How to Remove a Ghost From Your Home

Parsem ghosts Something doesn’t feel right. You know it the minute you walk in the door. You might check all the doors and windows to make sure someone didn’t break in. You’ll also look under the beds and in the closets, feeling slightly foolish for doing so. The unsettling sensation will probably drift away after a while, but returns the minute you slip into bed and turn off the lights. If your house truly is haunted, you might also feel as though someone is watching you during odd moments of the day. Items will probably disappear, only to reappear somewhere else. Footsteps will be heard in empty rooms or you might catch a glimpse of something moving quickly out of the corner of your eye. While most ghosts are nothing more than earth-bound souls who haven’t found their way to the light, it’s still unnerving to share your space with a ghost. Here are several methods of removing a ghost from your home.

1.      Arrange a House Blessing

Most religious leaders are happy to bless your home providing you are a member of their church. Having the backing of the church behind them can make a difference. If the ghost was once human, they might remember this from their living days and respect the wishes of the clergy.

2.      Cleanse the house yourself

  • Start by calming down the energy. Purchase white sage from your local metaphysical store. It can be mixed with cedar or sweet-grass for good effect. You should know that sage isn’t a cure all. You can’t just walk from room to room burning it and expect it to remove all the ghosts. Think of it more like “Ghost Valium.” It quiets the spiritual energy, making them more willing to abide by your wishes.
  • This is a good first step and may be enough to solve the issue. Ghosts don’t always understand they can’t come with you. When you claim your space, it lets them know they can’t just move in with you on a whim. Before you begin, open a few windows in your house.
  • Light the stick of sage and then blow it out once it starts to provide smoke. Ask your Spirit Guides or guardians to help you.
  • Fill every room in your house with the smoke, starting with the outermost corner, working your way to the front of the house. Let the sage smoke cover every inch of space in every room, from floor to ceiling. Some say the smoke is calming to them, helping them transition to the next plane. As you burn the sage, tell them you’re filling the house with light and love, and that no negative energy can remain. Tell them this is your house and you are taking it back. Encourage them to find the peace and love they desire through the white light. Tell them it’s time for them to go. Some people will say a prayer as well.
  • When you are finished, extinguish the sage stick on the front walkway.
  • Cut your ties. You can do this physically, as well as mentally. Cut the cords that connect you to this energy, and then move on. Don’t think about it. Shove it out of your mind. Thinking about it could actually draw them back in, so avoid this as much as possible.

Some people follow this up with a ring of sea salt around the border of the house. If this isn’t feasible, sprinkle it on the windowsills and doorsteps. This seals the property and prevents negative energy from returning. Some will also create a spiritual boundary by spraying their walls with Holy Water. Others will also take a warm bath filed with sea salt and lavender, to cleanse their body of the energy.

3.      Counsel the Dead

Imagine yourself as a ghost therapist. Talk to the energy and tell them about the white light. It opens up when we die and we are supposed to cross through it to get to the other side. Some people call this place on the other side Heaven or the Kingdom. It is a wonderful place, filled with all their loved ones and relatives who have passed on before them. Tell them it’s okay to cross over. Often, souls balk at crossing over into the light at the time of their death. They begin to wonder if they were good enough in life to earn passage, fearing they will take an elevator directly down to fire and brimstone instead. This isn’t the case. Everyone is allowed to cross over. While they might not like the ramifications of their misdeeds, they aren’t sent directly to Hell. Some misdeeds aren’t misdeeds at all. They are considered a human condition. Tell them they are forgiven, that God loves them and welcomes them. Urge them to find the light and cross over. They can call out to their ancestors to help pull them through or to look for someone else’s white light to pass through. Funeral homes and churches are good places for them to look. Most souls linger around to attend their own funeral, perhaps checking out the attendance, and won’t cross until the service ends. Several members of my Paranormal 101 class and I have been helping souls cross over by using this technique. We simply talk to them as though they are people standing in front of us. In several instances, we’ve been highly successful, which is the best possible solution, in my books.

4.      Don’t Make Things Worse

Homeowners can make the haunting worse. Don’t kid yourself that you can’t. Through naiveté and ignorance, the living can anger the dead quite easily. Some key points:

  • Don’t investigate your own home. I’ve been called to several homes only to discover the homeowner is actually pleased with the haunting. Basically, I was invited over so she could show off her ghosts to me. If this is the case, please don’t call me. I see enough ghosts on a daily basis to last me a lifetime. I don’t need to meet yours too. If you continue to poke at them, trying to get a great EVP or photograph to show your friends, they aren’t going to go away. They might like the attention and decide to stay on for an extended period. Or you could make them angry, which is often the case.
  • Ghosts were people too. Remember this as you attempt to exterminate them from your property. Chances are: your house was once their house. They might have built it themselves and have a personal interest in how it’s maintained. Sometimes simply informing them of upcoming maintenance or home-improvement projects can go a long way in easing their fears.

