Grand Central -- that's how I would describe just about every place I have lived. Ghosts would come and go from the time that I was little. My family on both sides has always been connected some how to "the other side." When I was small, I spent most of time being raised by my great grandmother while my mother worked. I have never met a more in-tune woman. My mother actually pulled me away from her when I was young because I was getting a little bizarre for a child. I could bend spoons by simply holding them, predict phone calls and who would be on the line, feel presences, feel people walk through me that weren't there, fix watches that had been broken for years by merely holding them in an enclosed fist.
After my great grandmother died, she made her presence well known. We would hear her walking around on the second floor, smell the overwhelming stench of funeral flowers in one area of the house, catch a glimpse of her often. She was always my protector. I have several instances to relay so this is rather lengthy.
One afternoon when I was about 8, my mother was counseling a troubled teenager at our house. This girl made me uneasy and I felt that her presence was eerily bad. After she left, I stood at the front door for a while. It was summer and my mother and I were getting ready to go out for an evening of theater. I heard a thump behind me on the floor. When I turned around, one of my mother's owl wind chimes was laying behind me at my feet. My mother collects owls and she had this wind chime that stood about 5 feet from the door. The shape of the owls came to sharp points and there were about 10-12 of these measuring about 2 inches wide and 6 inches tall. The chime should have flown the other way -- the breeze from the door would have directed it in the opposite direction. Instead, the pointed end was facing me. My father came downstairs shortly after from taking a nap and stood in the middle of the living room smelling an overwhelming stench of funeral flowers in one area of the room. You could walk through it, smell the flowers, get to the end and smell nothing. To this day, I believe my great grandmother had protected me from some evil entity.
Years later, in high school, I acquired the upstairs bedroom. Peculiar things started to happen. The house was an old post-war cape cod and the upstairs was a finished attic with dormer ceilings divided into a sitting room and bedroom with locking french doors between the two. I never locked the doors until after the first occurrences. I was laying on my stomach trying to fall asleep when someone pressed a finger into the small of my back and flashed a light in my face. I froze, unable to move. The next morning, I figured my parents had played a joke. They denied ever having been up there. A few weeks later, I heard the squish of footsteps on the carpet, saw the black figure of a man, as if he had been cut out of black construction paper. He walked to my bedside, crouched down to me with his arm extended and whispered my name. I froze again with fear. I saw him once more after this and he again repeated my name. Once I began locking the doors, something late at night would rattle them, desperate to get inside.
The activity subsided until my senior year of college. I would sit downstairs with my mom watching TV and I would hear someone walking around upstairs. I once saw a glowing white light over my bed. The last incident upstairs happened when a skeptic of a boyfriend spent the night. I was downstairs watching TV and he had gone to sleep earlier. When I went upstairs, he was cowering in the corner, too afraid to move. As he struggled to get dressed, he told me a black entity had approached him threateningly and scared the wits out of him. He never set foot upstairs again.
When I was last home at that house, I slept downstairs as my dad had once again reclaimed the upstairs bedroom. I heard footsteps over the hard wood floor and something stopped right at the threshold of my doorway. I waited for something to appear. Nothing. I screamed for my parents (this from a 25 year old). My mother assured me it was my great grandmother -- she said she always saw her in that exact spot.
I have tons stories -- people jokingly call me a magnet for other-worldly things. Who knows.
The Ghost That Hated My Husband
I had a whirlwind romance that led to a very bad marriage. I married Eric when I was 22. He was in the Navy in Norfolk, VA and I decided to move down there to join him.
Not knowing the city at all, I was drawn to a particular old building in Norfolk's Ghent area called the Aberdeen on Redgate Avenue. The building still had the dumbwaiters to bring coal up to your apartment and the original coal sheds in the basement where past tenants could store their own personal supply of coal.
We rented a 3 bedroom apartment on the first floor-- wood floors, claw foot bathtub, steam radiator heat. I was in heaven. We used one bedroom, converted the other into the TV room/library and the other room (because it had no radiator) served as storage and a possible guest bedroom with a day bed. Our marriage (which lasted only 6 months) began going sour as soon as I moved down to Virginia. I soon discovered that I had company in the apartment that resided in the bedroom that we had reserved as storage. I always had a feeling that I was being watched but I was never scared. This something looked out for me. It turns out, it hated my husband.
