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Sunday, July 5, 2009

Not Moving (or, I think I saw the devil.)

We are not moving. Not right now, anyway, because the house that I just loved and adored and had to have, turned out to be not such a nice place after all.

Oh sure, it was cheap, and it was in a very nice area. But it had some major issues, three of which were the roof, the plumbing, and the electrical. All three were cobbled together and probably functional but certainly not up to code. And then there was the very obvious ganja growing operation in the garage, and the secret tunnel (did I tell you about the secret tunnel?) that led to an underground room where the previous occupants had been growing mushrooms. And I'm not talking about the yummy delicious portobella variety here folks.

None of that scared me off. I will tell you what scared me off, but you have to promise not to laugh or call me crazy. (You can think I'm crazy if you want, just don't tell me that.)

So. First I have to say this. I don't believe in the devil or anything like that. I believe in positive (good) and negative (bad) energy. I think these energies are powerful enough to manifest themselves into various incarnations of good and evil, but I don't believe in a devil surrounded by various lesser demons. And if I ever start acting like I do, you better come make sure I didn't raid that secret room.

When I first saw the house on Ryan Road (heretofore referred to as "the Ryan Road house,") I was absolutely, madly in love with it. It felt spiritual, in a way. I immediately envisioned medicine circles and herb gardens and shaded benches. It felt like it had been all made and laid out just for me. It was, in a word, perfect. I took tons of pictures and couldn't wait till the girls came back from their trip to Grandma's so I could bring them through it too.

The next day I showed the girls the pictures, and they seemed really excited too. So we went down to the house, all of us chattering excitedly about paint colors and the pros and cons of Berber carpet.

When we pulled in the driveway, everything was different. It was all wrong.

As I was getting the kids out of the car, I could swear someone was watching me from the loft balcony. I didn't look up, because that's foolish - no one could possibly be in there. The realtor locks were all in place, and there wasn't another entry.

We went in, and it really and truly felt like someone was there. This is a house with lots of nooks and crannies, and it felt like someone was lurking behind each one. I thought that if I turned around real quick, I'd see someone watching me from the staircase, or maybe peeking around the hall corner. It felt bad, really bad. It felt as though we were distinctly not welcome there.

The kids felt the same way, and were terrified to leave my side. They kept wanting to get out of the house, to go outside and check out the little shed that we thought we'd make into a chicken coop. I made The Hub stay near us as we showed them the rest of the house, because I felt like anytime, I'd come upon a vagrant or someone staying there.

We didn't find anyone, of course, but as we left, I again had that uncomfortable feeling of being watched. The girls fought and screamed and yelled and pulled hair the whole way home. EJ cried for no reason. And they both kept telling me they hated the house, they couldn't live there, and, my favorite, from Four : "They should just tear that piece of cwap down!"

I felt so weird when we got home. I was sad, because I had loved that house the day before, and it was like a totally different place. But I talked myself out of this feeling, chalking it up to the negative feelings I had brought to it myself - I had been feeling particularly unsettled that day. And it had been so perfect just 24 hours earlier. Houses don't just become haunted or negative or whatever overnight.

That night, we put in an offer on the house.

We decided to take another tour of the house a day or two later. I brought my dad, because I figured he could help me check everything out better. We hadn't hired an inspector because the house was so cheap that even if it needed $50K worth of work, it would still have more than $50K worth of equity built in.

Once again, when we pulled in the driveway, everything was wrong. Except this time, it felt bad, bad, bad. Not just weird, but downright evil. It distinctly felt as though we were absolutely not welcome in that house. It had been raining, and there were children's bare footprints all over the walk, which was really odd to me, considering that this house is probably an eighth of a mile from the nearest neighbor - way too far for someone with feet smaller than Beastie to walk. The house was no longer on the market because we had put an offer on it, so these footprints weren't from someone who brought their children when they came to see it. And the previous owners had had no children - so it wasn't them coming to visit. (And why would they? It's been almost two years since it was foreclosed on.)

