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The Shadow

So almost every morning I hear about a story about Β “the shadow girl,” “the face in the window,” “the little boy is back,” from my daughter. Β My daughter, Anna, aged 11 in July has always had these sort of stories. She’s been a co-sleeper basically all of her life. No matter what I’ve tried, she won’t sleep alone in her room. We’ll have a night when we think all is well, there are cats with her (for protection) and a nightlight left on. But without fail, 2-3am she’ll be standing by my bed, scaring me awake, with some story. Now, as a person who’s childhood was normal, sans the ‘ghosts’ who grabbed my legs, my arm, put me in a state of fear locked in a bathroom with doors ratting, I kind of have a soft spot for these ‘stories’. What if she’s telling the truth? Do I want to be the parent, like my own, who just never believed her? Or, if I say I believe her, will that perpetuate more stories? I don’t know. I try to use logic, “Well, cats are highly perceptive to ghosts and whatnot, but you clearly see the cats are still on your bed…” It doesn’t work.

SO, while I have no fix to this current situation, I figured might as well turn her stories into photos. Starting with the shadows. Ok, long story short, or long story kind of short… When I was stationed in Keflavik, Iceland (Navy) I shared a barracks room with another girl, but she was never around at night-she usually spent the nights with her boyfriend. One night as I’m laying down to go to sleep, the minute I shut my eyes I hear my Mom. Now back at home my Mom *always* woke up singing to the cats and our Rottweiler Vinnie. I opened my eyes and was looking out of my old bedroom, to the backdoor where she was standing and singing. It was nice and seemingly normal. Then instantly I realized…wait a minute, I’m not at home! The room went dark and there I was, back in my room in Keflavik. As my eyes started to focus on the shadows in the room, one caught my attention. It was the shadow of a man leaning against the far wall. My whole body started to shake as I stared in horror. Slowly, very slowly, this shadow slid down the wall into a crouching position and just stayed like that. I was in a panic, it didn’t make sense. I willed myself as hard as I could to close my eyes. As soon as they were shut the shaking stopped. I opened my eyes again and the shadow was gone. Totally freaked out, I jumped out of bed and turned the lights on. I sat up in bed until eventually I fell back to sleep.

About a week later, I was getting ready to sleep again. Pretty much the second I closed my eyes I heard a slow, sad whistling. Again, my whole body starts shaking and as I open my eyes, I see a shadow figure crouching right in front of me! Instantly I’m able to shut my eyes and the whistling and shaking stops. Hysterical, I jump out of bed, turn on the lights, open the blackout drapes (24 hour sunlight), and stay up until it’s time to go to work. At this time, I’m totally freaked out and have to tell someone. At the risk of sounding like a lunatic, but knowing I need to get out of that room, I tell my CO, who refers me to the Mormon chaplain in the IT department. I get a room transfer and the shadow never returns.

I realize this could very well have been the result of a wake-initiated lucid dream, but really…it was so crazily real to me, both times. I have other stories, things that happened in broad daylight, even with other people around, but I won’t go into those now. So yeah, child’s imagination, or…