In 2008, I wrote a story on my old blogger site about some true, personal ghostly adventures I had, when I was a child. I thought it would be fun to revisit it again and share it with you, especially with Halloween just around the corner. So, here goes . . . hope you enjoy:
My timing is off. I probably should be writing this in October at Halloween time. But I wanted to share some personal stories from spending time at my grandmother’s.
We just watched a movie tonight on the Hallmark channel called, “The Good Witch” starring Catherine Bell and it reminded me of the magic and mystery of things unseen. I believe there’s energy in everything and we’re connected to it. Sometimes, we can’t explain it in logical terms but it happens nonetheless.
I grew up having a grandmother that had that type of mystery about her. She intuitively knew things other people didn’t pick up on but it was no big deal to her. But my sister and I, and 5 cousins, grew familiar with the unusual happenings that would occur now and then, as we all spent each summer together with my grandmother and grandfather in a small town in Virginia.
My mother, the eldest of my grandmother’s children, told us of spooky things that happened in that same house when she was a child. So, it’s no wonder the same things would continue for the next generation to take claim of and pass along.
I don’t think the house was haunted. It was mostly its geographical setting enhanced by the fact that Grandma was psychic.
Their backyard was connected to a funeral home and Grandpa’s tool shed and a small storage building that belonged to the funeral home separated the yards.
From our side, it looked like the small storage building was built with clapboard wood and had a window with drawn blinds. There was also some sort of door with an ivory door handle and a key hole.
We always tried to peek inside to see if we could see anything. This was mostly where they stored caskets but I think, at one time, it also was where they used to prepare the bodies. Given all that drama and children’s imaginations you can believe we scared ourselves to death.
On top of that, Grandma had her stories about people she loved who had died and we saw how comfortable she was in being in tune with them from the other side.
There were times we’d hear a loud noise or, out-of-the-blue, something would drop and that’s when Grandma would make her declaration: “There’s going to be a death in the family.” You never knew what would trigger it. To her, it was second nature – peaceful and surreal – not creepy, like it felt to us. It added more fuel to an already over-worked imagination.
Sure enough, we would always get that phone call in the wee hours of the morning about a distant aunt or uncle that had died. (For another story that I wrote about my grandmother that includes more ghostly adventures see, That Special Someone.)
I remember one night. Everyone was out in the living room watching TV and I went into the kitchen to get something from the refrigerator and I heard the back screen door slam. I called for Grandma (because I wasn’t going out there alone). She and I went out, through a porch-type addition, to the back door with me stuck close by her side. She unlocked the heavy door and checked the screen door and it was hooked. Ugh (I thought) – here it comes. She made her declaration and we got another phone call that night.
Because we couldn’t sleep most nights, we would stay up and sit on the floor under the front bedroom window, where the street light would shine, and play cards. After Grandma and Grandpa went to sleep, we would sneak downstairs in the dark to the kitchen to get something to eat.
My grandmother had a large oval picture, with a gilded frame, hanging on the front wall in the living room, as you came down the stairs. It was a sepia picture of her 2-year old son, Billy Bob, who had died of pneumonia and appeared to just be lying sound asleep.
Actually, in that picture, he was dead but as a child he looked peaceful and sweet. You never noticed the picture, at other times, until you came down the stairs in the dark and then it seemed to illuminate. That was enough to move us swiftly right along to the kitchen.
Night after night, throughout the whole summer you would find us sitting up whispering and playing cards until daybreak. One night, as usual, we were down in the kitchen. I guess we were talking a little loud, telling each other spooky stories and giving gory descriptions of the food as we ate it. All of a sudden, the lights went out and we took off running in different directions. Then, we heard Grandma, as she flipped the breaker switch and the lights came back on. She had her ways to get us all back upstairs and in bed.
I miss her dearly and feel her spirit with me every day. She talked of loved ones and spirits and of a world that was not foreign to her. Because of her and these experiences, it opened the spiritual world up to me, early on, and influenced a strong faith in a higher power that I carry with me today.
Are there ghosts? I believe there are souls, who for some reason, at their death are unable to cross over and are caught between worlds. I also believe our loved ones and animals that have died come to visit. Some people are open to see them but most are not. We’re now living in an age where more of us are exploring this phenomenon. We’re no longer burning these gifted souls to the stake instead we’re intrigued and asking questions.
What are your thoughts on this? Have you ever had a strange experience you couldn’t explain? Given the saturation of the teachings of spirituality and energy, it would be interesting to hear more discussion on this as people become more free to accept our connection to everything.
Pat from the ol’ kitchen table