Even as I write this I am hesitant on publicly speaking about my experience in Tonopah, Nevada. As it is, my team is no stranger in taking our faults and using them for learning experiences- for each other, and others alike. My approach on this issue, I feel I have to be careful to make sure people who read this understand, that I do not bring this issue up to highlight my own abilities or gifts, but to put myself out there openly so others don’t have to experience what I did.
Be prepared for a long winded, shit fest of emotion.
A life long interest in the paranormal, feeling sensitive my entire life, and running a successful team for a couple years now- I’ve never experienced what I did just over a week ago. What I went through was, from my perspective, embarrassing, humbling and disappointing.
Although I have publicly come forward and admitted that I am an empath, talking about other things I’ve experienced throughout my life hasn’t come easily. While the paranormal investigator part of my life I feel has been accepted by my friends and family, talking about the fact that I seem to predict things, I sense things on people, I breakdown and I am sometimes paralyzed with the emotions of others- That part doesn’t come as easily. Who wants to be looked as crazy or as a liar by the people you love? Most people don’t understand such things.
I know how psychology may look at empaths. As just emotionally unstable or oversensitive people. So be it, but I live it.
I’ve spent a lifetime suppressing these feelings, visions or whatever you want to call them, by merely telling myself that they don’t exist. Over a year ago that became too much to bare for me. I felt myself an emotional mess by events that were happening around me. It’s easy to downplay what I’ve experienced by telling me I am too emotional, or even tell me I have a mental disorder, simply because people don’t believe or understand my current state. Explaining things with seemingly logical explanations always seems to trump over what anyone experiences, especially when it seems to have no rationale. What a shitty predicament to be in. Only since I have concentrated on what I have and accepted it, have I began to really open up.
I admire anyone who embraces their gifts and is able to set aside the ridicule that comes along with it. It’s not something I’ve been able to master, hence the embarrassment and disappointing emotion I explained earlier.
Honestly, it’s been easier to say nothing.
What I write here, one cannot simply write out, out of fiction. What I write here comes from the heart and from a loss of what else to do with it. As I type it seems to dump onto my keyboard. I’m still contemplating “publishing” or not, I hope I have the courage to hit that button once this is all said and done.
So about a month before my trip to Nevada I had a dream that woke me in a cold sweat. It was extremely lucid. In my state, I grabbed my laptop which sat on the floor next to my bed and I began to type what I dreamt. I posted it on my teams private page. I let them know that I had no clue if it held any validity but that it shook me. But incase it did, I want to be able to validate it.
I’ve had these dreams before and they always seem to come in a lucid nature, sometimes even with a mix of Sleep Paralysis.
I explain that I had a dream we were on a case with long hallways and that I walking through corridors with my team, when I felt myself lured down a hall. My equipment fails and I am in the pitch black only to realize that I had strayed away from my team. I called out and no one answered back. I felt a whisk of air and energy rush past me and it nearly spun me around. I attempted to back track finding myself in the “T” way of a corridor. I felt confused about my directions but continued to walk and adjust my eyes to this dark environment. I called out again, and got no reply. I am terrified at this point. Once again this sensation roars past me and I squeeze my eyes shut. I attempt to gain footing through my fear and I continue down the hallway. I feel isolated. As I begin to see what seems to be light at the end of a hallway, I start to run towards it. The same energy that toyed with me before comes from the lit end of the hallway and hits me like a freight train. I am knocked to the ground, flat on my back, and my body feels like its no longer mine…it’s buzzing just the same as when a limb falls asleep ….and I am no longer in control.
With that, I fight myself to wake up. I find myself in a mild Sleep Paralysis, which is something I’m no stranger to. I wake and I am in bed flat on my back, just as I was in my dream.
When I woke, I felt rattled and my first thought was to talk to the people I trust most in this situation, my team. In all my years, when it comes to this sort of thing, I feel a safe haven in them. I feel they are some of the only people who won’t judge me or think I am crazy. After all, they’re the only ones who’ve seen me use my gifts. I feel no need to prove myself with them, it just comes naturally. They know I do not fabricate truths.
