY
STUDIED, AND THE CONCLUSION IS
THAT N.D.E.S MAY BE REAL EVENTS DESPITE
NEGATIVE EEGS. SO, THE ANSWER
IS ALSO FALSE… WE’RE STILL
LOOKING. YES OR NO, AND THE ANSWER IS
BOTH. IT WAS NANCY NELSON FROM
MISSION HILL WHO ANSWERED THE
QUESTION CORRECTLY. THANK YOU FOR PARTICIPATING AND
A BOOK WILL BE IN THE MAIL TO
YOU SOON! WE’LL BE RIGHT BACK AFTER
THIS…>>WELCOME TO YOUR PRAIRIE DOC
LIBRARY AT WWW.PRAIRIEDOC.ORG. WHEREVER YOU LIVE OR TRAVEL,
YOU AND YOUR FAMILY CAN ENJOY
FREE AND EASY ACCESS 24 HOURS A
DAY. SEARCH FOR A SPECIFIC TOPIC.
BROWSE THROUGH THE TELEVISION
SHOWS, RADIO PROGRAMS AND BLOG
PAGE. YOU, YOUR FAMILY AND FRIEND
AROUND THE WORLD CAN LEARN FROM
PHYSICIANS AND OTHER HEALTH
PROFESSIONALS ANSWERING QUESTIONS ON A
VARIETY OF MEDICAL TOPICS. VISIT YOUR PRAIRIE DOC LIBRARY
TODAY, AT WWW.PRAIRIEDOC.ORG.>>I AM A PHYSICIAN WHO
BELIEVES IN EVIDENCE-BASED
SCIENCE. I AM ALSO OLD, APPROACHING MY
OWN “LAST CHAPTER” FROM
PANCREATIC CANCER. I SHARE THIS NOT TO ENGENDER
PITY, NONE. RATHER, I SHARE THIS IN ORDER
TO GIVE YOU A SENSE OF MY
POTENTIAL BIAS AS I WRITE ABOUT THE QUESTION;
DO WE HAVE A SPIRIT OR SOUL
THAT IS MORE THAN A
BRAIN-CHEMICAL REACTION THAT WILL GO AWAY AT DEATH? OF
COURSE, THE ULTIMATE ANSWER TO
THAT QUESTION IS, “NOBODY
KNOWS.” SOME ARCHEOLOGISTS BELIEVE THAT
RELIGION FIRST BEGAN WHEN
SOMEONE WONDERED WHAT HAPPENED TO THE LIFE FORCE OR SPIRIT OF
A YOUNG BOY AFTER HE DIED.
WHERE DID IT GO? ARCHEOLOGISTS SPECULATE THAT
“JOB ONE” FOR THE EARLY
CHURCH… AND, FOR THAT MATTER,
CHURCHES OF TODAY… WAS TO REASSURE AND COMFORT THE
FAMILY AFTER THE DEATH OF A
DEAR ONE. HOWEVER, JUST BECAUSE IT
REASSURES US DOESN’T PROVE THE
SOUL EXISTS, BUT THERE ARE OTHER EXPERIENCES
THAT DO. I REMEMBER MY MOTHER EXPLAINING
TO ME ONE NIGHT BEFORE PRAYERS THAT THERE IS SO MUCH MORE
GOING ON THAN WE KNOW, SO MUCH THAT CANNOT BE
EXPLAINED BY PHYSICS AND
CHEMISTRY. SHE DESCRIBED WAKING UP IN THE
MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT IN
MINNEAPOLIS DURING WORLD WAR II, FILLED WITH DREAD AT THE SAME
MOMENT THAT MY DAD WAS LANDING
ON SOME PACIFIC ISLAND IN FULL
COMBAT. THAT WAS SOMETHING ABOUT WHICH
SHE COULD NOT HAVE KNOWN DUE TO
RADIO AND MAIL SILENCE. HOW DID SHE KNOW? DO WE HAVE
SPIRITUAL CONNECTIONS WE SIMPLY
DON’T UNDERSTAND? ARE WE NEVER
TRULY ALONE? DURING MY CAREER, AT LEAST
THREE PATIENTS DESCRIBED A
NEAR-DEATH EXPERIENCE, AN
N.D.E., WITH ALL IT’S TYPICAL RAIMENT,
INCLUDING AN OUT-OF-BODY
EXPERIENCE, A WARM AND
COMFORTING LIGHT, A LIFE-REVIEW, LIKE A MOVIE,
AND REASSURANCE THAT THERE IS
NOTHING TO FEAR ABOUT DYING. A RECENT META-SURVEY INDICATED
THAT THIS HAPPENS IN 17% OF
PEOPLE WHO ARE RESUSCITATED AND IN EQUAL PERCENTAGES
