(NOTE: the following occurred in Grosse Ile, Michigan)
I think that I believed somewhat in ghosts and spirits growing up, but was never very aware of them. In 1984 I was a 14 year old skeptic of scary things, religion, God, etc. So, ghost stories really didn't just enter my mind - even after watching horror movies or reading scary books. However, a winter night that year changed my mind forever.
For months my two-year old sister, Sara, had been having nightmares. Her room was right next to mine and connected by a rather thin door, so I could hear everything that she did. I woke up many nights hearing her thrash and cry out. I knew that her dreams were not normal. How many two-year olds living a happy, normal life have intense nightmares several times a week? Quite often I would go in and comfort her after she woke up. Sometimes I would bring her into my room to sleep with me, so that she wouldn't be scared.
I began having occasional nightmares too. Most of them involved something or someone trying to "get" Sara, and my trying to save her. Usually, the dreams involved a burglar or baby kidnapper who was breaking into the house and trying to grab her or hurt her. In the dreams, I would do everything I could to hide her, fight the thing, or get her out of the house and away from whatever it was. Sometimes I would get hurt or die trying to do so, but in the end, she was always OK.
Well, these nightmares continued, side by side, with Sara's, for several months. Then they began to get more frequent and intense, causing me to lose sleep and become somewhat anxious. I didn't tell my parents about the dreams because I knew that it would upset them. Particularly my mother, who is a somewhat psychic dreamer herself. She hates to hear about bad dreams involving her loved ones because she thinks that they may come true. How could I tell her that something was going after Sara in my dreams? Not only did I worry about my mom's reaction, but I also felt kind of stupid for worrying about it.
Then, I woke up one night from a particularly horrible dream about Sara. I laid in bed breathing hard, with tears coursing down my face, and shaking - it was so real and so intense. I had the door to Sara's room open that night, so that I could hear her. She was having a nightmare too, thrashing and moaning. Suddenly, she woke up crying and called out for me. I immediately got up and went to her crib. Without opening her eyes (she was still half asleep) she lifted her little body toward me so that I could pick her up. As I leaned over to do so, I felt a prickly sensation on the back of my neck and up my spine. I felt as if I was being watched from a corner of her room that was opposite the door I had walked through. I tried to "shake it off" and dismiss it as leftover nerves from the nightmare I'd had. However, the feeling didn't leave me and I walked out of the room, holding Sara, as quickly as possible.
I climbed into bed and laid down with Sara, arranging her in a "snuggling" fashion against my arm and chest. She seemed to calm down and begin to drift away when I felt something come through the door from her room. At that second, I felt a crushing weight on my entire body. I couldn't move or breath or make a noise. The only way I could describe it is to imagine that an invisible two-ton truck is lying on top of you. I noticed, with alarm, that Sara wasn't moving or breathing either, but I couldn't move to check on her.
The presence kept moving into the room and stopped to hover about two feet from my bed. I remember looking straight at the spot where it was (since my face was turned in that direction when it came into the room and I was "frozen" there) and not being able to see a thing. However, I could see it in my mind. It is so hard to describe how I could see what it was but not actually view it with my eyes. In my "mind's eye" the presence resembled a grayish-black cloud that was somehow electric and alive. Almost like one of the "swarms" made by special effects in a very bad B-movie. It had a dark energy that I could perceive strongly, but it was not human or human-like. I felt it curiously observing me without any particular sort of animosity - only that it was able to paralyze us because it was there. I perceived that it was an entity with a purpose directed toward my sister - to make her sick. I don't know what kind of sickness it carried, or who from, or why. Only that it carried it and was trying to find a way to get at her. It was a very "cold" and uncompassionate presence, like a mob assassin who doesn't know his hit personally. I was scared to death. I felt totally helpless to do anything to protect my sister from this electric sickness, or to protect myself. We were both paralyzed and unable to breathe or cry for help.
But then something happened. I grew angry. My anger grew and grew almost instantaneously, with a force that I'd never encountered before or have since. I grew so psychically enraged that I felt like my anger came from somewhere else, that it was superhuman. Because my body couldn't move, my anger had nowhere to release itself but through my own mind. And it did - right back toward the presence hovering near me and Sara. Somehow, all the anger of the world funneled through my head and communicated itself to the force which sought to bring sickness to my sister. It felt as though my head would explode.
Then, suddenly, as quickly as it floated into my room, the presence floated back out. It was as if the energy had felt my anger and went "whoa, I don't want a piece of that..." and decided to leave. The thing just went back through the door toward my sister's room and didn't come back. As soon as the presence hit the other side of the doorway the weight was lifted off of me and Sara. Both of us filled our lungs with a simultaneous whoosh - sounding like drowning swimmers gasping for air. We were able to move again, and Sara began crying. I comforted her again until she fell back asleep, and then I laid awake - listening - for several hours.
The next day, I got up and placed a cross over Sara's crib and said several prayers in her room to try and "cleanse" it. My parents, who were not particularly religious people, thought that I was "cute" but didn't pay much attention to it. I also kept a bible next to my bed for the entire remaining time that we lived in that house. My nightmares stopped, and so did Sara's, although they started up again when she moved into another bedroom with my other baby sister several months later. I was alarmed that she was having bad dreams again, and checked on her regularly during the night. However, I didn't feel the same presence that I had before, just something that seemed to be sort of annoying. Sara never got sick with anything more than a bad virus when we lived in that house, and hasn't since.
I've never forgotten that night in 1984. I've never been able to find an adequate explanation for it either. One person, who was very religious, told me that it was an evil spirit and that I was Sara's spiritual mother and protector. He also told me that the anger that I'd experienced is called "righteous anger" - the kind that comes with the help of God. Some of this made sense since I'd always felt very connected to my sister in a very deep way. However, over the years I've come to accept that there are all kinds of spirits or energies, including some which bring bad illnesses or luck. I believe that what I experienced was one of those "sick energies" and that I really did repel it with helpful anger from somewhere. My family has since experienced a few more "ghost/spirit" incidents, and continue to have an occasional insightful dream. Whatever the medium, I pray that no one else has to experience the same type of black energy/presence that me and my sister did that night.