Thursday, February 23, 2012

Who Was It?

I wanted to write this down while it’s fresh on my mind. Last night I had the coolest experience. I woke up and someone was standing beside my bed—someone I love a whole lot, but I don't remember who it was. When I saw this person, I was so excited, I reached behind me and tapped Bill three or four times rapidly and firmly to get him to see too. I was smiling so big that it hurt, so it must have been someone I was extremely happy to see and also someone that Bill knew too. The feeling that I had was that this person was someone he loved as well, but he only mumbled a few words and did not look up.

Immediately, whoever it was—was gone and a faint, rectangular light remained, almost as if the image was quickly peeled away from the dull scene of the side of my bed. But my big smile still remained while I studied where the light had been and tried to pull back from memory who it was. I tried for several seconds then came to the conclusion that I was not supposed to remember the person, but just the feeling and the light.

I love experiences like this, because they strengthen my conviction of life after death and that this life is but a moment in the eternities, and also, and most importantly, that the ones we love and hold close to our heart are not far from us and watch over us. One day, we'll be together again. I look forward to that time when mortality will be but a glimpse of a memory, and we are settled back into our true existence once more.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Experiences with the Spirit World

Beyond the range of normal experience or scientific explanation

I was only nine years old when I had my first experience with the paranormal—definitely beyond the range of normal experience or scientific explanation.

Though it was many years ago, I vividly remember the bedroom I shared with my older sister, JoAnn. It was big enough for our twin beds, which straddled the only heat source in our room, a small register in the middle of the floor. Our bedroom had one window that looked out over the meadows and on to the woods. The room had three doors, one that led down an enclosed stairwell to the kitchen, a short door that opened to a small cubby, and a door to the attic. JoAnn slept in the bed closest to the window—mine was by the attic door. The door that led downstairs to the kitchen was at the foot of both our beds.
JoAnn had stayed late at a friend’s house and upon returning, decided to sleep downstairs on one of the two couches in the living room. I awoke during the night and went downstairs for a drink of water. I left the door upstairs open. As I ascended the stairs, my eyes beheld a being, all arrayed in white, sitting on JoAnn’s bed, facing mine. I did not turn and run, but quickly surmised the situation. I looked to the heat register to see if any light from it could be causing the image I saw. I checked the window and the attic door for any signs of light. There wasn’t any, and yet the being remained, eyes fixed on me. He did not do, or say anything. I suppose he waited for my reaction to him. He presented no danger to me—no reason to fear him, but I did. I’m convinced that a strict religious upbringing entrenched in unnatural fear gripped my young heart, of which I sorely regret. I inched my way over to my bed, snatched a pillow then hurried downstairs to the second couch with our family dog, Duchess, by my side. I did not sleep, but prayed for protection for the rest of the night.
Who was that being; and what was his purpose? Why was he entirely white, from the top of his head, to the bottom of his feet? Did he have a message for me, or perhaps a request? Dare I imagine I hold some importance to him somehow? Or was he merely resting, before continuing his journey?
I do know, as anyone would, that he was not of this world—at that moment at least. Perhaps he was an ancestor returning to stir my heart towards spiritual matters, or an angel of God, whose purpose remains unknown for a while longer?
Whatever the purpose, this undeniable fact remains—there is more to life than meets the mortal eye. I bear firm witness of that.

I was a freshman at BYU when I had this experience with the spirit world.

I had transferred from USC to BYU and knew very few people. I felt so alone. Because I worked the graveyard shift full-time, from 11:00 p.m. to 7 a.m., I didn’t get to socialize at all. I didn’t have a car and from January to April walked two to three miles each wintery night to work then walked home in the morning. I barely made enough money to pay for my rent at the Riviera Apartments and for my own food. I had classes at 10:00 in the morning and because I played in the BYU Symphony Orchestra, I sometimes had concerts in the early evening. I remember a couple of times not going to bed at all, but going from work to school to concert to work …
I guess I had had enough, and one evening deep in thought, I unwittingly willed myself to go home. It wasn’t anything I was attempting to do, it just happened. I lay on my bed at the apartment, and simply asked to leave earth for good—it didn’t seem like I was asking to die, but merely to return to heaven. I felt a swirling sensation that started from my feet and moved up through my body. It felt like my spirit was leaving my body, and it frightened me, so I stopped it.

After I finished that year at BYU, I returned to Maine and then shortly thereafter went to Ohio and met my husband and the experiences with the spirit world continued.

