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A Visit From A Friend

Ashley Hartley, Indiana, USA
December 2005

At the age of 17 I lost my best friend in the whole world. Her name was Mary. We first became friends around nine to ten years ago. I would stay with Mary every day after school until my dad arrived home from work. She wouldn't even let me watch t.v. until my homework was finished. She wanted to make sure my homework was finished so that I made good grades in school.

Mary was sick. She was breathing off of an air machine. She was on oxygen. She always had to make her way around in a wheelchair. She had diabetes, and sometimes during the winter she would get pneumonia, but she always got better.

As the years went by Mary and I became best of friends, and I was good friends with her daughter April also.

During the year of 2004, in the winter, some friends of mine,and April had noticed that Mary wasn't feeling well. She was sick with pneumonia and was coughing a lot so we were very concerned about her.

During school that year, on September 28, I had been called to the office during third period to be picked up by my dad. On the way out to our truck dad had told me that Mary had passed away. I was heartbroken, but I didn't cry. I kept it to myself. As soon as I arrived home I ran straight to April and hugged her. I told her everything was going to be all right. I couldn't cry because I had to be strong for April. Dad asked me if I wanted to go in and see Mary and tell her good-bye, but I told him no. A few minutes later we all watched Mary be carried out on a back board to a car.

That week during the showing, I finally burst out in tears. I couldn't hold it in anymore, I had to let go. As soon as my mother showed up, I walked to her as fast as I could, and I buried my face in her shoulder.

The funeral is what got to the Storm Patrol ( a group Mary was involved in) we were all friends. Most of the Storm Patrol were sitting in the back, including me. I was sitting next to my boyfriend at the time, and my friend Adam next to the door everyone entered in. I was recieving cold chills, and my body was getting cold. We knew something was going on.

Next thing we knew the door had come open without the doorknob ever turning, which the doorknob had to turn for the door to open. The door remained open for a little while. The hand radios we all had were turned off during the funeral. Soon after the door came open there was a voice/voices speaking on a member's radio when it was turned off. Soon after the voice spoke the door shut without the doorknob ever turning, which again the doorknob has to turn for the door to shut all the way.

After the funeral we checked the radio on which the voice/voices had spoken, and the radio was completely turned off.

That night after the funeral my boyfriend (Tony) and I went to my house for a while so he could make sure I was going to be all right. My father wasn't home so it was just us two. We turned the kitchen light on, and the livingroom light on. We left the t.v. off so it would be quiet. In our t.v. screen you can see the reflection of our kitchen. Our kitchen table was by our back door. I looked up into the t.v. and I could see a figure of a woman that looked exactly like Mary. Only she was standing up straight with no oxygen. I couldn't see her face because all I saw was a black shadow. I could see her in the t.v. standing between the kitchen table and the back door. I said "Tony do you see that?" and he said "No" I said "you can't see that figure of a woman standing by the kitchen table in the t.v.?" and he said "oh I see her now." We could see her in the t.v. screen, but we couldn't see her in the kitchen. Tony had figured it was my dad so he started yelling for my dad. I told him my dad had never pulled up in the driveway, and the back door had never opened. After he left she was still there. She stayed there until I went to sleep, and I don't know where she went after that.

That night as I lay there thinking about that shadow, I thought about Mary and how I couldn't believe she was gone. That night after I fell a sleep I had a dream. I dreamt that I was having a party at my house. Out in my dad's room there was a door in his hallway that went outside. In my dream someone was knocking on the door. I told my aunt to answer it. She told whoever it was to come in. Through that door Mary came rolling inside in her wheelchair with a big, bright smile on her face. I ran to her, kneeled down in front of her, and I started to cry. She lifted my head and she said, "Don't cry. I'm all right. It's going to be ok." and I woke up. That night I couldn't go back to sleep for anything. I knew not to cry anymore because she had come back to tell me she is all right. I haven't seen her since.

I go visit her every now and then at the graveyard even though I know she isn't there. What I do know is that she is in a better place, and that she can hear everything I say. Sometimes I can feel her presence, but if she comes she doesn't stay long. She knows that I miss her. She is always looking down on me.

Ashley Hartley, Indiana, USA
00:00 / 01:04
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