Since it’s almost Halloween, let me share with you an experience so creepy and frightening that just by writing about it now, I still get goosebumps.
I was a college freshman living with the family of my aunt in Angeles City back in 1990. I used to sleep all alone in their upstairs room, while my aunt and uncle along with their three little kids were all cozily tucked in in their downstairs rooms. The house was old and the street, eerily quiet. The only light that illuminated the room was coming from a streetlight nearby.
I remember standing at the corner of a bedroom, near the wooden jalousie window, staring at the still, seemingly lifeless body lying on the bed. I moved closer, trying to get a good look at the face of the sleeping figure. Dread was slowly creeping in, enveloping me, choking me, nearly immobilizing me. The form of the body partially covered by a blanket, her sleeping position, even the nightdress she was wearing all looked terrifyingly familiar. But, I was still taken aback when my suspicion was confirmed. I was looking at myself!
I took an involuntary backward step as I made a soundless gasp, my knees nearly buckling. My mind was in total chaos from too many thoughts that were racing too fast, clamoring for my attention. “Am I dead? What caused my death? Is my family already notified about it? Why can’t I remember any of it?”
Frustrated, I wanted to flee, to go as far away as I could. I turned, but instead of bumping into the concrete wall, I met no resistance. I just passed through the solid wall! And, instead of taking a painful fall to the ground, I defied gravity. I was floating, drifting, flying!
I was afraid, but I was also ecstatic. I could fly, and the feeling was both exhilarating and intoxicating. I couldn’t stop myself even if I wanted to. Like a child who just received a new toy, I was excited to try my power to fly.
I flew past our neighbors’ houses, past the familiar trees and light posts and street signs. I even flew past a balut vendor and a couple of drunk buddies. But, when the surroundings were no longer familiar, I ground to a halt. Fear crept back in. “What if I get lost? Would anyone even know that I’m missing? What if I can no longer get back to my body?”
So, I headed back to where I came from. With apprehension, the return trip seemed to take a lot longer. When I finally got back to my room, I thought of all the horror movies I was so fond of watching. I remember how a “wandering soul”, in his effort to get back to his body, would simply imitate the body’s exact position and sort of “merge” with it. That’s what I did. And, surprisingly, I was able to merge with ease!
When I slowly opened my eyes, the first thing I saw was the ceiling. And when I moved my eyeballs, I could see everything in my left and right through my peripheral vision. But, for the life of me, I couldn’t move any other part of my body. I tried my head, my hands, and my feet, but nothing would even budge. It was like being in a trance! I was aware of my surroundings, but I couldn’t move. I wanted to scream, but no sound would come out. I was trying to stomp my feet, but they were like a couple of heavy dead logs.
In that particular instance, I knew that only one thing could help me. And so, I prayed. I prayed so hard like I hadn’t prayed before. Then, I concentrated earnestly, summoned my will power and gathered all my remaining strength. And, in one powerful, desperate attempt, I tried to move again. At last, I budged! I slowly lifted my head, then my fingers, and, then, my legs. I was able to escape from that realm of semi-consciousness. A prison between deep slumber and wakefulness.
It was a relief to know that I was still alive!
I didn’t want to delve deeper into what really transpired that frightful night. I didn’t even tell a soul about it. But, the next day, I retraced my steps, or rather my flight route, the night before. Everything was exactly what I remembered seeing. Even the particular spot where I decided to go back, that point where I had never really been to until last night’s mysterious journey.
I hope and pray that I will never have to go through that horrifying experience again, because it was an experience so creepy and frightening that just writing about it now, I still get goosebumps.