About 4 years ago, I started working my first job as a certified nursing assistant at a nursing home in my small town of Rocky Mount, Virginia. I was very excited to start, especially since I loved taking care of people and because I was finally going to be making my own money. I usually worked 3pm-11pm, but on this night in particular, one other aide and I had to stay until 12:30 am because coincidently the two aides coming in behind us were going to be late, so she and I weren’t in a hurry to get our things done for the night.

A lot of spooky things would happen at night (I know because I used to get mandated a lot to work 11pm-7am due to being short staffed) like seeing shadows, call lights going off in rooms that were unoccupied or in rooms where someone just passed away in, and sometimes I could swear I’d hear whispering. On this night though, something terrifying happened to me that wasn’t paranormal.

On my first day of orientation, which was about 3 months prior to this happening, an aide warned me to never go outside in the back alone to dump the trash. Unfortunately, one of our duties as 2nd and 3rd shifts CNA’s was to take out the trash because there were no housekeeping workers during those shifts. She told me that I should take someone with me because there was a man lurking around the dumpsters at night who tried to snatch girls. Every time it’d get reported and the cops were called, the man was already long gone.

I didn’t really take her seriously, to be honest, because I just thought she was trying to fuck with me and scare me because I honestly didn’t think that something like that would happen in my town. On this night in question, it was about 12:20, almost time for me to go home, and I volunteered to take out the trash so I can sneak a call to my boyfriend while I was out there. By this point, I had completely forgot what the aide had told me 3 months prior. I had my two barrels of trash with me and walked outside to the back parking lot to the dumpsters. I remember walking out into pitch black because the light, that wasn’t normally that bright anyways, that normally shined on the dumpsters was out.

I was annoyed because the light had been out for over a week and the repair man still hadn’t fixed it.

I turned on the flashlight on my phone and made my way to the dumpsters. I was emptying my second barrell when I heard some footsteps. I just thought that it was another aide from a different wing bringing out there trash or coming out for a smoke break, no big deal, so I finished what I was doing. When I turned around to start walking back towards the building, the light from my phone landed on a man standing a few feet away from me. He looked to be about average height and was skinny and had long, shaggy hair.

He was just standing there, staring at me with his hands in his pockets. I was so startled that I couldn’t even talk. I wanted to ask him what he wanted, but I just couldn’t find the words. I was frozen in fear, and then I remembered what my coworker had told me 3 months ago. He slowly started walking towards me, hands still in his pockets, with an eerie smile on his face, but he didn’t say anything.

I thought to myself that I needed to get the hell out of there, so I pushed my trash barrels into him, which temporarily stopped him, and started running faster than I ever have in my life towards the building. I remember looking back as I was about to turn the corner of the building that led to the back door and seeing the outline of the man just standing there. I swear I could hear him laughing. I made my way back into the building out of breath, trembling. I went back to my unit and told my coworkers what had just happened. They called the cops, and once again, they couldn’t find him.

After this incident, they finally decided to install cameras out there and a better light. The man was seen maybe 2 or 3 after, but eventually he just stopped. I still wonder what he wanted.

Was he trying to kidnap me like that girl warned me about or was he just trying to scare me? Was he trying to rape me or even worse? Apart of me wants to know, and the other doesn’t. All I know is that I never went out there by myself ever again.

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