My house was broken into this week. During the day, while I was out working, trying to earn a quid.
The door was kicked in, breaking the architrave - its a basic house, and someone/s entered my house, the one I have spent the last 4 months making into a home, went through my drawers, cupboards, jewellery box looking for some fast cash and small valuables. They found very little. Took an Ipod with its carefully assembled collection of songs, and some jewellery, my lovely freshwater pearl earrings, which I have worn far far more than any other pair of earrings I own. My most loved earrings. Things of small economic value, but great sentimental value.
I was relieved. Relieved they hadn't taken more, or vandalised my home. Relieved, because its taken an extraordinary amount of courage and determination to make a new place for myself. And I was starting to love it here. I just don't know if I could have handled that been taken away from me. My placemaking efforts. The way I arranged my collection of ginger jars upon the antique court cabinet. The new doonah covers I bought my children.
I know where they traversed in my house. They left a trail of open cupboards and drawers, some discarded jewellery and items on the floor. Were in my eldest sons room. Touched the photograph of him signing his senior leadership agreement. He gives a genuine smile in that photo. Unguarded, natural, so beautiful, his natural kindness shining through. Sometimes that expression gets lost in his posturing, his little bit of arrogance, an attitude that painfully reminds me of his father. But not in that photo, tipped over by my intruder and later fingerprinted by the police. For a few days it was as though I could feel their signature in the house. As though they left behind a disturbance in the very air I breathe. Their bodily cells marking out the territory in which they walked. I didn't know I was so particular about my home. That having an uninvited guest would feel like such an invasion. I'm not particularly attached to the concept of ownership. But respect is important to me. Still, if I can withstand contuinual disrespect from the one who was supposed to love me, a little bit from a stranger is really nothing.
I've told my friends, colleagues of my break and enter. Expressed concerns about my vulnerability as a woman living alone. It did make me feel that way, vulnerable. And glad to have made the decision to have returned to my martial arts training. No one will bring me down without a fight. My best fight. The fight of my life. What I didn't expect was the lack of empathy for the person who kicked in my door.
Bastards, scumbugs, friggin arseholes, were all names thrown about. I don't particularly feel anger. I feel sorry for someone who feels that kicking in someone's door, a barely living above the poverty line someone, is an acceptable life choice. There are some many beautiful things to do with your time in life, how sad to choose to do this. I want to intervene. To give them an indication of a better path. To trace back to the point in their lives where it went wrong, and fix it. I am sure that once, that this person, was once a beautiful, innocent child. What have we done?
Naive I am, to be sure.
So as I type I have timber boards across my front door, as it is broke, reminiscent of some crumbled war zone home and I try to discern what is it that I should learn from this experience.
No matter what is thrown at me, the optimism in my heart, my very soul, will prevail. Thus endeth the lesson.