Exclusive Excerpt: Zak Bagans’ I Am Haunted

Ever wonder what goes into a lockdown on “Ghost Adventures” or even what happens after the guys have been scaring up spirits all night? Well, here’s your chance to find out as we have an exclusive excerpt from Zak Bagans’ book I Am Haunted (review) right here for ya!

This is only a small teaser of what’s in store for you guys when the book comes out on February 10th. Check it out!

Lockdown Hangover

It’s way worse than
a regular one.

Just about everyone has experienced a hangover. You go out, you have fun, you drink too much, and the next day you wake up in pain and make a list of the people you need to apologize to. The day after a lockdown is no different… except for the lack of booze.

I’ve evolved as an investigator, and as time goes by I release more and more of myself to the spirits I come in contact with. I let them use my body however they need to, opening the door to the spirit world wider and wider. This has resulted in deeper and deeper connections, but it comes at a price. The more I allow spirits in, the more sensitive I become to them and the more damage they can do, even long after a lockdown is over. Early on, when I had only a few investigations under my belt, I learned how important it is to trust what your body is telling you. Some of us are like tuning forks or lightning rods for the paranormal, but like anyone who abuses his body in any way, I start feeling the consequences of that abuse over time.

I’m very much in tune with myself. I can recognize a skipped heartbeat, a wheeze in the lungs, a sudden attack of goosebumps, or a powerful wave of sorrow, and I know what they all mean during a paranormal environment. I don’t do this once in a while as a hobby in my free time; I do it all the time for a living. I’m frequently on an emotional, empathetic level with spirits, and I’m sure they know that I’m in tune with their world. It’s almost like a part of me has already passed over, and the spirits can sense that and reach out to me as a result. I truly believe that I’m connected to the afterlife in some small way, but it’s taken its toll on me. After a lockdown I’m always in pain, and some lockdowns are worse than others.

Our investigation of the Sorrel Weed House in Savannah, Georgia, gave me a three-alarm hangover. It was very similar to a real one—headache, nausea, dizziness, throbbing, memory loss—but weirder. I can usually gauge how bad my hangover is going to be by the interactions I have with spirits during a lockdown, but this one threw me for a loop. It was an incredible connection, sure, but the lasting impression it left on me was disproportionately huge.

At the house, I came into contact with a powerful spirit in the slave quarters that I’ll never forget. This spirit wasn’t just strong; it reached inside me and let me feel its emotions, connecting us like a cross-dimensional umbilical cord. Moments like this are always strange and unpredictable, but I’ve long since thrown caution to the wind, so I opened myself up and allowed it in. What did I get for that? I was paralyzed. I stood motionless and frozen in time, unaware of my surroundings for several moments. You lose all sense of time and space when a spirit takes a hold of you like that. You don’t recognize the people around you. You don’t know what time it is. Nothing is familiar, and your head swims until you fall into a trancelike state.

It’s this moment, when the spirit is drawing your energy from you and you are feeling the spirit’s emotions, that really drains your body. There’s a scene in Bram Stoker’s Dracula where Keanu Reeves’ character is being held hostage by female vampires. They continuously suck his blood, but they leave a tiny bit so he’s barely alive. That’s exactly what a lockdown hangover feels like. That’s how deep I get into these experiences. These hangovers are the worst because it can take days to get my body working properly again.

I love these intimate interactions and ethereal moments with spirits, but the next day kicks me in the gut. It took me five days to get over that investigation in Savannah. I was nauseated, dizzy, and just plain off. And it shook me up not only because it took me so long to get over it, but also because I was so irritated with everyone afterward. We all go our separate ways the day after a lockdown, and I usually ride to the airport with Billy and Aaron. This is when we’re most on edge with each other because the residue of an evil spirit takes time to wear off. When we have an emotional moment during a spirit interaction, channeling, or possession, we end up carrying the residue of that spirit, and it takes a little while to get ourselves back to normal.

We know this now and have learned to stay quiet until we’re home because no one wants to say something he’ll regret. We even keep the joking to a minimum. We can turn on a dime, and we usually try to talk as little as possible so we don’t. On the way home from Savannah, though, Billy and I got into it because my connection with the spirit stuck with me and changed me for a while. But in the end, it was worth it to me. I’m convinced that the longer and stronger the hangover, the deeper the connection was with the spirit.

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Steve Barton

You're such an inspiration for the ways that I will never, ever choose to be.

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