I’ve always been a big believer in fate and destiny. I also believe that most things happen for a reason. After experiencing one disappointment after another, I began paying attention to the signs that were sent to me and started turning my life around.
After my divorce in 2005, I purchased a cute little house in the town of Barre, Massachusetts, that was well within my budget. At the time, I was working a management position for a national pet chain and was capable of purchasing a house on my own. Two weeks before the moving truck came to haul my meager belongings to my new home, fate smacked me in the face. The deal fell through. The owners decided not to sell their house afterall. That left me with very few options.
My family was a thousand miles away and I didn’t have any close friends at the time, so I had nowhere to go. Instead of moving into my cute new home, I moved into a motel that offered monthly rentals on efficiency units while I looked for another house. Because they didn’t allow pets, I had to make arrangements with my ex-husband to watch my two cats and dog. My parrot came to work with me at the store I managed, along with my pet rat.
This was a rock-bottom existence for me. I was separated from my kids who couldn’t stay with me due to the longer distance to their schools, and I was removed from my pets that spent their days locked in a basement utility closet. I was there for three months, hating every moment. As Christmas neared, I wasn’t sure I could survive it through the holidays. The thought of hanging garland around the window at the motel was depressing. When a house came on the market in the town I needed to be in, I jumped on it.
It was thirty-thousand dollars more than the first house I picked, but it had recent renovations and was move-in ready. The bank wouldn’t process a loan for me, so I was encouraged to talk to my ex-husband’s mortgage guy, who could “work miracles.”
I got the loan, but they didn’t factor the town taxes into the already high mortgage. I’d have to pay those myself quarterly. It was a tight stretch, but I thought I could make it work. Shortly afterwards, I was offered a promotion at work, moving from a store location to a regional position. Every month was a struggle, but I survived. I paid my bills on time, even if I had to scrimp and save, and made improvements to my house, adding on a new roof, windows, siding and repaving the driveway with money I received after my house was hit by a drunk driver in 2007. All was well and good until 2011 came around.
I was promoted to a national position with the pet industry chain, but ended up losing more than I gained. The company car that I was given was taken away, resulting in my need to purchase a used car and add car payments, insurance, gas and maintenance to my already tight budget. I began slipping on my town taxes, often paying back taxes with my tax refunds.
In January of 2013, I was hit with a life altering letter from my bank. They said that because I was late paying my taxes, they paid them for me. My already high mortgage suddenly went up another four-hundred dollars a month. I was devastated. How could I afford that? I called the bank and pleaded with them, but they were firm on their decision. They would be willing to reassess the situation in two years. There was more to the story than I was aware of, something I didn’t find out until over a year later.
During this same period, the town clerk of my town was stealing tax payments. I knew I was several quarters behind, but didn’t realize that she had also taken my first two quarter payments. If I had figured this out at the time, I probably could have done something, but I didn’t. I was too caught up in the reality that was presented to me. I contacted a lawyer and was encouraged to simply foreclose on the house. The housing market in my town was horrible and my bank was shy on accepting short-sales on properties. My house was also now worth less than $100,000 less than what I paid for it, despite the thousands of dollars of improvements I made on it.
This was, hands down, the worst thing that ever happened to me. After all those years of struggling to keep my credit rating high and to pay my bills on time, I was now looking at having to declare bankruptcy to protect myself from the bank due to the foreclosure. I went from hopeful to hopeless in a matter of months. I moved my son and myself into an apartment an hour away, closer to his new college, and did nothing more than survive. Six months later, I was hit with a second major blow. The pet industry chain was moving my national job to the corporate office in Texas. I could either move with it or quit.
Moving simply wasn’t an option. I was supporting a son who was only in his first year of college and wasn’t even certain I could financially survive in Texas. I took the severance package and took a leap of faith that everything would work out for me. In less than a year, I went through foreclosure, bankruptcy and unexpected unemployment.
