Being in a coma is a serious condition and can have long-lasting effects.
Every year, a great number of car crashes, failed suicide attempts and drowning incidents (just to name a few) leave adults and children in a state of comatose. They become unable to move and speak, but somewhere deep inside their consciousness, a spark of life still lingers.
In this article, 16 people who have been in a coma share their stories:
[Sources can be found at the end of the article]
1/16. I was in a car accident at 18 and in a coma for three months. A couple of weird things happened. First I was fully aware of everything for a couple of days before actually waking up. I couldn't open my eyes or move or talk but I heard and felt everything. It was terrifying because I honestly thought it would last forever. After two days of this I fell asleep and [cut] when I woke up I was fully conscious and never more relieved in my life. I thought at first that I had just slept for three months but after a couple weeks of being out of the coma I started having the weirdest most vivid recurring dreams and flashbacks of literally being another person.
I had never experienced anything like this before the coma. I had never had a recurring dream in my life but since the coma I've had the same four or five dreams hundreds of times and in each one I'm the same person but not me. They are freaky and I always wake up panicked and often find that I'm sleep walking as well and that also never happened before the coma. I'm pretty convinced that during the coma I lived some other life in a super long and intense dream, it's the only explanation I can come up with.
2/16. I was in a coma for three weeks nearly three years ago, nearly dying several times from double pneumonia and a strain of flu that was killing younger, healthy people.
I remember precisely nothing. Little flashes of faces and pieces of dialogue, maybe. Everything I know about that period was told to me by my parents, boyfriend at the time, and doctors and nurses. Maybe some people can hear what's going on around them while they're in a comatose state, but I wasn't one of them.
When I awoke, I wasn't confused or anything. I recognized that I was in a hospital room, and I remembered being in the ER weeks before - it was the last thing I remembered. I thought maybe I'd been there a couple of days and had just slept off the worst of it. Then I saw the dry-erase board on the wall in front of me where someone had thoughtfully written the date.
My first thought was "I am so fired."
My second thought was "Um, I can't move."
My third thought was "I can't talk? WHAT IS THIS THING IN MY THROAT GET IT OUT GET IT OUT GET IT OUT"
Turns out the coma is the GOOD part. The recovery afterward - learning to walk again because your muscles have atrophied, waiting for your voice to come back because you've been intubated all this time, trying to pee without help, and trying really hard not to get depressed - is the worst part.
3/16. I was in a coma last year (I'm 17 now). I was in for 7 months after I decided it was a good idea to jump off my roof. I remember one thing from my coma, I was having a weird dream that I had traveled to the USA and got mugged. After 7 months I remember waking up and thinking I had for some reason took a nap in the hospital. The nurse came in and saw me awake and freaked out. She immediately called my mom. My mom rushed to the hospital. She then told me it had been 7 months since I had been awake. I looked like I was wasted right after she told me that. Now I feel a lot better.