5.      Research the History of the House.

Go to your local town hall and look at the census records and death records to find out if the ghost is a former resident of the home. Sometimes a tragic event could have caused them to stay behind, or maybe they’re just attached to the house. Sometimes just knowing what you’re dealing with helps move them on to the other side. After you’ve figured this out, return to step 3 and work on counselling them.

6.      Do Nothing

Allow the energy to calm down on its own. Don’t acknowledge them and don’t be fearful. Just go about your life as usual. Sometimes this simple action makes a difference. Unless they pop up in my face, I don’t pay any attention to them. I pretend I don’t see the cats staring at the spot above my bed. I dismiss the rapping sounds on the walls I refuse to give it any energy, which ultimately feeds it and gives it more ability to continue. Sometimes, they grow bored with me and drift away.

7.      Move

The last resort, which I don’t think is a good one, is to move. I don’t like this last option, because you are only leaving the problem for someone else to deal with. Or worse, you go through the effort of moving, only to discover the ghost has followed you.

8.      Change Your Life

Dark energy attracts dark energy. If your life is in shambles and you live each day dreading the next, you are likely to attract more than you bargained for. Negative entities love nothing more than feasting on your misery. Get out of your house and go for frequent walks. Open the blinds every day and let the sunlight in. Find good reasons to live your life and make changes so it becomes second nature. For me, this made a huge impact. I’ve always considered myself to be a positive person, but I sometimes let past hurts affect me. One psychic medium I went to said she saw a dark spot on my aura and told me to let go of the past. Advice like that is often easier said than done, but I did take her words to heart. Once I finally let go of the traumas from my past, I discovered that my vibration increased and dark scary entities stopped following me home.

What Next?

Sometimes drastic situations call for drastic measures. Some ghosts are resistant about moving on, so the typical measures aren’t going to work with them. If you’ve done all these things, but still continue to have paranormal issues, you will need to pull out the big guns. .

Get Help

Understand that this is more than you can handle on your own and find a psychic medium to help you. There may be more going on than you know. If the ghost is advanced and is negative, you don’t want to handle this by yourself, especially not the first time. Find someone who has experience removing negative energy. An experienced Psychic will be able to determine the type of haunting and help you find the correct measures to deal with it. If you suddenly went blind in one eye, you probably wouldn’t go to the pharmacy and ask the sales clerk for help. You’d seek out an optometrist. The same theory applies to extreme hauntings. After years of having negative entities follow me home and disrupt my life, I finally found people who could help me. Both of them are psychic mediums. One of the mediums began teaching me how to protect myself, something that could help me in the long run. The other one removed the ghosts from my house when I could no longer handle them. People like this do exist and are often willing to help you. For me, finding them was the hardest part. If you find this to be your reality as well, contact your local metaphysical shop or look for a psychic medium groups on social media sites. Ask friends for recommendations and keep searching until you find someone. Always keep in mind that most ghosts were individuals, and every method isn’t going to work with every ghost. The more resistant a ghost is, the harder they are to move along. Always start at the beginning of the list and rule out normal explanations first. You will save yourself a lot of time and stress. When I went through this myself back in the 1990’s, I wasn’t sure what to do and the resources weren’t as prevalent as they are today. I ended up moving out, leaving the energy for someone else to contend with afterwards. I later learned that the house was sold five times in five years, and it made me feel very guilty for not pursuing it further. Whatever you do, do it with purpose and remain calm. Fear is never a good tool for working with ghosts, and neither is anger. Most hauntings are human in nature and a sense of compassion is your best ally.

What if the Haunting isn’t Human?

When we talk about a non-human haunting, we are usually talking about a demonic situation. While these are rare, they do exist. Signs of a non-human haunting will range from foul smells in the house and abrupt personality changes to unexplained scratches on the body. Demons don’t possess locations, they possess people. They only hang out at a location to stalk the perfect victim. If you suspect your haunting isn’t human, find a professional to help you. I would recommend a combination of efforts. Seek out a trusted psychic medium, as well as a member of clergy. The medium will help act as a go between, letting the others know what is going on. A member of clergy, preferably a Roman Catholic Priest, will conduct an exorcism. Don’t allow someone to perform this unless they have a proven track record. This isn’t the time for someone to be learning a skill, especially if your life is at stake Always believe it will work. Faith and a firm sense of belief will carry you much further than doubt and fear. If you enjoyed this article, you can find more information just like it in my new book Dark and Scary Things, available in paperback or eBook on Amazon.com (click here) or on BarnesandNoble.com (click here).  Joni Mayhan is a paranormal investigator and author who lives in central Massachusetts. If you enjoy reading about the paranormal, you might also enjoy her other paranormal books, Bones in the Basement – Surviving the S.K. Pierce Haunted Victorian Mansion, The Soul Collector, or Devil’s Toy Box. You can click on any of the covers below to learn more about them.

