Allow me to share with you an anomalous encounter which happened one night, albeit several years ago, in the house where I still live . . .
After checking on my infant son, who was nestled beside the chimney breast in his carry cot, I climbed jadedly into my bed and pulled the covers tightly around my bone weary body. Having recently been widowed and left quite literally holding the baby (plus a young toddler) I was exhausted but looking forward to a few hours repose. Savouring the somnolence , it wasn’t long before I drifted into a deep and undisturbed state of slumber.
Quite unexpectedly, I found myself back in the land of the living. Something had rather abruptly interrupted my much needed rest and wondering what could possibly have roused me, I untangled myself from the quilt before rolling over to investigate the cause.
As my eyes became accustomed to the darkness I perceived a shape silently developing beside my bed, unable to look away I was filled with indescribable terror as I realised I was face to face with myself!
There I was, adorned in my best coat and hat, staring down at me clad only in my pyjamas!! I did what any self respecting person would do confronted with such an alarming and bewildering sight . . .
I quickly pulled the duvet over my face, hoping that the next time I dared to peek my bizarre duplicate would have departed.
Mustering all my strength I once again glanced above the coverlet only to be again confronted by an identical version of myself. My ghostly double was calmly leering at me in a horrifying manner as the cold fingers of fear prickled down my spine.
Fortuitously, my baby chose that moment to wake up and I instinctively turned to attend to him and although I didn’t dare get out of bed, I forced myself to glance back at the apparition.
Imagine my perplexity when I realised ‘I’ had gone, I was still filled with disquietude and unease but became almost euphoric when I realised my sons and I were safe.
I have often since contemplated on my nocturnal visitor and speculated as to why she chose to come by that night. Perhaps I’ll never have an answer, maybe I’d rather not know!