Truth, in this case, is truly stranger than fiction.
After this dream came 3 big trips. 1). The USS Hornet 2). Murphy Hotel 3). The Belvada Apartments
I felt with absolution the first two were not the problem, in my gut the latter of the 3 gave me anxiety. Despite these feelings I followed my normal habit of disregarding and dismissing it. I did not listen to myself, and I allowed myself to follow through anyways, even though I knew better..
Our two prior cases went off without a hitch. Both truly successful, pleasant cases. Even with one, barely anything occurred. In between we had a residential that we were able to amount to a child’s overactive imagination and the obsession of Ghost Adventures. Things were going great. Being logical has always been the ALPS way. Find a plausible, natural reason before jumping to the paranormal.
Our Friday drive to Tonopah was long, but fun. We arrived and we were all in awe over the rustic integrity of the city. It absolutely looked as though as if we stepped back a century ago and were in the heart of the silver rush. What an amazing town. The entire area buzzes with energy, that is alive and yet dead, beautiful and yet eerie. I’ve personally never experienced such a mix of conflicting emotion in one place.
On this trip we met Barrie Berry of Vegas Valley Paranormal, he was the general contact for this investigation. We were invited to assist.
Our team includes myself, Scott, Jennifer, Faye, Jim and our newest member, Dustin.
Our first night goes good. After a 6 hr drive, we have very little sunlight to check much out. We agree that in the morning we would get an early start and check things out, then head to the Belvada for safety checks.
(I want to add at this point, something very personal happens to me Saturday morning. I read in the paper that a tragedy has happened in our area. I read this and become frantic. No names have been released but I insist that this concerns someone I, or my daughter knows. I am reduced to tears I feel so deeply that this tragedy is something that hits close to home, even though I do not know who this news story is regarding. I felt it was either a friends child, or my daughters friend. My teammates Jennifer and Faye are witnesses to this. I am sickened with worry. I will not publish the news event because it turns out that I do know of the victims, through their parents. It’s not my place to talk about it)
When we arrive at the Belvada Saturday morning. We are all a little quiet, more so than usual. Barrie himself seems anxious, which I am feeling on him big time. We go inside and the entire time, my concern is with Barrie who is giving me high feelings of anxiety. I am videotaping through this first floor safety check, and you will hear me asking him repeatedly if he is alright. I can’t explain why, but I am feeling as if there is something “not right”.
At this time we all agree we should go eat before proceeding to the upper 4 floors. We head off to breakfast and before proceeding with the upper floors, we decide to check out the highly recommended Tonopah Cemetery.
As big of history buffs as we are, this was obviously a no-brainer. 99% of pre 1900’s wooden grave markers? We are there.
We arrive to Tonopah Cemetery, and all I can think is “Wow!”. While stepping inside, it feels just like stepping into an old western. It’s like a different world entirely. The entire team is there, excluding Jim. Even Barrie joins us. We all break apart and go our separate ways. When I go into a cemetery, I have the habit of scanning each row, observing each grave marker. God knows I’ve been to more cemeteries than probably the average person, considering what I do for hobbies. I didn’t think twice about going into this one. Cemeteries have never given me much of a problem.
As I enter, I feel myself just staring into the cemetery and scanning with my eyes, rather than using my legs to navigate. I notice an empty plot and gate to towards the back. I am immediately realizing my mood has changed and I’m no longer excited by what I’m seeing. I feel solemn and quite frankly, depressed. I begin to walk to what is a little hill in the middle of the cemetery, in a way I can only say is as if I am being pull that way. I have a severe tension in my collarbones. A deep tissue pressure. I feel as if I have two hook in my collarbones and I am being towed through the cemetery aimlessly. I walk through the grave sites till I’m on top of that hill. I feel so overwhelming melancholy that I cannot move. I have no explanation for my inability to move, I’m just there. I stand with my feet planted, because I feel that if I continue to walk, I will become dizzy and possibly fall.
