By Tess Baker
My good friend Jean died October 18, 2013 after a short illness. When she became ill, I started going to the senior citizens luncheons that Jean attended, wanting to know her better. She would pick a seat across the table from me, always looking at me with her brown eyes. It was hard to read what she was thinking.
She introduced me to everyone as Eddie Carpenters’ daughter. Jean was a coworker with my dad in the 40’s when they both worked at a meat packing plant. She loved talking about the old days and I loved listening.
I went to her funeral but didn’t go to the cemetery. I felt guilty but was mentally and physically drained and just wanted to go home.
The next morning I sat down on the couch and dozed off. I had been sleeping half an hour when I became aware of something that felt like a hand, caressing my cheek. As I woke up gradually, the hand slowly went away. It seemed like Jean, letting me know she understood and was ok.
But it wasn’t ok. Other things started happening as soon as I put my Christmas decorations out after Thanksgiving. I brought out my battery operated candles, consisting of 6 candlesticks, and several thicker candles, all requiring batteries. The candlesticks need to be screwed in by the light bulb in order to go on.
Shortly after they were out on the windowsill, the candles started going on by themselves and I thought that I just didn’t turn them off all the way. I started making sure they were turned off. Then one evening, right after I had told my husband JB about “the ghost,” the candlesticks started lighting, one by one, in secession! It happened right at nightfall. I left the candles on and went to bed.
The next morning, the candles were all off. I asked JB if he turned them off and he said no. I went over and made sure the candles were not touching the batteries. A moment later one of the candles came back on by itself!
Later that week, JB couldn’t find his address book and was certain he left it on the nightstand along with other things needed for work. Everything in his pocket was found in with his clothes in the washing machine; his magnetic identification card to gain access to buildings at work; his chapstick—all important enough that he was very careful not to misplace them. So here was another thing we blamed on our strange unwelcome guest.
One morning after Christmas, I was in bed half asleep and felt something move under the mattress. It moved again, suddenly, then nothing. So was it really there? JB and I started talking about the things he had seen and heard and I told him about the mattress. Something moving under the mattress wasn’t possible. It was very new and had no tears or rips—there was nothing that should be moving!
I went to my favorite psychic friend, Molly with my story. “Someone is trying to get your attention,” she said as she described a man she called James Mills. He had lived in the area near our home about 200 years ago. Her voice went on in a monotone about James’ life, his violent past, his wealth, and his episode of violence against his wife. But he wasn’t violent now. He was “stuck” here on earth and didn’t believe he could ever leave. Because of his suicide, he felt unworthy of Heaven. He was truly a ghost.
Molly told me he had hung himself and his neck was leaning to the side—that was how she knew he had not transitioned. I suddenly realized she was describing someone she could “see” and she confirmed that James was standing behind me with his neck at an odd angle lying on his shoulder. The little room we were in got much smaller. My hair was tingling on the back of my neck.
Molly spoke again and told me what to do to help James to go “to the other side.” I was to pick a time close to 8pm because that is when he hung himself. I needed to light candles in a circle, turn off all other lights, and tell him to go to the light. I needed to tell him that his wife (her name was Sherry) was waiting for him and would welcome him home. His stillborn child was also there, waiting. I was to repeat this over several times and say the 23rd psalm because it was his favorite. I did what Molly told me to do and the incidents started to cease.
It is fall again a year later and the candles are out on the windowsill. I am hoping James made it home.