COLUMN: My first and last time going through a haunted house

When I was 14, I experienced a haunted house for the first time in my life. I went with my dad, my two older brothers, Isaac and Nehemiah, and my younger brother Malachi. My sister had moved out when I was in middle school, so ever since that point it was always just my brothers and me.  

I was determined to fit in with them and act tough. That’s why when my older brothers, who love haunted houses, suggested we go to one, I had no choice but to say yes.  I was determined to prove to them that I wasn’t a scaredy cat. 

The moment finally arrived. While waiting for our turn to go into the haunted house, there were actors already attempting to frighten us. I didn’t think they were that scary, so I felt like this haunted house wasn’t going to be as bad as I had previously thought. I was so wrong.   

The first room we walked into almost made me pee my pants. It was an asylum-looking setup with an insane patient screaming and chasing us. It was so scary it made Malachi cry and run back outside. After seeing my younger brother run out the door, with my dad trailing right behind him, and my older brothers continuing to the next room, I knew I had to make a choice. Was I going to leave with my dad and Malachi, or was I going to keep going with Isaac and Nehemiah? Without giving myself time to fully think through my decision, I ran after my older brothers to catch up with them.  

The rest of the haunted house was a blur. I don’t remember specifics, but I do remember grabbing on to Nehemiah’s shirt the whole time and not letting go. The only other thing I remember from the haunted house was the last room.  

 In this room, there was a guy with a chainsaw chasing us out of the house. I had been holding onto Nehemiah’s shirt for the entire haunted housebut in that last room, as soon as my brothers saw the actor with the chainsaw, they sprinted out of the room and left me there by myself, frozen. Of course, I knew that I wasn’t going to die, but in that moment the only thing that was going through my mind was, “Wow, my brothers really left me here to fend for myself.”  I stood there for so long that eventually the actor had to leave to go scare the next group of people. When he did, I took my chance to leave, and I sprinted for the exit. 

Years later, I look back at that moment and can’t help but laugh. I still cannot believe I had the guts to go through a haunted house, something my younger brother couldn’t even do. That was my first and last time going through a haunted house. Now, I think I can prove my toughness to my brothers some other way that doesn’t involve running for your life from crazy people. 


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