We went in, but I didn't want to. I strongly felt that we had to leave, like, now. Everything looked the same as usual on the inside, except it was obvious that someone had been there. The cupboard doors were all open, and the toilets were closed (they had been open, with tape across them, due to winterization.) There were big homemade blinds in all the windows, and the last time we had been there, I had opened them, to show the girls how it looked when it full of natural light. This time, they were all closed, with the pull string wrapped very tightly around the little catch hooks. I kept hearing a radio somewhere in the house - always just behind me, and so quiet that you couldn't hear what was being said.

We went in the garage, and it felt even weirder than the house had. The door to the secret tunnel had been barricaded, and all the hoses that made up the intricate sprinkler system in the ganja room were torn down. Things were definitely not right.

My dad wanted to look around the property, but I sat in the car with the kids, who cried and fought like they had the last time. It seemed like an eternity, but finally he and The Hub came back, and talked a bunch more about fixing this and that an blah blah blah. I just wanted to leave. I felt like we had to get out of there now, like we had tested the negative energy for long enough. Have you ever felt the crackly air during a thunderstorm, where you can just feel the electricity buzzing around you? That's how it felt sitting in that driveway. It was almost like I couldn't breathe. We finally left and as we did, I turned around and looked at the house. You are going to think I'm nuts, but I know I saw a little child up on the balcony, watching us. It was fleeting and I can't say for sure that it wasn't my own imagination, but it was creepy as hell, and I told The Hub there was no way in hell we were buying that house.

He was mad. He loves that house. But I don't care - I can't live there. I told him that if he wants it so bad, he can go live there by himself, because I won't live there and neither will my children.

... So we're still looking for a place. Our budget is so small, if I told you, you'd laugh and laugh. But this is Michigan, and you can get a nice house for not a lot of coin here, if you know where to look and don't mind doing some work. And I know where to look, and I don't mind doing work. I know the perfect house will come to us. It has to.


Anonymous said...

I think you were right to follow your gut. You may have completely lost your mind, but with the vibe you were getting from that house you couldn't have lived happily there. Real or imagined, it would be pretty miserable to spend the rest of your life in a place that gives you the creeps.

Sending lots of positive house finding thoughts to you guys!

nava said...

I understand how you feel exactly. We were in an apartment that just got more and more and more negative the longer we were there. When C actually saw 'something' and felt menaced we decided we were done trying to pretend everything was ok, and told our office we would be moving in 24 hours, didn't care about the deposit. They were nice enough to relocate us instead, but insisted they had never had any problems like that before. 3 years later my shuttle driver happens to mention living in the same housing loop and the random crap that happened to him and others. I felt relieved, honestly. I will never ignore my gut, especially with something as important as where I live.

Stuff On My Blog said...

How very creepy, I don't think I'd want to live there either.

Kaylen said...

That totally gave me the creeps!!! You were in a haunted house!!!!!! And your husband wanted to buy it!

It just freaks me out when I hear about stuff like that, cause there should be an explanation for everything - I just need my logic, and creepy feelings about not being alone in an empty house is not logical! I'm glad you stood your ground on not buying it.

Manic Mother said...

It was the ghost of MaryJane! ;)

Masasa said...

Oh my goodness...serious chills as I read that, and I am alone downstairs in the dark at my own house. Out, bad vibes, out! You're not welcome to travel through the internet to my house.

becky @ misspriss said...

yeah, it creeped me out just reading about it.

Intertwined said...

Been there, done THAT a couple of times. Husband and I have a house we just refer to as "the house that shall not be named". We lived there for a grand total of three months and then left in a big big hurry. Scary stuff. It started the night we moved in. I was standing at the sink and had the most startling feeling that someone was standing in the backyard staring at me. It was dusk and a beautiful evening and I felt cold run from the top of my head to the tips of my toes. We were both experiencing the same things but hadn't spoken of it to each other until one night when we heard footsteps on the roof while watching TV. He looked at me, I looked at him and we both blurted out at the same time "have you been HEARING things???".

Gah, it gives me chills to think about it even now and that was nearly 7 years ago.

More recently, about 3 years ago, we lived in a house with a palpable presence. It wasn't negative but it did CREEP my children out badly (it was in their closet). I often felt her watching me from the windows upstairs.

And just a few weeks ago I went to look at a house on the market that is in disrepair and would be a great steal but I felt GET OUT shouted at me in every fiber of my energy being. We won't be moving there!

So. It's not just you.