I would always try to keep this door to the bedroom closed. I would close it, listen for the click of the door, check the door by pushing against it. I would walk two steps down the hall and hear the creak of the door open. After repeating this several times, I decided to let it remain open. My cat used to have a ball playing with something in that room. The stranger part of this is that whenever my husband closed the door, it stayed that way.
Once he was taking some laundry downstairs to the basement (which was creepy enough) and left the back door open for a few seconds. He closed the screen door which had to be forcefully closed as it scraped against the concrete. Our kitchen was directly above the washing and drying machines and he definitely would have heard someone enter the apartment. When he came back upstairs, the screen door was locked (and this was a metal hook lock that had to be swung into an eye or metal loop). My husband had to climb through a window to get back in and proceeded to search the entire house as he thought someone had broken in. Nothing. It locked him out on several more occasions.
When I moved out, I maintained contact with some neighbors in that building. When we would go out, I would always sense something watching longingly from the window of that bedroom when we walked by.
When I left Virginia, I had managed to find the love of my life after the worst marriage of my life. I joked that I had to get married, to move to Virginia, to get divorced, to meet my soulmate.
After spending two years in Virginia, we decided to return to my homestate of Ohio. My father had bribed us with a free house. My grandmother had owned the house when she died and my uncle had died in that same house shortly after. The house had been a rental for about 15 years and was the eye sore of the block. The deal was renovate it and it was ours.
It was a big task and we actually thought twice about it. The house was dark and creepy -- almost as if it was unhappy. The house was built in 1928 and you could tell someone at one time had really loved this house and had put a lot of work into it. It had fallen into disrepair and the house was visibly sad looking.
It all began one summer evening at dusk. I had been left alone in the house for the first time and I was scraping linoleum glue off of the kitchen floor. From the basement, I heard thumping right under where I was sitting. The thumping then began to run the length of the house, as if someone was in the basement pounding on the ceiling. Although I was freaked, I continued to work. And sing. I sing professionally in musical theater productions. My singing seemed to calm the noise. Especially older songs from the 30s and 40s. Even to this day, when I play Glenn Miller, an exuberant peace pervades the entire house.
The noises continued and the presence in the basement was so thick. You would be working on something down there -- rinsing out paint brushes, laundry -- and you always felt someone over your shoulder watching, almost supervisory. Making sure you were doing a good job. My mother and I both felt it but decided to not tell my fiance about it. One day he approached me and asked if I felt like I was being watched. I had to confess. The presence was in the basement, up the stairs from the basement and about two steps into the kitchen. It never usually went any farther.
A pattern began to emerge -- the thumping and rustling would begin around 6:00 pm every night and last until around 11:00 pm. Almost as if the person was coming home from work, retiring to the basement for an evening of work on some project and then would go to bed. Sometimes he would even open and close the refrigerator. My dog would stand in the middle of the kitchen and bark at nothing.
As we were cleaning up the basement, we closed the door to the fruit cellar (a little room about 4' x 10'). Big mistake. That night we heard such noise from that basement, like something was trapped and fighting to get out. We never closed that door again. To this day it is still propped open.
We began to get a little fed up -- especially when you came up from the basement with laundry and something chased you up the stairs. You could audibly hear the swish swish of trousers rubbing together and footsteps behind you. He had called my name once and even went so far as to goose me one day when I was vacuuming.
We eventually went downstairs and had a little conference. We told him he was welcome to stay but this was our house and we really loved it and were doing our best to fix it -- we didn't want to see him or hear him anymore because he was frightening us. All was pretty much quiet. However, the day it all ended was when we had glass block windows put in the basement. The workers had removed all the old windows and the basement was aired out for the first time in years. I think he finally decided it was time to move on.
My next door neighbor who is 72 and has lived in her house for 49 years told me about a man named Frank who had lived there for about the same time. He had loved the house and had put a lot into it. I think he was trying to make sure that we took care of his "baby."