I’m going to break a rule here and write in first person narrative because this really did happen to me. I was not asleep and I was not imagining things. I truly believe I saw a ghost. And not a very nice one either.
My husband and I were living in Aggie Village in Fort Collins, Colorado. It’s student housing for families at Colorado State University and it’s pretty old. There was about two feet of space between my side of the bed and the window which looked out on a brightly lit street. It was just our luck that there was a street light directly outside that window so I never needed any lights in the apartment to find my way around at night.
I’m a notoriously bad sleeper and I’ll wake up at least multiple times nearly every night for no reason at all. One night I woke up and my head was positioned so that when I opened my eyes I was looking right at the window with those god-awful greyish-tan curtains brightly lit from the street light outside. Except that there was something very dark standing in front of those curtains, blocking the light.
A large black shadow, fuzzy around the edges. It’s features were hidden – it was just black. But I could feel that it was a man and I could feel it watching me. I’ve had other encounters before this but only once before have I been frightened and this… thing… terrified me. All at once I knew I was not safe. A myriad of thoughts flashed through my head in less than a second and none of them stuck around to be analyzed. A rapist? A murderer? A burglar? But he had no solid features and he was fuzzy, like he wasn’t in focus and my eyesight is 20/20.
Like the old, dried up cliché says, “it seemed like an eternity,” but really I couldn’t have been paralyzed from fear for more than two seconds I would think and even that might be a second too long. After all, the brain works mysteriously quickly in certain situations. When I was able to rip my eyes off of the figure, my fear growing with every paralyzing slow-motion moment, I turned away to wake up my husband. As they say “there is strength in numbers.” It literally took less than a second. I whipped my head back around only to find the figure gone.
I bolted upright in bed, repeating, “He’s gone! He’s gone!” My husband only half woke up and, upon hearing the panic in my voice and seeing me sitting up, tried to soothe me. “It’s just a nightmare,” he said. “It’s okay. It’s just a nightmare.”
Yes, it was a nightmare. But it was real.
Have you ever had an encounter you couldn’t explain?