What Time Is It?
-By Debbi Decker
My mother passed recently and I had been spending time at her house, cleaning and gathering things to send to Goodwill and other charitable organizations. Towards the end of a 6-day stay, I was still trying to understand why the house felt so “clear”. It was not an after effect felt by me due to my mother’s death. I had noticed from the moment I walked in that the house felt empty. As if no one had ever lived there. I was confused, curious, and a bit unnerved. Houses imprint. Unless the place is brand spanking new, there are going to be elements that will resonate with everyone. I even commented to several family members and friends about the emptiness that I felt. My brother commented that he could feel it too but he felt that it would change.
The last full day I was there, I spent the day alone cleaning and sorting until late afternoon. I stepped out to get a bite to eat and to wind down from my busy day. After finishing my meal and checking the day’s e-mails, I decided to kick back in a very comfortable recliner in the living room and read until it was time to head to bed. Within a few minutes of reading, I began feeling a sense of heaviness in the atmosphere. As the evening wore on, and the sense of heaviness increased, I several times stop reading, looked around and tried to figure out exactly what I was feeling. The house was now occupied by someone or something other than me. I was not able to figure out who or what it was, but as the feeling got stronger I began to sense that it did not quite like me being in the house. It was not a hateful or hurtful feeling, but more of a “why are you here and you need to leave” kind of feeling.
At that point, I figured I would head to my room, read some more and then try to get some sleep. I noticed the digital clock at my bedside nightstand was not working. Thinking it was a battery issue, I went into my mother’s bedroom and rustled up some batteries and inserted them into the clock. The clock would light up, and then within 2 seconds the numbers would appear to melt from the top to the bottom and the clock would stop working. I fiddled with the clock trying to fix it for several minutes and it continued to react in the same manner. Assuming that the clock was broken, I went back into my mother’s bedroom to get a clock that was on her dresser. This clock, although battery operated, was not digital, had hour, minute, and second hands, and was running but the time was wrong. I reset the time and the clock stopped working. Again, I inserted fresh batteries, but nothing changed. That clock would not run either.
Now, I was two clocks down, with a house that was feeling creepier and heavier by the minute. I was frustrated and starting to get a bit edgy. Both clocks were put on my mother’s dresser in her room. I had to have a clock that worked though. It was important to me that night that I be able to see the time at any moment. Eventually, I found a small clock that was working, placed it on the nightstand beside my bed, and proceeded to read until my eyes were blurry. I was unable to get any sleep that night. It was a doze off, wake up, and repeat kind of night. I never did turn off the lights. And I was NOT leaving that room. For whatever reason, my room felt the least strange of all of the rooms in the house that night.
Morning came, and I managed a sleep-deprived stagger into the kitchen to make some coffee and get ready for the day. My sister was due early to assist with the sorting of mom’s clothes and further cleaning out of closets. Although the house felt a bit better than it had the night before, there was still a sense of occupancy and some heaviness.
My sister arrived and we began our day. Going back into mom’s bedroom to retrieve some items we needed, I happened to glance at my mother’s dresser. Both clocks were up and running perfectly, with the right time displayed on both! The heaviness I’d sensed the night before seemed now to be centralized in my mother’s bedroom. I quietly walked out and shut the door behind me.
I’m sure you can imagine all the swear words I was speaking under my breath. I let whatever or whoever it was that messed with those clocks the night before know that I was not amused. And I left a day earlier than originally planned and drove home.
Debbi Decker is proprietor of twistedpixelstudio Art & Assemblage Emporium. Check out her artist page to find links to her shop and blog to read more of her writings. Visit again next month for the telling of hauntings and ghostly tales by Debbi Decker.