So things were quiet. Mostly.
Yes, that lamp turned on when my mom was here but that was it for a while.
And I find myself wanting to blow off electronic things. I suppose at this point I’ve watched enough Ghost Hunters to know that you have to look for another explanation first. There are too many things I don’t know about how lamps and clocks work to just go, “Ah ha! It’s paranormal!”
But it was weird. And it’s hard to dismiss the fact that the only times I’ve ever seen lamps turn on by themselves with no other explanation have been in places where I also had other unexplainable experiences. (Remind me to tell you about the haunted hotel room I stayed in once … interesting story.)
For those of you who might assume I’m too quick with the old calling-it-a-ghost thing, you should know that the lamp in my bedroom started blinking on and off rapidly one night. I examined it and found an ancient curse etched into the underside …
I’m kidding. I actually found that it was a loose connection on a very old lamp. So that was the end of my so-ugly-its-frickin’-gorgeous bedside light.
Opening the door?
For a few months it was uneventful around here. So much so, that it felt like things were really over.
One Friday night, I put the wee ones to bed and collapsed onto the couch for some mindless TV. Friday night is ghost night on the Travel Channel. I wanted to watch. But I told myself that I wasn’t watching that stuff anymore.
Then I thought… That’s ridiculous! I’d have to be cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs to think that a damn TV show is going to affect what’s going on in my house. I mean, that doesn’t even make any sense! Would a ghost know what I’m watching on TV? And can’t I control my own mind enough to watch something about ghosts without subconsciously inviting them over for coffee?
So I watched The Dead Files.
I’m sorry, I find it super interesting. I just do.
It was fun to watch again. But I admit, it got me thinking: What on earth is the deal with the Single Momma Townhouse? Could it really have been a ghost who was doing all the weird things? If it was, I didn’t have any sense of evil or darkness about it. Heck, even Megan took it in stride and the darn thing tried to talk to her.
But whatever. We didn’t need to hear from it. It would all remain a mystery as far as I was concerned.
The Single Momma Townhouse has what everyone calls Brady Bunch stairs — that is, the backs of the stairs aren’t closed. So if you’re sitting in the living room and someone is coming down the steps, you can’t see the backs of their feet until they get to the landing.
One night I put Megan to bed. A few minutes later I saw her feet on the top step. Not moving. Just standing there. She never does stuff like that. I was about to ask her what was up when she came down the rest of the way — slowly with a puzzled look on her face.
“Um, mommy? I’m not sure how to tell you this, but something just said my name again.”
Oh boy. Now Megan has no idea what I watch on TV after she goes to bed. I’ve never discussed The Dead Files with her. We never talked about the strange things that happened in our house, other than right after they happened.
So this event was entirely out of the blue. She looked really confused — and also as if she knew what she was saying sounded crazy and she couldn’t quite believe it happened herself. In other words, she wasn’t making it up. (Mommas: Back me up here. You can smell a lie from your 8-year old like a fart in a car.* It might change in the teenage years, but most 8-year olds haven’t entirely honed their lying skills.)
*Thanks to the awesome early ’90s Christian Slater movie Pump Up the Volume for the fart reference. I’ve gotten lot of mileage out of it over the years.
Anyway, I believed her.
I went into hypercalm mode.
“OK. Are you sure there was no way it came from outside?”
“No, it was inside my room. Near my posters.” Her posters are on her closet door.
“Hmm. Do you think there’s anyway you just thought you heard something?”
“Mommy. I heard it. I’m sure.”
“OK, then,” I said as I popped up off the couch. “We’re going to handle this right now.”
We went up to her room and she showed me where the voice came from. I looked around a bit but didn’t see anything out of the ordinary.
“Come sit on the bed,” I told her. “This is what you’re supposed to do when these things happen.” I still hesitated to use the word “ghost” with her. I didn’t know if that would scare her — and she didn’t seem scared at the moment, just confounded.
Hippie Trish, I mean I started talking out loud. “God, please surround us with your white light.” Why did I say that? Protection, in case there was anything questionable lurking around … “Now I would like to talk to whoever keeps saying Megan’s name. If you are her guardian angel, we’d like to say thank you for looking out for her and please continue to do so.”