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22 Truths You Might also Recognize

castle ruins

I find that long drives give me a chance to unfurl my mind, and I seldom waste them. During a recent drive back from my home-state of Indiana, I had nineteen hours to think, and here’s what I came up with.

1. Being a people-pleaser can be either a blessing or a curse, depending on the person you’re trying to please.

2. I will always choose quaint, quirky and comfortable over anything else.

3. The person who cares the least in a relationship has the majority of the power (not that I’ve ever experienced this personally 🙂 )

4.  I love the sound of a cat purring. It’s like a warm hug to my soul. I also love cool breezes on muggy days, a perfect cup of coffee, stimulating conversations that you wish could last forever, naps, and people who ask you to text or call them when you make it home.

5. I despise country and western music, pickles and people who block the grocery aisle with their cart.

6. If you dawdle in the crosswalk after I’ve waved you on, I’ll probably fantasize about running you over, even if it’s just for a second.

7. The right song at the right time can completely alter the course of my day. The same goes for the wrong song at the wrong time. I really need to purge all the depressing songs off my ITunes account.

8. Nobody’s life is easy. Most people just don’t bother to complain about it.

9. If my GPS says “recalculating” three times in a row, it’s fairly safe to say that I’m either going to yell at it or turn it off, depending on my mood.

10. I trust too easily and forgive too slowly. I think it’s because I’m honest to a fault and expect other people to be the same way.

11. Being compulsively organized isn’t the same thing as being a neat freak. I will sometimes put things away before I’m finished with them without realizing, but I can walk past a pile of unfolded laundry for several days before giving into the task.

12. Just once, I’d like to get something I really want without having to bleed for it first.

13. Sleep deprivation turns some people into uglier versions of themselves.

14. Most people don’t really listen to you when you talk. They are waiting for you to finish talking so they can speak.

15. People who always tend to “one up” you have self-esteem issues. While they are also very annoying, I try to remember this before I get too aggregated with them.

16. Hands down, June is my favorite month. I love all the newness of summer – the fresh greenery, the powder blue skies and the feeling that I can do anything I put my mind to.

17. While I yearn for love, I often push people away when they get too close. I think it’s a self-defense tactic, and I really need to work on it.

18. I have a low tolerance for anything sticky.

19. Why do we always settle for less than what we want? Why not go for it and not stop until we get there?

20. I have a tendency to mother-hen people who are sick or hurt to the point where they tell me to stop.

21. If I care about you, I will do anything for you, even if it hurts me in the process. I don’t think people care enough about each other any more, because I seldom see this returned. Friendship is about having one another’s back, about stepping out of our comfort zones when we need to.

22. I will always search for the good in a bad situation. Call me an optimist or just one of those annoyingly happy people, but I can’t imagine spending more than a minute being angry/sad/depressed.

My mind stopped unfurling by the time I hit the New Jersey state line and the traffic picked up, but I’m looking forward to my next drive. It gives me time to think about the person I am, as well as the person I’d like to become.

Joni Mayhan is a paranormal investigator and the author of 13 books. Click on any of the covers below to learn more about them.

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Ten Signs a Ghost is Nearby and You Don’t Know it

Ghost Near You

Despite what paranormal television shows portray, most hauntings are subtle. You could have a ghost nearby and not know it. Here are 10 signs of a haunting you might not be aware of.

