My parents bought a Baptist Church when I was one to rehab it into our family home in the early 1970s. Growing up–upon hearing we lived in a former church–people always remarked about how blessed it must have been. How filled with angels it was. Kind of. Not. It didn’t feel like anything more than my home. Aside from the three little hellions who’s resided there (my sisters and I), we had another tenant: the Ghost of Remington House.
I don’t remember when we first began referencing the Ghost of Remington House. I think it was something my mom’s creative mind gave birth to early on in our tenure in that big ranch-style house. We blamed the ghost for things. How’d the dog get out? Who left the mess in the TV room? Who left the light in the living room on? The Ghost of Remington House. For sure. Certainly not the lazy youngest son who wanted nothing more than to crawl into the television and live among his best friends Steve Austin and Jaime Sommers.
Somewhere along the way, the ghost became more than a scapegoat for me. He manifested in sounds and unexplained occurrences. Nothing terrifying. Again, it was open doors I knew I closed or lights I knew I turned off. Probably just my imagination or distracted memory, but the ghost blended seamlessly into my family. Though we didn’t bring up him often, we were often reminded of his ever presence with the odd noise here and there.
I haven’t lived in my childhood home since the 80s but when I go for a visit and nestle into my childhood bedroom–no matter what time, the ghost reminds me he is around. Every single night since I was a kid going to sleep in the room–whether I lived there or just visiting–there would come a point as I was drifting off to sleep where I could hear a “thump” in the ceiling. A solid sound made in the rafters of the once-church. Not ominous or scary. It’s a comforting sound that I’ve been hearing for forty years. I can’t help but smirk when I hear it. It’s like a solid pat on my shoulder.
One thump. Only one and nothing more. A signal that he knows I’m home and safe. Reminding me he’s still there.
It makes me smirk every time.
Also published on Medium.