I’m sharing these experiences with you –not to clarify them for myself, but to help you understand a paranormal experience. I hope you’ve had one, if not maybe sharing mine with you can help. I want to start out by telling you something someone once told me;
“The Dead can’t hurt you, only the Living!”
The feeling of another’s being -is not actually the act of them standing next to you but the sense of their presence. It can be when you’re alone or in a crowed room. Can the person standing next to you feel it too? Maybe –but probably not. Many people doubt the ability to have this sense. Sometimes you may doubt it yourself –therefore deny things you’ve felt or seen -to others.
In these experiences –I use thoughts and quotes from the book, -Relax, it’s only a Ghost- written by Echo Bodine. This is a must read book if you have experienced paranormal activity or are just an avid reader of “Things that go Bump in the Night.” This is one of my favorite books second to Haunted Places, where throughout the United States –places in every state are listed where a haunting has occurred.
The Paranormal comes in many different ways to the people who have the gift. In my instance, it comes as seeing person’s who have passed on –in several cases, even knowing it about to happen. My experiences have mostly been with loved ones. I’m about to share with you to date, most of my memorable paranormal experiences.
Knowing death as a child is very hard. I believe that if you teach your children at a young age what death is -that it can help them deal with it in their adult lives. Yes, it was a very scary thing to me when I was a young child but now I realize that it was a gift. My first death experience was of my grandmother. I saw her lying very still –sleeping peacefully in a large wooden bed. It was not explained to me exactly what her situation was, only that she was with her maker now and not in any pain. I want to also add –that one of the hardest things I had to deal with –not understanding, was that –one, they were put into the ground and two, that I would never see them again. Or would I?
I now know my gift started when my grandfather whom I knew as my “Dad” was very sick with cancer. At the age of 8, I was so naive about the dying process. The evening he passed, I knew he would and told others. It did take place. My family went to the hospital and came home with the news. After the mortuary took care of the arrangements –we were called to come to a “viewing”. My family and I went and I walked into the same room where I saw my grandmother. There lay my father, in a familiar looking bed, again very still and peaceful. My Grandmother told me that this would be my last chance to say goodbye and that I should kiss him. I walked over to the casket and being just the height to reach his cheek –leaned in and my lips met his cheek. He was Very Cold and his skin was very firm. I was so afraid that I ran out of the room and was not able to look at him again. For many years following, I would call that the “Haunted Kiss”.
My bedroom in our home was located at the end of a long hallway. I started seeing half of his body coming down it many nights –turning into years. At first I was petrified. I would cover my head with my blankets hoping that when I took them off –he would be gone. I couldn’t understand why he would want to scare me –hurt me. He was my hero, my best friend and a wonderful father. I went as far as to shut my door knowing that I could not see this vision of my imagination. I mean –this was a Half Body. I just couldn’t understand. It has taken years of paranormal reading that finally made me realize that it truly was him, that I was a believer –and to be a believer means it was real.
From “Relax” –Echo comments –“Also common, and a little eerie is that they [ghosts] will sometimes only appear from the waist up or as just a head! This is because their energy is low and that’s all they are able to manifest. It doesn’t mean they’re not all there –it just means that’s as visible as they can make themselves at that time.” (Please keep this next comment in mind as you read the rest of my experiences) “As time passes, they will build up their energy and be able to appear in full form.”
The troubling thing was that when I told my grandmother about these visions, she passed them off as last seeing him last, in the casket –thus half of the body. All I hoped for was for time to pass and someday to see him in full form. I came to trust that vision and depend on seeing it, knowing he was there to watch over me. Another way I knew he was there –was his smell. Now I know you think that’s weird but my father had a certain smell (maybe a combination of cigarette smoke and after-shave) and more than not, I could smell his scent very well. This carried me through to my next memory.
An encounter I had during High School leaned more toward my passion to become a mortician rather than a paranormal experience. A close friend of mine drowned and I was not going to go to the funeral because of what I called my other “Bad Death’s” I’d experienced. I refer to them as bad because I had not been properly prepared for the real meaning of Death. My friends were going to the viewing of his body and asked me to come along. I agreed and there AGAIN I stood in the room where both my grandmother and father had been viewed in. When my friend’s body was found –it had been submerged in the water for days. As he lay there so peaceful, the makeup and preparation of the body that was done -amazed me. He looked as though he was napping after a class. This made me realize that I need to study more about death.