  1. Bad Luck – Have you recently had a string of bad luck happen to you? It feels as though nothing is going right. Appliances seem to keep breaking and your cell phone keeps losing all its contacts? Tech-savvy ghosts are capable of bringing bad luck to our lives.
  2. Odd Smells – Ever smell something in your house that doesn’t make sense, like the aroma of baking bread, floral perfume or cigar smoke? These are signs ghosts sometimes give us to alert us of their presence. The ability to detect ghosts by scent is called clairalience. It is a mediumistic ability that not everybody possesses.
  3. Missing Items – Do you feel like you’re always looking for misplaced items? Ghosts often play a spectral game of hide-and-seek with their living room-mates. An item will go missing, only to turn up in an unusual place. People often blame this on a lack of sleep or a busy schedule, when in fact, it has a vastly different explanation.
  4. Frequent Nightmares – If you are plagued with frequent nightmares that have a different texture from your normal dreams, you might look deeper for the cause. Blame it on the pepperoni pizza you ate before bedtime, but it could be an entity trying to rouse you from sleep.
  5. Exhaustion – Ghosts need energy and they often pull it from the living. Paranormal investigators frequently discover the batteries on their equipment draining at haunted locations and feel exhausted after an investigation. Ghosts will pull energy where they can find it.A typical sign that a ghost is using your energy is the sensation of vibration. When they pull energy from us, sometimes their vibrational rate is different from ours, giving us the feeling that we are vibrating from the inside out.
  6. Strange Photos – When you upload your pictures from your camera or cell phone, do you ever find strange streaks of lights in the photos? Ghosts typically don’t show up in pictures like we expect them to. Often, they appear as streaks of light or strange unexplained mists.
  7. Odd Pet Behavior – When your cat or dog watches something moving around the room, don’t immediately brush it off as being an insect. Pet’s vision differs from ours, allowing them to see a broader spectrum of light. They might be seeing something paranormal that you can’t see yourself.
  8. Frequent Ear Ringing – Do your ears ring at strange times? While this could be due to a medical condition called tinnitus, it’s also a mediumistic ability called clairaudience. People with this ability will often hear a tone that is similar to ear ringing. The next time it happens, turn your head to see if you can localize the sound. Is it moving around the room, growing fainter as it gets further away? If it is, chances are you’re hearing a ghost.
  9. Unexplained Nausea – Some people get physically ill when a ghost is present. The sensation is typically presented as a sudden upset stomach and the feeling you are close to vomiting. Try leaving the room and see if the feeling abates. If it does, you might be physically reacting to the presence of a ghost.
  10. Feeling Watched – Do you ever get the feeling like someone is watching you? You turn, but find nobody else in the room. This is a frequent sign of a haunting. The sensation is usually unnerving, at best. Try moving from the room to see if the sensation goes away.

 

If you’ve experienced any of these behaviors on a regular basis, it might be time to do a little research into the history of your house. While not all ghosts are malevolent, as they are portrayed in paranormal television shows, they can’t always hide from us. If you think your house is haunted, reach out to a psychic medium or Shaman to help you do a house cleansing to clear your house of spiritual energy.

 Joni Mayhan is a paranormal investigator, author and instructor. To learn more about her, check out her website Jonimayhan.com

For more information about signs of a haunting and exploring your own mediumistic abilities, check out Joni’s book Ghostly Defenses, or one of her paranormal true stories available on Amazon.com.

Click on any of the book covers below to learn more about each book.

 

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Ghostly Pajama Party – my night at the Curtis House Inn

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I knew the moment I walked into the room that someone was waiting for me.

It had been a long day and a long night already. It was just after midnight and we’d just come from a four hour presentation. Lorraine Warren, the celebrated medium, had hosted an event in nearby Monroe, Connecticut. My friend, Sandy, and I had made the two-and-a-half hour drive down from Massachusetts to be a part of it. Since driving back two-and-a-half hours wasn’t an option, she had reserved a room for us at the Curtis House Inn, in Woodbury.

Built in 1735 by Anthony Stoddard for his son Elikim, the house would open its doors as an inn in 1754. Originally, the house contained two stories, with the second floor sporting a massive ballroom. The ballroom was eventually converted into individual rooms, with a third floor being added in the early 1900’s. It has the honor of being the oldest continually opened inn in Connecticut.

Our room was in the carriage house, which is connected to the main house by a charming footbridge. Four rooms had been carved from the structure, with the main floor being used for storage. While the main house is known to be haunted, no one had reported any activity in the carriage house.

I was tired when we got to the room. Thoughts of investigating were far from my mind. I actually hadn’t given the accommodations much thought. I’d reserved our tickets for the Lorraine Warren event, while Sandy had handled the overnight reservations. A friend had recommended the inn because of its relative proximity to the Warren event.

It didn’t dawn on me that we were going to a haunted inn until I walked in the door. It was as if the room was filled with invisible guests already.

As an experienced and enthusiastic paranormal investigator, finding a haunted venue is usually very exciting to me, but at that moment it was the last thing I needed. I just wanted to change into my pajamas, read a little from the new book I’d just purchased at the event, and then close my eyes for seven or eight hours until I was properly rested and ready for the next day. Dealing with ghosts wasn’t on my agenda.

It was then that I realized Sandy had mentioned we would be staying at a haunted inn.  I guess in the back of my mind I’d thought we could wander the grounds and inn to do a few EVP sessions, before retiring to our room. What I hadn’t considered was the fact that we’d be hosting a pajama party for the paranormal realm.

The room had two twin beds, so I quickly claimed the one nearest the door, and then retreated into the bathroom to brush my teeth, and to change into my sleeping attire. I’d barely closed the door when I realized I wasn’t alone.