I was about three months pregnant with our oldest son, Jason, when I pulled a string of muscles in my back lifting a small TV. The doctor told me to stay in bed for two weeks while it healed. We left our small apartment in Batavia and stayed at Bill’s parent’s home on the other side of town. We stayed in Bill’s brother’s room. It was a small bedroom, but we managed to put a TV in the corner, and our three year old daughter Mandee’s sleeping bag on the floor beside us. There was a window across from the bed and a dresser against the same wall as the headboard. The bed was alongside the wall opposite the window. I slept on the outside of the bed for easier access in and out of bed.
I awoke one night to find two men dressed in white standing by my bed. They were not frightening in the least; in fact, it seemed quite natural and not out of the ordinary at all to see them. The one on the left reached his hand out to me, and said, “It’s time to go.” I began to sit up and reach my hand to his, but looked back at Bill, and said, “No. I want to stay with Bill.” I do not remember anything past that. I must have simply cuddled next to Bill, and gone back to sleep.
Was it a dream? If anything had been out of place in that room, I may have wondered so, but there wasn’t. The room was exactly the way it was when I went to sleep that night. I noted that the TV was in the corner, the dresser to my right, Bill on the other side of me, and Mandee sleeping soundly on the floor. There just happened to be two men, dressed in white, standing there, too.
Was it my time to go?—apparently not, but maybe so. Did I have a choice?—perhaps. Was it the same choice that I had at BYU? I think so.

I have had several experiences with the spirit world. In fact, one of the most poignant experiences that I have ever had with the spirit world happened in Gilbert, Arizona.

In the middle of the night, I awoke and found my deceased father standing across from me at the foot of my bed. Bill was sleeping in between us. My dad called me by my nickname, Terri. It was wonderful to hear his voice! The voices of the deceased ones that I love are the hardest part for me to recall, but I recognize them immediately. Daddy didn’t say anything else, but I knew what he wanted. He wanted me to return with him.
I said, “I will be obedient,” but then began to cry as my eyes rested on Bill. I said, “I love you,” to Bill three times then lay back down. I heard a soft rumbling sound and felt a gentle swirling sensation growing in intensity surrounding my body. I knew that if I did nothing my spirit would leave my body, so I stopped it.
Instantly, Daddy was gone, and I was not asleep. I had nothing to wake up from, no pulling out of any sort of dream state, nor dreamy awakening … I was not sleeping, so did not need to awake. I was simply there, alone with Bill sleeping by my side.
What does one do, when in an instant a pretty incredible experience ends, and you are left to ponder its meaning? Does one simply go back to sleep? Oh, no, no, no, no.
I immediately got out of bed and got on my knees. I told God that I would be obedient, if indeed he wanted me to come home that evening, then I would go, but, if I could choose, then I wanted to stay with Bill. Then I sat down and wrote the whole experience out and a message to each one of my children.
I am not afraid of death. It holds little mystery and all wonder to me. I imagine when I do leave this existence, it will be quite like the experiences and dreams I’ve had, but only better.
The veil between earth and the spirit world is very thin. I’ve witnessed some pretty amazing and marvelous things—

The first time I saw this young spirit was in Dover-Foxcroft, Maine. She was wearing a knee length dress, and had long hair. She looked directly at me then turned back and passed through the upstairs hallway in front of me—not up or down the hallway, but through the walls on either side.
The second time I saw her was in Phoenix, AZ. It was the same thing—I stepped into the hallway, and saw her pass through the walls again.
The third time was rather interesting. I saw her in the temple—twice. It was hot that day. I don’t recall if there had been a problem with the air conditioning or not, but the room was stuffy. They told us they were going to leave the door open a bit to let the air circulate, as they had had someone faint earlier.
I occasionally found my gaze wandering to the partially opened door and saw a group of women walk past, and only saw the hems of their long white dresses—then I saw a young girl with long hair pass by. The curious thing is that she later passed by going back the way she came then passed by the door again. There was a young boy—a little taller than she was with her one of those times. I also saw temple workers talking to each other at the foot of the stairs, and noted that I could only see the top half of them, because I was sitting down.
After we were finished, I lingered for a while, and when I went to leave the room, I was absolutely surprised to find that there was no hallway on the top of the stairwell where I had seen the hems of the group of women pass by and the young girl and boy. I totally expected to see a hallway cross the outside of the door where I had seen them pass, but there wasn't any, only the enclosed stairwell going down to the lower floor.