My next experience was with my brother-in-law. He passed 10 years after my father did so I was in my late teens. He and I were never very close and a lot of my least memorable life occurred after my father died, -with him. He too, had his viewing in the same room but that is not were my experience happened yet I wanted to mention this because the mortuary always used that same small room, which the mortuary itself was small –as was the town at that time. (Weird fact!) My niece and I were in the line to pay our last respects and we both went up to the casket together. When we looked down at him, his eyes opened and he looked right at us. We both freaked out and darted out of the chapel. Of course –no one believed us since they had sown his eyelids shut. But at least with this experience, I shared with someone else. I guess it was at that point that I realized that he was trying to control me in death. Echo writes, -“Every one of us has to discover our own power at some point in our soul’s development and stop giving it away to others. It’s part of setting ourselves free.”
Continuing she writes, -“The difference between a ghost and a spirit is very simple. They are both souls that are no longer living in a body, but a ghost is a soul that has remained on earth, and a spirit is a soul that has moved on to the other side and has begun a new life there. A spirit can come to this side to visit, but it will return home; spirits are not stuck here on Earth. Ghosts are.”
Throughout many years, I had experiences of feelings, like a guardian angel or something was near me. I knew I never had to fear this anymore but build my powers on it. I could always feel when there was that “presence “ with me. Maybe knowing whom it was or not. I usually didn’t tell anyone of my paranormal gift. I wasn’t ashamed of it, it is just so many aren’t believers and they really do think you’re kind of kooky. This wasn’t a good thing with myself being diagnosed with Bi-Polar Disorder. (Manic Depressive)
My Husband and I attended a Special Church prayer event in our lives. We were sitting in a large room with mirrors covering the room. He and I were the only one’s in the room. I was looking around, looking in the mirrors –thinking of how they went on forever. He was sitting on my left and the other gentleman was sitting on my right. WAIT, WHAT OTHER GENTLEMAN? It was my father. He was letting me know he was there for me –dressed in white and a Whole body. He had enough energy to present himself as whole. And what a delight that was. He was that spirit that had moved on but was still there for me. I walked away from that event, finally putting all the pieces of the puzzle together –making the whole picture fit, Finally!
If I began here to write every tidbit of paranormal that has formed shape in my life, I could probably write a novel, but since this is a short story of memorable experiences I want to stick to my most important ones. My 3rd son was born with a birth defect to his heart. I know that my father was the one who guided me and held my son to be alive today. With as much pain as a manic-depressive goes through –I have no other explanation. And here’s why: Several Years after my son was born, I had issues with my life. I wasn’t sure if I really could go on. I decided after several beers that I should be over –the pain, my life. So with a hand full of pills, I did it. It would finally be over. Still to this day, I honestly don’t know if he was there to tell me to stay or to come with him, but I truly believe that he must have meant for me to stay. Before the pills took affect, there stood my father before me in the doorway to my room, holding my cat that had died a few months prior. Such a peace came over me. I knew that no matter what –I would be okay. Years later as I write this, you can see they turned out the way they were meant to.
Christmas Eve one year, the nursing home where my grandmother lived called and told us that she had passed away. She had been very sick with arthritis and Parkinson’s Disease. Her frail tiny body just couldn’t keep up any longer. Long after the funeral, I could always sense she was in the room with me, because I would smell carnations. Although allergic to many flowers –that was always her favorite. Well you can tell by this time, I have quite a few “angels among me”. I was honored to know the mortician at this time, and was able to come in after she was embalmed and do the “final touches”. I dressed her, did her hair and makeup. This is more that most people think, as you have to have the makeup just right and have the care not to use too much. Some think it’s creepy but that is why I would like to be in this field of work.
