Friday, January 16, 2009

Break in

Up until I was pregnant with Adriana, I'd had the same nightmare for years: someone would knock on the door, and when I opened it and realized that had been a bad idea, it was too late; the bad guys would push their way into the house. The dream changed over time, with different people as the bad guys--the strange, bearded homeless man with a dog on a chain who had come to the door in Santa Cruz that day to offer to repaint my house number on the curb; the weird manager at the Safeway in Alexandria who would follow me around the store; people that I seemed to have invented in my imagination--and different locations, although usually it took place in whatever house I was currently living in. Even in my dreams I would remember that this was a recurring dream. Someone would knock on the door and I would be hesitant to answer, because it seemed just like my dream. "Don't be silly," I would chide myself. "That's just a dream." And then I would open the door and the events would be set into motion once again. The dream never got further than the initial break in; as I would push against the door to try to keep the bad guys out, or wonder how they were now at the window, or run away trying to find a phone, I would wake in a panic.

My dreams changed when I got pregnant, though. I was still an active dreamer and remembered a lot of detail from my dreams, which is apparently normal during pregnancy. I still had nightmares sometimes, but usually they were about the baby. The home invasion dreams were gone.

Until this past week.

On Saturday night, someone broke in to the club house/fitness center at our apartment complex and stole both of the televisions. We had noticed the big, flat screen TV in the main room on when we'd walked by on our way back from dinner that night, but Sunday morning when Brian's mom was walking by, she noticed it was no longer there. Brian went down to check and found that a window had been removed. Brian called the security folks, and on Monday I talked briefly with the police who came by to check things out. In the end, it's not really a big deal, right? The "bad guys" broke into a place that they knew had no people in it. Property was taken, no one was hurt, and most of the people in the complex probably don't even realize it happened. I didn't even realize it was bothering me, even when I double checked that the front door was locked before going to bed, despite having already heard Brian do the same thing, or when I closed the windows, even though we live upstairs, before going out on a nice day, even though I left them open all summer. It wasn't until the small hours of Monday morning when I startled awake from that same dream, the one that I hadn't had in three years, that I realized how much it had upset me. I'm telling myself that I'm not being unreasonable, that someone broke into a window that I can see from my own bedroom window, that I am not doing anything particularly unusual by simply making sure my apartment is locked up when I leave. But I hate that this dream is back and that I am worried about this kind of thing.


aunt champ said...

When I was living at Roberts house and I was alone at night I would often get up in the middle of the night and check the doors and windows. You are definitely not being unreasonable. As for the nightmares...if you ever find a solution, let me know. I still have dreams at least a every couple weeks where I wake up screaming. I'm sure my neighbor thinks I'm psychotic.

Casa Cornett said...

I used to have the break in dream a lot. Then one time I realized while it was happening that it was just a dream and I let go of the door and the person came in and I woke up and I never had the dream again.

Our city has been having a CRAZY amount of break ins lately. It seems like every week another person I know had their house broken in to. But up until now it's always been during mid day when no one is at home (although one friend came in to the house through her garage and startled the burglars who then ran out the front door). But a few nights ago two men with guns entered a house near us and held the occupants at gunpoint while they robbed them. Now I'm scared to leave the house AND I'm scared stay home.

Casa Cornett said...

Oh! And one time in college over Thanksgiving break when everyone left to go home for the holidays I was alone in the apartment and I heard strange noises. I kept telling myself that the noises have never been anyone breaking in before, everything is fine. The next morning I found the screen on the windows pried open - someone had tried to break in!

And then there was my friend who was house sitting for several weeks. The day after her friend came back and she went home a crazy person with an ax broke into her friend's bedroom at night and tried to kill him.

Geez! Now I'm spooked.

teddy7 said...

I have some thoughts about this--what it is and how to deal with it, at least what worked for me--exorcising a demon so to speak. Unfortunately new ones can pop up, engendered by things that happen to us or to others.

skybluestar said...

any time trust is broken, no matter what is done or said to make amends, it takes time for the wound to heal. Then the real challenge for us as human beings becomes this, how do we keep opening our hearts even though we know they will be broken?