Shoo, Ghost!

How a local ghostbuster helped my daughter find some peace of mind.

Let me just start out by saying I would do pretty much anything for my children, Brittany, Dylan and my son-in-law Mick. Well, this past June, I was put to the test. Okay, it wasn’t that bad, but a series of events made me step out of my comfort zone and opened my eyes to the possibility of….well…ghosts. Yep, ghosts. The Backstory I guess the best place to start would be to give a little background on the matter. Not the ghost, but my daughter. Brittany, from the time she was a wee little mite, has always been afraid of the things that go bump in the night. We had to have nightlights in her bedrooms, and she had a veritable menagerie of stuffed animals and pillows she tucked in her bed to create a protective barrier around her when she slept. When she was around 9 or 10, she was coerced into watching “The Sixth Sense” at a friend’s house; she hardly slept for a week. She has just fretted over ghosts and things unseen. But she grew and things got better. She got married last October, and last spring, she and Mick started talking about buying a house. She’s always loved the look and character of older homes, and since moving out of our house at the age of 19 six years ago, she’s only lived in homes that were pre-1920. When speaking about her dream house she said, “It needs to be old, cute, have a fenced yard (they have 2 very energetic Australian shepherds), a nice kitchen and wood floors.” And then she would say, “and not haunted.” This last part was half-joking. Or was it? Their realtor showed them house after house. They fell in love with a house in Hopkins and made an offer, which was accepted. But the appraisal came in low so it was over for that one. Finally, after being frustrated and almost giving up the search altogether, an adorable two-story house came on the market in Uptown. They went the same day and fell in love; it was meant to be. Their offer was accepted and a closing date was set. Now, here’s where it gets interesting. Two weeks before closing, a friend of theirs drove by the house on his way to a gig and took a photo on his new iPhone. He sent the photo to Brit’s phone. No problem, right? Well, for some odd reason, Brittany decided to zoom in…really zoom in…to something that caught her attention in the upper window. I wasn’t there, but apparently she screamed. Or drank some more wine. Probably both. She called me a few minutes later. “Mom,” she said, “there’s a ghost in the house.” ‘What?’ I said. “I’ll send you the photo,” she said. I received the photo and all looked normal until I zoomed in…gulp. I saw it. Well, at least I thought I saw something. In the upstairs window, just below the wood piece in the bottom sash, looked like a little girl gazing out the window, her arm bent across her chest. Do you see her? Being the mom that I am, and knowing it’s always my job to keep things under control, I said, “It’s just a reflection of the leaves.” And then I added, ‘Well, if it will make you feel better, I have someone who can help with that.’ What, you ask? Yes, part of this whole interesting/crazy Casper-the-ghost-type tale is that two days prior to that day the friend sent the photo to Mick, I received an email, a story pitch, from Suzanne Worthley, a White Bear Lake woman who has made it her life’s work to deal with energies in this world and beyond. At the time I thought it was a great idea to pursue sometime; I had no idea I would be reaching out to her a few days later. The ‘Cleansing’ To give my daughter some piece of mind (and to feed my curiosity), I contacted Suzanne and scheduled a time for her to visit the home after Brit and Mick had closed. We had done some painting in the house, (okay, a lot of painting) but no furniture or personal items were in the home just yet. Suzanne arrived at the home on a sunny summer morning and was sitting on the front steps when we pulled up. Wearing a long, Bohemian-type skirt and tank top, and smiling broadly, Suzanne was every bit the open and wonderful spirit I imagined her to be. Almost immediately she looked at me and said, “Your parents are with you, right behind you. And your mom is loud; she has a great sense of humor.” Now, if you had the chance to meet my wonderful mother before she passed, you would know these were two of her most recognizable traits. I was stunned. And happy. And more than a little freaked out. Brit unlocked the heavy front door and we walked in. I hadn’t felt anything unusual the times I had been there previously, nor did I at this time. But I was waiting. Suzanne asked us to sit down for a chat, so we sat cross-legged on the wood floor in the family room that had been laid when William McKinley was president, and she lit a candle. The house was quiet. Suzanne talked about different levels of energy, she drew diagrams about chakras, etc., and then she was off to walk through the house on her own. Brit and I sat there wondering, chatting about what she would see/hear/feel. Some minutes later she came back down and said she not only felt an energy, but saw a little girl of about 7 or 8, who, apparently, had been very ill in the home. Oh, maybe here’s where I should mention that the upstairs window is in Brit and Mick’s bedroom. Yep. All of Brittany’s fears were coming true. Suzanne said most of the little girl’s energy had passed on, but because she was so sick in the house, she was still kind of connected to the space. Suzanne asked her to move on, to leave, and once again according to Suzanne, her family on the other side came to get her. “Okay,” said Brittany in a nervous laugh when she heard this. I could tell she was trying to process this information. “Now we will walk around the house together,” said Suzanne. She lit some sage and handed it to Brittany, she handed me a spray bottle filled with water and essential oils, and she had a bell. We walked from room to room. We burned the sage. We rang the bell. We sprayed the water. “It’s all about empowerment,” Suzanne said to Brittany. “You must claim the home as yours.” And that’s what my sweet Brittany did. My daughter, who has grown into a wonderful woman, waved the sage bundle around the rooms, the doors, the upstairs, the downstairs, the backyard. The sage smoke unfurled and the oils filled the air with a soothing aroma. Brittany claimed the house, and repeated over and over that only love and light were welcomed there; she believed it with her whole heart. And as a mom, I can tell when something is real, is true. And I could tell she was feeling better about the whole thing. The Outcome It’s been almost three months since they’ve been in the house and everything is going great. Brittany has decorated the place and turned it into a home, their home, with all the things and goings on that make it their special place to be. Brit and Mick share a passion for cooking, and spend a good deal of time in the kitchen. They make meals for us, for their friends, for Mick’s family. Their dogs chase balls and play with sticks in the yard. Mick cuts the lawn and Brit waters the flowers. They are creating memories, dreaming about babies and thinking about the future. I’m not sure what made all of the pieces fall together as they did (Suzanne calls it “divine timing”), but it all worked out. And I’m just glad I could be part of it.Read about Suzanne Worthley's ghostbusting endeavors in this month's issue of White Bear Lake Magazine.