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The Presence of My Brother

Renee, Netherlands
October 2006

In 1999 my brother Michael passed away tragically, and to almost everyone in the family it was a total shock, since we did not know he was ill.

It all started on a cold October wednesday, exactly 3 pm, I will never forget this day for the rest of my life. Ever had a moment in your life that you just knew that something was going to happen? Something like a premonition? Well, to get back to my story, it was around 3 pm that day, my mom's cell phone started to ring, and before she got to the phone to answer it, I thought: Michael is dead. I did not say this out loud of course, because that would've been a weird thing to say, so I just let it go.
My mom answered the phone, was quiet for a moment, started to panic and rushed downstairs with my brother-in-law, jumped in the car and drove away at high speed.
Apparently, this is what I heard afterwards, according to my brother's girlfriend: she found my brother dead in their bedroom, eyes still open and his body still warm, but it was already too late for him, he had passed. The entire time my mom was gone the house was quiet, my 2 younger sisters were upset because they didn't know what was going on, neither did I, because nobody told us what happened, but instinctively I knew he was dead.
My brother and I were never close, actually I really disliked him, we didn't get along whatsoever, so I did not really know how to react.
Finally, my mother and one of my older sisters came home, mom crying her eyes out and sister trying to comfort her. It was a tragic day and we all tried to cope with it in different ways, my way maybe different than the others.
Now my older sister, I will call her Joey, is very spiritual and can actually see ghosts and feel their presence, me on the other hand, I'm a down to earth kind of girl, I wanna see it first before I start believing it. But to come back to my story, we all went to bed and I slept peacefully, surprisingly.
About two days later, my brother was brought to a crematory, he was placed in a small room, with an open coffin so the family could say goodbye to him. The first day he arrived there, me and Joey "visited" him, and although he and I were never close, I went along with my sister, out of curiosity maybe, or out of respect for my mother since she did lose her oldest child, I don't know.
I remember seeing him and that I wanted to leave because I didn't feel right at all, like something is spying on you from the dark corner of your room. We went back home, and I decided to go to bed early, for some reason I felt really tired.
In the middle of the night, I woke up, kind of cold, so I turned to my left side (my bed was next to the window) and wanted to close my window but it was already shut! My room at the time was pitch black when you turned the light off, so I reached and turned on the lamp that was sitting next to my bed and just sat up for a little bit, trying to wake up from my "dead" sleep. It was so quiet in the house and it gave me chills, since there was always noise. I was still cold, so I wrapped my blanket snugly around myself, turned the light off and lay down. I was just staring in the darkness, and thinking about what happened the last couple of days until I started seeing something in the corner of my room. It is kind of hard to explain what I saw, but I will try my best to describe it.
It reminded me of someone being in a dark field trying to sign with a flashlight, from far far away, turning it off and on, off and on, off and on. And it kept on going for a while. At first I did not really pay attention to it, I blamed the "flashing light" coming from me turning off the lamp next to my bed, every time I turn off lights, I can still see it, it's like this spot on my eye, that disappears after a while. Kind of hard to explain. So here I was, laying in my bed, waiting for this "spot" to go away, but instead of it going away, it seemed to get closer to my bed, and it seemed to get bigger and brighter! I was really confused, so I kept looking at it, while it was still flickering in the back of my room. After a while I got chills up my spine, and got kind of freaked out, so I turned the light on again. I didn't see anything, but I kept on feeling these chills and I started to get kind of scared, but I didn't want to wake up my family, so I turned the light back off, attempting to go to sleep again.
I wish I NEVER turned off the light! Oh man, even thinking about it makes me want to cry out of fear. Because as soon as I turned of the light, the bright light that I had seen before was coming towards me at high speed and it was huge! I started screaming, jumped out of bed and ran out of my room to where Joey was sleeping. I tried to wake her up, telling her something was in my room, I was scared to death, and I did not want to go back into that room alone. I wanted her to tell me that there was nothing in my room, but instead of telling me everything was alright, she looked at me. I was afraid that she didn't believe me, after all, things like that are not really "normal".
We stood in front of my room, and now you could really feel the difference of temperature, it was almost like my room was a huge freezer, while the rest of the house was warm! She grabbed my hand, did not even look at me and said: "You have company". I seriously thought I was going to have a heart attack. She was not joking with me, instead, she dragged me back in my room and said: I will stay in your room tonight. I was kind of relieved by that, I figured that because of her being there with me, the presence would leave. Was I wrong..
She jumped into my bed and I lay down on the little futon that I had in my room, covered with blankets, curled up like a ball, scared to death. After trying to calm me down by talking to me, she turned off the light, and as soon as she did, the light came back, flashing in front of me like it was inspecting me, mocking me, I don't know. I was so scared that I put my head underneath my blanket, started to cry and told my sister that it was back again. All she could say was: Yes, I feel it too, close your eyes and try to go to sleep, it won't harm you. Easier said than done, I was terrified. But fatigue started to sink in and before I knew it it was morning.
I was embarrassed to talk about it, because like I said, I'm a down to earth kind of person, and I didn't believe in ghosts, but my opinion has changed since that night.
I'm not sure if it was my brother that visited me that night, and I don't think I want to know. I'm just very glad that ever since that happened, I never had an experience like that again.
Thank god..

Renee, Netherlands
00:00 / 01:04
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