People hear the word ghost and immediately think of those teenage horror flicks from the eighties. You know the ones where the ghosts are usually evil and the characters are always hiding from them? They paint the ghosts as terrifying spirits on a mission to kill off all the mortals, but I have a different view of them. I’m fascinated by the thought of spirits stopping in for a visit or guiding us through life, as long as they’re nice.
From a very young age, I’ve felt the presence of spirits and as fun as I think it would be to live with the Maitlands in my attic, it isn’t anything like that. Instead, it feels more like walking into a room expecting to see someone waiting for you, but no one is there. Ever since we bought our old Victorian, I have that feeling a lot.
We’d lived in our house about six months before we suspected it was “haunted”, even though nothing super scary has ever happened like what you’d see in The Shining. Our ghost just likes to remind us she’s around by jiggling all our doorknobs at the same time, flashing our lights or turning on our ceiling fans. It isn’t a wiring issue, we’ve had that checked multiple times. It’s not a Smart Home issue either seeing we don’t have one and this kind of “activity” has been happening long before tech came along. But when the lights flash or the doorknobs turn, we feel something near us, a kind of presence that tells us we’re definitely not alone.
Every pet we’ve ever had, including our current cats and dog, sit in our hallway staring up at someone or something from time to time.
We can’t see who they are looking at, but “they” say animals are far more sensitive to spirits than people and that’s definitely true in our house. They seem to know when our spirit arrives well before we feel her presence.
Our first dog would sit on command in front of no one and lift her paw up as if to shake. It made us laugh and we were thrilled she could do tricks, even if she never did anything like that for us. Our former cats would twist and turn around an invisible leg and purr as if greeting their favorite guest. It was kind of comforting to watch, and we figured if it were an evil ghost, our pets probably wouldn’t be doing tricks or be that happy to “see” it.
But our pets aren’t the only ones besides us to witness our ghost. At the end of a party, when we were saying goodnight to friends standing by our large front door, a bead fell from nowhere right into the middle of the group. All the women checked their jewelry to be sure it didn’t come from them, but it was obvious it didn’t. It was an old, hand-made filigree bead and it didn’t look like anything any of us would be wearing, at least not in this century. We all wondered where it fell from. I mean, our ceilings are high but not cavernous, and there’s no ledge or place it could have been resting before falling to the floor in front of us.
I guess our ghost wanted to make sure our friends knew we weren’t crazy.
Witnessing a “haunting” makes it tough to be a disbeliever. Even my scientific husband who does his best to justify all the weird things that have happened in our house has trouble coming up with rational explanations when he sees all the doorknobs in our hallway jiggling at once or the dog doing her tricks for invisible people.
We have learned to accept our little ghost, but she isn’t the only one who stops in for a visit.
The month before my mom died, we’d made a pact to try to stay in touch. I know, most people don’t talk like that to someone who’s dying, but like me, my mom was into spirits and she called on them from time to time. She even had a group she called the “Fearsome Foursome”. Two were her parents and the other two were good friends. Any time she heard about someone who was sick or worried about one of us kids, she’d ask her “Fearsome Foursome” to help her out. Sure enough, most times her little group came thru. The sick neighbor had a miraculous recovery or her son, my crazy brother, didn’t die after flipping his car… ahem… I think even he was amazed he walked away without a scratch that night.
It was tough to hear at the time but now I’m grateful we talked about it before she passed over.
She said, “I will be a lot more help to you kids when I’m there.” Wherever her “there” was…
So now, all I do is close my eyes, send her a thank you for setting me up for success and ask for help and guidance whenever I need it.
Call it meditation, call it praying, call it whatever you want but it works for me and I recommend it for everyone, especially if you’ve lost someone close to you.
She doesn’t only help me on a personal level either. I like to think of my mom as a kind of spiritual mentor. If you didn’t know this, it was my mom who named my company and as promised, every time we’re faced with a challenging issue, my mom seems to pave a clear path to guide me.
Most of you already know this but my mom was a passionate environmentalist and her influence continues to impact how we do business at MAJAMAS EARTH. I continue to feel her nudging me in a better direction and I believe she is the one orchestrating our biggest environmental decisions.
Call me crazy… a lot of people do… but inspiration has to come from somewhere or someone. Even if that someone died 21 years ago.
Look, death is a part of life. It’s going to happen to all of us and it’s incredibly difficult to say goodbye to the people we love, but I believe people die so the living can appreciate life. It makes those of us left behind take inventory of our lives and in a way it works as a kind of motivator for change. I launched MAJAMAS EARTH the year after my mom died because the reality of just how short life is hit me hard and I figured if I wanted to start my own business, well I better get moving.
I’m not trying to make this sound trivial either… Losing a loved one like a child or someone unexpectedly is close to impossible to bear and I have no words or magic potion to take that pain away. Even for those of us thinking we’re prepared, saying goodbye to someone we love is painful and time is the only thing… I promise… that helps us heal. But once we’re able to move past that initial, horrible pain, feeling a loved one’s presence after they die can be comforting.
Now don’t get all preachy with ME. I’m not talking about religion here, even though it sounds like it. Relying on our ancestors and loved ones who’ve passed before us for guidance and help on earth is not new and it’s a practice we should all embrace.
Ghost in the hall messing with your pets? Could be… but the next time you feel as if you’re in the presence of someone else and no one is physically there, embrace the feeling. As long as you aren’t afraid and you feel at peace, think about the person who might be reaching out and let them help you.
I promise, you’ll become more intuitive and sensitive to those around you and I’m not just talking about the ghosts! Who knows, you may just get the insight you need to resolve a pressing issue, reach out to a friend in need or even start a business.
As we approach Halloween and Dia de Los Muertos, I encourage you to celebrate your ancestors and those who’ve died before you. Cook their favorite meal, play their favorite music, pull out photos of them and decorate with colorful flowers.
It’s a rare holiday that celebrates both life and death and I believe if we all acknowledged that life is short and death is inevitable, we might just live fuller, richer lives.
Celebrating our dead is a great way to become more comfortable with the inevitable and hey, you may just get your dog to learn some new tricks in the process.
– Germaine Caprio, MAJAMAS EARTH Company Owner & Designer
Let ME know:
How do you connect with your own spirit guide (s)?
Please share your own thoughts with us – let’s get a conversation started in the comments below!