1. O Brother, Where Art Thou?
Until my preteens, I lived in a small bungalow in a rather old and impoverished neighborhood in Winnipeg. Growing up, I always had an unsettling feeling about my house. I remember playing in my basement alone and distinctively hearing my parents call my name from the room over, only to find no one there. I also had terrible nightmares throughout my childhood and difficulties sleeping. In fact, I later learned that as a baby, my mom took me to a local Buddhist priest because I wouldn't stop crying and pointing to a corner of the room. If that's not eerie enough, I don't know what is.
Anyways, this one experience I remember as though it was yesterday happened when I was about 8 years old. At the time, I shared a bedroom with my younger brother and my parents, while my two older sisters shared a bedroom across the hall. My parents always left the hallway light on in case one of us needed to use the bathroom in middle of the night. The bathroom happened to be located between the two rooms.
In the winter time, I would often wake up cold in the middle night and crawl to the heat vent in the bedroom to warm up. One night, I did just that... except something was different. I was sitting by the heat vent when I chilling feeling washed over and drenched me in fear. I looked over to the bedroom door and saw a black shadowy figure with glowing green eyes hovering by the door frame, blocking the light from the hallway. I thought maybe...just maybe.. it was my brother, so I called out his name. There was no response. Terrified, I looked over to where my parents and brother were sleeping and saw that they were all fast asleep. I jumped back into bed, pulled the covers over my head, and some how willed myself to fall asleep.
The next day, I told my entire family what happened. My mom convinced me I must have dreamed it up, but I could tell what I told her freaked her out. Aside from that experience, I never saw anything like that ever again so I put it out of mind. In fact, I almost forgot all about it until a few years later. My brother and I were watching his old YTV show called Mystery Hunters. In one episode, they covered "Shadow People," which they said were evil spirits that entered our world through doorway portals. My brother immediately turned to me, pale in the face, and said, "Isn't that what you saw a few years ago?"
I still get goosebumps thinking about it to this day.
By Jessica Huynh, Creative Industries at Ryerson University
2. Knock, knock. Who's there? Nobody.
There was one incident when I woke up in the middle of the night to my door creaking. I turned to my door to see it was closed, which is normal because I always sleep with it shut. I thought nothing of the door creaking as I thought it could've been my mom or just my imagination so I turned my back to my door to go back to sleep. I then heard my door knob twist and my door creak open as slowly as possible. I was completely petrified and frozen, I could not turn around for the life of me even though I tried with all my might. I laid there for about 2 minutes until my door slowly creaked shut, again hearing the knob turn and the door shut completely. I fell asleep an hour later, exhausted from the adrenaline and fear. The next morning I asked my mom if she opened my door and she said no. Literally the most terrifying experience of my life.
By Anonymous, Durham College
3. Sleep with One Eye Open...
When I was ten years old, my family purchased a second-hand bed frame at a thrift store. It's wooden and originally had really ugly paint job, but my Dad refurnished it and made it look really nice. Since owning this bed, I have had nightmares every night that I've sleep on it. Other family members that have slept on my bed have mentioned that they also have only had nightmares when they've slept in my bed. I have had sleep paralysis a few times sleeping on it..
Once, I saw the Grim Reaper standing in the corner of my room moving closer and closer to me. I've even woken up a few times to my bed shaking violently in the middle of the night. Other times, I have felt the sensation of someone trying to choke me. Some of my personal items tend to fall off my dresser in the middle of the night too, and the window is always closed so I can't blame the wind. It is safe to say that this bed of mine is haunted.
There is something evil lurking behind or linked to this structure. I know I should get rid of it, but a part of me doesn't want to. Perhaps I am in too deep at this point. I need to see out where this bed goes...
By Julia Marren, Social Work at Ryerson University
4. Have You Checked on the Children?
When I was just a baby, my family lived in an old farm house (AKA the start of every horror film ever) in Caledon East, which is just north of Brampton. At this point, I had two older sisters who may have been around 7 and 9 years old. One evening, my mom and dad went out, so they had my mom's best friend - my Aunt Pat - babysit us girls.
My Aunt Pat put us to bed as the sun went down and settled in to watch TV in the living room downstairs. You should know that the upstairs of the house was set up in such a way that my older sisters' bedroom was on one side of the house and my baby room was on the other. The rooms were connected by a bathroom with entrances on either side. The age of this farmhouse made it so that the floors and stairs creaked in very discernible ways. Because of this, when my sisters were out of bed when they weren't supposed to be (or when someone walked up and down the stairs), you could very clearly tell from the living room (funny how we call it a LIVING room, eh?).
My Aunt Pat was watching TV when she suddenly heard footsteps creaking down the stairs. Having known us for a long time, she assumed my sisters were out of bed again. She expected one of them to pop their head around the corner at any second, but no kids did. Like any good babysitter, she went up to check on my sisters and I, but we were all asleep. Slightly confused, but not creeped out, my Aunt Pat headed back downstairs to continue watching TV.
Without fail, almost right above her, she heard the creaks of someone walking back and forth between the two bedrooms through the bathroom. Now sufficiently creeped out, she walked upstairs HOPING to find my sisters and I being little miscreants, but... WE WERE ALL ASLEEP.
Of course, my Aunt Pat freaked out and quite seriously told my mom she would never babysit at our house again. When she confessed why, my mom replied, "Yeah, they like to check on the baby's room."
By Bailey Parnell, Ryerson University
5. Mirror, Mirror, on the Wall...
It was weird because I often heard footsteps behind me and in front of me. I knew my place at the time on Palmerston was an old house, but there was something quite eerie about the energy and the creaks on the wooden floor. I came home from work one day while it was still broad daylight; it was probably mid January or something as the weather was cold. I was all frozen from the walk so I hopped in my shower. I was blasting Mariah Carey, singing along, when I heard the bathroom door squeak open just a little bit. It was then, when I remembered my roomies weren't home.
I didn’t hear the front door slam shut and I also didn’t fully close the bathroom door (because my roomies weren’t home). I shut the idea of ghosts or spirits out of my mind because I knew that'd freak me out. I kept singing. I started soaping my body when I heard the door squeak open a little more. That's when I immediately stopped singing. I stood under the running hot water, trying my best to listen for anything else other than the music. But it was silent.
I kept standing there, rinsing my body, when suddenly I reached for the shampoo and felt a cold air brush against my arm. That freaked me out. I was under steaming hot water so I wondered how on earth a cold breeze caressed my right arm. I slammed the faucet down and peeked out the curtain. There was nothing but steam in the cold, old bathroom. I paused my music, grabbed my towel, and quickly wrapped my shaking body. I could feel the leftover shampoo sitting on my head. My right arm was still tense from the cold draft and the room was still moist...
I quickly turned on the sink faucet to wipe the suds off my ears. Then, I wiped my foggy mirror down with my left arm only to see a silhouette of a man standing there staring back at me. I looked back quickly behind me, only to see my bathroom door creak open one last time.
By Blake, York University