To the Grave and Back ...?

We all have questions that we continually ask ourselves as we go through life.  Many of these questions are hard, or even impossible to answer. I myself have always asked myself the same question over and over.  Although the answer to this question does not worry me, I always think that it would be cool if i indeed did know the answer.

What happens to us after we die?

I never thought that anyone could answer this question.  I mean it seems impossible.  How can somebody die, and then come back and tell the world how it was.  When you die there is no coming back because well ... its death.

I am an avid soccer fan and although that may seem irrelevant to this blog entry, last year an event happened that could possibly answer my question.

During an FA Cup match on March 17th of last year, Fabrice Muamba, a soccer player for Bolton FC in England, collapsed on the pitch after going into cardiac arrest.

The game was stopped, and medical attention was immediately on site to try and help Muamba.  According to Bolton team doctor Jonathan Tobin, Muamba stopped breathing and was 'technically dead' for 48 minutes until he arrived at the hospital.  After another 30 minutes, and over 15 shocks from a defibrillator, Muamba finally started breathing again.

In the end Muamba was 'dead in time' according to his team of doctors for an astonishing 78 minutes.  Call it a miracle?  Muamba was lucky enough to not have any sort of brain damage, and although has since retired from professional soccer, he now lives an average life with his wife and son.

But back to my question, Muamba was technically dead for 78 minutes.  I am happy that Muamba has recovered back to full health, and has put this horrible day behind him, however I wish I could ask him what it was like being dead.  Did he see the light? Maybe he saw nothing. Only Muamba himself knows the answer to these questions. 

But in the end this event although as horrible as it was did make me realize that sometimes not all of our seemingly unanswerable questions are actually unanswerable.   


This is something that has always interested me as well, im a soccer fan and have played my whole life, while i dont watch it that much i still enjoy it when its on. BUt i remember seeing this and thinking the same thing. I want to go up to him and ask him what happened, like how he felt during the whole thing, or maybe he wont remember because it will be just as though he passed out for that period of time, and then woke back up. I would also like to know how he felt right after he started breathing again... was it like waking up from a nap, or was it like taking your first breath of air after being under the water too long. I also want to know why to doctors did not declare him dead? Since he was not breathing for so long i guess they could still feel his heart so maybe he was never actually dead? Either way i completely agree with you that this question is unanswerable.

This is so crazy! Liam brought up a good point when he mentioned that he was surprised the doctors didn't declare him dead. I looked into what it means to be clinically dead and it's basically when your heart stops beating. Maybe what happened with Muamba was that either he only stopped breathing, or his heart stopped but not long enough for all of his vital organs to shut down. Nick, you said that there was a defibrillator on the scene, so I'm sure that was largely responsible for keeping him alive and jumpstarting his heart at the hospital.

That is crazy that someone can be pronounced dead and then alive again. It would be cool to see if they could remember what it was like to be pronounced dead and then alive again. I have heard it on the news a few times that someone died on the surgery table and then woke up again alive. I wonder why this occurs. It would be cool to figure out the reason. I found this article of a little boy that was pronounced dead and then alive again which was pretty interesting. This story is actually kind of crazy and a little disturbing because it was a little boy who was pronounced dead, sat up in his coffin and talked, and then died again. Crazy! I wonder how this happens!

I remember hearing about this story on the news. It is scary to think just how quickly death can come over us and even scarier to think of how what we think is the end, might not be just that. I looked into other stories involving people who had similar experiences when I came across this story of a boy in a car accident who was pronounced brain dead and his parents were asked to look into donating his organs. His parents instead insisted that he would recover and he actually did. Some may say this is a miracle, but as your article explains... maybe this is not just an isolated experience.

I find it very interesting to see that there are people who have faced death head on, yet have still lived to tell their stories of this dark time.

I'd really like to know what Muamba had to say! We all for the most part know the different causes and bodily functions of death, but what about after death? No one really knows for sure, And it would be awesome to know what he had to say about it.

I found this really interesting because it brings up so many ethical questions. Carolyn mentioned what it means to be clinically dead in her comment. With the caliber of medical treatment we have today, doctors can keep people alive even after critical body systems shut down. Events like the Muamba story and even older cases like the Terri Schiavo case raise questions about the definition of "alive". My sociology professor brought up this topic in class last year and I always think back to that discussion everytime a new case comes up in the news. When it comes to ethics and what it means to be dead or alive, I think only time will tell.

Im glad that most of you who commented on this post found Muamba's situation very interesting. It is very unique and not something that we see every day.

The one thing that we are all wondering is what does Muamba have to say about his experiences being 'dead'. Caitlin I did not know that there were other cases, such as Terri Schiavo. Although these experiences may have been horrific to the people they happened to, I hope one day they could speak up about it. Maybe you should think about doing a blog entry on Terri's experience, and how it relates to Muamba's. What were the similarities, what were the differences, ect.

Also if anyone else has an 'unanswerable question' such as this one that somehow is actually answerable, and wants to explain it through a blog post, i would be very interested in reading that.

Nick, thank you for blogging something like this. It really makes someone think about things that really are unanswerable. Although people may ask why you would think about such a thing, especially because it is unanswerable, I believe it is something that almost every person thinks about quite frequently. It is scary to think about what happens after you die. Is there life after death or are you really in the sky looking down on your loved ones? Is there a heaven and a hell? Asking Muamba questions like that may answer some things, therefore, if you ever find out a way to go talk to him, hit me up, I would like to go with you.

Leave a comment

Subscribe to receive notifications of follow up comments via email.
We are processing your request. If you don't see any confirmation within 30 seconds, please reload your page.

Search This Blog

Full Text  Tag

Recent Entries

Alcohol and Energy Drinks
We've all heard of Four Lokos (or "blackout in a can") and the drama surrounding them when they first came…
It isn't up to the Keratin
Many girls who have naturally curly, wavy, or frizzy hair have started looking into getting keratin treatments at their local…
It isn't up to the Keratin
Many girls who have naturally curly, wavy, or frizzy hair have started looking into getting keratin treatments at their local…

Old Contributions