Sometimes a knock at the door is a good thing. Someone has come to visit! Or it is the groceries! Or a neighbor bringing tomatoes!
Sometimes a knock at the door is a scary thing. Yesterday was Halloween. I didn’t have any trick or treaters last night, but I got home late after my infusion, and haven’t had any kids stop by in years. I had just gotten home and was in my bedroom changing when I heard this very loud and sharp rapping on my front door. My heart stuttered, and I gasped out loud, because the sound was so intrusive, especially to someone who lives alone. My cats scattered, and I quickly locked myself in my bedroom and got my gun out of my safe, and stayed there shaking for like a half hour, because I was afraid to come out! I was thinking that little kids can’t knock that loud, maybe it was an adult with them, I sure hope it was a neighbor trick or treating! We don’t have many kids in the neighborhood, and a lot of summer houses too, so I don’t even buy candy anymore. My bedroom looked out at the back of my house, not the front, so I couldn’t look and see if anyone was there.
I do have a legit reason for being scared, but I thought the reason was no longer one to worry about. I think the attack in NY yesterday made it come to the forefront again for me.
Because that is what it is all about. I cannot go into details, but let’s just say that lone wolf terrorists that have been radicalized here are something I need to worry about. And it happens more frequently, it seems. Around the world, not just here, in the USA.
It really got me to thinking. I am scared, yes. But dammit, I am angry. Angry that people like that even exist. Angry that people die, and will continue die. Angry that I have to make lifestyle changes. Angry that I sometimes wake up in the middle of the night with my heart thumping so loud, straining to hear the tiniest sound. Was that a knock I heard? A footstep? Why did the cats wake up? What are they hearing?
I have a gun. I only got it because the FBI told me to. (Again, I can’t go into details). However, it only gives me a false sense of security. I keep it locked up in a safe. Most likely if someone broke into my house and wanted to kill me I would never have a chance to even get it. That’s fine with me. I don’t know if I could pull the trigger and kill someone anyway. It’s a huge thing to do. But I digress.
Over the winter something similar happened. One night, very late, I was awakened by rapping on my door, very loud, insistently. Never stopped. Just kept knocking. It took me a minute to get my bearings and get up out of my bed because of my bad back. I stumbled down the hallway, eyes slit, and peeked around the corner to look at the front door. There were flashing lights and spotlights shining everywhere. I could not see who was knocking because of it. But I could tell they were using a flashlight, or bat to knock. I called out, “Who is it?” They responded with “Police, open up immediately!” I replied, “Why are you here, what do you want?” They said they needed to talk to me and to open the door or they would break it down. I was so scared. Was it really the police? I thought about going back to the bedroom to get my gun, but figured they would just shoot me if they saw a gun. So I went down the stairs and opened the door. They shone their big flashlights in my face, blinding me. They asked me whose car was in my driveway. I was confused at first, because I always park in the garage. Then I remembered, I had told my neighbor that his friend who was living with them could park there. So I told them that. They asked me the name of the owner of the car. I did not know. By this time, I was shaking from fear and the cold, and crying. They got a call on their radio then, and literally turned around and walked away without another word.
Now I was angry. My fight or flight adrenaline had now changed to fight. How dare they scare the shit out of an innocent citizen with no explanation or “sorry to wake you in the middle of the night”. I am a single woman, living alone. I slammed the front door shut, locked up, and then went upstairs to look out my big bay window. There were squad cars at the house kitty corner from me, and police walking around yards etc.
I knew the grand kid of that homeowner was always in trouble. In fact, at the time, I thought he was in jail, as per usual. He was always getting caught doing something wrong. So I figured he was in trouble, again.
The next morning when I went out to go to work, the kid was outside, talking to some policeman or detective. I glared at them, and the kid hollered over, “Sorry for the disturbance last night, I woke up last night to find somebody trying to steal my guns, can you believe that?” I said, unbelievable, and then said to the policeman, I was very scared and upset last night, and the officers that were pounding on my door were very rude. I have reasons that the Lake County Sheriff’s office is well aware of for being scared. Obviously that was overlooked last night.
The policeman then apologized. I went to work. When I got home, I didn’t see the kid anymore. In fact, I haven’t seen him in awhile. I’m sure he stole those guns or something like that. I hope he doesn’t come back. And let me just say that typically the police/sheriffs/detectives/agents that I have had dealings with are the BEST. So grateful to ALL our first responders.
Luckily the rest of my neighborhood is wonderful. The people that live around me always look out for me. They are very good to me.
Just don’t go knock knock knocking at my door!