It’s Not Over When It’s Over

If you’re reading this post, you, my friend, are dying.

I know this isn’t news to you. We’re all aware that the moment we’re born, we’ve begun the process of death. In the comforting light of day, it’s a concept of inevitability that easily rolls off the tongue, just like saying you have to pay your taxes or eat and drink to survive.

But when it’s nighttime, with everyone asleep and it’s just you, the darkened silence and the realization that you only get so many sunny mornings, it becomes the most important and terrifying reality in the world. And what makes it so frightening? It’s simple. Nobody truly knows what happens after you take your last breath. Other than Jesus, no one has ever truly come back from the dead, and he’s not around to interview. Near Death Experiences are too nebulous with too many differing tales of the other side to bring into the mix of hard fact.

Why am I focusing on something that will just make me, and you, uneasy? Because death is the single greatest mystery in the human experience. We all know someone who has died. No one exits stage left without having it touch their life, time and time again.

Pretty scary, right? Now here’s the twist.

I don’t feel we have to be so scared or uncertain at all. I say that because I see proof of an afterlife all the time. Hell, I once had it pay me a personal visit in a cramped hotel room in Barcelona and literally take hold of me.

Show of hands, who reading this has ever seen a ghost? OK, those of you who didn’t raise them, bring them up high if you know someone who says they did. I see a lot of hands.

Ghosts and their accompanying spooky stories didn’t start with Hollywood or Ghost Hunters on TV. They’ve been around for as long as people have been dying. Depending on the polls you read, anywhere from 18% to 40% of people across the globe have seen a ghost.  It makes me wonder why we, as a society, don’t devote more serious study to the phenomena. For my money, if you can prove that they are in fact real and not a subconscious projection of the living, and that they were, at one time, alive and on earth, well, then you’ve just shattered the greatest fear and answered the greatest  question known to man in one fell swoop.

No, we’d rather spend a million dollars in grant money to study the sex life of sea snails and leave the exploration of man’s eternal soul to new age folks and lay groups of people who gather to seek out the paranormal. It makes no sense. I can only assume that even scientists are too afraid to eyeball death.

Sure, I write about ghosts in a fictional way, but that’s my process of exploring the things I’ve experienced in a format that’s familiar to me. Ghost stories scare the piss out of us because they force us to face our own inevitable end, and wonder what made the floorboard creek at the foot of our bed. We’re scared because it’s a great unknown and we’ll have to face it, alone, some day.

I know that my gandparents still exist somewhere, in some form, because of what I’ve seen with an open mind. Death is not the end, but rather the beginning of the rest of our lives. Now let’s cast aside our fear, get serious and prove it to the rest of the world.

~Hunter Shea is the author of the critically acclaimed novel, Forest of Shadows, available in print and e-book.

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About Hunter Shea

Hunter Shea is the product of a misspent childhood watching scary movies, reading forbidden books and wishing Bigfoot would walk past his house. He doesn’t just write about the paranormal – he actively seeks out the things that scare the hell out of people and experiences them for himself. Hunter’s novels can even be found on display at the International Cryptozoology Museum. His video podcast, Monster Men, is one of the most watched horror podcasts in the world. You’ll also find him every week on the Final Guys podcast, available everywhere. He’s a bestselling author of over 30 books, all of them written with the express desire to quicken heartbeats and make spines tingle. Living with his wonderful family and two cats, he’s happy to be close enough to New York City to gobble down Gray’s Papaya hotdogs when the craving hits.

9 responses to “It’s Not Over When It’s Over”

  1. Mallory Anne-Marie Forbes says :

    Excellent, accurate,articulate post.As an experiencer of ghosts and other, I agree. Almost all humans are too fearful of understanding, let alone comprehending, the Other Side-whatever that constitutes. Notice animals, who often experience, are frequently not so fearful. I’m also in agreement about why we write-and read-Horror: catharsis.

    • Hunter Shea says :

      Thank you Mallory. Relegating the study of death and the beyond to “pseudo science” and ridicuing those that try has been a pet peeve of mine for years. I honestly think the world is too frightened to seriously look for the truth.

  2. The Paranormalist says :

    Do I have something set wrong (so that I see your blog in my style) or did you just switch to this theme? It was weird coming here and having it look the same as my blog. In any case, it looks great this way 🙂

    This is a well-written piece. I suppose it’s not so strange that you and I, perfect strangers, ended up doing the same thing … pretty sure it was all those ‘In Search Of’ shows we watched. I wonder how many more of us are out there?

  3. Marika Weber says :

    Great post Hunter. I believe that my paternal grandparents are the cardinals that follow me wherever I go. Yep, birds. They both loved birds and cardinals were there favorites. I believe in ghosts but I’ve never seen one. But I do believe that your spirit never leaves.

    BTW, great review, too. 🙂


    • Hunter Shea says :

      Marika, that’s a beautiful story. I could only wish that my grandparents were that close to me. They used to love to look at the robins in their backyard.

  4. Paul D. Dail says :

    Good post. And thought provoking. Never thought of ghosts being scary because it makes us face our inevitable deaths, but it makes sense. And I try to avoid those trains of thought that bring me to the end of the line. Scientists will certainly figure out something by then, right? 🙂

    Seriously, though, after convincing myself that I had died when I was in a car accident in my younger years (it was one of those brief seconds-feel-like-an-eternity moments) and finding it remarkably calming, I no longer fear death. I don’t WANT to die, but I’m not afraid of it.

    (p.s.- I faced Death down again when I went skydiving. Even wrote a letter to my family in case I didn’t survive. Who knows? Maybe I didn’t, and this is all fantasy.)

    Paul D. Dail A horror writer’s not necessarily horrific blog

    • Hunter Shea says :

      Losing the fear of death must be incredibly liberating. One less thing to worry about! I know that if I tried sky diving, I’d be dead, in the air, from a heart attack!

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