Have you ever wondered about what being in a coma would be like? Probably, because most humans are terrified of not being alive, and slipping into a coma is maybe the closest thing to being dead that we can imagine. And if you’re one of those people who is actively terrified of death, then it’s likely that you’ve even googled “what does it feel like to be in a coma” only to be met with so many results that looking through more than two might just give you another panic attack you weren’t looking for.
Don’t worry! You never have to search out your darkest fear — oblivion — again, because a new thread on Ask Reddit has the low-down on exactly what it’s like to be completely unconscious (that’s what we’re calling it to make it less scary, okay?) for an extended period of time with no guarantee that you’ll ever come back. (Actually, that doesn’t make it sound any more cheerful, does it?)
Here’s the good news: Being in a coma seems to be fairly pleasant, if not eventful. The bad news? No one’s seeing tunnels of light or chilling with the grandparents they wish they’d spent more time with until someone says that it’s time to go back and get out of bed.
Take this story of a medically-induced coma, for instance:
I was in a medically induced for 2 weeks and I had no perception of time. I was in an accident, put into the coma by doctors, then awoke on a later date. The drugs gave me crazy dreams for the next month in the hospital but I have no memory of anything during the time I was in the coma.
Or this one, in which someone reveals that you don’t feel anything when you’re out, but that memories are still formed:
I was in a coma for a week after surgery. To me it was instant. The odd part. My mom talked to me while I was in the coma and I remember the things she said. She talked about raising me, the funny things I did, etc.When my mom passed away in 2007, she fell asleep first. We knew she wouldn’t wake up again. So I talked to her about how amazing she was as a mom. I talked for hours until she took her last breath. I hope she heard me. I wasn’t always a good son.
Of course, some people have very vivid dreams:
My dad was in and out of a coma for about eighteen months. He had a ‘dream’ of being a Chinese watchmaker in an 18th Century fishing town, which was extremely long and complex. The memories from his ‘dream’ are so vivid and span such a large amount of time that he thinks it was actually him revisiting a past life.
But even if there aren’t dreams, it’s apparently not so bad if you’re someone who enjoys naps:
I was in a coma after a big head concussion resulted from a car accident. It’s no different than being asleep, the only difference is that you wake up thirsty like you’ve never been before and for some reason I couldn’t drink any water and I was only allowed to suck a clean wet sponge to “calm” my thirst. I was in a coma for 2 days which isn’t too long but as I said before: it isn’t any different than taking a long nap.
And it might be an especially nice vacation for anyone who’s ever dreamed of messing some stuff up and/or punching a medical professional:
I was in a coma for four or five days. I woke up two days into it and pulled out my vent and feeding tube and punched a nurse. I don’t remember that at all. Then when I came out again I was in the process of trying to punch a different nurse. Then I realized where I was and calmed down. Last thing I remember was getting put onto a helicopter. Then I woke up. No in between.
Who’s gonna check you for that? You were out! You can’t be held responsible.