skip to Main Content

Sometimes my mind plays tricks on me

The other day, the offspring and I went to the library. I came home with seven books, three of which I’d already read. Dave doesn’t understand why I do this.

Sometimes I like a book so much I want to read it again, especially if it’s been a while. And I’m trying not to buy so many books, even though going to Barnes and Noble, and purchasing a few new releases is one of my favorite things to do. However, the library is a lot kinder to our budget and there are plenty of good books for me to choose from.

One of the books I came home with was The House Next Door by Anne Rivers Siddons. I read this book for the first time in 1978, when I was eleven years old. I don’t know which parent bought it for me and I’m amazed they let me read it. However, my dad also gave me Stephen King’s The Stand and The Shining for Christmas that same year so they either thought I was not an easily spooked child or had absolutely no clue about the content of any of the books they bought for me.

The House Next Door is a horror novel. All of Anne Rivers Siddon’s other books are literary fiction but for some reason she took one foray into the horror genre.

The book is about Walter and Colquitt Kennedy. They are childless, by choice, and live in a beautiful home next door to an empty lot. A young couple has purchased the lot and hired an up and coming architect to design their dream home.

The Kennedy’s become good friends with the architect and each of the home’s subsequent owners.

Something tragic happens to everyone that lives there. The house has a way of bringing out the worst in all of them and the evil gets more prevalent with each new owner. Walter and Colquitt become entangled in the lives of their neighbors, whether they want to or not.

The book is not overtly terrifying. The creepiness is subtle and builds slowly and you are able to understand how Walter and Colquitt are ultimately forced to acknowledge that an evil supernatural presence is the only way to explain what happens to everyone who moves into the house next door, especially when the “house” starts killing pets and homeowners.

I finished re-reading the book Monday night and for some reason, had a lot of trouble sleeping. I kept waking up and thinking about the book.

I woke up again because Lauren came into our bedroom complaining of a headache and sore throat. I asked her if she wanted Motrin and she said she did so I walked downstairs in the dark to the kitchen (I’d keep the Tylenol and Motrin upstairs but ever since Chloe ate the Tylenol on Lauren’s night stand, and had to have her stomach pumped, I keep it in the cupboard in the kitchen).

I felt uneasy walking downstairs in the dark. I hurriedly flipped on the kitchen light and glanced up at the microwave to see what time it was.

Imagine how I felt when I saw that the time on the microwave was 3:15 (or, as I like to refer to it, Amityville Horror time!). I grabbed the Motrin and pretty much ran back upstairs, leaving the kitchen light on. I’m sure if I had looked out the sliding glass doors I’d have seen the glowing red eyes of Jody, the demonic pig.

In case you’re thinking I’m a colossal scaredy-cat, let me explain.

I have a habit of waking up at scary times. A couple years ago Dave and I rented The Exorcism of Emily Rose one Saturday night (ironically enough we had taken the offspring to Saturday night services at church and picked up the DVD on our way home). I was reluctant to watch it, because I don’t like scary movies, but it was billed as a courtroom drama based on a true story and Laura Linney was starring in it.

It pretty much scared the holy crap out of me. It’s about a girl named Emily Rose who is possessed by the devil and the priest who tries to perform an exorcism on her is charged with criminal negligence after her death.
Laura Linney plays the lawyer who is hired to defend the priest. The story is then told in flashbacks as Emily Rose begins, and ends, her struggles against the demons that possess her.

Laura Linney is warned that, by taking on the case, she will be targeted by demons for exposing them. She begins to experience strange occurrences at 3:00 AM, just as Emily Rose had. The priest explains that 3:00 AM is the witching hour that evil spirits use to mock the Holy Trinity. It’s the opposite of 3:00 PM, which is traditionally known as the hour Jesus died.

For almost two weeks I woke up at 3:00 AM. It freaked me out and I told Dave I wondered if it was possible to somehow set your mental alarm clock to wake you up at a time guaranteed to mess with your head. And every single time Matthew or Lauren woke up sick in the middle of the night it was straight up 3:00 AM on my bedside clock radio.

The other night Chloe’s barking woke me up in the middle of the night. She paced back and forth by the sliding glass doors in the kitchen and the only reason I was able to open them and look outside was because I didn’t look at the microwave to see if it was Amityville Horror or Emily Rose o‘clock. And I guarantee you it would have been one of those times.

So basically I can read scary books and watch scary movies but only if I’m okay with waking up at scary times.

Has this ever happened to anyone else? Wouldn’t this be a great time for everyone to share his or her story on my blog?

Please tell me the name of the scariest movie you’ve ever seen or the scariest book you’ve ever read. Or just tell me about a time you had the crap scared out of you. It’ll be fun, really. You can leave your comments anonymously if you want.

I promise to read the scary book suggestions but I’m not watching any more scary movies.

And I need to find a way to store the Tylenol and Motrin upstairs.

Back To Top
×Close search