THROUGHOUT ALL CULTURES AND
RELIGIONS. IT IS ALSO AMAZING TO LEARN
THAT THE WARM LIGHT IS SEEN
EVEN BY PEOPLE BLIND FROM BIRTH. EVEN AS A STUBBORN
SCIENCE-BASED GUY, TOGETHER
WITH YEARS OF EXPERIENCE AS A
GERIATRIC INTERNIST AND HOSPICE DIRECTOR, I TRULY
FIND A COMMUNITY FAITH WITH A
LOVING AND INCLUSIONARY CHURCH
VERY REASSURING. I HAVE REASON TO BELIEVE THAT
THERE IS A SPIRIT WITHIN US
THAT CONNECTS US ALL AND THAT DOESN’T DIE WITH OUR
BODIES. I HAVE BEEN AT THE BEDSIDES OF
MANY DYING PEOPLE WHILE THEIR
SPIRITS LIFT FROM THE BODY AND PASS
THROUGH THE PORTHOLE OF
ETERNITY. BEING THERE HAS BROUGHT ME TO
BELIEVE THAT THE SOUL IS MORE THAN A BRAIN-CHEMICAL
REACTION THAT GOES AWAY AFTER
DEATH.>>WELL, A GREAT-BIG THANK YOU
TO OUR GUESTS, MAGGIE AND
RICHARD, FOR VOLUNTEERING TO
JOIN THE CONVERSATION FROM OUR STUDIO AT YEAGER HALL
ON THE CAMPUS OF SOUTH DAKOTA
STATE UNIVERSITY AND ADD THEIR EXPERIENCE AND
KNOWLEDGE TO OUR DISCUSSION
TONIGHT. IF YOU WOULD LIKE MORE
INFORMATION ABOUT THIS PROGRAM
OR TO SEE MORE EPISODES, PLEASE LIKE AND FOLLOW US ON
FACEBOOK OR VISIT US AT
PRAIRIEDOC.ORG. THAT DOES IT FOR TONIGHT. FROM
ALL OF US HERE AT “ON CALL WITH
THE PRAIRIE DOC,” STAY HEALTH-OUT THERE, PEOPLE.
AGAIN, THANK YOU, RICHARD AND
MAGGIE.>>THANK YOU.>>THE ATTRACTION OF THE
METROPOLITAN CITIES OFTEN
OVERSHADOWS THE VALUE OF A MEDICAL PRACTICE
IN SMALLER COMMUNITIES. HIRING RURAL DOCTORS IN THE
U.S.A., NEXT TIME, “ON CALL
WITH THE PRAIRIE DOC.”>>FOR MORE THAN A DECADE, Dr.
HOLM IN HIS ROLE AS THE PRAIRIE
DOC HAS EMERGED AS A LEADER OF HEALTH CARE
EDUCATION AND COMMUNICATION IN
SOUTH DAKOTA AND ACROSS THE
COUNTRY. EVERY WEEK, Dr. HOLM AND OTHER
MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS VOLUNTEER
MANY HOURS TO SHARE SCIENCE-BASED TRUTH ABOUT
HEALTH CARE ON PUBLIC
TELEVISION, ON THE RADIO, IN
OUR NEWSPAPERS AND ONLINE. AND BEST OF ALL, EVEN HAS FREE,
EASY ACCESS TO THE ENTIRE
PRAIRIE DOC LIBRARY. HI, I’M JENNIFER MAY OF RAPID
CITY. AS A BOARD MEMBER OF THE
HEALING WORDS FOUNDATION, I ASK YOU TO CONSIDER MAKING A
DONATION. PLEASE HELP US
CONTINUE THIS IMPORTANT WORK. GO TO PRAIRIEDOC.ORG AND MAKE A
DONATION TODAY. THANK YOU.>>MAJOR FUNDING FOR “ON CALL
WITH THE PRAIRIE DOC” HAS BEEN
PROVIDED BY:>>AVERA IS A PROUD SPONSOR OF
“ON CALL WITH THE PRAIRIE DOC”
ON SOUTH DAKOTA PUBLIC
BROADCASTING. LARSON MANUFACTURING IS PROUD
TO SUPPORT “ONCALL WITH THE
PRAIRIE DOC” AS IT CONTINUES TO OPEN DOORS
FOR IMPORTANT MEDICAL
INFORMATION. AND BY THE SOUTH DAKOTA
FOUNDATION FOR MEDICAL CARE, THE MEDICARE QUALITY
IMPROVEMENT ORGANIZATION FOR
SOUTH DAKOTA. AND WITH THE ONGOING SUPPORT OF
THESE INDIVIDUALS AND
INSTITUTIONS…

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