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Millie N's ADC

Experience description:  

The entire event took no longer than 5 seconds but it takes a lot longer to explain it. While the coffee was brewing I turned to the west and was looking out the kitchen window for a minute or so before I witnessed a plume of smoke wrapping around the patio pole. It was about a foot long and 2 inches wide (to start) and came wrapping around the side of the pole from behind the pole. It was about 1 foot from the top of the pole. I have a very "logical" mind and immediately tried discerning what the cause of the smoke could be. My 1st thought was a fire in the rafters of my home but I quickly ruled that out (since the patio is not connected to the main roof of the house). My 2nd thought was an electrical fire in the patio roof but quickly ruled that out (the patio is pre-wired for a ceiling fan which we never installed and there is no wiring even close to the smoke). My 3rd thought was that the neighbors behind us had started a fire in their trees (they almost did that a few months earlier while burning leaves) but quickly noticed none of the trees were on fire. 

About that time the smoke expanded to about 3 feet long and 4 inches wide. I then noticed it was the weirdest looking smoke I've ever seen. 1) It didn't fan out like normal smoke rather it stayed "stuck" to the pole 2) It wasn't white, grey, charcoal or black in color but instead was an orange "rust", "desert rose" type color 3) It was swirling within itself, think of Santa Clauses' beard with the big "loops" of soft looking hair tresses. That's what it looked like only the "loops" were swirling really fast (almost violently). 

I've never seen anything in my life like it and realized that very quickly, however, I never felt any fear during the entire incident. I thought maybe it picked up the "desert rose" color from the color of the gravel in my backyard. Once again trying to answer in my head "logically" what it could have been. I also noted that the weather was "high cloudiness" with no direct sun (playing tricks with sun and shadow across the backyard fence). Also, it was perfectly still outside, no wind, rain, etc. The neighborhood was dead quiet, it was Saturday morning and everyone was probably sleeping in. My husband and son were in the house with me but both were still sleeping. 

After a couple of seconds of trying to figure out what this strange "smoke" was, it suddenly "stepped" to the side of the patio pole. That's the only way I can describe it, I don't remember it moving it just instantaneously moved to the side and landed about 3 feet away from the pole and was "floating" about 5 feet off the ground. 

In the next microsecond it morphed into a male torso shape. I could see the torso from about the groin up through the shoulders, the left arm and the head but couldn't see any facial features. My mind was racing by this point and I remember thinking "what in the world am I looking at, what happens now?" kind of thoughts. It was still "desert rose" colored but looked at that point more like fire than smoke. It was filled with inner-movement (like fire) highly luminescent and had "spots" of gold flickering (within the body).  

He had his head slightly facing down to the side and moved it to an upward position until we were staring directly at each other. At that point he "jerked" like he was really shocked to see me looking at him. It was such a classical human reaction. In the next moment he turned sideways, facing back to the patio pole and put his left arm up (like he was running). The next instant he reverted to a wispy smoke and disappeared, within that same second I saw a white butterfly exit the opposite end of the patio pole. 

By that time I had moved across the kitchen about 8 feet and was standing directly in front of the window. I raced to the patio door and ran over to the patio pole but there was nothing there.  

I was simply astounded as I've always been a complete skeptic and never believed in life after death. Another point to mention, the windows in my house are covered with solar screens. If you're outside in daylight hours it's impossible to see inside, only the apparition could definitely see me...

Was this experience difficult to express in words?  No

Did you see the deceased?         Yes

I didn't automatically think it was my son and went through a whole range of "what could it have been". Everything from alien, to Jinn, to guardian angel, to ghost. I read a bit about the Jinn afterwords and the whole smoke in the bottle thing. When the bottle is opened the genie comes out, with no legs, no shirt and a bald head! Classic "Mr Clean" icon. He turns from smoke to a male figure with no legs floating in the air. 

But after reading a lot and seeing how common it is for parents to see apparitions of their dead children I'm pretty much convinced it was indeed my son. He was slightly built but muscular, shaved his head, never wore shirts around the house. The apparition certainly did look like him body wise, didn't appear to be wearing a shirt and had a shaved head.

            How clearly did the deceased appear?            I couldn't tell if he was transparent. I kept trying to figure that out but was never able to come to a conclusion.

            How much of the deceased did you see?       From the groin up, no legs, no facial features.

            Did the deceased appear or not appear to be the age at which they died?       Couldn't tell the age, couldn't see any facial features.

            How healthy did the deceased appear to be?            No infirmities. Looked like my son, a perfectly formed, muscular build.

            Is there any possibility what you saw was from any other source present in the surroundings at the time of your experience?           No, I have definitely ruled everything out including reflection of TV on the window (it was turned off plus it isn't in the kitchen). My husband and son were still sleeping so it wasn't their reflection in the window. It was like nothing I've ever seen before.

Did you smell a distinct smell, scent, fragrance or odor associated with the deceased?      No

How long did the experience last?        five seconds

Was the beginning and end of the experience gradual or more sudden?         started gradually and ended suddenly.

Could you sense the emotions or mood of the deceased?           Yes

He jerked his whole body like he was startled I was looking at him.

Did the deceased give you information you did not previously know?  No

How do you currently view the reality of your experience?           Experience was definitely real

            Please explain why you view the reality of your experience as real or not real:          I was wide awake and completely rational.

            Was the experience dream like in any way?   No

Describe in detail your feelings/emotions during the experience:           Shock, disbelief. Unsure of what I was seeing but at the same time I knew it was paranormal.

Was there any emotional healing in any way following the experience?           Yes

I have talked to so many people and read so many things. I believe I will see my son again.

What was the best and worst part of your experience?      The best part was it happened to me.

Has your life changed specifically as a result of your experience?         Yes    

Did you have any changes of attitudes or beliefs following the experience?
   Yes     Major life change.

Did the experience give you any spiritual understandings such as life, death, afterlife, God, etc.?            Yes     There is a God and an after-life. I never believed that before.

Death Compacts are when two or more living people promise among themselves that whoever dies first will try to contact the other(s).  Have you ever made such a compact?        Yes

Since I witnessed my son I made a pact with my husband.

Did you observe or hear anything regarding people or events during your experience that could be verified later?          No

What emotions did you feel during the experience?            I can't even begin to describe what I've been through since. A complete awakening of my spirituality.

Did you have any psychic, paranormal or other special gifts following the experience that you did not have prior to the experience?         Yes

Yes, I have had just about every "paranormal" event possible since this happened. From hearing voices (of God and my son), to hearing him call my name from time to time. Poltergeist activity in the house, shadows, dog that's completely "fritzed" out now (acts like he can see something), smells, feeling someone touch me, lucid dreams, conincidences, premenitions, etc.

Did you see a light?           Yes

An inner light within the apparition itself, no other kind of light.

Have you shared this experience with others?        

Yes     I surprised so many people I have shared this with tell me their own "stories". It is really astonishing, I could write a book.

Have you shared this experience formally or informally with any other researcher or web site?   Yes

I posted it on paranormal.about.com in January 2004.

 Is there anything else you would like to add regarding your experience?       It was a life changing event.

Did the questions asked and information you provided accurately and comprehensively describe your experience?               Yes