I hesitated before sending this story. I wasn't sure it could help anyone, but it was my daughter's initiation into the "paranormal" and my first true sighting.
In 1991, my daughter's dad and I moved into a house (built in 1965), and found out the day we moved in that I was pregnant. I really don't remember any activity worth mentioning that occurred before my daughter Jerrica turned 5. Although her dad did tell me a week or so after we moved in that he thought the house was haunted. He didn't know why; just a feeling he had. Here I was, the one with previous experiences, and I didn't feel anything from the house. Oh well, I guess my "Spidey Senses" weren't active yet.
There were so many days that Jerrica would come into the Living Room or Kitchen and ask me what I wanted. Before I realized what was going on, I would tell her I didn't say anything. Jerrica would tell me that yes, I called her name. Funny thing about that is I called her "Baby." I still do sometimes and she's 18. I rarely called her Jerrica, except when she was in trouble and then it was "Jerrica Lynn!" Finally, when I realized she was hearing voice (s), I started telling her I didn't remember what I wanted, or I would make something up.
Don't criticize me here, please. I was completely ignorant about things then. I didn't know what to do, or even if this stuff was really real. I hadn't started keeping my journal yet, so I was still on the fence: "am I crazy or I am really seeing/hearing things?" Strongly leaning toward "crazy"; people just didn't talk about "that kind of stuff" then. If they did, in my experience, it was either to tell "ghost stories" to scare little kids (and teenagers!) or to make fun of other people.
During the summer before Jerrica started Kindergarten, her dad and I would hear crying and naturally assume it was Jerrica. When Jerrica cried, I would run into her bedroom, but she would be sound asleep. It was a very small 2-bedroom house; it only took a second or two to get to her bedroom. When it happened the first time, and I realized she was sleeping peacefully, I wondered if my cat Harley was meowing and her dad and I just thought it was Jerrica. Since cats can make noises that sound like crying, this would have been a completely reasonable explanation. Especially when I went in and Harley was lying on Jerrica's chest with his paw on her face. Harley slept with Jerrica whenever he was in. Sometimes he even napped in her bed when she wasn't home.
Okay, time for a lot of you to go off on me! I know there are people who absolutely freak out about cats around babies and children. I'm not one of them, and my daughter is still alive today. Harley didn't steal her breath or her soul! In hindsight, I think he was trying to comfort, protect her. Anyway, I quickly ruled out it being Harley because the crying would happen when neither he nor my cat Familiar were even in the house. (Side Note: I never thought it was Familiar because typically she didn't go in Jerrica's room. She was my cat and very independent in nature. Familiar didn't need the closeness that Harley thought he did.)
The crying happened almost every night for what seemed like an eternity. Each time, her dad or I would check on her and she would be asleep. The weird thing about it was the crying was for "mommy." Jerrica never called me mommy; I was "momma." (To this day, the word "mommy" has never crossed my daughter's lips when referring/talking to me.)
One night Jerrica started crying really hard. I ran into her bedroom, picked her up and held her while she cried. She kept repeating "I need my mommy." I told her that I had her, but she still kept crying for her "mommy." I yelled for her dad and when he came in Jerrica had calmed down a little bit, but was still shaking from crying so hard.
I can't remember the exact order these next events took place, but at one point she put her hands on my face, put her nose and forehead to mine and told me "Promise me you'll never do that again. Please, mommy, promise me. It's so bad, mommy, you just don't know" and started crying again. Yes, these were her exact words. They are words that are so cemented in my brain that I can still see, hear, and feel her doing it.
At one point, she looked at her TV and just screamed in terror. Then a few minutes later, she screamed again when she looked at her bedroom window. The whole time Jerrica was screaming and crying her eyes were totally vacant. She didn't even have tears. I know that sounds weird, but there were no tears. She was "dry sobbing" if that makes any sense. She wasn't seeing anything except what was in her head. I just sat there, held her, and cried. I had never felt so helpless in my life. My baby was terrified and I couldn't do anything to help her.
Finally, and I'm not sure how long this went on that night (it seemed like forever), Jerrica suddenly came out of whatever trance she was in, sighed really deeply and laid her head against my chest and went to sleep. It didn't even seem like she'd been crying. She didn't do the gulping, shuddering that children do when they've been on a "crying jag" and have cried themselves to sleep.
The next day I asked her if she remembered having a bad dream and she didn't have any idea what I was talking about (she still doesn't remember). But this went on for 2 entire weeks. Every night the same thing would happen; Jerrica's dad and I would hear a little girl crying for her mommy, Jerrica would start "crying," I would go in to comfort her, she wouldn't realize I was there, and eventually she would just go to sleep. She didn't say anything the other times though; just that one time. Believe me, that was more than enough.
I asked her pediatrician if he thought she might be nervous about starting school and he said more than likely that was not the case. He said he just calls them night terrors, all children have them, and there was nothing that could be done about it. He also said not to worry about them because they eventually go away. Her dad and I didn't realize that there might be more to it than that until a few months later.
Jerrica and I were the only ones in the house one afternoon in September of that same year. She was playing in her bedroom floor, back to the doorway, watching TV and working a puzzle. Jerrica was dressed in a purple Mickey and Minnie Mouse sweatsuit. (This is relevant.) I went to the bathroom and left the door open since we were the only ones there. I saw something out of the corner of my eye; thinking it was Jerrica, I glanced up. But she wasn't Jerrica. I saw a beautiful little girl standing in the bathroom doorway. She was about 4 or 5 years old, long blond hair which hung in ringlets over her shoulders, with big blue eyes. She was wearing a blue short outfit. The shirt came to just above her belly button and had a lattice-type border on it, about an inch from the bottom of her shirt. I couldn't see her mouth, but I knew she was smiling because of the crinkles at the corners of her eyes. I also couldn't see her feet. I'm not sure how long she stood there (it could have been minutes, it seemed so long), but when I blinked, she was gone. She wasn't transparent; she was as solid as I was.
I didn't mention to anyone that I had seen her until 2 or 3 weeks later, after I saw her again. Then I told Jerrica's dad. I'm not sure he believed me at that point, but we kept watching and listening. Familiar was the only cat who ever noticed her. Familiar would glance up, look toward the hallway, and move her head from left to right, like she was watching the little girl go from Jerrica's room to my bedroom. It was never the other way, always from left to right. I know Familiar was seeing the little girl, because she would look up just as I would see her. The second time I saw the little girl, I saw her coming from Jerrica's room to my room.
It seemed like this occurred every year from then (1997) until I moved out in January 2000. And it was always football season, or the start of school maybe, but it was getting cooler when we would notice her. Jerrica's dad never saw her, but I saw her three different times. The third time was just a glimpse of her in the hallway going from left to right, bedroom to bedroom. Jerrica's dad and I both would see a shadow go from Jerrica's room to our room just about every night during that time period. She wasn't clear all the time. The second and third times I saw her weren't anywhere near as clear as the first time.
I hated hearing her cry. She sobbed. It was heartbreaking. All she wanted was her mommy. And I didn't know how to help her. Then when winter came around, we wouldn't hear her again until late August, early September of the next year. Jerrica's dad never heard the little girl again after I left.
I would tell you what we experienced was a residual haunting, but there is more to this story. It's just too long to submit as one. Can a residual haunting also be an intelligent haunting?