Being clairaudient, with a dash or two of clairvoyance thrown into the mix, I can hear and sense ghosts and spirits. I hear an audible tone that drifts around the room, allowing me to identify the location of the entity, as well as the gender. My clairvoyant abilities, which are still developing, provide me with more information. This entity was a ghost, not a spirit who’d crossed over into the next realm.  While spirit tones usually don’t bother me, the sound of a true ghost always gets my attention. You never really know what a ghost is capable of.

This ghost was a young female, possibly a maid from the early 1800’s, who’d worked and lived at the inn. I saw her in my mind as thin, with long dark hair that she wore in a bun under a white cap. She wore a pale blue dress with a large white apron over the top of it. She didn’t mean me any harm, but was curious about me.

It’s my understanding that anyone with mediumistic abilities, the ability to communicate or sense ghosts and spirits, is instantly identifiable to the afterlife. I don’t know if we emit a certain glow, or they are just able to sense our abilities, but they definitely know we’re there and that we can feel them as well. Maybe she was looking for help, or to pass a message on. She might have just been seeking a human connection with someone who could feel her, after being ignored for the better part of two-hundred years. I’ll never know because my abilities don’t extend that far.

“I know you’re here, but I can’t communicate with you,” I told her. “I’m not a true medium. I can feel you and get an idea of what you look like, but I can’t communicate like a real medium can,” I told her. Most mediums won’t bother to say this out loud. They will talk telepathically with the ghosts or spirits. It often makes me feel inapt, not being able to do this. If I want to talk with them, I have to use my ghost hunting equipment.

After getting somewhat settled, I returned to the room to find Sandy already in her pajamas with her digital voice recorder in her hand. Also being a budding clairvoyant, she must have gotten a similar message while I was in the bathroom.

“This room is wall-to-wall ghosts,” she told me.

Normally an investigation has more of a formal feel to it. We gather our equipment, including our meters to measure electromagnetic energy, and our beloved Spirit Boxes, and conduct a session. It usually starts with one of us sweeping the room with a Mel Meter, to see if there are any electromagnetic spikes that would cause our equipment to alert us. A false spike could often be caused by faulty electric wiring, or devices like clock radios, that usually emit high levels of energy. We didn’t even bother this time. The room was full of ghosts and we knew it. All we needed was a way to record them.

We turned on our recorders and began asking respectful, gentle questions of our invisible guests. As we began, we started sensing the others as well. One entity was male, and was joined by several other females. I didn’t like him as much. He felt controlling and a bit hostile. We asked them general questions about where they lived, how old they were, and why they were still lingering at the inn. We even pulled out a Spirit Box to see if we could get a response, but the ghosts just weren’t talking. We didn’t record a single EVP.

By this time, I was getting really tired. I’d been up since seven that morning and had worked a full day before making the two and a half hour trek south to Connecticut. All I wanted was some nice REM time to recover my energy. As I’d soon find out, it wasn’t going to happen.

The minute I turned out the light and rolled onto my side, I felt them swoop in. The feeling is very similar to the sensation of a person walking very quietly into a room. Sometimes I just know they’re there. I can feel the displacement of air, the sense of their energy behind me. Added to this was the very loud buzzing in my ears. By the sound of it, there were at least a handful of ghosts trying to get my attention.

I’ve been taught to surround myself with white light and then inform the entities that they are not allowed to come near me for the duration of the night, so I did this. I envisioned the light as being very bright, radiating from my body like a solar flare. As it would turn out, it would be like a bug light to a flock of moths.

One touched my hair, pulling it back from my face. Even though I’ve had this happen numerous times, it still unnerves me. I don’t like to be touched, especially by people I can’t see.

“Stop touching me!” I said, probably jarring Sandy out of early sleep stages in the bed across the room. I closed my eyes again and tried my fail-safe method of counting backwards from 21. Usually, all I have to do is think the number “21” and I’m well on my way, but this time it wouldn’t work because someone touched my leg. It felt like a cold hand being placed on my ankle. I pulled my knees up into a fetal position, wondering if I would ever get to sleep.

“Are they bothering you?” Sandy asked.

“Yeah, they keep touching me,” I told her. She sighed, feeling bad for me.  She could feel them as well, but they usually gave her a wide berth when she told them to stay away. For some reason this never works for me. The more I resist, the closer they come.

I tried reciting the Lord’s Prayer in my mind, something that usually calms me, but before I could get to the “amen,” I was jolted off my pillow in pain. It felt as though someone reached into my eye socket and grabbed a handful of eyeball.

I started to sit up, when the pain moved to my chest. The hand lunged into my chest and grabbed onto my heart. It almost felt as though I were having a heart attack before the feeling eased and then moved to my leg. I was under attack.

