11.15.2009

Old Post: Burglarized

[Originally posted September 14, 2001]

Our house was broken into last night. While we were sleeping, someone came in through an open window and took cash, wallets, passports, and other important items. We have had to change our door locks, cancel our credit cards, and assure our tenants. Right now, even as I type this, I am sitting in a room where an unknown burglar came in, took things, and then left.

Amy is alternately distraught and enraged, sometimes upset that sentimental things were stolen from her and sometimes ready to find the culprit and execute vengeance. Me, I’m just numb. This has all been too much for me to process in one week.

I was supposed to be in Seattle this week. My flight was scheduled for Wednesday, the day after the twin terrorist attacks. I was supposed to be at a conference. I was looking forward to staying with a college friend of mine, seeing some of my relatives, and enjoying the sights in the city in which I was born. Earlier this week, I was praying for God to care of my baby while I was out of town, as I know that she struggles when I am away.

I let my mind wander into the land of what-if. What if I was already in Seattle, and then stranded by the ban on commercial air travel? What if I was apart from my wife when all of us had to deal with the emotion of horrific media images, lost friends and family, the threat of terrorism at our doorstep? What if Amy was alone when that burglar entered our house? What if she was sleeping downstairs, as she often does when she can’t sleep in her own bed, in the room that the burglar entered to get inside?

I take solace in the fact that Amy and I are safe, that nothing that we lost can’t eventually be cancelled or replaced, and that I was here and not thousands of miles away. But I am also numb. You can know in your mind that burglary takes place, that there are people out there who are willing to break into other peoples’ houses and take things that don’t belong to them.

But when it happens to you, there is a sense of violation. There is a feeling of sacredness about our house that is no longer here. There is an uneasy feeling that someone out there has our social security numbers and passports.

These are indeed the times that try our souls. And mine is weary. May God bless us all.


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