Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Visions or Delusions

I am writing out of a list of things I have seen during my life.

The first memory I have as a child is seeing the Easter Bunny. He was an upright, white bunny and was taller than my own father, who was 6' 2" at the time. I remember getting out of my bed and going to the louvred glass windows and peering out; I think the sound of the gates creaking woke me. It was then I saw this creature open my (maternal) great-grandfather's gate, walk up the path and approach the door. I am not sure how long he was out of my sight, but it can't have been too long. I remember, too, him going over to the water meter on the far side of the garden and crouching down. He then made to go back to the gate. At that precise moment, my mother woke and told me to return to bed, having asked me what I was doing at the window and gaining a murmured response. As I returned to my bed, I heard our gate squeak and then the gate of our neighbour's house sqawked, as it did when it was pushed.

The next day, my father and a neighbour were talking at the fence when I went over and picked up the eggs from in between the tufts of grass. I showed my father my horde and he asked me where I had found them. I told him. He seemed rather perplexed and, as I made my way back to the house, I heard him ask the neighbour if he had put them there. The neighbour remarked that the children next door had also found extras in their yard.

My next memory is of staying with my (paternal) grandmother's house whilst my mother was in hospital. I had been staying with her for three days and we had been sleeping in single beds in what used to be the boys' room. Grandmother was in the bed next to the door, and I the next one down, though there was still two beds between me and the window. I awoke to see ghosts, apparently flying, past the window. I was stunned. I watched three or four pass before endeavouring to wake my grandmother with a loud whisper. She woke and asked me what was wrong. I told her, but when I looked back, they were gone. I stayed another week in that small outback town, but never again saw the ghosts.

I cannot remember much after that in the way of visions. It is not until I am in my 20s that I remember seeing a face in behind the glass in my window. Again, it was at night, but the face was so gruesome that I had to wake my flat mate up and I spent the rest of the night in her bed. The next morning, she remonstrated with me as I had sat bolt upright all night, without moving an inch and this had made her more than uncomfortable.

It was not until I moved to my current location that I had further encounters of note. The most astonishing of which occurred in the woods in Yorkshire with a group of people. We had honoured our ancestors and all was at an end. Most were standing about talking and I decided to wander off. There had been a number of hunters out lamping that night, we could hear their guns going off, so it wouldn't do good to stray too far. I had headed off in the direction of the flowing water, when my eyes, finally adjusted to the gloom, focussed in on a hooded figure. There was nothing particularly ominous about the figure, but I knew that I was to go no further. So, I skulked back to the group around the fire.

Shortly thereafter, I was gazing up at the stars. I had just realised that where we stood was inside an almost perfect circle of trees when I noticed a beam of incandescent light - emanating from somewhere above me in the heavens - was shining down on the the other side of the fire. There didn't appear to be a source for the light. My eyes followed the beam and just as the others came into view, one of them exclaimed "Isn't it beautiful?", to which a companion replied "What?" - they couldn't see it. I later discussed my vision with this other person, who confirmed they had seen it, but no-one else appeared to have done so, they were so engrossed with their own conversations. I asked about its source, to which no reponse was offered. Shame - it filled me with awe.

Ever since that particular episode, visions came with greater frequency. I have had visions of mice crawling up my walls. I have had strange creatures wander in and out of my sight at various times of the day and night. I once woke to a whole wall full of symbols, which I believed were runes. Of course, at the time I could not read runes, but now I am beginning to wonder if these were indeed Ogham.

I have been on early morning walks with the dog, only to see semi-transparent creatures beckon me to a certain place. When I have responded and walk towards them, they disappear, but there has been things left for me; things I have wanted. There are times when I see other landscapes while looking at familiar skylines; its as though they overlay or underlie the scene I know to be real.

So, am I delusional and in need of psychiatric care, or were these things real? Given my understanding of mental health and delusions, I am inclined to think my visions were real. What's more, there have been times when I have not been the only witness to these visions, giving confirmation to my idea they are, in some way, real.

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