Sounds so unpoetic and uneventful, compared to how intense it felt. I’m struggling to even explain.
At this point I am approached my Barrie and Scott. I don’t know if they notice me just standing there, but they are now beside me. Barrie’s asks me what’s wrong, I say that I’m okay. He tells me I dont have to lie to him that he sees my expression. I explain that I don’t know. He says its OK to tell him. I begin to feel extremely emotional, and he tells me its time to take a walk.
We walk outside the cemetery gates and I try to put into words about the way I feel and I can’t, I am now void of sensation or emotion. I just feel as if I’ve been depleted, and removed of all feelings. Disconnect is the best way to describe this.
Oddly at this moment, our new member Dustin, who was not anywhere near us, comes out of the cemetery tearful and shook. Dustin has no history of being “sensitive”. I’m alarmed that he is tearful. I don’t understand why.
Thank God for Barrie to be there and recognize that something isn’t right. At this point, I feel overwhelmed and I realize that something seriously negative has happened to myself and possibly Dustin.
I feel as if a piece of me has been “taken”. Whether this was the beginning of a spiritual intrusion or possession, I do not know. But I know what transpired after, took me on a serious emotional roller coaster like I have never been on. Barrie and I agree that it would be an appropriate time to leave.
Tonopah Mining Park
The team decides they want to check out the Tonopah Mining Park that overlooks Tonopah, and get away from the graveyard. In all honesty, we are trying to have FUN. This was the extracurricular portion of our trip. No one should be feeling bad.
Still feeling void of emotion, I feel as if I am still on autopilot. We arrive in the park and there is a picnic table in the parking lot. I go up there and sit. I am overlooking the peak while the team is moving about to check it out. I cannot find myself appreciating this spectacular view that over looks the valley. I find myself finally able to feel. Whether its because I’ve been removed from that environment, the fresh air or what, I do not know. I begin to tear up and all I can manage to feel is a huge sense of shame and disappointment in myself. I have a hard time understanding how someone like myself who is always careful about what I do spiritually, managed to become so vulnerable. I always try to be the strong one, the protector of the team, and here I am, reduced to a whimpering crying mess. I began to feel even more shameful that I felt for feeling sorry for myself. Jennifer approaches me and I feel like I wanted to hide my face from her. I honestly do not want anyone seeing me in such a weak state. I also recognize that it’s important for someone to witness what is happening. As rawly as I can, I express what’s happening to me, although I am at a loss for words. A huge lump was in my throat and I found it impossible to express myself. In that moment I felt so low as if something inside me was dying. I felt an overwhelming amount of negativity. I felt grief. I express to her that something is so deeply wrong, that I felt ill. A welling up of emotion inside me was nearly choking my own thoughts out. Although I was now able to feel, I was still on autopilot. Was this emotion mine? Or where was it coming from?
Even writing this it’s so conflicting. I can barely makes sense of it.
I believe I told her I felt like a child who thought they were tough, until they just had their ass handed to them by a bigger kid on the playground. I felt humiliated and small. I felt extremely violated.
Words in a blog cannot begin to project how absolutely real and alarming this was for me.
I did get a call at this point identifying the people in the news story mentioned earlier. It confirms that in fact it is a neighbors child and a friends child involved. How sobering.
It is now time to arrive back to the Belvada for phase 2 of safety checks. I feel completely wiped and deteriorated. I find myself weak and nearly unable to climb the stairs. I am having continuous equipment failure on the upper floors. I finally tell Scott I feel “fucked off” and disoriented. One thing I can tell you about Scott is that he is extremely logical. He obviously sees my distress. He asks if I’d like leave, and head back to my hotel to get out of this environment. I tell him yes that I need to decompress. I head back to the hotel and I lay down. I fall asleep nearly right away. While I am sleeping, Jennifer mixes me up a cleansing bath mix to shower with. I do get up and shower and spend sometime meditating in the shower. I feel as if the rest and shower do help me to get back to focus.
