Among the most difficult things to tell normal, rational people about yourself is that you believe there might be ghosts. Reactions can range from a mild grunt or raised eyebrow up to and including something approaching insane laughter followed by the statement “Are you nuts?”. I usually handle the latter reaction by asking if that person believes in God. Think about that, if you are a Christian, you believe that a man was made God, and the belief in ghosts is not that big a stretch. This, however, is not a post about religion or Christian belief. It is a post about some odd things that I’ve experienced that have no explanation other than the paranormal.
My Mother was a believer. She experienced something that cemented her life long conviction that there really are things that go bump in the night. She claimed that she knew when her Dad died because his spirit came to our home to say goodbye. This was not an experience that I was raised with. She was around 21 at the time, and she didn’t have a strong ego, so when she shared her tale with other adults she was laughed at. It caused her to keep her experience to herself. She never told me until I shared an experience I had when I was in my late 20’s. The conversation took place in 2006 shortly before her death.
My Dad received the call regarding his father-in-law’s death at work. We hadn’t been able to afford a telephone yet, so it fell to him to inform her. Shortly before he died, when the subject came up between us, he did admit that she knew before he told her and he couldn’t see any way for that to have occured. He still wouldn’t admit that she had a supernatural experience, but he did allow that something strange had happened. I never did tell him about my experience.
My first apartment as a married lady was in an old victorian house that I believed was built by a doctor. Evidence we found indicated that a portion of one side of the house might have been a hospital of some sort. We did rental management for the owner and had access to all parts of the building. In the basement there were old glass x-rays and jars of dessicated body parts. They were mostly the product of appendectomies and were marked on the outside with the name of the former owner.
Our living room, which was in the hospital section, had a window that we couldn’t keep closed. In these old homes that were renovated into apartments there was usually a lack of any real maintenance. Each successive owner simply created new apartments where none had existed before without paying any attention to the existing work necessary. In that case, normally the problem would be that you couldn’t keep windows open or in some cases be able to open them at all. These were the old fashioned windows that worked on weighted ropes that allowed one to open a window and keep it open. If the rope was broken, the window wouldn’t stay open. If the rope was too tight, the window would open at unusual times, which is what we thought was happening. To cure the problem we replaced the lock on it. After that, when we found the window open, we just assumed we forgot to lock it. It never occured to us that anything else was going on.
After we moved on, the owner sold the home to a friend of ours who had it in mind to renovate it to make larger more upscale apartments. I was at work one day when this friend came rushing into my office exhibiting some signs of distress. Having been in our apartment numerous times and witnessed the window opening, he was well aware of which window it was. When he and his crew removed the casings around that window in preparation to taking it out, they discovered there were no ropes there at all. Not only should that window never have opened on it’s own, it never should have stayed open without some type of brace.
In my mind, both of these experiences defy logical explanation. I can’t honestly say that I’ve ever seen a human ghost. I have seen someone that a friend claimed was the ghost of her grandfather. This past Mother’s Day I saw a cat of mine that is no longer alive sitting in her favorite spot looking out the window and watching the world go by. Yesterday I experienced a cat brushing against my ankle and the feel of it’s tail against my thigh as it walked under the dinette chair I was seated on. This happened to me in an apartment where no living cat exists. The client owns a small dog, not a cat. The dog was in it’s hiding place in the livingroom when this occured.
Do ghosts really exist? I honestly don’t know. What I do know is that there is more to our world than we understand. Until someone finds proof, I intend on approaching the subject with a healthy dose of skepticism yet not enough of it to close my mind to possibilities. With the interest today in television programs like Ghosthunters, one thing I know for sure is that I’m not alone in my curiosity. Who knows? The next time I threaten my kids with coming back to haunt them, I just might be telling the truth.