After browsing this website and reading dozens of stories, I finally decided to post one of my own. I've actually had several paranormal encounters over the years, but this one has always struck me as particularly bizarre and frightening. This incident occurred sometime in the fall of 2006.
I grew up in a rural part of Ohio. My house had fairly dense woods located directly behind it. As a child, I had a passion for exploring. I especially loved exploring those woods. It was my favorite place to be.
Prior to the incident, I had wandered through those woods many times, always with my mother's permission. There was one tree in particular that I frequently enjoyed to climb, usually about to the halfway mark so I could perch myself on one of the heavier branches and just relax as I listened to the peaceful sounds of nature. Climbing that tree for the very first time was quite an accomplishment. From that position, I could partially see the back of my house.
On that day, after a fair amount of exploring, I carefully scaled my favorite tree. I seated myself on a sturdy branch and took in the view. Naturally, being late in October, the sun inevitably began to set within a few minutes. I always felt a little saddened to see the darkness approaching. The woods were like my own little sanctuary. I could entertain myself out there for hours. When darkness began to fall, however, my mother would stand at the edge of the woods and call my name until I obediently returned home so not to be stranded out there after dark.
After watching the sun set until I could no longer see it, I began my descent down the tree. I was nearly at the bottom when I heard my mother's familiar voice, calling my name. I thought nothing of it at first, as this routine had occurred plenty of times before. Then I realized something strange as my feet touched the ground. My mother's voice was coming from behind me, deeper in the woods, rather than towards the entrance where she always stood when she called me home.
My mom had never entered those woods before. At least not with me. I was eager to find her and show her all of my favorite spots before it grew too dark. That's when I realized something was off. How could she have gone into the woods ahead of me? Certainly I could have missed her, but as I said, she never entered those woods. She continued calling my name, but there was something strange about it. She sounded absolutely frantic, almost angry. Fearing that I was in trouble for reasons currently unknown, I froze in place. As her voice drew closer, I squinted my eyes to see if I could locate her and determine exactly how angry or upset she appeared to be. However, I didn't see anyone or anything unusual.
Suddenly I heard her voice calling my name from the direction of my house, sounding much calmer. Seconds later, from somewhere within the woods yet again. It wasn't an echo. I wasn't imagining things. I was literally hearing her beckoning me from the edge of our backyard, as well as ahead of me. My legs suddenly turned to jelly. I couldn't quite comprehend what was going on. "Come here, right now!" the voice that I originally believed to be her screamed from just ahead. I realized that whoever or whatever was mimicking my mother was drawing closer.
I didn't question which voice was actually my mother's, as there was something about the way it sounded that unnerved me. Terrified of what I would see if I stood there much longer, I turned around and ran towards the exit of the woods as quickly as my legs could possibly carry me. It was amazing that I didn't trip over anything in my haste. Even though my house wasn't very far away from where I had been standing, those woods had never seemed larger to me than they did in that moment. From behind me, my 'mother's' voice continued to call my name, now sounding desperate. Panic set in as my actual mother finally came into view, waiting patiently as she usually did until I returned home. In my frightened state, I absolutely refused to look back.
As soon as I was out of the woods and in the backyard next to my mother, the other voice was suddenly gone. Rather than fading away, it seemed to stop the very moment I stepped foot into my backyard. I must have looked as frightened as I felt because my mother asked me what was wrong. Slowly but surely, my panic subsided. I didn't say anything until we were safely inside of the house with our doors locked. I asked my mother if she had entered the woods. Appearing confused by the question, she told me that of course she hadn't.
With that confirmation, I hesitantly asked her if she had heard anyone else calling my name and yelling. The answer to that question was also no. Although I was still very much shaken up, I managed to explain everything that happened as clearly and rationally as possible. My mother was surprisingly nonchalant about the whole situation, explaining that I must have imagined it. That I was spending too much time out there by myself.
The incident in those woods have stayed with me to this day. I can still hear that voice as clear as a bell. Whoever or whatever it was calling my name sounded exactly like my mother, but I know it wasn't her. Not only was she waiting for me outside, but the voice also sounded strange in a way that I still can't fully explain. I didn't go back into the woods until I was seventeen years old and even then, I never hung out for very long.
I've carefully gone over every possible explanation, but none of them seem entirely plausible. It certainly wasn't my mother playing a prank. There was no way she could have pulled it off. Not to mention the fact that she's never been one to play pranks. I also highly doubt that it was anyone else because as I stated before, we lived in a rural area. The closet neighbor was at least a mile away and I wasn't personally acquainted with any of them. How could they have known my name and where to find me?
We've since moved out of that house, but my mother and I occasionally discuss the incident. She still claims that she never heard or saw anything unusual out there. I know it probably shouldn't, but what happened in those woods continues to bother me. I spent many hours out there prior to that day and never had anything out of the ordinary occur. The best explanation I have at this point is a doppelganger or possibly a demon, but I'm unsure. If anyone has a possible explanation as to what might have happened, I'd love to hear it. Thank you for reading.