Growing up, I could always confide in one of my Aunts. She and I would spend many weekends together since she’d never married and my father had passed away. I told her about all the experiences I’d had with our departed relatives and she seemed to always enjoy me telling them to her. We would always joke about her coming back to tell me she was okay when she passed away. At the end of her life, she too had to live in a nursing home because she was too sick to care for herself and maybe had some Alzheimer’s too. I spent the whole day with her –the day she passed away. A strange thing (at the time) was all day she wanting to take off her gown. She wanted to be free of material things –even her nourishment, she really didn’t want to eat and when she did –it came back up. Her bodily functions were pretty much shut down and her skin color was paling. At about 7pm –she was in and out of conciseness, her speech was incoherent and rambling. She really didn’t recognize any of us in the room. But at the last moments, she started talking very clear –to her mother. She was the one I’d experienced my first death with. I felt her feet and legs –cold and no pulse. My uncle had never seen the death process and was very confused. My Grandmother was there to greet her to her life passing over. I felt the presence of many coming for her. The room was very cold and I knew then that I must tell her body and soul together for the last time, -I loved her very much. I called her name –“I love you”. She looked into my eyes and smiled –and with that, she was gone. At that moment, her skin colored quickly yellowed and the room felt warm again. Most importantly, the room was radiant with love.
Dealing a lot with the Hospice program, I have noted that many –especially elderly, seem to have the tendency to be rid of material things. It could be they try to give their belongings away, “take their clothes off” –sometimes even to go as far as to not have you there with them when they pass on. There are signs you must look for; lost interest in hobbies, TV shows and things around you. The final days show a lot of sleeping or in some cases, very much alert. The skin starts paling and their breath is fowl smelling. Often when the organs start to shut down, the person becomes more incontinent. Nights can bring what’s called, “Death Rattles” or chest fluids building up. In remembering “death” -I can recall many of these things but not as well as when my father-in-law passed on.
We moved my husband’s parents onto our land with a small modular home. This way we could take care of them but they also could keep their independence. We knew the time was short for “Dad”. He was starting to show the final signs when we got them moved in comfortably. His last two days –he too knew he was dying. He would tell us and to not make such a fuss over him. His rattles were bad the night before and I was sure we would loose him that night. But we were able to make him comfortable that night. The next day –the day he passed, he didn’t want to eat. He wanted to lay down and sleep all day, but I wouldn’t let him –knowing it would be harder for him to breathe. When the evening came, I just wanted to make him as comfortable as he could get. I requested that he sleep in his recliner to better help his breathing. Nen (whom I called his mother) said she would also sleep in hers next to him. I made sure they were set for the night. I then went back to our house. I remembered that I had a load of their laundry in the dryer and that I better get their bedding back onto their bed for morning. So I got the sheets out of the dryer and went back over to their house. I went in the door where both of the recliners sat. They seemed to be both sleeping soundly. I went in and made their bed. I’d say it was no more than 3 minutes. When I came out to leave –death had already made its visit. (I still wonder if he wanted me there-aware of him dying –or was trying to wait till I was gone!) It was if the world had stood still. As I leaned down to wipe a last drop of saliva from his mouth –I held his hand, trying to feel his soul. I knew then, that his body was not his vehicle any more. But there again –I could feel the love so strong. I didn’t cry because I’d lost this precious man –I cried because I had to wake up the woman he loved for almost 60 years to tell her she’d lost him. That Bond –that love they held could never be measured by years past, but by years to come.
Days and weeks passed. Nen never cried either. I wondered why at times but I found out she too had a paranormal gift. She told me every night that she could feel him lay down beside her in the bed. After my experience with him, I knew she was telling me the truth. I was bringing laundry back again another night and looked in their kitchen window. I saw “her” sitting at the table in the dark. I was going to knock on the window to let her know I was coming and at closer glance –it wasn’t her sitting there, it was “Dad”. Another night we were doing things at her table and she and I turned around and there “Dad” was –looking for something with a flashlight out on the porch. Many other things just like this happened to her and I. One afternoon when she was visiting our house, I asked her, “Nen, when you die –will you come back and be with me too?” Her response was, “My mama was an imp with me so it would only be fair I too be your guardian angel”.
See –“Dad” wanted to always be with Nen so he chose to be a “Ghost”. I don’t think he planned on leaving until he could take his Nen with him. Less than 2 years later –I had to go through the same process with her –with the exception that she became terminally ill very quickly and passed on just as fast. I’m not sure if her sleep at the last was medication induced or in a coma –what I would like to call at this stage, a “Transition period”. She never really woke up before she died so I never really got a chance to say good bye but I should have remembered I wouldn’t have to.
