The year was 2004, the month was July and I was preparing to begin a new journey: college. It was surprisingly not the brightest time in my life. I was embarking upon a transition that had far greater implications than I realized at the time.
I was leaving my mom alone in a house that had begun to cloud with shadows. Maybe shadows from before us, but then we added our own too. And I always wonder did the darkness of that house create problems in our lives? Or was it just a metaphor for what my family and I were to endure while we lived there?
A couple of overnight guests claim to have seen a figure that they described as male. One time the figure was at the bottom of the basement stairs and appeared to be wearing a hat. Another time the figure appeared to be bending over the bed, watching my sister and her boyfriend while they slept.
I had a couple weird moments in that house too. The funniest one is the day I woke up and my alarm clock was on the pillow next to my head. People said I must have moved it while I was asleep. We typically try to rationalize the unexplained because in our linear thinking world we operate like everything can be explained. Most people need a wake up call.There comes a moment when we realize everything cannot be explained in the clear terms we might like. In trying to explain everything, rationalizing the minutiae of life, we lose sight of the magic, of the mystery.
My mom’s room was beneath mine and she said she heard footsteps up there all the time. She said she would call up to me to see what I was doing. But I wouldn’t respond. Maybe a soul was left behind there on Yale Lane, stuck in time, not ready to move on to the light yet. If that soul or souls were suffering, than we found them because we were about to embark upon on a tremendous amount of suffering ourselves.
It was in that house that my mother became very sick. She started her long journey home back then when her illness began. Perhaps she knew, and we all did unconsciously that she was going to die. Ghosts roamed the halls of our house and she was becoming a ghost too. The shadow of her former self haunted us all. Our life was changed forever.
No one should have to watch their mother change like that. To see the life slip away from her over the years was surreal. It was a subtle, continuous heartbreak, watching her lose everything that made her who she was. It gnawed on me day after day. I wasn’t sure how would it end but suspected often there was only one way it could.
Life consists of many miracles but it also consists of tragedy and death. Those are inescapable facts. It doesn’t make life any less beautiful or any less worth living.
So in 2004 after graduating high school and realizing that my mom’s time was limited I was anxious about the next chapter of my life. The idea of going to college terrified me. That summer I began to hear a whisper. Signs are everywhere. My spirit was calling me to remember some valuable things. I was getting the call at that time because it was key to my survival in this world.
Have you gotten the call yet? The call to understand more about this world and the life after. Ghosts were the first spiritual concept that I believed in and wanted to understand more. Ghosts are just the beginning. If you cant wrap your mind around the existence of ghosts then you are not ready for the great mysteries yet.
I still think about the ghost on Yale Lane and my own ghosts there. I’ve dreamt of that house many times. It’s eerie yet sentimental. The ghost of my mom haunts me in more ways than one. She watches over us I know, in a literal sense. But she haunts my thoughts too because I can’t help but wonder what life would be like if she were here. Her absence continues to haunt me, like a vacant space that can never be filled, a wound that never seems to really heal. There is so much of her in me too, more than I probably even realize.
But for all the things she did that made me stronger, that made me who I am; losing her made me who I am too. The ghosts of our past are painful. They may still make us angry, make us cry and shake our heads because it’s not fair. But our past suffering, our losses and all the people we’ve loved along the way make it possible for us to carry on. Every time something bad happens, we are again forced to realize how incredibly strong we are, otherwise we would forget. We must exercise muscles to strengthen them.
When I was young I was afraid of ghosts until I began to understand what ghosts are and why they are here. Once I understood that, they no longer scared me. I may not have had the desire to understand ghosts until death stared me in the face. Mysteries are waiting to reveal themselves to us, we just have to want to discover them.
The mysteries of life may not be calling you yet. But when they do, don’t be afraid to answer, they will comfort you like nothing ever has before. Pain and suffering are ancient companions of planet Earth, so all we can do is find ways to coexist with them and find ways cope with the heartache we will often experience while living here.
The ghosts and shadows will always be here, they will always haunt us, we can’t ignore them but we move on each day in spite of our sorrow.