Mar. 20, 2021

Barricaded

I had been employed with Winyah a total of about 10 years when this happened. I have had more experiences than I care to remember, one of which involves a particular bathroom – the “big bathroom,” as we often referred to it.

One night, while coming down the hall, I had to use the potty. I stepped into the Big Bathroom, as I have done on numerous occasions before. Tonight, however, would be the last time I would ever step foot in it again at least, alone.

I only remember one other time in my life that I can recall, what I can only describe as being truly terrified of an entity. This night was the second time.

From the moment I entered the bathroom until about three minutes later when I exited, I sensed something was wrong. I brushed it off as; the place is totally haunted. No big deal.

As I used the facilities, I became increasingly more frightened. I felt someone was in there with me and “he” was angry.

A sense of real fear began rising inside of me as I suddenly took on a feeling that I would be “barricaded” inside the bathroom if I didn’t leave. I remember that term explicitly; barricaded.

In just a few seconds of entering the room and my feeling of fear beginning, I had grown into a panic. “Anne!” I yelled hoping she could hear me down the long hallway. “Geralene - Anne!”

As I reached for the nurses emergency call light I reasoned with myself; I’m alone in here. There’s no one here but me. God will protect me. Just calm down and take a deep breath.

I kept repeating it to myself over and over again. The more I tried to calm myself, the angrier the entity became. He was completely pissed off as I sprinted toward the door to leave. Forget washing my hands. I just wanted to get the hell out of there.

As I reached out and grabbed the handle I had the very distinct impression it would not open from the inside. I yanked. It opened. I stepped out from the bathroom and immediately, the feelings of anger, fear, and of being barricaded inside, dissipated. I have been scared before by ghosts but, as I said before, there was only one other time I was afraid to that degree.

As I went down the hall toward Station 1, Anne popped out of a room. “What’s wrong with you?” she asked. “You look like you seen a ghost and there’s plenty of them floating around here tonight, too.”

The bathroom,” I stammered, still shaken, “The big bathroom. I’m sorry to say this, but if a patient collapses in there, I will not be going in that bathroom.”

Anne looked thoughtfully in that direction before going back into the patient’s room she had been in. As she closed the patient’s door she said, “Oh yeah. I hate that bathroom, too. You must have seen Mr. Rutledge in there.”

I stood at my co-worker Glenda’s desk and asked, “Who is Mr. Rutledge?”

Michelle, you remember Old Man Rutledge. He was always so mean to the staff. Whenever he got mad at us, which was all of the time, he’d roll his wheelchair into the big bathroom down there.

I think he had died before you came back to work here. He died in the big bathroom, too. I remember they had to take the door off the hinges to get him out because when he died, his wheelchair fell over in front of the door and it had barricaded him inside.”

(photo is random)