I was born and partially raised (until I was 10) in a small town in New Hampshire. My best friend, Janet, lived on a dairy farm on top of a hill with her family. I spent many a night at Janet’s house in those days, but one night in particular stands out.
It was a clear, cold night in January and we were outside because, well, children don’t always make the best choices. Plus, in those days, people were a little more laid back with their children. We were returning from the barn, where we had just checked on the horses, when a movement caught our attention. That movement wasn’t near the house or in the field or by the trees; nope—it was above the trees.
We looked up, staring in awe, as a light in the sky zigged first one way and then the other, stopping for a moment before zipping off like a kitten on a hard-wood floor. Fear shivered its way along my spine. I knew I had just seen something not of this world. This was no airplane or weather balloon; looking back, distance and size would also point away from it being someone’s RC helicopter.
Now, sure, it was the 70s, but Janet and I were good girls; her older brothers were rarely home, so we were not high on pot, second-hand or first-hand. Her parents ran the dairy farm, so they didn’t exactly have the time to get high, even if I could have imagined Mr. & Mrs. S doing such a thing.
From that point on, I firmly believed that we are not alone in this universe. Many years later, I married and had a child. When he was around 4 or 5 years old, my boy told me of a nightmare he had had. He told me of how someone or something had come into his room and placed a hand on his forehead, then left as silently as they had come in. The night in question, it was neither my husband nor I who visited him in his bed.
We had never watched alien-themed movies or shows around him, nor discussed any belief or non-belief in aliens. He described, in nearly perfect detail, the “little gray men” that people often describe in stories of alien visitations. A large head with large eyes, small, narrow nostril slits and a tiny mouth, a slender body with long arms and hands—my paraphrase of what I got out of his description; these are obviously not the exact words of a 4 year-old.
I showed him a picture in a book from the library and he cried out, “That’s him!” I tried to reassure him that the alien was not likely to hurt him, as it had not done so during its visit, but even so, I slept very lightly, and on his floor, for many, many, many nights after that. He is 17 now, and still remembers that night; he also believes that we are not the only life forms in this universe.
What about you? Do you believe that there are other beings out there among the stars? Do you have hopes that one day, we will make contact or does that idea frighten the life out of you? Do you think aliens will be friends or conquerors?