I jumped up from bed. The room was dark, with just a gentle glow from the street lights filtering through the window. While I once loved sleeping in total darkness, I just can’t do it anymore. After experiencing what I did with a negative demonic entity that I wrote about in my book, The Soul Collector, nothing would ever be the same for me.  I’m not afraid of the dark. I’m afraid of what’s hiding in the dark that I can’t see.

“Do you mind if I turn on the lamp?” I asked.

“No, go ahead,” Sandy said.

I have to give Sandy credit. Being my friend comes with a very large burden. While she also is coming into her own abilities, mine seem to be far more disruptive.

I turned on the light and then turned around to consider my bed.

“Maybe I can sleep in the car,” I mused.

Sandy laughed. “I think they’d find you there just as easily.” It was a truth I didn’t even need to respond to. If I was in the vicinity, a ghost would be sure to find me. I have a very hard time sleeping in hotels for this reason. If there is even one lingering around the building, it will hone in on me within minutes of my arrival, promising me a night of restless sleep. It’s another reason why I’m still single. Some baggage is okay, but mine would be difficult to handle for most people.

I went back to bed with a determination of finding some sleep. We had a big day planned for the next day. Our friends had invited us to investigate at the abandoned Sterling Opera House in nearby Derby. I’d seen photos of the building and was eager to experience it for myself.

I curled back on my side and with a dire determination, finally fell asleep. I’d be woken up minutes later by someone again grabbing my ankle. This would go on the entire night. The minute I’d fall asleep, I’d either be poked or touched until I woke back up again. Several times the touch would come with a strong smell. Once I smelled cigarette smoke and another time the very foul smell of a dirty animal nearly made me choke. What little sleep I would manage was interlaced with dreams of people I didn’t know, trying to urgently tell me things they wanted me to hear. When I woke up the next morning, I felt as tired as I had when I walked into the room at midnight.

I don’t have any wild stories to tell about furniture being thrown across the room or the contents of my travel bag being dumped on the floor. All I have is the personal experiences that prodded and pulled at me for a solid nine hours.

If you invite me to go somewhere that involves overnight travel and I hesitate, please don’t be offended when I decline the invitation.

Being a sensitive in a world filled with ghosts isn’t always easy, but it’s all I know. Maybe one day I’ll learn to handle it, but for now I’m just doing the best I can.

Joni Mayhan

Joni Mayhan is a paranormal investigator, as well as a free-lance writer. Please check out her paranormal thrillers on Amazon.com and BarnesandNobles.com. For more information about the author, please see her website: Jonimayhan.com

The Soul Collector – The true story of one paranormal investigator’s worst nightmare

http://www.amazon.com/The-Soul-Collector-ebook/dp/B00EIHG90Q/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1381464557&sr=1-1&keywords=joni+mayhan

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Angels of Ember trilogy – After a devastating virus nearly wipes the world clean of people, 16 year-old Ember Pain grows tired of running and hiding from the bad men who hunt her and her younger sister, Elizabeth. Fighting back becomes a necessity, even if it threatens her very life.

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Ddigital-text&field-keywords=angels+of+ember+trilogy&rh=n%3A133140011%2Ck%3Aangels+of+ember+trilogy

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 Lightning Strikes

Ember Rain

Angel Storm

Altered Destiny

ImageDo you ever wonder about your choices?

Sometimes I think life is nothing more than a path filled with forked roads. You find yourself at a cross-road and have to make a decision. Do I go left or right? Just that one simple decision could alter your entire life.

I narrowly missed being involved in a horrific traffic accident once. It really made me stop and wonder about it. I’d misplaced my keys that morning and spent a few extra seconds looking for them. Had I walked out the door at my intended time, I probably would have been killed. Those three or four seconds were life altering.

It made me really consider the concept of destiny. Every second of the day leads to the next second. What we do in those seconds dictates what comes next. Sometimes I don’t feel it’s entirely accidental. It feels like there must be a mastermind behind some of the planning, or at least I hope there is.

For me, my life turned on a dime when I was seventeen years old.

I had no direction in my life. I had no idea what I wanted to do after I graduated from high school. I didn’t have any passions or dreams. I just meandered from one thing to the next.

Then, one night everything changed.

I had a horrific fight with my mother, which led me to move out of her house and into my father’s house. This meant that I had to also change schools in my junior year of high school. The entire move to a new school was devastating and I didn’t know where to fit in. At my old school, I’d fallen in with a crowd who enjoyed partying, and I became a very devout rebel. When I walked into my new school, I saw in an instant that this just wouldn’t work any longer.