While we were living in Maine, and about one year before we moved to Ohio, I had an incredible experience. One night I dreamt of my recently deceased brother, Donnie. He died in 1988 as a result of drinking and driving. In my dream, I opened a door and entered a pristine waiting room. Donnie entered a door from the other side of the room. He was radiant. The colors of his face and the blues of his eyes, the whites of his teeth were like colors I had never seen before, far greater augmented and brighter than any earthly hues. He called me by name, and we embraced. I can remember no more. I am not meant to. But when I awoke I had a smile plastered on my face that was so intense that it hurt. Was it a dream? I don’t think so. The colors were nothing like I had ever experienced here in mortality, and the joy I had upon awakening needs no confirmation, nor explanation.
About a year later, shortly after we moved to Ohio, Bill’s parent’s ward were sending several of their youth ahead of the adults to the Chicago Temple to do baptisms. My two oldest children, Mandee and Jason went with them. After they left, and had already arrived at the temple, I realized that Jason could do Donnie’s baptism, so I called the temple and requested that he be allowed to do my brother’s work. Proper protocol was to send a family group sheet along, and I hadn’t. They called Salt Lake, and Jason got special permission to perform his uncle’s baptism. One of the sisters in the ward that witnessed it told me that Jason had already performed his fifteen baptisms and redressed, but they had him change back into baptismal clothing again for Donnie’s baptism. She said it was very spiritual.
The next day, we arrived to do the rest of the ordinances and a particularly interesting event occurred –in a special location of the temple, my brother Donnie—more than three years deceased, audibly called me by name. I recognized his voice immediately. I was at first surprised, because no one speaks above a whisper there, and Donnie’s voice was not a whisper! I turned to look for him, but saw nothing, but I know it was him. It was his distinctive voice. I’m sure that I was kept from viewing him there at that moment, because I would probably would have disrupted the quietness in my excitement to see him.

How can I ever question the reality of things not seen? The Lord has blessed me above measure with many out-of-the-ordinary personal experiences that testify to life beyond this life.

I truly wish not to record this, but I know I must, for they are as much a part of my life’s experiences as the pleasant, peaceful, and joyous ones are.

We moved from the dairy farm into town. My parents bought a large two-story house on Union Street. I do not have bad feelings about that house. I loved that house, even though very scary things happened within its walls. I will not elaborate, or embellish with lofty words, I would much rather simply record the events and be on with it. So, suffice to say, I saw, I felt, I heard, I experienced the unimaginable. Steven King hasn’t written anything near to what I experienced there. Fourteen nights in a row, gripped by some unseen force, my jaw locked in place, visual, even actual electricity from my head to frayed electrical cords, indentations in my leg, horrifying sounds. Imagining the hand of God protecting me, and sleeping with a Bible by my side were my only reprieve.
Later as a freshman at USC, while waiting for friends to come back to the car, I heard the frightful sound of wild dogs growling and gnashing their teeth, first off in the distance, but then surrounding the car that I sat in. I could see nothing outside the vehicle, but could only hear the terrible sounds. I prayed, and the sound went away, but came back twice.
In Ohio, when I went downstairs into Bill’s parent’s family room, I saw a plant rocking rhythmically back and forth. And one evening, I saw just the head of a very frightening apparition, in full horrific color floating above me in my bed. I’ve seen other spirits—one that was alarming and one that was not, with her long gray hair and quiet demeanor.
Okay, why? Why me? Why not everyone? Maybe I needed to experience the evil to appreciate and choose the good. Maybe I’m chosen to stand as a witness that these things do exist. Maybe I was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. Or, maybe I can help someone understand that they need not fear the unknown, for that is what I have learned. Fear is a choice. All things have purpose, nothing is without a cause, and all things can be explained and understood. There is sweet and comforting peace in knowledge and faith.

Around May 2009, Bill and I were heading west on Brown, when he jumped and pointed forward. He had just seen the tail end of a collision at Brown and Val Vista. We were among the first at the intersection and were the first in line in the far right lane. The cars involved in the accident came to a stop on the other side of Val Vista—across from us, in the east bound lanes. Bill hopped out of our car and ran over to help, along with two or three other people. I stayed in the car and watched.
It didn’t seem like a very bad wreck from where I was sitting, and though I was concerned for the young girl behind the wheel, and her friend in the back, I wasn’t too worried. I watched as Bill stuck his head in the driver’s side window to check on her and the other girl, and then I just played the waiting game for him to return to our car. He was over there quite awhile.
Finally, he came back, and I had lots of questions. I wish I had recorded this when it happened, because too much time has elapsed for me to accurately recall all the details, but I think Bill told me that she had lost consciousness, but I’m not sure now. However, the one thing that I do remember clearly, as if it just happened yesterday—was his response when I asked how the girl was in the back seat.
He looked at me strange and said, “There wasn’t anyone in the back seat—there wasn’t anyone else in the car.” He was adamant about it, but I so was I. I disagreed with him for a short while, but he would not relent and neither would I. He was over there—he stuck his head in the car, and he was there for a long while trying to help out, and I was simply sitting across the intersection, observing. But, I truly had seen both a girl behind the wheel and a girl looking straight ahead from the back seat. So, who did I see?
I’ve often wondered about that—wondered if she had left her own body—and wondered why I could see her, and not Bill.

I am humbled to have been entrusted with such incredible experiences. They have helped to develop and define me and given me a firm testimony that the spirit world exists and a strong desire to share what I’ve experienced in the best way that I know how—through speaking and writing.

To correspond with Theresa write to Visit her website at To purchase her No Angel Series, visit her Amazon author page