Last week, I became radio famous. How? For my true story of past hauntings in a previous house. On Ks95, they were looking for stories from people who had been through creepy encounters. I dialed in, not expecting to get through the line and was greeted with the broadcaster who asked me what I had. Upon hearing my story, he told me it was the best one and I was going live. For the next few minutes, I got to tell my spooky story. After receiving several texts from friends, I decided in the spirit of Halloween, I’d retell it:)
It was an exhausting and busy day of moving into our past house. Though we had moved from a small place into a bigger place, we were amazed at the amount of boxes of things we had collected throughout our ten years and two kids. Our oldest child was getting ready to start kindergarten, our middle was a toddler and we had one on the way.
It was April.
Our main goal that day was to physically move all of our boxes into our new home, to get our furniture in after days of repainting and to get our beds put together so we could sleep in our new place. So, after much exhaustion, although we had gotten everything moved into the place, we chose to leave the boxes packed and crash into our beds.
The next morning, when I awoke, I looked over at my husband, who laid beside me. Initially, I started laughing to the point where I couldn’t stop.
“What?” he asked, confused, but laughing with me.
“Your face,” I said, between laughing fits. I could hardly breathe. Sometime during the night, his face and arms had been colored with markers and although I am the world’s lightest sleeper, I hadn’t even awoken.
“Did you have any marker on your hands that could’ve smeared or that you could have rubbed against your face?” I asked.
No, he didn’t.
Our kindergartner was still asleep in the other room and the toddler was in her crib. Everything was still in boxes and though we searched our house, there weren’t any markers to be found.
It became a joke until over the next few weeks, our toddler began to set up tea parties for two people in her room. “Is this spot for me?” I’d ask.
“No, mama. Ayla,” she’d say pointing to the other chair.
I didn’t think much of it, admirable of her imagination. But throughout the next several weeks, she began to talk to her. Like all the time. I asked what she looked like, playing along, and she easily described this little girl.
One day while pulling out of the driveway, our daughter screamed, causing me to floor the brakes in a sheer panic.
“What?!” I whipped my head around to face her.
“You forgot to buckle Ayla!” she cried out, looking at the empty seat beside her.
Fear gripped my heart as I considered what to do. “I’m sorry Ayla,” I said.
I got out and buckled “Ayla” in. Would you want to risk getting colored on during the night? She seemingly liked me.
We didn’t burn sage for a few more encounters. Not when our babysitter’s boyfriend refused to sleep on the couch downstairs after waking during the night to see a little girl standing on the steps watching him. He didn’t even know our story when he told us this. We wanted to keep our best babysitters after all:)
The breaking point happened one day when my husband and I were alone in the house and downstairs. There was the creak of our rocking chair gliding against our wooden floors upstairs.
“See who it is,” I urged him, wondering if maybe a neighbor kid had come over looking for one of our kids to play with.
He climbed the stairs, knowing someone would be in the chair, but unsure of who. When he reached the top of the stairs, I waited, expecting to hear the start of a conversation and curious as to who stopped over. Silence.
“Weird,” he said when he came back downstairs, shaking his head. “No one’s there.”
Immediately, the creaking started, back and forth above us. We looked at each other, thinking the same thing.
“You go,” I encouraged him. After all, I am the spider killer of the house so this was clearly his responsibility.
Again, he trudged upstairs and the rocking immediately stopped.
We’re not the most superstitious people, but at this point, we knew something had to be done. I dreaded anytime he was working late. And so, that was the night we drove to the grocery store and bought sage, came back and lit it, while also saying a prayer for God to bless our house.
We lived in that house for many years and despite being near a cemetery, never felt uncomfortable again. No more Ayla. No more strange rocking. No more midnight coloring to Freddy’s face.
These days we still talk about Ayla, but it is always accompanied with laughter. A story from many years ago.
But when we talk of her, we make sure to do it lovingly.