What It Feels Like To Be Haunted

erin kelly
erin kelly

There are ghosts in my apartment.

I swear there are. I hear them banging around between the walls and knocking down things in my shower.

They wake me up in the middle of the night rattling their chains and playing drums on the radiator pipes. I know they’re not actually ghosts, but rather the aches and pains of an aging building, but I like to pretend they’re just my noisy, see-through company.

I couldn’t sleep at all last night. There were ghosts throwing a party in my apartment, sure, but every time I closed my eyes I was haunted by the fact that I could wake up the next morning to an email telling me that my new friend had died.

Like I’ve always said, no good news comes in the early morning hours. There is no news you need to hear at 3 AM but bad news.

I keep dreaming about him, and sometimes I wake up sad and scared. Sometimes I wake up feeling comforted by his life in dreams. I think he’ll be around long after he’s physically gone.

Ghost season.

They say that when people from your past reappear in your present, it means that there’s still some energy between you that needs to be resolved. Things need to be healed or they need to be let go.

I guess my ghost is haunting her, too, because she sent a sad, late-night email about it. At least email is less intrusive than a text message. She knew that I was still mourning her loss. When you lose a friend, I think you grieve that ghost forever.

I keep dreaming about them, too. I’m not ready to let it go yet, I guess. I keep dreaming about rings that aren’t mine and won’t ever be.

He woke up too early this morning looking spooked, his pale blue eyes were cloudy and disturbed. My own eyes snapped open, knowing something was wrong. It’s funny how that works. “Just bad dreams, baby.” He explained, low, moving into my arms. I held him for a few minutes, stroking his hair. He looked truly terrified even though I tried to comfort him; he stared into my face for a moment, making sure I was real. “It’s OK,” he said. “I woke up and you were here.”

I fall asleep next to him and in the middle of the night sometimes I reach over to make sure he’s still there, to make sure he’s alive and breathing. I used to do that with the baby when he was little; I’d creep upstairs during his nap and hold my hand gently under his nose to feel for his breath. His little body was churning out radiator heat and I’d watch his eyelids twitch and fingers curl as he dreamed. He was always just fine. I had nothing to worry about. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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