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Tuesday, October 31, 2006

My True Ghost Story

I never leared what a Shadow Person was until a year ago. Those people that believe in ghosts or Shadow People will be interested in this story. Was it a ghost? A demon? A Shadow Person?

Shadow People are supposedly dark, with vague humanoid shapes, but they're not like ghosts. They're often distinguished by glowing, red eyes. People who have spotted them report feelings of dread, which is quite believable.

I probably don't need to reassure you that I'm not making this up. Why would I bother? There will be plenty of people that will accord this to temporary insanity, I'm sure. I'd like to add that I'm not prone to hallucinations or hysteria and I'm no ninny. My ex-husband is as somber as a judge and wouldn't dream of pranking me. His idea of getting wild and crazy was having a beer during Superbowl.

All that being said, here's what I/we encountered.

It was the fall of 1992, and I had just bought a house here in the Tampa Bay Area, Florida, with my ex-husband. The woman who'd owned the house had just died (in a nearby hospital) and her husband had predeceased her by at least a couple years. She had been a peculiar old woman, by all accounts. When she died, her son sold us the house, and everything in the house, including her beautiful antiques, her clothes, her personal jewelry (including solid gold watches). We wondered why he wanted no mementos of her whatsoever. Even the realtor (a family friend of ours) was surprised: He had never seen anything like that.

It took us an extra two weeks, working feverishly at night, to sort out what we wanted to keep and what we sold or donated to charity. One of the odd things that we gave away included a creepy looking hand-crafted, embroidered doll which was left squarely in the center of her bed. It was labelled "The Dammit Doll". My husband and I discussed it at that time, noting that it was the something we'd never seen or heard of before. (It looked similar to the one pictured here.)

This house was built in 1963, and was a classic old Rutenberg home (a guy who built a lot of good, sturdy homes back then). It was concrete block and lathe.

The first thing we noticed after we'd moved in was the creaking at night, as if someone was tiptoeing over creaky floorboards. The problem being, of course, that this was a concrete block house, and there was no wood anywhere (except in the attic). Certainly there was none on the floors, which were terrazzo. OK, that was creepy, but we put it down to 'an old house settling'.

The next thing that happened were the rats. We lived in an area that used to be an old citrus grove, so there were still citrus trees around. Enough, anyway, to harbor citrus rats. So, they weren't uncommon in the neighborhood. What was uncommon is that they suddenly decided to nest in our attic! And I don't mean that a small family moved in. At night it sounded like the Brazilian Soccer Team was up there. We'd lay there and hear a BUMP, then skitterskitterskitter as they would run in a pack across the attic...back and forth, all night.

They were so cute that I didn't have the heart to kill them at first. First we tried 'kind traps' and released a couple into the wild. Then we tried glue traps. Nothing was slowing the team down. Finally we tried poison and ended up with the equivalent of Rat Auschwitz in our attic. It was disgusting and I felt very guilty. My husband was given the enjoyable task of climbing up there and retrieving the corpses regularly. I didn't, because I was pregnant at the time. (Since then, I bought a new house that also had a rat infestation at one point, so I don't claim that it's an uncommon occurence in itself).

Here's the next thing that happened:

We slept in her old bedroom. They had that kind of old-fashioned relationship where he slept in the room down the hall, had his own bath, and she had hers. We converted his bedroom to a nursery, and during that time his toilet in that bathroom started flushing. All night.

We did what we could. My husband changed the rubber thingies in the back of the toilet (sorry, I'm not a plumber so I can't tell you what these parts are called, but he knew what he was doing). He did it repeatedly, but the toilet kept flushing itself.

Then we started hearing someone outside the window at night, crunching through the leaves. We'd look out and no one was there. May I add that this was in a VERY good neighborhood that was well-lit, even though it was older. There was no chance that we had a transient, and if we had, we would've seen him/her. Also, there were old bushes grown up outside the windows. You could see out and in but they were formidable to get through so it wouldn't be easy for a living human to be walking directly under the windows. In fact, it wasn't possible.

All that was beginning to get on my nerves, what with a new baby coming and all...

Then the straw that broke the camel's back:

Everyone who's had a baby knows that when you're pregnant you need to pee a lot more than you ever did before. It's hard to squeeze another human into your body cavity and still have room for other stuff. So, in my 6th month on, I had to get up at least a couple times a night to pee.


Here is a slightly out-of-proportion diagram of this portion of the house, and I will describe it, too:

Our bedroom was good-sized, probably about 10x12. It had two doors leading from it. One door entered the hallway. At the end of that hallway was the nursery. The other door entered the bathroom. The bathroom also had a door that opened onto the hallway. If you left both doors open and sat on the toilet in the bathroom (shown as an oval), you could see into the room and down the hallway into the other room.

