I wasn’t going to even write about this, but as the hours pass I seem to be more and MORE shaken up, which is odd. Maybe getting it all out will calm me down, at least I hope.
It’s no secret that I despise my neighbourhood. Hell I despise my entire city, but that’s another story for another day. Today I will try to count my blessings instead, because to be quite honest I came closer today than any other day in my 35 years to biting the big one. I guess as that sinks in, my stress level is rising. So, here I am.
Okay so we’ve established that I hate my area, but I LOVE my neighbours. (No, not the ones who throw parties for 200 and have the S.W.A.T. team break down their door in the middle of the night.. those guys suck ASS.) I love my OTHER neighbours. The guys I wrote about in my very first blog on this page. The ones who take amazing care of their home and are some of the kindest, most generous, funny, warm people I know. They make living here worthwhile and I’d do anything for them. (Yes, that was blatant foreshadowing…)
One of them has this neat little app on his iPhone that alerts him when a door in his house is opened. Today while my little ones napped, he texted me and asked if I was home. Yup, I’m here… just lying down while the kids sleep. He asked if there was a car in his driveway. I looked out my window and said no, no car. He said that he’d just gotten a message through his phone that his back sun room door was open. I don’t know WHY I didn’t think much of it. This “Frankenstorm” or whatever the hell it is has been blowing the place to shit all day; I honestly thought the wind had likely blown it open. I said I’d run over and check it out. I figured I’d just close it for him and run back home.
I put my coat and boots on. Cell phone in one pocket, baby monitor in the other, and texted him to say I was running across the road to take a peek.
I walked up to their back gate which is at the back of the driveway and I looked over. The sliding door leading into their sun room was open about five inches. “Hmm…” I thought, “the wind couldn’t have done that..” (Warning sign #1… which I ignored for some reason.)
I figured maybe they accidentally left that door open slightly, so I opened the gate (which was LOUD and creaky… Guys, like I told you earlier, if you want me to act as private security, start oiling the goddamn gate, it almost got me killed!) and walked into the yard just far enough to see the interior door that leads from the sun room into the house.
It was wide fucking open.
Heart pounding, I realize how much noise I just made coming through the gate, and not only THAT but now I have to MAKE THE NOISE AGAIN TO GET THE HELL OUT OF THERE. No time to screw with it and try to be quiet, I flung it open and ran like a bat out of hell across the road.
As I reached the other side, I looked over my shoulder – and there he was. I knew if someone was in there they’d heard me for SURE. A man was standing in the exact spot I’d just been on the other side of the fence. He turned away just as I looked back at him, but I knew he’d watched me run away and the cherry on top was that now I was standing on my porch. The porch of my house. Where I live. With my kids. And I’d seen him. Just. Fucking. Awesome. What he doesn’t know is that I didn’t see his face. Just the back of his head*. He turned away too quickly and disappeared.
*Dear piece of shit burglar man. You are the scum of the earth and what you’ve put my friends through is DISPICABLE and if I ever saw you I would attack you. However I did NOT see your face and was unable to give a description of you to the police, other than the fact that you have short brown hair and are a FUCKING DOUCHE. I’d turn you in if I could, but since I can’t, please don’t come back and try to kill me because I really didn’t witness anything.
By this point I’m willing the kids to stay asleep because I’m now on the phone with first my neighbour and then 911 and within about 90 SECONDS (I seriously shit you not) there are squad cars EVERYWHERE, it was like a movie. They screeched up onto my curb, the neighbours’ front lawn, they blocked the road, set up a perimeter and had search dogs out. There must have been 10 cars and 20 cops.. it was insane. I kept waiting for them to come out of the house dragging this guy in cuffs, but when it appeared to me that he ran back into the house, I guess he ran behind it and jumped the fence. The police dogs did pick up his trail but the rain was so bad that it tapered off and he got away – at least for the time being.
The officers came and took my statement and I gave them what I could but it wasn’t much. The strange thing is, I felt guilty. I kept thinking if I’d not bothered to put on a coat or if I’d just ran over there faster maybe I could have stopped him before he got inside. It’s insane, I know… I’m lucky that I didn’t come face to face with this guy! I keep wondering if he had a knife, or a gun. I think about what he would have done if he’d come out and I’d been standing right there. Then the thought occurred to me – what if he’d broken into MY back sun room? I was home alone with my sleeping babies… what nightmare would have befallen us in that scenario? I don’t think sleep will come easily for me tonight – or my poor friends across the street.
This break in was referred to be the police as a “smash & grab”. The guy wasn’t in the house more than five minutes but he trashed the place. I went over tonight and their back door was shattered with a large rock, and the house was ransacked. Drawers emptied, everything overturned. They were totally violated and lost some precious things. People say “It’s just “stuff”.. at least you’re okay”.. but I’m not so sure about that. They lost some things that are nothing short of irreplaceable and my heart is just so broken for them that they’ve had to deal with this. One of the weird items of note was a lap top… douche bag didn’t take it, but it was broken – almost in half. WHY? I couldn’t understand what the point of that was… but then the guys told me that based on where it was they think he might have dropped it when he heard me come through the gate. How EFFING scary is that?
(I’ve already sworn enough in this post and my parents will read it so I have to rein it in.)
Hours later the cops were finally gone and in the middle of this FREEZING wind and rain my sweet friends have to go out and buy a new door, new lock, and likely a handgun or twelve. (I’ll take one too, guys.. thanks) I hope that they can somehow relax and get some rest, no one deserves this.
As for me, the kids are finally asleep and I might have a Baileys… god I hope we have some. I am frazzled. My nerves are raw and I think my husband is REALLY annoyed at what I did by going over there today. I didn’t mean to be stupid, although you’re all likely wondering what the hell I was thinking. I was just trying to help my friends and I don’t regret it for a SECOND. They texted me because they knew they could count on me, and that’s the kind of friend I want to be. But I might have taken it a smidge too far, in retrospect. Oops.
I keep thinking about how if something had happened to me, my babies would have been napping in their cribs and no one would have even known. They’d have woken up and been crying for me, and I wouldn’t have been here. How long would they have been alone until someone found them? I have to stop these thoughts, I know. That’s why I decided to write it all down… it’s therapeutic and hopefully cleansing.
My husband just called up to tell me to come down and watch tv… he has the latest episode of Dexter queued up.
Well isn’t that just perfect.
Lock your doors and hug your kids, my friends…