It’s October. The month of my favorite day- CD Player Day!
It’s also the month of my second favourite day: Halloween.
I’ve decided to share with you some of my experiences with the paranormal in honour of Halloween (it was hard to come up with stories about CD players). So grab some hot-chocolate and gather round for some spine tingling tales.
Whether or not you believe in ghosts, everyone has had strange experiences in their lives. Things that make you scratch your head, or odd sensations that have no basis in anything you can sense with your five senses. Since I was a little kid strange things have happened to and around me. I don’t know that I would admit to believing in ‘ghosts’ (aka spooky dead people chilling waiting to freak out unsuspecting living people- the jerks), but I believe there are things that exist beyond the boundary of our perception. Maybe, just maybe, when conditions are right some of us can sense those things.
I’m not saying I’m one of those people…but I might be. Until a few years ago I had ‘paranormal’ experiences pretty regularly. My most recent experience was at a private school I had applied to, which was a converted historic house. I was on a tour of the facility and thought the school was unique but didn’t give it much thought otherwise. The administrator took me around and showed me all the different rooms. As we walked into one of the last rooms on the top floor I resisted the urge to come to an abrupt stop and say, “things happen in this room, don’t they?”
I didn’t think that would help me get the job. That room felt different. Similar to the feeling of being watched, or when you’re asked to go first into a dark, unknown, room. I didn’t want to run from the room, but I didn’t want to hang out in it all day either.
These sorts of experiences happen with less frequency and intensity, now. Perhaps I’m getting older and am more inclined to look for a ‘logical’ reason; or because I made an active effort to close myself off to those types of experiences. Perhaps they lessened because I stopped messing around with things I probably shouldn’t have been (more on that later). Most likely, it’s because my family moved out of the totally haunted house we grew up in.
Some of my earliest memories revolve around the paranormal. There was the closet in my room which all my friends agreed was ‘bad’. There was nothing obviously scary about it. I wasn’t bothered by any of the other dark, small, spaces in the house. Only that one closet ever bothered me. Even as an adult it would have me rushing out of the room muttering, “Nope. Nope. Nope.” Nothing scary ever happened. The door never opened or closed on its own and there no strange noises coming from it. I never saw a pair of glowing eyes staring back at me in the dark. It just felt bad.
That’s not to say I never encountered strange noises. Many nights, when I was young, I woke up because someone was walking around above me. My room was on the top floor so whoever was pacing above me was doing it in the attic. I can’t remember if I told my mom about it or not- I thought nothing about it at the time, other than it was kind of annoying. However, I was shocked years later when my dad and uncle went up into the attic to change the insulation. I noticed they crawled around and asked why they didn’t stand up and walk around. My dad let me poke my head up into the attic. It was very clear that only a small child could stand upright, and anyone up there had to move along beams. No one could walk back and forth as I had heard for so many years.
Around the same time I would also be woken up in the middle of the night by the smell of burnt toast. If you are Canadian insert your obligatory “Doctor, I smell burnt toast!” joke here. If you are not click here for an amazing Canadian Heritage Minute.
I would throw aside my blankets and rush from my bed hoping to sneak a late night snack with my dad or great-grandfather. I would be constantly disappointed as I reached the kitchen (steps from my bedroom) and find nothing there. No used dishes, no crumbs, no evidence anyone had made any food. Now, you may say, “Well Amanda, clearly someone cleared up their mess and went back to bed.”
A reasonable thought.
However, neither my father nor my great-grandfather were the type to clean up after themselves. They would leave it to be dealt with in my morning. My mom wasn’t really the midnight snack kind of lady. If it had happened once I would give it a pass. But this strange burnt toast smell was a regular occurrence. I never learned not to get my hopes up though.
Perhaps these are only instances of being a child with an active imagination. However, there are many other occurrences, as I got older, which made me wonder if ghosts or the paranormal exist.
Were these seemingly innocuous experiences the first in a pattern of occurrences that would follow me into adulthood?
Keep an eye open for other stories leading up to Halloween!
What are some of your earliest scary or paranormal experiences?