I am now able to talk about what happened. Even myself cannot make complete sense of it. But I do know that what I was feeling was not healthy or okay.
How on earth would I EVER explain this sensation to anyone who’s never been in this position? Hell, I’VE never been in this position.
About an hour before our investigation, Barrie comes to our hotel to talk to Scott and I. He expresses a high amount of concern for me and whether or not we should continue. I explain to him that I feel better, and that I feel whatever happened came from the cemetery, not the Belvada. I do not want to disappoint the team and I’m hoping that whatever this is, is only targeting me because I’m empathic. In hindsight, I feel I might have been wrong about that.
Although drained. I do setup a certain amount of spiritual wall and all the white light that I can muster around myself. I feel as if I can continue to this nights investigation. But it does not come without a bit of apprehension.
To make a really long story, short, I just want to say that I was not the only person negatively effected on this trip. Aside from myself and my teammate mentioned earlier, two more people were effected. One became a tearful panicked, inconsolable mess, which is completely out of character. Another became ill after feeling what could have been a spiritual intrusion, which caused intense vomiting and chest pains.
(Just to note: All of this seems deep seated in the upper floors of the building. The First floor and even basement seem less intense)
Again words on a screen do not capture the emotion of an event.
I feel its up to them to share their experiences. I will never be able to capture the essence of their situation that would do them justice.
As paranormal investigators, no matter our age, status or experience, we put ourselves in an extremely compromising situation by doing what we do. I myself have always walked in with a warrior mentality that I am protected, and that I am untouchable. How horribly egotistical, and what an irresponsible way to think. The fact is, what we deal with is neither stupid nor incapable of putting us in our places. I always conduct myself with compassion and respect for the dead. But, on a playing field of spirits as diverse as the living, not everything we come in contact with is going to greet us with that same respect and compassion. It’s when you think that you’re on a happy outing or field trip, and your guard is down; that’s when it’s likely to happen. Right when you’ve let your pride get in the way of taking care of business, that’s when it’s suddenly going to confront you.
It’s so easy to get jaded. It becomes mundane walking in and out of these places, that are KNOWN for spirit activity (how fucking SILLY!). It’s not to say we’re not precautious, but sometimes we do so without any attempt of EXTRA precaution. Becoming blasé is absolutely dangerous, and I should have known better.
God, I should have known better.
I should have listened to all the warning signs. I should have listened to my body, to my intuition. I’ve battled so hard with my own abilities to discredit what I am, that I just did not trust myself. I let my more skeptical side over take what I feel and know in my heart.
I’ve learned in the hardest way to trust that little voice in the back of my head to back out. I’ve never been a quitter, and after a 6 hr drive, my teams excitement for the location, and my own pride; I made the decision to go through with our investigation anyways. I regret that decision.
I am here to admit that I am human, and what I did not only compromised my own safety, but the safety of people I care about. It’s a hard pill to swallow when I see 3 other people aside from myself effected by this.
Not one of us who took the brunt of this, feels as if we’ve completely bounced back from this trip. Others of us walked away with absolutely no adverse reactions.
Personally, I am on a hiatus from investigating until I feel that I am spiritually in a better place. It’s been a week and I am barely coming around. I’ve felt myself become slightly isolated since this has happen. I’ve been somewhat reclusive. No doubt that I am extremely humbled by my situation. I’ve sought the help of extremely spiritual people I trust and its been unanimous that I am extremely lucky. Whatever confronted me was methodical, and poisonous. It could have been so much worse. Although, I still don’t know the possible long term repercussions from my experience.
When I talk about my situation to others in the community, they ask, “Would I ever return to Tonopah?”
For the first time since I’ve started paranormal investigating, the only thing I can certainly say, is that I am completely uncertain.
My advice; Be cautious, be vigilant and NEVER let your guard down. It does not matter how seasoned you think you are, there’s always something bigger than us out there. There is NO case worth you or your teams safety. If it feels wrong- let it go.