If I were a young child today, I suspect that I might be somewhere on the Asperger's spectrum. In the 1960s there was no such thing, or at least, I never heard of it. Children were "normal" or diagnosed as "mentally retarded," and placed in special education. Those stuck somewhere in the middle were simply considered goofy or awkward. I fell into the middle crowd, and was miserable. I knew I was different but kept trying to hide it and pretend I was "normal." Loud sounds terrified me, even on television.
About 20 years ago, I fell asleep in my daughter's bedroom while watching movies on her VCR. At around 4:00 AM, I found myself in that state that is between being asleep and awake. This is difficult to explain to those who have not had any such experience, but your mind is awake and aware, you can open your eyes, but the rest of your body is not able to move or react. On this particular morning, I perceived what looked to be the shadow of a man who was about seven feet tall. He was standing in the doorway watching me. My great grandma always said that if you encounter a spirit you should ask it, "What in the Name of the Lord do you want?" She said if it was evil, it would vanish.
I grew up in a small town in Botetourt County, Virginia, and we lived off the main highway. My great grandmother had cousins who lived just up the hill behind our house. As a little girl, I always felt uncomfortable in their house but did not know why. They had a black clock that was about three feet high and whenever it chimed, chills would go down my spine. In 1969, this family moved in with relatives and built a brand new home in the same spot as their old one. It was beautiful to look at but still for me had that eerie feeling when I went inside.
In the spring of 2005, my oldest son was in his final year at Radford University. He had his own apartment, but often came home on the weekends. He always left to return to school at about 4 or 5 PM to make sure he got enough rest for Monday. On this one Sunday however, "Jr." was running late and I asked him to stay overnight. He said if he did, he might not wake up the next morning in time to make it to his first class. It was rainy and cool and I had that mother's intuition that something bad was going to happen, but I accepted by son's decision and prayed for him.
About five months ago I noticed that my bathroom commode was taking longer for everything to go down. A few days later it began backing up. Plunging helped, but the problem kept coming back. I plunged again, and this time, even though the system worked as it should, I heard a gurgling noise as the water went down after flushing, and when the bowl refilled, the water did not come up as high as usual.
The movie New Jack City and various television shows give a very vivid picture of a crack house. They depict an abandoned building in a run-down neighborhood where people are dirty and lying on the floor. It implies that those who smoke cocaine disappear for days and live inside the filthy walls of this undesirable situation in order to get high. While that may be true in some cases, it is absolutely not the norm.