North Posey was literally in the middle of a corn field. The kids who went there were the kind of kids you see on sitcoms, American apple pie and sunshine. Future Farmers of America was a big club in the school, and nearly everybody in town went to the football games each Friday. A party girl from Mt. Vernon, who smoked and drank wasn’t going to last long there.

I tried to fit in. I really did. I hid my smoking and gave up the rebel attitude and tried to find my mid-western roots somewhere deep inside me, but I still just didn’t fit in. I’d changed schools in the middle of a school year, in the middle of my second-to-last year of high school, where friendships had long been established. I wouldn’t find my place friend-wise for nearly a year, but I found my lifelong dream in a classroom.

I didn’t know I was a writer until a teacher showed me that I was.

Mrs. Hunt was always smiling, but she could be tough when she needed to be. She assigned us small writing projects and then helped us improve our technique. I felt as though I’d finally found my calling. It felt like walking into a dream for me. I was mesmerized by the process of putting words on paper and creating something whole. As our projects got larger, I began to really stretch and grow. Mrs. Hunt didn’t let this escape unnoticed. She took my stories and read them to our class, as well as her other classes too. I couldn’t have been happier.

I took what she taught me and expanded on it. I majored in English in college for two years, and after dropping out to join the workforce, took creative writing classes on the side. I joined a writer’s group, wrote short stories, and just kept at it until I’d finally written something worth publishing. I wrote six books before one would be published. Lightning Strikes was actually my sixth book. The others were just practice books.

When I published Lightning Strikes, I wondered what had happened to Mrs. Hunt. I wondered if she knew of the impact she’d had on my life. I decided to find her. I reached out to a friend who still lived in the area and mailed him a copy of my book to give to her. A month later, I received a letter that made me cry.

She had fallen on hard times. Her husband was very ill, and she’d become bedridden. She said she once loved reading, but had given it up years ago. When she got the copy of my book and saw the dedication I wrote to her on the very first page, she cried. It meant the world to her to know that what she had done – the countless lessons she’d taught, had changed someone’s life. That letter was worth more to me than any amount of money in the bank.

If I hadn’t had that fight with my mother, prompting my move to a new school, would I have ended up as a writer? And what consequences did I set into motion when I found my old teacher and thanked her for inspiring me?

In the end, it all counts. Every bad decision, every stroke of luck, every lost key changes your destiny, at least a little. It’s one of the reasons why I always try to do the right thing. I’ve seen people with less integrity find greater success, and I’ve seen Karma look the other way, when she should have shot daggers instead. I’ve never had it easy. Nothing has ever fallen into my lap. I’ve had to fight hard for everything I have, but in the end I’m thankful it was difficult.

It all came together to make me the person I am today.

I’m not perfect, but I’m okay with that.

I’m me. I’m here, and I’m happy.

And I’m a writer.

Life is good.

Joni Mayhan

Joni Mayhan is a paranormal investigator, as well as a free-lance writer. Please check out her paranormal thrillers on Amazon.com and BarnesandNobles.com. For more information about the author, please see her website: Jonimayhan.com

The Soul Collector – The true story of one paranormal investigator’s worst nightmare

http://www.amazon.com/The-Soul-Collector-ebook/dp/B00EIHG90Q/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1381464557&sr=1-1&keywords=joni+mayhan

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Angels of Ember trilogy – After a devastating virus nearly wipes the world clean of people, 16 year-old Ember Pain grows tired of running and hiding from the bad men who hunt her and her younger sister, Elizabeth. Fighting back becomes a necessity, even if it threatens her very life.

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Ddigital-text&field-keywords=angels+of+ember+trilogy&rh=n%3A133140011%2Ck%3Aangels+of+ember+trilogy

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 Lightning Strikes

Ember Rain

Angel Storm

Halloween Mischief

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Halloween has always been my favorite holiday.

When I was a child, it was all about the costume. I could be anyone or anything I wanted to be for one night. The results were often less satisfactory than the desire, but the bag full of candy made everything all better. We’d carry our pillow cases from door to door, not bothering or even caring whose house we were knocking at. We just tried to visit as many houses as possible.

As I grew older and trick-or-treating was no longer an option, I turned to the more sordid aspects of the holiday. Mischief.

I don’t see this as much in New England as I did in the Midwest, but one of our favorite things to do during the Halloween season was tee-peeing. I’d save my allowance for a month and then buy cases of toilet paper with it. Most of the time we went in groups.  We’d pick someone who had wronged us in some fashion, and then we’d slip into their yards in the wee hours of the morning and would throw toilet paper into their trees.

I can remember the rush of adrenaline as I hid at the edge of the property, trying to gather my courage. There was a very big chance that we would get caught. If the person chose to, they could have called the police and had us charged with vandalism. One of us would give the signal, and we’d rush into the yard, tossing the rolls into the trees. The goal was to toss the roll as high as possible, leaving a long white streamer behind. It took a bit of practice, but I eventually got the hang of it.  We’d continue until we either ran out of TP or we risked getting caught, then we’d slip away, high fiving one another for a job well done.