Now... when I wake up, I wake up. There's no sleepwalking or even a half-somnolent stage. I've often wished I could only partially wake up. It takes a long time, sometimes upwards of an hour, to get back to sleep again once I get up.

Well, one night I woke up, and my bladder was calling to me. I lazily got up and went into the bathroom, without closing all doors. Those of you who've been in long-term relationships know that after a while, all privacy is gone anyway and it was in the dark, with no lights on.

I sat down on the toilet, stretching leisurely. Ok, I know this doesn't present a pretty picture: a naked pregnant woman sitting on a toilet. But stay with me on this.

I looked down the hallway, toward the nursery, and saw two red eyes. Yeah, they were as red as Christmas tree lights and they were at the level and distance apart that eyes should be.

I never believed in ghosts or psychic phenomenon, so I figured I was getting some sort of fake lights in my eyes...the kind you get if you're in a dark cave with no light. So I blinked, looked away to the bathroom window and the gray patch of sky outside, then looked back down the hall...and the eyes were still there.

That's when I really started getting spooked. I knew I wasn't mistaken. I had no idea what the thing was, but it was unnerving. I started thinking through different possibilities. Were they lights from some electrical device my husband had installed without telling me? Were they some sort of reflection? They couldn't be. The way they were positioned, they couldn't be a reflection of anything whatsoever.

Then the eyes started to move, and The Thing started coming down the hall toward me. I screamed like only Jamie Lee Curtis can scream and my husband woke up and turned on the light in a flash...and The Thing was gone.

Of course he looked all over the house on my insistence. I was sure there was some sort of intruder in the house with us! But all windows were sealed, all doors were locked, and nothing was inside or outside.

After that I decided it was time to do something! I considered getting a priest out there to exorcise the place, but I'm not Catholic. So, I settled on praying The Thing out of my house. I prayed all the time. If I'd been Catholic I would've worn out my rosary. By the time the baby was born, the noises had gone and I never saw The Thing again.

But...what WAS it???

44 comments:

Edge said...

I'm sure it was the creepy old lady who used to live there. My next door neighbor had a ghost in the house. It was the deceased husband of the woman who used to live there. He was nice they say. He spilled coffee grounds and made coffee. He also played music ( old swing ) on the piano. When too many people were over watching TV he would knock stuff off the shelves. He would also open the door to the garage if your hands were full. The neighbor finally told him that his wife and son now lived in San Diego and he should go. And he did.

Anonymous said...

*shudder* that's a scary thing. Had similar experiences in the past but without the eyes. It's easier to blame it on self-inflicted terror if there are no eyes.

*shudder*

Beaver in Zombie-Land

QUASAR9 said...

Hi Saur, spooky

So do you watch Charmed
don'y wanna spook ya even more or scare you out of your skin, but with you being pregnant at the time, sure it wasn't a 'spirit' looking for a body to habitate ...
the child's body.
How's Sour kid doing??? lol!
And Halloween tonight too wooooooh!

Saur♥Kraut said...

Quasar, the thought (of possession of the infant) did cross our minds at the time. I never really watched Charmed more than once... I just never remember to turn on the TV! SaurKid's doing very well, thankfully. Maybe the spirit went on to inhabit Macaulay Culkin, though...

Beaver, yeah... I've had "the willies" before (feeling all creepy) but never that (before or since).

Jeff, but with the toilet flushing in HIS room all the time, was it him? Or was she merely unhappy with us and expressing it in any way she could? Or was it another explanation entirely?

Badoozie said...

well, i would say you're nuts, but one, i don't think you are, and two, i believe there are ghosts. so there. other than that, i don't know what to say? i've never personally seen one, or been in a house affected that i know of? i also believe that there are only certain people who are prone to running across ghosts. and i don't know what qualifies you as one of those people.

and i could have done without that last picture you threw in there, now THAT is going to stick in my head, and if i have a bad dream tonight, i'm calling you!!!

Saur♥Kraut said...

Susie, thanks for the compliment on the last pic, cuz that's my own Photoshopped little monstrosity.

Interesting that you should say some people are more attuned to the paranormal, which I believe to be true.

Daisy Lupin said...

Hi, I just popped over from Tea's blog. Your story has fascinated me. I have heard of these red eyed spectres before. If you visit my site, you can link to from it to my Ghost Story Telling Circle, have a look at it their are some poems, fiction and some true incidents, including a photograph of maybe a ghost girl. The site is only up for Halloween and a month after. I am sure you will enjoy it. You can ask me if you would like your posting to go on it.

