In honor of Halloween, I thought I’d tell you my own personal ghost stories. I don’t even know if I truly believe in ghosts, and I’m sure all of my stories can be explained in some rational way, but they’ve stuck with me as spooky goings-on in my past.
The Mysterious Radio
I’ll start with the least spooky. The one most easily disproved.
From the age of 6, I grew up in an old house on a lovely little street in a small town. It had been built sometime in early 1900s and was rumored to have been a boarding house for women/war brides during WWII (I think I have that right – but who knows), but otherwise was a single family home.
Late at night, if I happened to wake up, I could hear a radio softly playing in another part of the house. It wasn’t clear, and it wasn’t always music, but sometimes people speaking. When I’d get up to investigate, it would stop and everyone would be asleep.
I can hear you saying “Sarah, that was clearly someone listening to a radio or tv, you gullible dunce.” and I have no argument there. I do know my mom also heard the radio, so it had to have been one of my brothers if it wasn’t a ghost.
The Box Incident
For some reason, I had decided to paint my room bubble gum pink when we moved in (thanks, 6 year old me) and thus it had to be repainted at some point. When the time came, when I was still a pre-teen, I carefully put all of my stuff under the drop cloths in the center of the room. I had a box that my grandfather had made (he was still alive, btw) that I put all my precious tidbits in and I slid that box under my bed under the drop cloth in the middle of the room. And promptly went out to play – I didn’t have to paint because have you met me? I’d have been a disaster.
As I walked around the house to the backyard to climb a tree or slither into the club house that was really just the space in between some bushes, I saw several of my precious tidbits scattered around the side yard. Weird. I gathered them up and took them back inside to put back into the box.
It proceeded to happen several more times. Sometimes showing up crusted in dirt/mud as if they had been outside for a long period of time. I remember putting stuff on top of the box, being fussed at because I kept going in and out of the house/room being painted, and getting increasingly freaked out.
Eventually everything stayed put where I wanted it to be and I resumed my outdoor adventures. But it was super weird.
The first, and only, truly scary unexplainable/ghostly encounter of my early life also occurred in that house. I don’t remember why, but I was sleeping in a different bedroom. It was my oldest brother’s, and I remember I wanted it to be my room, so maybe this was after he had left for college and I had just moved in. I had to have been 12ish when this happened.
I was on the top bunk reading after I was supposed to be asleep. Not an uncommon occurrence. But suddenly there was knocking coming from the wall shared with the kitchen. Someone had to have been leaning over the stove or counters and knocking on the wall, but the sound moved from place to place and some of those places were behind appliances.
Then the knocking started moving to under the floor, on the ceiling, and the outer walls. There was no way someone could have been knocking on those outer walls without a ladder – they would have had to been levitating 10ish feet off the ground. There was also no way someone could move from place to place so quickly, and also be in the attic or the basement so fast.
It was terrifying.
I remember fleeing the room like something was on fire, and for about a month or so I fell asleep in my parents bed and then they’d transfer me to bed afterwards.
Eventually, I got over it and spent several years in that room, until the sunroom became an option and I moved in there. I never heard more than a knock or two at a time again.
Who Opened the Door?
Moving right along to when I was in college and living in a house that had housed a single family for something like 60 years before we bought it, I had a single ghostly encounter. This is the only one that I actually still think about and wonder what happened. The knocking could have been a very vivid dream, the other 2 could be pinned on my brothers, but this one I don’t understand.
I was living with my brother (not the same one whose room I stole) while I went to college and he went to law school. One day I pull up to the house and his truck wasn’t in the driveway. I got out of the car, got my keys out, and go to unlock the door. I glance up, there’s a shadow of a person in the little window in the kitchen door, the door unlocks by itself, the knob turns, and it opens a bit. I push the door open, and there’s no one there. I call out and search the house, and my brother is nowhere to be found. I go outside to see if his truck is on the other side of the house or in the backyard – maybe he’s hiding in the house somewhere, and if I see his truck I’ll know that’s the case. Nothing.
I wasn’t scared, more just confused. I said something like “Thanks for opening the door, my hands were full.” and obviously got no response.
I lived in that house for 5ish years and that’s the only thing that happened beyond easily explained things like the feeling of being watched, small sounds in places there shouldn’t be sounds, etc. The house had a very homey vibe and wasn’t scary in the least, just old.
It was probably Shane…
When we moved into our current apartment, Shane and I were unpacking boxes in the living room when I felt something bounce off my lower back/hip area. My back was to Shane and so I asked what he threw at me, because I couldn’t see anything on the carpet around me. He swore he didn’t throw anything, and it was all in my head. Now, he does sometimes do stuff like that – say he didn’t do something when he did, but he always fesses up. Not this time.
I like to think it was a way of the apartment welcoming us. They’re relatively new, so I don’t think anyone has died in here.
So that’s them – the 5 ghostly encounters I’ve had over my life. That I remember, anyway. On days I do believe in ghosts, I’m not really scared of them. On days I don’t believe in ghosts, I’m also not really scared of them. Only one was truly scary – the knocking – and I always assumed, even as a child, it was a sort of reprimand for reading when I was supposed to be sleeping and not an evil presence. At that point, a few generations of children had grown up there, so it made/makes sense that a mom ghost was not having my late-night shenanigans.
I would love to hear your ghost stories – I think they’re fascinating.