During this period of time, I truly began connecting with my spiritual side. I began communicating with my spirit guides and learning to watch for signs. Several psychic medium friends echoed what I was beginning to suspect. Obstacles were being removed for me so I was able to do what I was born to do: write.
I cranked out 15 books in four years, making just enough to survive on. I’d like to say this was my happily-ever-after, but life had more in store for me. Earlier this year, as my lease was running out on my apartment, my son hit me with some news. He wanted to move in with his girlfriend and begin his own life. Not only did this mean I wouldn’t have his daily companionship, I’d also lose the child support which helped me stay afloat. With a heavy heart, I swallowed my pride and made the decision to move back into my old house, which was still in foreclosure.
I couldn’t purchase anything else until the house was out of foreclosure. I called the bank to inquire about their intentions on selling it and was met with indifference. My lawyer told me that houses in my town weren’t selling well and that the bank might hold onto it for another five years, for all she knew. “You might as well wait it out in the house instead of paying rent somewhere else,” she told me.
Moving back into the house that I abandoned two years previously wasn’t an easy feat. Water pipes were busted, heating radiators were cracked and cobwebs draped from every ceiling. Furthermore, I was also moving back into the house where I experienced the Soul Collector. Many mediums felt there was an open portal in my old bedroom. Unfortunately, I didn’t have many other choices. The meager money I make on book sales, classes and events wasn’t enough to support an apartment, providing I could even find one that would accept my pets.
I bit the bullet and forked out the money to have the house repaired. Pipes were fixed, an issue with the well was repaired, the house was scoured clean from top to bottom and walls were painted. Less than a month after I moved back in, I got another heavy blow. The bank was finally jumping into action and were selling my house at auction. After all the work and money, I had less than a month to get out of the house.
I looked for jobs, but found that I wasn’t all that marketable after years of being out of the work force for so long. My Paranormal 101 classes were beginning to dwindle in attendance and book sales were steady, but not enough to support me in New England, which is one of the most expensive places in the US to reside. What was I going to do?
Digging deep has become a way of life for me. Nothing has ever been handed to me. I take complete ownership of the fact that I made some terrible decisions and am paying for them now. If I thought I was at rock bottom in 2012, I was now carving out a cozy space below it. Would I end up homeless? Was this how those things happened, with a slow decline that led to an unavoidable drop off? Would I become one of those sad people who lived in their cars?
I called my mother and told her about my situation and she promised me that no one would let me be homeless. “Why don’t you move back to Indiana where the cost of living is much lower?” she asked me. She offered to help me finance a house in the historic town of New Harmony, a place I’d always loved. Could I really do that? Leave everything I knew and loved in New England, including my son and daughter, as well as my friends?
My former step-father stepped in and took over. Doug began tirelessly house hunting for me in New Harmony, but we weren’t having much luck. Every house we found had an issue or the deal fell through. Finally, he purchased a modest mobile home that sits on a corner lot and is going to rent it to me until I can find something else.
I’ve always been the kind of person who bounced back from hardships quickly, always searching for the bright side of situations instead of lingering on the brutal reality. Once I let go of the sense of misery, I was able to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Indiana is my home state. My family lives there, as well as several childhood friends I’m still close to. Maybe I could make a fresh start there.
As my mind wandered, I thought about bringing the paranormal world to the historic town of New Harmony. I could set up ghost tours for the bevy of tourists who flood there every summer and autumn. I could set up paranormal investigations at some of the haunted buildings. I might also write a book about the town’s haunted history. Hope began to creep in where heartache once resided. I could do this.
My moving truck arrives in two weeks, something that both terrifies and excites me. Two of my trusted psychic mediums friends have assured me that this will be a good move for me and I believe them. If I have paid attention to the signs, this is where I’m being led.
I don’t know what I will find in Indiana, but I have a feeling it will be something exceptional and rewarding. I’ll be continuing this blog as I move, so please stay tuned.
April 26, 2016
Joni Mayhan is a paranormal investigator, teacher and the author of 15 books. To check out some of her paranormal books, click the photos below.