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And -- -- incredible story of survival.
A well respected surgeon kayaking in a remote south American river.
-- Fifteen minutes underwater at for her after a horrific accident -- -- to the bottom ever river no air and no way out.
Amazingly doctor Mary -- did manage to make it out alive after she was rescued.
But she says she had a glimpse of the after life.
That she calls one of the greatest gifts she's ever received while she was struggling under that water.
Author of the book to heaven and back.
Doctor -- Neill joins me now she's an orthopedic spinal surgeon doctor -- thank you so much for being here I wanna start with this.
Prior to this incident we were religious person.
I would say I was pretty typical in that.
I was raised in church on Sunday mornings and I did take my own children to Sunday school.
But I think was typical of that I never incorporated spirituality and my daily life.
-- you have a thought about an afterlife for heaven prior to this -- -- the other.
I'm not sure right you really spent the time to think about it I had four young children and a full time job and -- husband then.
Life gets in the way of thinking about spiritual things usually so you're out in this horrific acts may find itself under water fall kayaking and it -- her epic.
That was wonderful writer right right it's tough to kind of -- -- and end.
Take -- threat what what happens to you as you find yourself submerged underwater.
Well I was submerged and the force of the water had me absolutely.
Pinned to their front deck of the vote.
And so I was not able to.
Push myself out of the boat or pull this -- -- an exit the boat.
Dad I tried a number of times.
Before it became clear that.
I wasn't going to be open to exit the -- on my down.
And -- was far enough away from the shore of the river.
That I didn't think anyone was going to be pulling me out.
And at that time I gave my life over to god and truly and sincerely -- that God's will be done.
And at that moment everything changed IA.
Was very calm and peaceful and felt great.
And I had this very physical sense of being.
Held and comforted.
And reassured that everything would be fine.
My husband and my children.
Would be fine regardless of whether I -- -- This is while you're under the water with no air with you you can't breathe your -- completely submerged.
You do you believe you were dying.
I -- continued to do self assessment exams.
And I knew I couldn't breathe.
But for me it was a very seamless transition.
I had never wanted to ground I had always been afraid of -- even not a water person.
And for me one of the remarkable things.
Is that I never felt panic.
I never felt.
Really very calm and continually reassured even though.
I knew that I had -- -- and I knew that I was dying.
You say -- you felt you you wrote you rose up and out of the river and when my soul broke through the surface of the water I encountered a group of fifteen or twenty souls who greeted me.
With the most overwhelming joy I have ever experienced.
Tell us about that.
It was fantastic.
People spirits -- -- I'm not quite sure what to call them all the words sound a little goofy.
Embraced me and we're so filled with love and joy.
And they were people that I had known for an eternity.
And they had not made for an eternity and we were so happy to see each other.
And they were.
Clearly there to help me go down this -- That protect me.
And that it was wonderful they.
Where God's love and grace.
-- they took me down this path that was so beautiful that.
I have really no words to describe it.
And time and space had a different sense and so I could rejoice with them.
I could look back get their river bank.
And see my body being pulled to the shore.
And seeing CPR.
And I look back on my body and sort of felt filed late toward it but here is served me well and it was then that I a truly realize that I must actually.
Well -- do you as a doctor.
Have a medical explanation for any of that.
Where medicine and Scott begins.
That's the real answer.
Because this was not a dream or hallucination.
And it wasn't the result of a dying brain.
This was more real.
Then any thing we experienced turner and and IA -- now having been through it.
Do you have any fear of your own death.
Oh absolutely not I wouldn't hasten that but I a am looking -- -- back.
When that's the right time.
While I have no fear.
Doctor Mary -- it's an incredible story and we're so grateful that you came on to share with us I do want to ask you for a -- go quickly.
He say one of that one of the questions that you feel you can answer in the book is white and why did bad things happen to good people can you leave us with his thoughts on that.
I would tell you that there's no such thing as something that's bad as a one very quick example you called this a horrific accident.
I look at it with incredible gratitude enjoy.
And it we may not understand.
How a quote bad thing.
Transitions into a beautiful thing.
But I think when you truly have trust that that beauty exists.
We can look and that's -- -- I always retrospectively.
But we can almost always look back at some thing.
And see all of the incredibly positive and beautiful things that have come out of something that.
Where it originally be called tragic death.
Even my back as far as the death of Christ and we celebrate it got to leave it that budget -- thank you so much the book is called to -- and back and we'll be right back.
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