Paranormal story time: Other peoples’ houses

A few months ago I posted about one of my new favorite podcasts, Para(normal). I had sent her some personal experiences and she read them on a recent episode, also giving me (and this blog) a shoutout. Yes, I fangirled. Yes, I’m sad that they’re over the border and we can’t be best friends.

Anyway, in case you’re not listening to this podcast (WHYYYYY), I thought I’d start sharing some of my paranormal experiences. They’re not super scary necessarily, but when I think about some of this stuff it still creeps me out a bit.

When I was a kid my paternal grandmother owned a farm in the mountains of eastern Tennessee. It wasn’t a functional farm really, but there was a lot of land and some of the old farm buildings were still intact. The original 18th-century farmhouse was hit by lightning and burned to the ground a few years after my grandmother purchased it. No one was hurt and she managed to save some of her things, but she was so unsettled by the experience that when she rebuilt the house, she wouldn’t put it on the same location as the original house. She built a little 3 room log cabin, and when I was about 11 she decided to drastically change the house. She added a library, dining room, bathrooms, guest rooms… it was a pretty major renovation. After the renovation was complete I started seeing things in the house.

When the family was gathered in the house we usually hung out in the kitchen around the large island. From that vantage point we could see almost the entire first floor, and to the right of the island was the first half of the stairs. There were a few stairs, a landing with a huge, beautiful stained glass window, and then the staircase turned 180 degrees and continued up to the second floor. Every time I was sitting at the kitchen island I could see a man standing on the landing, just watching us. He was tall, in dark pants and a light colored shirt, and he was opaque enough to block out the light from the window. He never seemed menacing, but it was unsettling to see him just… standing there. Watching.

I would usually spend a week or two with my grandma in the summer and my room was on the second floor, along with a loft, a powder room, and another guest room, while my grandma’s room was on the first floor. I never liked going upstairs at the end of the day because I’d have to walk by the place where the man stood, and I always felt like he might follow me upstairs or spend the night lurking in one of the empty rooms. As an adult, I’ve tried to discuss this man with my grandmother and various other family members, but it seems like I’m the only one who saw him.

When I was in my mid-20s I lived in a large house with my now ex-husband and another married couple. The house was built in the 1970s in a large subdivision – not the kind of place you’d expect to be haunted. My husband and I had a bedroom, bathroom, and office on one end of the second floor and the other couple had the same thing on the other side. We shared the common spaces on the first floor and in the finished basement. The only part of the basement that wasn’t finished was the storage/laundry room to the left of the basement stairs, and from the minute we moved in this room gave me the creeps. I always felt like I was being watched while I was doing laundry so I spent as little time in that room as possible. We kept our game systems and a pool table in the finished part of the basement, and we’d often find the lights on and things moved around when no one had been down there. We always blamed one of the other people in the house rather than something paranormal.

A few months after moving in we started hearing scratching noises in the walls on the second floor. Any time I was in my bedroom alone I’d hear something scurrying across the floor in the crawl space above me, and it seemed to follow me around the room. A few times one of my roommates would hear the same thing in their bedroom at the same time, but we assumed we had rodents and called an exterminator. He didn’t find any evidence of animals in the crawl space. At least once a week we’d hear someone pounding violently on the front door and there wouldn’t be anyone there. The scariest incident involved the basement; I was in the kitchen helping the wife from the other couple clean up after dinner, and suddenly we heard voices in the basement. We thought maybe someone had left the tv on, even though no one had been down there in hours, but the minute we opened the basement door the voices stopped. We went down to check, and the tv was off. We went back upstairs and closed the basement door, and the voices started again. It was a man and a woman, and they were having a heated conversation but we couldn’t make out the words. We both left the kitchen in a hurry. Neither of us wanted to acknowledge what we’d heard, and by the time our husbands came downstairs the voices had completely stopped.

Not long after these incidents started the other couple began arguing a lot, and the activity seemed to increase. Slamming doors, small objects going missing, more voices. My husband and I couldn’t take the fighting and all of the activity so we moved out. A few months after we moved the other couple filed for divorce and sold the house, and as far as I know the new owners haven’t experienced anything.

I have a TON of creepy stories and personal experiences, so if this is something you’d like to see more often let me know!

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