When I was thirteen-years-old, my family moved to a neighborhood filled with boys. I quickly developed a love-hate relationship with them.  Actually, it was more of a hate-hate relationship, more than anything. A family of three boys lived next door to me, with another scattering of boys in other houses in the neighborhood. Most of the time they were very mean to me, being the only girl in the neighborhood. They’d set up a game of baseball in the front yard, but would never let me play. They’d throw firecrackers at my feet if I had the audacity to step foot onto their home turf. I wasn’t allowed in their club house, a small building they built at the border of our two properties that was used as their main hang out. As Halloween approached, I started getting evil ideas.

I stockpiled toilet paper, hiding it in my room so my mother wouldn’t see it. While she wasn’t necessarily friends with the neighbors, she wouldn’t have approved of my act of vengeance.  Several nights before Halloween, I set my alarm for 2am, and then slipped from my bedroom window, armed with toilet paper.

The windows were all dark in the house next door. Not a soul was in sight.  I sprang from my hiding place and spent the better part of a half hour, practicing my toilet paper throwing abilities. By the time I was finished, you could barely see the tree under the white streamers. I did my best to hide my smile as the boys got onto the school bus the next morning, but it probably wasn’t even necessary. They knew who did it.

I spent an enjoyable evening watching them grudgingly attempt to pull the paper from the trees. Every once in a while, they’d cast angry glances at the front of my house, where I sat watching.  It wouldn’t be something that I’d enjoy for long, though.  All six of them returned the favor the following night.

They pulled out all the stops. Instead of just papering our trees, they also used soap to draw profane pictures on all of our windows, and they dumped an entire bag of corn kernels into our yard, knowing they’d sprout corn the following spring. The biggest problem with this was their timing.

My mother had signed our house up to be on a Tour of Local Homes.  It was going to take place that weekend. When she looked out the window at the flurry of toilet paper hanging from the trees, she wasn’t very happy. It would be the neighbor boys’ turn to laugh at me as I was pulling toilet paper from the trees.

One of the younger children in the neighborhood confided in me that they planned to do it again the following evening. Knowing how upset my mother would be, I jumped into action. I waited until I knew they were all home and began setting up a ruse. I had a length of twine and began running it from tree to tree in the front yard, covering the entire perimeter of the yard. I’d look up on occasion and catch a curtain fall close. I’d just smile, knowing my plan was working so far. They were curious about what I was doing.

I spent an hour with the twine, and then followed it up by bringing a car battery to the front yard. It was just an old battery that my step-father had kicking around in the garage, but the neighborhood boys didn’t know this. The last phase of my plan was to tell one of the younger children that I’d set up an electrified perimeter fence. I told her to be careful if she happened to come into my yard because I wasn’t sure what it would do to someone. “It might even electrocute them,” I said, managing to keep a straight face.

That night was my night for fun. I sat in the living room, watching out the window. It took a few hours, but they began to show up, armed with toilet paper.  They walked cautiously around the property, looking at the twine perimeter fence. I could see them pushing each other, trying to get one of them to test it. In the end, they just gave up and walked home.

I could have been extra evil and repaid the favor to them later in the night, by tee-peeing their yard again, but I didn’t. I’d pulled my greatest prank yet. Just seeing them walk away disappointed, was good enough for me.

Sometimes, I think back to those memories with a fondness I can’t duplicate. Those boys are long grown. I heard that one of them died when he was barely in his twenties. The others just disappeared into the wind. In my heart though, they are still twelve and thirteen, and I am the same, and we are waiting for another chance to get even with one another.

 

Joni Mayhan

Joni Mayhan is a paranormal investigator, as well as a free-lance writer. Please check out her paranormal thrillers on Amazon.com and BarnesandNobles.com. For more information about the author, please see her website: Jonimayhan.com

 The Soul Collector – The true story of one paranormal investigator’s worst nightmare

http://www.amazon.com/The-Soul-Collector-ebook/dp/B00EIHG90Q/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1381464557&sr=1-1&keywords=joni+mayhan

 Image

 

Angels of Ember trilogy – After a devastating virus nearly wipes the world clean of people, 16 year-old Ember Pain grows tired of running and hiding from the bad men who hunt her and her younger sister, Elizabeth. Fighting back becomes a necessity, even if it threatens her very life.

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Ddigital-text&field-keywords=angels+of+ember+trilogy&rh=n%3A133140011%2Ck%3Aangels+of+ember+trilogy

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 Lightning Strikes

Ember Rain

Angel Storm