A Hand To Hold Me

13 September 2021 | Your True Encounters

One month before my eighth birthday my twin brother was hit and killed by a car. It was a horribly traumatic time for my family. Years later ,I realized it also led to my first known paranormal experience.

The day of the funeral is a blur mixed with very detailed memories. Watching my little black patent leather shoes landing on each step of the stool someone had placed in front of the coffin so I could say goodbye to my brother one last time. The little teddy bear with a white bow tucked in his arm. The new brown suit I had never seen him wear. The slight bruising on his forehead under the strange creamy grownup makeup someone had smeared on his face; the face that I knew almost as well as my own. As a seven year old, death was something I was completely unfamiliar with. To this day I remember a strong feeling of floating outside of my body; so lost and overwhelmed it didn’t seem real. The grownups shuffled me from hug to hug and whispered empty comfort in my ear, lost and overwhelmed with their own grief. By bedtime I was completely worn out, barely able to slip off my shoes and climb into bed.

My brother and I shared a room and bunkbeds. Often times we would move back and forth from top to bottom to comfort or annoy each other, like siblings do. That night I chose the top bunk because it always made me feel safe being high up and snuggled against the wall.

I tried desperately to fall asleep but ended up tossing and turning for what felt like hours. My young brain was trying to process everything and just refused to let my body rest. Out of pure frustration and exhaustion I turned to the wall and began crying. I missed having my bunkmate and best friend with me and could not fathom why he wasn’t there. Suddenly, I felt a small hand on my left shoulder. I stopped mid sob and turned around thinking it was my mom or one of sisters that had heard me. I clearly remember the window in our room shed enough moonlight that the room wasn’t completely dark. When I looked over my shoulder I fully expected to see someone there. But the entire room was empty. I was shocked to the point that my tears stopped and my mind set to work to figure out who was in my room. I was absolutely sure that not only had I felt a hand on my shoulder, I knew without a doubt that someone else was in the room with me. I had no understanding of the after life and as far as I knew, ghosts were the things from a Scoobydoo episode; one of my brother’s and my favorite cartoons. I checked everywhere and when I was sure I was alone, I tried to wrap my brain around the fact that I felt a physical touch when no one was there. But rather than fear, I felt this soft sleepy comfort come over me. I know that whatever it was helped me to rest my mind and let things go for a bit.

To this day, I am grateful for that comfort.

Years later, my mom told me that her grandma who passed when I was very young, is known for placing a hand on your left shoulder to comfort you. I’m not sure if it was her or my brother, but I do know that a loving hand was exactly what I needed to help get me through one of the worst days of my life. I think losing my brother at an age where reality and make believe can overlap so easily and having such a comforting visit when I needed it, has helped me to always be open and welcoming to unusual experiences. I like to think of them as visits from people we still need comfort from even if they are no longer with us physically.

 

Submitted by Warren Lee to Weird Darkness and My Haunted Life Too

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