OK, I'm going to tell you exactly what happened. I came back to life.
I'm prepping you for the take off—the journey home.
So, fasten your seat belt,
sit up straight,
stow away your personal belongings,
ensure all electronic devices are switched off.
What I've noticed these past forty-nine years is that life is goddamn messy. I need to get real here. How would you feel, knowing you were the one that ended the love of your life?
Lazlo. He will forever be my one true love. I forced him off the edge of a cliff for Heaven's sake. I'm not proud of it. It's unfathomable really. The one man I thought was my soul mate decides to become a saint. He sacrificed himself for me. Talk about having the last word!
What I noticed following my near-death experience was that I wasn't looking up. I didn't see the signs. I was too busy looking down, drowning in the weight of my own story.
The twelve months that followed my one-minute journey in Heaven revealed that all of us have the power to create Heaven on earth.
The moment has arrived to reach up.
I'd spent one minute in Heaven and was guided to an eternity of miracles. God presented me with a stairway into my soul— a climb toward peace.
~ One Minute in Heaven
Chapter 1: Defibrillated
This is your time to live, Lil, so make it the life you've always imagined.
Lazlo's final words pierced my side like a hot blade. Scarring. They seeped deep into my soul. Imagine? I don't want to imagine a life without him.
The fluorescent lights above my hospital bed hummed. A bitter wintry hail pummeled the glass. I cradled my hands in my face. Tears were streaming down my chin, my head was spinning, my heart was searching.
Where do I go from here?
Can I do this on my own?
How do I find the courage to be who he wanted me to be?
Everything in my body ached. My doctor said I was lucky to be alive—apparently, someone up there was fond of me. The rental car was totaled beyond recognition. A sporty FIAT. It took Fire and Rescue three hours to pull me out of that carnage.
I peered over my shoulder. My body was hooked up to tubes of varying shapes and sizes. A clear liquid dripped into my veins, my insides twisting with heat. I glanced down, gulping in horror at the sight of my scarred body. Look at me. I'm a goddamn mess.
I couldn't sleep. I was afraid of closing my eyes. Fearful of what I might see. I glanced out the frosted window. My expression chilled. A weighty silence in the room. Deafening. I was haunted by Lazlo's final act. His sacrifice. The push up. His words enduring.
“Reach up, Lil—”
“Reach up, you're almost there.”
The day was grey. Streams of hail battered the window ledge like angry bullets. The sheets of my hospital bed scratched like sandpaper. A car backfired in the street. I shuddered, my heart racing with a loneliness of loss. Scenes of Lazlo stretched out on the edge of a cliff made my soul ache.
I gasped, my teeth chattering with the incessant pelting of hail. I couldn't dodge the vision; two paramedics pounding on his chest—attempting to defibrillate and revive his soulless shell. Hopeless. I shook my head in defeat, hoping to steer away the pain.
The scene bored into my mind like a drill. Will I ever be free of it?
Grief. Forever engrained in my soul. My insides twisted with fear. Inconceivable. I refused to gaze into a mirror—afraid of what I might see. I glanced down, my knuckles white with frustration.
God, what have I done?
Was my life more important than his?