Thursday, June 30, 2016

I got robbed... again

Ok, so maybe not as dramatically as the movies but my property was stolen from me and I felt violated.

theft of personal property.
theft, stealing, robbery, pilfering, thieving;
burglary, housebreaking, breaking and entering;
informal filching, swiping, pinching;
formal peculation

Getting your car or house broken into is so very violating.

This is the second time my personal car has been broken into.

Aah, Old Main, I was actually in the undergrad library but this picture is prettier

The first time it happened to me I was in college.  My friends and I had planned for a long study session in the library and I had left an old backpack in the back of my car.  I usually parked at my grandma's church then walked over to campus so there was someone who watched my car (secured lot).  Since it was a Sunday I knew campus would be quiet so I could probably get a spot much closer to the library. Additionally, I didn't want to clog up the church parking lot as there were quite a few older members, so I parked on the street.  Well that was pretty foolish as I'd forgotten about the backpack in the car.

I'm sure someone walking by decided that stealing that backpack was a good idea for whatever value was inside.  There really wasn't much of value in there except for possibly my graphing calculator.  They'd stolen last semester's books which the campus store wouldn't buy back and a few other flash drives or something but really nothing of value.  It wasn't so much that they stole my backpack as the sense of violation that I felt not knowing what else they'd taken or how long my car had been open to anyone who felt the need to peruse my belongings.  I hated that feeling.

The funny thing is, I tend to prefer to stick to a routine on certain things such as parking.  Changing my regular parking routine is so silly if you think about it but hey, there are few things that I can keep routine in my life, parking is one I can handle... most of the time.

It's been quite a few years since that has happened.

Just last week, I was violated again... this time at my house.  No one broke into my house but they did break into my car.  Again, I wasn't following my parking routine.  It was Father's Day Sunday and earlier in the day we'd been out and about at my niece's birthday party.  We'd left our daughter up there to spend the next day with my sister-in-law and niece as she doesn't work on Mondays.  With only little man in tow, we made a quick easy stop to Sam's Club then home to fire up the grill.

I can't remember what happened or why I changed what I normally do but I remember that I didn't stick to my normal routine of parking and exiting the car as usual.  Instead of taking my purse in with the first load, I started the items from Sam's Club in first.  What was I thinking??  Who knows but I remember later that evening thinking, "where is my purse?"  Evidently, I should have put more thought into it because I'd left it in the car!  Sometime during that night, thieves broke into my truck and stole my wallet.

They stole this raggedy wallet
It could have been worse but it wasn't.  Thank God.  The only thing they seem to have stolen was my wallet.

You may be thinking at this point, "hold up crazy!  Your wallet??  The one with the money and credit cards and so much important information??" Yes, my dears, that one.

It could have been so much worse.  They could have stolen my camera or my actual purse or the $700 I had in a different pocket, but they didn't.  The icing on the cake was that, even though I realized almost immediately that it had been stolen (because I'm slightly a creature habit with a few things), a real officer had already left his card in the driver's side door with the note," Contact us. Important?"  Yes, with a question mark.  It seems that the police already knew.  I called and an officer was going to be dispatched to my house where they would need to take a police report.

This camera...

It would appear that the thieves had already been caught!!  Woo Hoo!!  Kind of...

Before the officer could get to my house, in panic, I contacted nearly all of my banks and credit card companies to cancel my cards and alert them of any possible fraud activity.  The very nice officer took my report, gave me a second case number then let me know that I was immediately able to pick up my personal property at the station.  Thank you!!  I'm not sure I've ever been so happy to see that massively over stuffed wallet appear in an evidence bag (up like straight out of the movies).  Luckily for me, the theives had been caught so quickly, they never even had a chance to go through my wallet to see what loot was in there... I was just as surprised to see that they'd left the $100 in cash in my wallet as I was to know that I actually had $100 in cash in my wallet.

Looks kind of suspect??  I have another story about that for another time

Remember the part where I panic, yup... I cancelled everything... I have no cards... how do I even function in a world where I have to use actual cash?? 

Apparently, I function in a world that requires cash poorly.  I'd already planned on going out that evening to do a little shopping for my little man at Buy Buy Baby where I spent about $77 and some change of the $100 I had.  As I ventured home, I knew I was in need of gas, but I also needed to go to the grocery store so I headed to Trader Joe's... again not remembering that I have no plastic.  

Remember that part where I spent all but $12??  I didn't until I had a basket full of groceries at the checkout with a sleeping baby in my arms.  Oh, crap.  This is the part where I'm frantically digging through my wallet searching for any card that I haven't cancelled, I find what I think is a working card... it doesn't work... I'm positive I've cancelled the rest... I try to run the card twice knowing that I don't have enough cash and I have no other available sources of funds.

Hold back your tears sweety.  This is when I really start to panic.  I feel the frustration of knowing not only am I holding up the line but I'm also creating a small scene going, "what can we buy with $12??" as I also ramble to the cashier about how my wallet was stolen, quickly realizing she's probably wondering why I have a wallet, then rambling in embarrassment that it was recovered but not before I'd cancelled everything.  


Keep searching...

Try not to cry...

Feel the rush of heat flood my face...

Finally, take a deep breath and regain my composure.

I start to pick the essentials.  Applies, cherries, bread.  The people at Trader Joe's are the best.  The reason that I went there not somewhere else in the first place is because they are always happy, friendly and somehow make shopping so much more enjoyable.  Did I mention how wonderful they were?  They threw in a few more of the items I had picked out for free: chocolate, chips, and poptarts.  Oh, and just because I was having a bad day, flowers.

Although I knew that this situation was only slightly embarrassing, I had a revelation as I left.  This is how people feel when they really don't have enough money for their groceries.  My situation was frustrating and temporary.  I knew by the next day I would have a card or two available for use again.  

I called my husband as I drove home with a gas tank on walk and a few groceries.  I sobbed on the phone about how this day was terrible and I couldn't wait to just get home and snuggle up with my baby boy.  But, I mostly just felt sad and defeated.  I couldn't shake the feeling of, "what if I couldn't feed my children?"  A huge sadness hung over my head for all the people who are trying to provide for their kids and can't or the elderly person on a fixed income who must choose between the essentials and maybe a small treat for the week.  

Although I'm still limping along as I haven't received all my cards yet, I am so lucky and blessed.  I don't use the word blessed lightly.  I got robbed, but the thieves didn't have time to actually steal from me before it could be recovered.  I got the groceries that I needed that day and a few more.  I got to go home knowing my husband would come home and get fuel for my truck long after I'd fallen asleep.

It sucked getting robbed.  

I can however see the good in it.  I remembered to pay back Trader Joe's for what they gave me and left some extra for the next person who is having a really crappy day who just needs a few more dollars.  Or for the person who doesn't have enough money for the essentials.  I feel like this is from all the times we've paid it forward.  Somebody was clearly looking out for me that day.

How have you paid it forward?    

No comments:

Post a Comment