Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The Reason for My Absence

Greetings! I know I disappeared without warning. I have, what I believe, is a valid explanation!

Last Tuesday, my home was burglarized in broad daylight. Many items were taken from my home - including several very sentimentally special items from around the world. Oh yes... one of my cars was stolen as well (and used to transport some of the larger items away from the scene.)

It has been quite a journey. Dealing with the fact that the thieves took a house key, and kept a car key (although they abandoned the car and it is now safe and secure). Making sure that my home is safe against further intrusion, trying to access the 'losses' and dealing with the psychological impact of the violation that occurred has been pretty consuming.

I've had some emotional reactions, but thankfully after the initial shock and hysteria (which only lasted a very few minutes), I feel like I have come through it pretty well. I was surprised by how vulnerable I felt. I didn't get into too much anger. It was mostly just sad, disappointed and frustrated by the immense inconvenience and extra work this situation creates for me. All of this uses time and energy that I would rather be directing at efforts to help other people live better lives.

I wanted to ask these guys who burglarized my house how they had come to such a sad and desperate way of life. They are obviously drug addicts (syringes in the car... lots of used Kleenexes, indicating their general poor health). I wanted to say, "There is a better way to live... this CAN'T be fun for you either." Some of my friends find me incredibly naive... but honestly, I couldn't respond any other way.

There were a few flashes of anger (I can't lie). Mostly when I discovered that particular sentimental items were missing, and also my laptop, which is extremely important to my daily functioning. Not to mention the horrible feeling of knowing that personal data is out there potentially be used for ill.

For the most part, however, I went in to action to document all the missing stuff, secure my home and notify my neighbors of the problem. Our neighborhood is having several security problems, and I really felt it was important that we all start to get to know each other, communicate and watch out for each other. That may be the really neat gift in all of this. I think I'll know my neighbors (after living here for 8+ years) and form a healthy, supportive community. That would be very cool.

As I navigate these waters, working with insurance, trying to balance a responsible approach to self protection with a desire not to get jaded and become distrustful of people, I'm sure I'll hit bumps and potholes along the way. I've always been a very trusting person, and I'd like to preserve the best spirit of that part of my psyche. I will, however, be a bit 'wiser' about how I conduct the material affairs of my life.

I once heard a teacher talk about taking security precautions as a 'spiritual practice.' He explained that by making it more difficult for people to steal or abuse our trust, we actually help thwart people from giving in to their worst impulses. We put up barriers to their self destructive impulses. We don't 'cooperate' as easy targets. I like that analysis. Especially at this moment.

I don't encourage paranoia... or hysteria. Neither is fun. Neither is useful. I do, however, advocate taking care of oneself, and not cooperating in the self destructive of other people. A lot of my precious possessions, helped those guys who robbed me get more drugs. That makes me sad. I hope they find a way out of the hellish life they are living. I wish for them the same freedom that I wish for us all.

I still may be a bit sporadic in my postings as I navigate these waters... I'll be back when I can.


Dewi Sri - The Balinese Rice Goddess
May she bring peace and healing to whoever she is with...
She will be missed in my home, but I trust that she will work her magic
wherever she is... on anyone she encounters.

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