What’s It Like To Be Robbed

You sacrifice for several years saving up money for your first house. You get the money. You find the home. Contracts are signed. Money is transferred. This house is now your home.

You make it yours in your own little ways. White walls are covered with colors that match your personality. Furniture and accents give each room its own story. Your house is like no one else’s (unless you’re an avid Pinterest user maybe).

And then one day you come home and see the back door smashed in. A large piece of wooden trim on the floor. Drawers in every room opened and rummaged through. Everything is missing. Everything.

Your pets are nowhere to be found. You fear the worst. Luckily you find them downstairs hiding in fear from what happened while you were away. You ask the cat what happened, but he doesn’t speak that great of English.

Ideally, you want the first instinct to be to call the police, but it’s not. Instead, it’s questions. Lots of questions.

Who did this?

What did they take?

Why this house?

Why my home?

Questions unanswered, you call the police. They unsurprisingly have the same set of questions and your answers for them are just as useless as the ones you gave yourself. All you know is that someone kicked in your back door, rummaged, and took everything they could carry in four pillowcases.

The police take prints on everything they can think of. Dusty black reminders are now all over your home reminding you that someone opened every drawer, every cabinet, and every door to find and take your belongings.

And then the police leave. They assure you that they’ll do their best to find your stuff, but you know it’s not coming back. The memories and stories behind each item remain, but physically you know someone else is wearing your watches, using your phone, and playing your video games.

You start to analyze how this could have been prevented. No security system is foolproof, but it could have been a deterent. Cameras on the perimeter of your home not only let you track activity around your house, but also give you that James Bond vibe you are so going for. You buy and install both.

You get the door fixed. The entire door and jamb need to be replaced thanks to the burglar’s size 13 boot doing a number on the whole structure. You part ways with $1000, but at least your door is better enforced now.

You change the locks, because they may have taken a spare key for easier entry should they decide to come back for the furniture or clothing they left. You even change your car locks, because they took the spare key in your office making it incredibly easy to take your car should they fancy it.

None of it matters. Not the security system, the cameras, or the new locks. If someone wants to break into your house, they’ll still find a way. You try to reassure yourself that it could happen to anyone, and that your neighborhood is actually safe. No one else’s house was broken into after all. You’re just the unlucky sucker who had a bad Monday.

And then you go on with your life. You fight your insurance company for every last penny to be reimbursed. You replace what you can. And then you hope that the next time, it’s your neighbor’s house and not yours.