Ed Abbey said...

Well I don't believe in ghosts but I did enjoy the story. Had I had two eyes/red glowing objects coming at me while sitting naked on the john in the middle of the night, I would have screamed like Jamie Lee Curtis too, belief in ghosts or not.

Valerie - Riding Solo said...

The mate saw ghosts in broad daylight several times in his life. I have had my own experiences with them.

But really, Boo!

scary, girl.

~Deb said...

Well let me just say that this was the best written story I have come across !!! I hung on every...single...word! You are an amazing writer!

Anyway, that's really creepy with the 'house settling' while it's concrete. But, I had to laugh at the imagery you painted of ...um.... you taking care of business. ha!!! Too cute! But, I'll tell you one thing, I believe in ghosts, and I have never heard of these 'red eyes' or ghost shadow things, but THAT would freak me the hell out! I mean, aren't red eyes supposed to be evil?

And that doll-----is that a fricken voo doo doll?

What a great story! Thanks for sharing this!

Anonymous said...

that's really creepy. i've seen tons of stuff including things like that.

Ted said...

I have turned around and saw a person out of the corner of my eye. I have been alone in our chuch before at night and heard strange bangs and scratches that scared me. One time Patti and I heard a door open in the hallway and when we walked toward the sanctuary door we both saw a reflection of a man in a hat that was not really there and we freaked out. Other folks claim they have seen him too. I didn't see his eyes.

R2K said...

That is the most creepy house story ever. That doll really is the worst of all, really what was that about? :) What a crazy mix of events.

I have never seen anything that I cant explain. Kinda boring I guess.

The Lazy Iguana said...

I had a bunch of rats take up residence in the attic. I also had them turn the shed in the backyard into a party condo.

Thing is I had FOUR CATS at the time. Did they do anything about it? Hell no. I think they made friends with the rats. They would have cat and rat tea parties and stuff. So I had to use the green cubes of rat death. The corpses are still up there - I am not going to crawl around in a hot nasty attic full of fiberglass looking for rat mummies. Worthless cats.

I have never seen a ghost. Or maybe I have, and just did not register what it was. I have even gone so far as to go into supposedly ghost infested places and order any ghost to do something. Appear. Turn out a light. Hang out and have a ghost beer. Anything.

Nothing has ever happened.

The Lazy Iguana said...

By the way, whatever it was you saw it was probably not King Kong. You would know if a giant gorillia was loose in your house. There would be giant gorillia....uhhh....by-product all over the place.

Ellen said...

I've had a few encounters, but nothing with eyes. Now I'll be on the lookout though.

What a creepy thing for you to see. I can't even imagine not slipping into labor after that experience.

Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Good ghost story. I don't believe in ghosts, but I'm sitting alone at my computer at 5 a.m. on a dark morning, so I have to keep reminding myself that I don't believe in ghosts...

Jeffery Hodges

* * *

Mr. Fabulous said...

Hmm...if it was just a story, it's a damn good one.

If you are absolutely serious about it, then I believe you 100%. You are one of the most levelheaded bloggers I know.

Freaky.

Saur♥Kraut said...

Mr. Fab, dead serious (no pun intended).

Horace Jeffrey yeah... it was pretty creepy to actually go through, too...

Ellen, SaurKid was in no hurry to come out (thankfully!) but it was certainly something that sent the adrenalin pumping!!!

Lazy Iguana, count yourself lucky. It wasn't a fun experience that I'd want to repeat. As for the cats and rats getting along, maybe the cats were on payroll... Nope, no large gorillas. I think the banana peels would give them away...

Saur♥Kraut said...

Alex, well, count yourself lucky. The doll was creepy, but she also had a little nasty looking porcelain doll, too. Hard to explain why, but its always given me the shakes.

Ted, interesting!!!

Toxic Pee/Toilet Girl, thanks for stopping in! Hope to pee... I mean see... you again, soon.

Deb, glad you liked it! It's all true. The doll: not voudoun (I know people that are). I think it may have absorbed a great deal of evil/negative energy, though.

Valerie, interesting! You should write about it. And Daisy Lupin is collecting such stories for a ghost story blog she's starting. You should contact her.

Ed, I never believed in ghosts before that experience. Yeah... it was quite hellified (pun intended).

Daisy, I popped over to your blog and was impressed. Great writing, good idea, too! Count me in!

Heather said...

That would have wigged me out. How did you sleep in that place ever again?

