The Second Time: April 6, 2017

If you’re looking at this page, you probably saw my sign about the home break-ins/robberies I have experienced at 919 Carolina. The first time was in November and you can read all about it below. You can also read a little about me on the intuitively named “about me” page.

Today I will talk about my second experience with this, April 6, 2017. Again, it felt like a relatively normal day when I arrived home. As I approached my door, I noticed the floor mat was slightly off. The sort of thing many people wouldn’t notice or care about, but having been violated once before, my guard was already up. I unlocked the door and peeked in to check on the TV, as had become my habit. Lo and behold it was gone, again. I was in shock that I was living this nightmare, again.

I called 911, again. I surveyed my house to see what was missing, again. They started by cutting a back window screen open like the first time, but were foiled to find that window locked. At some point they forced their way through the back door and promptly set to work disassembling my living room cabinet so they could remove the TV. They popped into my bedroom and took what was left of my jewelry – nothing of real monetary value, but things I valued for what they meant to me. Pacing around the house wondering what I had done to deserve this, again, was a decidedly bad feeling. A rock was left on the carpet, as if they tried to throw it through the window. They didn’t bother closing the back door.

I wanted to cry, but couldn’t muster the energy somehow. I was numb. The police arrived and walked around with me. They asked for my ID and the serial number of my tv, but otherwise had nothing in particular to say. We stared at each other for an awkward few minutes. I was handed a card with a police report number and left to my thoughts.

Everything that happened in November came rushing back, along with a feeling that the same invaders were back. They watched me, and waited; gave enough time where they would feel confident I bought more things for them to steal. They brought their weapons back, cut and pried their way into my house, and drove away with whatever they thought was worth taking.

Again, I felt tremendous shame and guilt that I had somehow provoked this. That maybe I was violating everyone else’s peace by bringing this to light. And that if I admitted it or mentioned this happened, I would receive another round of unwanted hints that started to feel a lot like blaming.

I considered giving up and moving out for about half a second. Then went on a shopping spree for more security paraphernalia. I tried to sleep, without much success. To my surprise, the next morning I felt like mentioning my experience on the neighborhood listserv. What I got back was supportive, and helpful. I started to feel it was worth it to stop pretending everything was fine. It actually felt good to talk about these otherwise tremendously negative experiences.

I’m not naïve enough to think that someone who robbed my house would be motivated enough to read a sign, and a blog, and then change their mind about invading my home again in the future. But right now I feel like asking for this to stop. So I have, and just doing that makes me feel a little better about the future.

So stay tuned. If and when I survive yet another of these, I’ll share it here. The same goes if either crime is ever solved. What I won’t do is pretend that I’m okay with people invading my home anymore.