I turned to Megan and asked, “If it is your guardian angel, do you still want it to talk to you or not?”
“Well, not right now because I’m going to bed and I’m tired. But other than that it’s OK.”
I addressed the room. “If you are Megan’s guardian angel, please don’t talk to her at bedtime because she needs to sleep. Now if you are not Megan’s guardian angel, we ask you to leave her alone. Don’t talk to her, don’t try to contact her, don’t do anything to her. Just leave her be.”
I turned to Megan again. “See? You have to claim your space. You have to let them know that you’re in charge of your room and they’re not allowed to mess with you. You have to be a little bit forceful about it.”
“OK,” she said. “Can I try?”
“If you are not my guardian angel, you need to get outta here and stop talking to me! Because this is my room and I don’t want you in here anymore! So get out!” She sounded like she meant it.
“Nice!” I told her. “Now if you feel scared at night, you can ask to be surrounded in God’s white light for protection. You can also ask your guardian angels to look after you. And you can even ask for extra angels if that makes you feel better.”
(Yes, I believe in angels even though I’m not religious. I have my reasons. There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy…)
“How many angels would you like?” I asked her.
“Six,” she said. “Plus one extra.”
“OK then. We ask for six angels plus one extra to surround Megan while she sleeps to keep her safe. If anything other than a guardian angel or a being of the light should try to contact her while she’s sleeping, we ask for the angels to intervene.”
She smiled. Big.
“Now let’s send some angels to Benjamin,” I said. “Just in case.” So we sent him 7 angels. Then Megan wanted to send angels to me and her daddy. She sent us each 10.
When I left the room a few minutes later, she was in her bed whispering to her angels.
At bed time every night, we always name three happy things that happened during the day. The next night she said, “Can I say something from yesterday? I liked talking to the angels.”
So that was all nice and pretty and good.
Darn squishy hippie girl
But still. Something had spoken to my kid. Again. And my hippie magic apparently had its limits.
A friend of mine let me borrow her sage stick. Burning sage is supposed to clear anything that might be in your house. So I lit it up and waved it around every corner of every room, including closets. I, again, said that the thing had to leave us alone.
Here’s where being a hippie is a drawback. I waffled. I guess my thought was that I didn’t care if it was here, as long as it left us alone. So I was slightly inconsistent. At times I said leave us alone and then at other times I said get out of the house.
My resoluteness was less than resolute. I knew I potentially lacked the forcefulness I might need.
Raindrops in the potty
So all was quiet again.
For a bit.
Then one night I was in the house alone. Asleep. Bedroom window open.
I was awakened by the sound of water.
I listened for a minute. Must be rain …
But it didn’t quite sound like rain.
So I got up and went to the window.
It wasn’t raining.
The water sound was coming from behind me.
The master bathroom.
I went in.
The sink was on. I turned if off and went back to bed. What else was there to do?
I told the Irishman about it later. He said, “You must have left the sink on when you got ready for bed.”
There’s no way. The night before, I had brushed my teeth and then I read in my bed for 20 minutes. I find it hard to believe that I wouldn’t have noticed the water running during that time.
Plus, it woke me up when it came on.
Plus, I don’t think I’ve ever just left a sink running and walked away in my entire life. (Who does that?)
Could it be a plumbing issue? Again, I don’t know enough about that area to know. However, this has never happened before in nearly two years of living here. Also, I got an entirely new sink and faucet setup a few months ago.
I don’t know what to think about that.
But the next day I was in the bathroom getting ready. I started preparing to launch into my regular leave us alone routine, when I decided to change courses.
Obviously, whatever this was really wanted to make contact.
So I said this instead, “OK, if you really want to make contact, you can talk to me. Just me. Not my kids. Don’t bother my kids, don’t talk to them, leave them alone. But you can tell me what you want. I’m curious.”
That was Memorial Day weekend. Nothing since.
And now, I’m ready to move into a deeper level of investigation. I don’t want to say too much about it yet, but I’ll keep you posted.
Thanks for reading.