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The Angry Visitor

Alma Ortega, Philippines
October 2004

Hi, I am Alma, from the Philippines. I never had any ghostly experiences until after my mother-in-law died. This happened in 1991, November 1 and 2, which is all saints' day and all souls' day respectively. My mother-in- law died in January of the same year. We were not really on good terms when she died because I haven't seen her or spoken to her since my husband and I separated in 1987 after 7 years of a rocky marriage. My relationship with her became sour when I convinced my husband that we will be living on our own instead of staying with her in her house.

We have two kids, a daughter (Karen) and a son (Dandy) whom she loved very much, especially my daughter who looks exactly like her, but she loved Dandy as well because he looks exactly like her son, (my ex-husband).

In between those years before I finally separated from my husband, he kept trying to tell me that his mother wants to take care of my daughter's schooling but she will decide which school she is going to, which means my daughter has to stay with her. Even though, I let my kids stay with her on weekends and school breaks, it doesn't mean that I will give them away to her. I knew exactly what she wanted. She has all the first-born of her four children and my husband is the youngest, so she wanted our first-born too. But I am a very protective mother and I love my kids more than my life so I can not imagine them growing without me on their side. So one day, when my husband visited the kids, he brought up the issue again that his mother wants my daughter. I got irritated so I just told my husband to tell his mother.."over my dead body". That shut her off because I haven't heard anymore from her after that. Until one day my mother came over from the farm and told me that my mother-in-law is dead. She told me to go pay my respects even if we were not in good terms. So I did go, together with my kids, even though I was feeling uncomfortable with all her family members around who were not very happy to see me.

My father -in-law was a very kind and a nice man and he was the only one (aside from my husband) talking to me about what happened on the last few minutes before she died.
He told me that she was asking for my kids and that she wanted to see them but nobody informed me, because if they did I could have let my kids visit her especially when she was in the hospital. My ex-husband also told me that every time he visited his mother, she kept asking him about the kids but he never told me anything. I felt guilty about it knowing that even on the last minute of her life, all she just wanted was to see my children.

One week before all souls day, when I was taking a nap at around three in the afternoon, I was dreaming that I was talking to my mother-in-law. It was very short but it seemed so real. She asked me "So Alma, since its going to be "all souls' day next week, you will come and visit the dead, right? But in my dream, I wasn't able to answer her if I will or I won't..I just woke up and was feeling a bit weird about it. I kind of forgot my dream and never even thought of going to the farm to visit her grave (she was buried in their land which is just next to our land).

On the evening of November 1, at around 10 pm, we were all watching T.V. with the bass player of my band (I am a musician by profession) when we heard somebody knock on the door. We all heard it, my friend made a joke that I had a "visitor". I was wondering who was visiting me at that time of the night without calling my name..because if some friends came to visit me, they would be yelling my name out loud even before knocking on the door. I shouted.." who is it?" Nobody answered and it knocked again three times and I asked again "who is it?" I started getting scared and I peeped through the spy hole on the door but no one was there. We turned off the TV to hear if somebody would talk but instead we heard a noise outside as though something had gone up from the door, through the wall towards my bedroom which was above the living room where we were. Everybody was listening until the noise got inside my bedroom and made a sound as though some plastic bags and papers in my room has been crumpled. It lasted for about 2 minutes or so and I noticed that my children were scared. I tried to show them I wasn't scared and we just dismissed it and convinced ourselves that it was a big rat. So we continued watching TV and nothing happened for the rest of the night. I had this strange feeling but I did not want to show it to them, especially to my kids who were just 11 and 10 years old.

The following day, my younger brother arrived from another city and I told him about what happened the night before. Like me..he doesn't want to show that he realy thinks it was something more than a big rat (in the Philippines we really have big rats that sometimes if you see one, you will think its a cat). But the funny thing is we lived already in that house for about a year but we didn't hear that kind of noise and had never seen any big rats. At around 9:45 pm I was taking a shower, just as I was about finished, which was about 10 pm, I heard my daughter, Karen, knock at the bathroom door and told me in a soft and scared voice, "Mama, there's a knock on the door again"..I quickly got out of the bathroom and joined with everybody in the living room. This time my brother was the one who shouted "who is it?" Nobody answered. Then we heard the same noise we heard the previous night but its a lot stronger and very distinct that it was going up to my bedroom but climbing up on the wall outside the main door. Then when it was inside my bedroom..we heard as though all the plastic bags and papers and lots of other things were thrown all over the place, by a "VERY ANGRY PERSON" . This time I really got so scared and I was shivering but I tried to control it and conditioned my brain that my brother was with us and my bass player who was sleeping upstairs in the middle room next to my bedroom. So after about 3 minutes of listening to the non-stop throwing of things in my room, which still continued, my brother (who was really cool...never showed fear at all) decided to go up and checked it out. I grabbed the kids and followed my brother who was going upstairs but we stopped in the middle of the staircase while he turned on the lights in my bedroom to see what's going on. He found nothing, nothing at all and no mess. I really freaked out and while he was talking to me...suddenly we heard big steps of a person wearing wooden sandals walk in front of us, in a small hallway going to the kids room! My kids and I were frozen and it seemed to me that my heart stopped beating for some time. We were waiting for the worst that we might see, something really scary! Then without saying anything...all of us knew who it was! It was my mother-in-law...We confirmed it was her because she always wore a pair of wooden sandals and the footsteps that we heard were definitely hers, even my kids told me they knew it was their grandmother. What's even amazing, after 2 days my daughter told me that she had a dream that she went to her grandmothers house (which is just about 7 miles from our house and we used to lived there with her) and she was asking her why she came to our house that night. And she answered "I just want to see you guys because I am leaving."

When I told my mother about it she blamed me for not taking the kids to visit their grandmother's grave and light up some candles and say a little prayer. So since that year I always remind the kids to light up some candles and say some prayers for her and it didn't happen again.

The lesson I learned here is, not to ignore your dream.

Alma Ortega, Philippines
00:00 / 01:04
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