by Jill K. Dion

Hersam Acorn Newspapers

Sydney Sherman was a normal child, the youngest, growing up with her family in Milford in the 1960s. She liked to sing, play piano and crochet. She said she was an everyday child, just like everyone else ... until she realized that she wasn’t.

Sherman, which is her pen name, is a medium, psychic and author who says she can see and hear people who have died, or passed on, as she prefers to say.

Sometimes she can only see them or hear them, and the forms they take vary.

“Through my eyes I see healthy, vibrant energy, not decaying corpses or zombies,” she says in her book You Are Not Alone, released last June. “Your mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, husbands, wives and even children. All whole, all happy. I’ve never experienced anything different.”

Sherman will be giving a presentation at the Trumbull Library, 33 Quality St., Thursday, Aug. 8, from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. in the Community Room. Registration is required. Call 203-452-5197.

Sherman recalled the first time she realized she was different.

She said she was six years old and a student at Live Oaks School in Milford. She was standing with a classmate, and then a “little spirit girl” came up to talk to her. Sherman said “hello” to the newcomer, and her classmate asked who she was talking to.

When Sherman explained she was talking to another child, the classmate told her there was no one there. Sherman went home crying after getting into an argument about the mysterious figure.

That’s when her grandfather took her aside and told her that like him, she could see and hear things that other people could not.

“He said ‘You see what you see; you hear what you hear. You’re normal’,” Sherman recalled.

Until then, she thought other people saw and heard the same things she did.

Sherman said that what she sees and hears is energy. She points out that according to the Law of Conservation of Energy, energy cannot be created or destroyed.

“Our bodies, our flesh and blood are the apparatus which houses who we truly are,” she writes in her book. “Our bodies keep us warm; they protect us. They are an identifier, a means of mutual recognition. Everything that makes us who we are, our personality, our feelings, comes from deep within us, not from outward appearances.  When we pass our energy still exists. We are still here. However, our physical bodies can no longer survive.......”

On her website, Sherman says she has never been alone.

“From as far back as I can remember I have had the ability to interact with people (peeps) that others could not see. For me it is not scary; it is a natural part of my everyday life.”

Sherman said she can see full figures, shadows, energy fields, light anomalies or sometimes nothing at all.

“But there’s always a sense of the person near me,” she said.

When Sherman was a student at Milford’s Foran High School in 1978, she formed Connecticut Ghost Hunters, and she went to Charles Island in search of ghosts. She said she didn’t find any evidence of spirits or ghostly energy there, in contradiction to some local folklore that suggests the island is haunted.

You Are Not Alone approaches the paranormal topic with common sense and encourages rational skepticism, according to Sherman’s publicist.

“She offers hints to avoid falling prey to the frauds in the paranormal field,” according to promotional book material. “The author educates readers on how they too can continue their relationship with their loved ones.”