Saur♥Kraut said...

Heather, I slept very close to my hubby, in the hopes that whatever it was would get him first... ;o)

Mikey said...

Just dropped in from Ed Abbey's blog... Freaky story. Thanks for all the chills.

Jenn said...

Ok, I was imagining you in a nighty until you pointed out that you were naked.

I wasn't freaked out until I scrolled down to the eyes picture. Now that is scarey. One reason I have never wanted to buy an old house. You have thoroughly creeped me out for the night.

Eddo said...

Well, I haven't had anything spookier than the cat thing jumping on my bed recently. However, when we were younger we had the whole lights flashing thing going on when we lived in a house in the colony and our dog would bark at stuff that wasn't there for no reason at all and then run away and hide and wimper like they were scared of something.

Interesting story.

I also believe that belief makes things real. We wrestle not against flesh and blood...

Anonymous said...

Creepy story, Saur!! How appropriate for Halloween! I do believe it was your prayers that drove the ghost/demon out.

I posted a ghost story over on my blog, too, but you may have already read this one.

Anonymous said...

Wow,that IS an interesting story! I've never had any encounters like that.

Tan Lucy Pez said...

Well, the Damnit Doll I know about. I've made them and given them to folks. In fact, my craft group at church made them and sold them at fairs!

You pin a paper to the doll when you give it out, that reads:
"When you want to kick the desk or throw the phone and shout.
Here's a little damnit doll you cannot do without.
Just grasp it firmly by the legs, and find a place to slam it.
And as you whack it's stuffing out, yell, "damnit, damnit, damnit!"


The red-eyed creature, I cannot explain. I don't believe in ghosts, but I am easily creeped out in the dark. You told this story very well. I enjoyed it.

Senor Caiman said...

Happy Halloweeen. I always agree with pregnant women so I'm sure you saw a spook.

I think my house is haunted because every time I sneeze the doorbell rings. I have cameras on the exterior and they never show the prankster.

Lee Ann said...

Wow...that is truly scary. Sounds like something that would have happened to me.

Wow....

HAPPY HALLOWEEN...
LOVE YA,
LEE ANN

Tea & Margaritas in My Garden said...

Okay....now I have shivers running up and down my arms! Freaky experience.I believe there`s more things in heaven and earth than we can ever imagine. Never seen a ghost of gouly but I do believe they exist.

tea
xo

The Lazy Iguana said...

Banana peels? I was thinking of some other substance when I said "gorilla by-product". While you would not want to step on banana peels, it would be much worse to step in something else gorillas produce piles of.

Miss Cellania said...

Well, now I'm gonna have nightmares. That story was scary enough, but the picture at the end is the cherry on top. Brrr!

Live, Love, Laugh said...

ok, now I am really freaked out. I haven't seen any eyes before but I have woke up and felt a presence in my room and seen a shadow before, if I see any eyes looking at me though, it is going to be all over!!!! Thanks saur, you have succeeded in scaring the living daylights out of me!!

Nihilistic said...

Did you ever see the movie Cat's Eye? The short story with Drew Barrymore and the Cat named General???

That's what it was!

eshuneutics said...

Neatly narrated, with a dash of humour! Psychic happenings can be connected to pregnancies--which produce heightened awareness...but others heard things too. I don't doubt this. A touch of Marechera: haunting in many ways.

Debbie said...

A very pregnant imagination. What did you eat before you went to sleep? What a strange house you lived in! Me I would have brought in the priest any how! Great story!

daveawayfromhome said...

Never having seen one, I cant say I believe in ghosts (I'm not totally against them, either), though I'm sure that things happen that we cant currently explain, and that time and space are a lot stranger than we know. Good story.

Ajay Shroff said...

Ok I dont know what it was..but i am spooked out.

exMI said...

YOU need to call into Coast to Coast AM with Art Bell or George Noury and share that story. They love good shadow people stories.

Drib said...

Dang SK, a day after Halloween and I'm freaked now. Appreciate it.

I have a buddy who swears up and down about Shadow People. I never really given it much thought but...that'd freak me out if I'd have seen that.

Anonymous said...

I know what it is but do you want to know? ;o)

Fred said...

Holy crap! Great story, Saur, I really enjoyed it.

Anonymous said...

Yikes...that was scary. I believe in ghosts, and I'm sure they are exist. I'm online everyday, until 3 or 4am. My PC is in the living room so I have to sit there all night when everyone's asleep.

Sometimes I caught black or white shadow, I think I'm getting used to it so I'm not scared anymore. But if I see just like what you saw, I will scared to death!!! Hahaha...