The night before she passed away, she came to the side of my bed –shook me, calling my name. Still half asleep I woke to see her for a moment to ask her what was the matter. She was gone. I was able to help get her dressed and some last minute hair and makeup. This was very fulfilling to me.
The next time I saw her –was at least 2 months after her death. She walked from our back door to the front. My husband and I both saw her. It was a neat experience. She didn’t look our way –but was just passing through, making sure the house was in order, I suppose. She wore a certain powder that I kept after her death. One night my son came walking into the house and I smelled the powder strong. I asked him if he’d used any powder from my bathroom. His reply was yea, right! But we all smelled it and knew she was with us. The last time her presence was felt was by my son. He was on his bed -on his stomach doing his homework. His door was closed. We have many animals. When he felt movement at the end of his bed like someone had sat down or an animal had gotten up –he turned and looked and there was no one there or no animals in his room. There was though –an indentation at the end of his bed. He tried not to “freak out” and came out and told us of his experience. She is with him a lot. She gave him her car and after 2 years –he can still get a drift of her powder. Yep –she is with him! But mostly I think she just is the “spirit” that comes to check in on us –and has no desire to be a “ghost” because she loves being with her husband again –forever. Hey –what is time to the deceased?
My last “real” ghost adventure I’ve had to date (not counting small, inconsequential happenings) was our “Ghost hunting” trip we took the summer of 2000. Our first stop for paranormal experiences was Rachel Nevada –the UFO capital of the world. It was summer, hot and dry and not the accommodations we’d expected so we moved on. Our next stop was the high light of the trip. The tour of the Winchester Mystery House, San Jose California. It’s in the middle of downtown and many freeways and interstates exchanges. So if you plan to go, DON’T GET LOST ! -Especially in this house! Sara Winchester’s Husband bought a bankrupt company and because famous with the Winchester Rifle. When he died –Sara’s Psychic told her that as long as she built –that the ghosts that were killed by the rifle wouldn’t harm her. So with her thousands of dollars she received from making the rifle, she built. It was told that she never slept in the same room two nights in a row. She escaped the ghosts by confusing them with fake doors, stairs that led to nowhere, secret rooms –Did I say secret rooms? Well one of her secret rooms was right behind her séance room. During the tour, our guide took us into this room. We lagged behind the group as I felt something –a cold chill, eerie. So I snapped a photo. (I thought about this all the way home.) We continued our tour and I took several pictures including one of the room where is passed away –hoping to get a photo. It would be a delight to return and visit her again. I’ll finish on this soon.
We traveled next to Alcatraz Island. Wear your walking shoes –as the ferry gets you over to the island but you have to walk up long hills to get to the prison itself. It sits atop the island. This was August –yet it was quite cold, so you could imagine what winter was like for the inmates. I didn’t feel any presence during my tour. It’s said that you can hear music, cell’s clanging and voices at night. The island itself isn’t open to visitors at night. To start your tour, you are given a cassette tape player and head phones. This guides you on the tour at your own pace. You can stop the tape at any point to read -say information about an inmate or just to sit and relax. (And this is something you’ll want to do occasionally!) At the end of the tour of the prison itself, you can wander and look at the exercise court, morgue or memorabilia stores. It is worth your time to visit, and you can see why ghosts still walk the prison.
Our next stop was in Bodie Ghost Town –in Central California, not far from the Nevada border. This is a “park” ran by the National Historic Society and manned by Rangers. It is strictly prohibits picking up anything off the ground or anywhere else in the park. Everyone who has –has left with a curse. Car’s have broken down, people have lost their money/wallets, flat tires, too many to mention. So as soon as they reach a place to do so, they send what ever they took, back to the park to break the curse. I loved looking in the old mortuary and even taking pictures –I think I got a glimpse of a mist but it was too fast for the film to get the picture. It was so awesome. To know that ghosts roam the streets of Bodie!
If you are interested in the paranormal or have the ability to experience it yourself –I would suggest that you become involved with the International Ghost Hunters Society. They have the equipment and instruction for correct ghost hunting and even suggestions and membership. I am a Certified Member myself and also have taken the course through the National Academy of Mortuary Science and am a Certified Mortician's Technician. Knowing the Dead –whether as ghost, spirit or shell, It’s one of my passions. I will also add more to this when something of importance comes along again.
I hope you’ve taken away something out of this. I’ve had more experiences since I wrote this and will add them soon.
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