Silence Was Not The Solution
The more and more I told people about what was happening around me in my childhood home, the more they distanced themselves from me. Friends, family members, anyone… they didn’t want to hear about the things they could not see. It is easier to pretend things do not exist if you don’t have some sort of tangible connection to them as I did. So, I stopped talking about it. I was isolated in this; alone.
Ghosts, spirits, or angels (as the first owner of the home had called them) – whatever you want to call them. They were in my house. They were in the basement, with me. My silence made everyone else feel more comfortable, but it only made me feel desperately lost. The fear had subsided some, simply out of getting used to the repetition of events, but I was still very aware that I was a part of something I had absolutely no control over. I simply accepted the facts as I knew them, and did my best to just keep living in spite of them.
Things carried on this way for months. Objects would move themselves in my room. Doors would inexplicably open and close. Lights would turn on and off without anyone flipping a switch.
I grew tired of watching shadows wandering in the hallway just outside my room as I lay in bed at night. I needed doors put up in the entryways (remember, there were two open doorways to the hall.) I asked my father if he would do me the favor of framing and hanging doors, under the guise that I simply needed them for a bit more privacy. I had been sleeping alone in the basement for years now. Privacy wasn’t really an issue, but he didn’t ask questions.
Within days, I had doors. I made a trip to the hardware store and bought two locking door handles, each requiring their own key for entry. Dad installed them for me, though he wasn’t to thrilled with the idea that I would be locking him out of a section of his own house. He must have wondered, what does she want to keep hidden in there? Being that I was a good kid (and by good kid, I mean staggeringly good) he didn’t make too much of a fuss. He trusted me, and I appreciated it.
I knew that the doors were not going to keep anything out (or in) but they provided me a certain sense of security anyway. I was doing the only thing I thought could be done for any measure of relief. I locked the doors every night before crawling into bed, tucking the only keys there were safely under my pillow as I slept. Each morning when I woke, the doors were open. They keys were never disturbed. There had been no opportunity for them to be copied.
I was running out of options.
The only thing I could think of to do was to verbally ask ‘them’ to stop opening my doors at night. I begged, sometimes to the point of tears for it to end. I didn’t actually expect it to work, but it did; for awhile, anyway.
The doors stopped opening, but another phenomenon quickly took its place. I began waking up in the mornings covered in bruises. Never on my head or face, but the rest of my body would be riddled with them. Some small, some large. I had neither been awakened at night to feel anything touching me or felt any measure of pain from them upon discovery. There had been no rhyme or reason to them. They just were. I tried not to think about them. I tried to keep them hidden, but eventually they caught my mother’s attention. She asked me over and over again what I had done to myself. Had I fallen? Had someone at school assaulted me? All I could say was, “No.” I didn’t have an explanation for her, so she went looking for one on her own.
Mom had worked in the medical field as a phlebotomist for years, so her first instinct was to take me to the doctor for some blood tests. She had a suspicion that I might have been suffering from a bleeding disorder called von Willebrand’s Disease. Every test that could be done was done. All of them came back as ‘normal.’ I was healthy by all accounts, but the bruises just kept coming.
I didn’t know if the people in the basement were causing the bruises, but I didn’t know that they weren’t. I certainly wasn’t under the impression that anything in the house had intentions to harm me. Nothing was waking me up at night. I hadn’t seen, heard, or felt anything that would explain the appearance of the bruises.
My mother worried a great deal over it all, so instead of choking back my suspicions, I told her that I thought maybe something in the basement was trying to get my attention, for whatever reason; I didn’t know what it was. I confided in her about the doors opening themselves at night, and how I had asked the spirits to leave them be. The only thing either one of us knew to try was to once again ask them to stop.
I did, and the bruises never came back.
Suddenly, keeping silent was no longer an option. At least my mother would listen to me now. The bruising went away, but as I had learned from past experience, asking the spirits to cease one activity always ushered in another to take its place…
To be continued…