I think I’ve mentioned before that when I was just a wee one, I was the victim of an armed robbery home invasion, so ever since then, for about 20 years, every time someone knocks on the door or rings the doorbell, I tend to think the worst is about to happen. Never mind that it’s election season, and the most likely scenario is that it’s someone stopping by to try to convince us to vote for a specific candidate. Nope. I immediately think that an armed robbery home invasion is imminent, and I make all efforts to hide the kids, hide the wives, hide the kids, hide the wives. (Not really, but remember that viral video?!) But in all reality, I may jump into the nearest closet.
On Thursday we had an extra suspicious visitor.
I was sitting in my living room with Mark’s mom, who was holding Joel, and all of a sudden, we heard the doorbell ring like three times, which pretty quickly freaked me out, because who rings a doorbell with such excessive vigor?!
And Mark’s mom is kind of a jumpy person too. So we both hopped up out of our seats, she (with Joel) running one way, and I running another – towards the office, which is to the left of our front door, where I could get a look at our suspicious visitor, all the while instructing Mark’s mom, “Don’t answer it! Don’t answer it!”
As I headed to the office I heard our suspicious visitor knock a couple more times, causing me to flip out even more, and I caught a glimpse of his car in our driveway, a nondescript silver SUV with its trunk open.
And THEN, I got a peek at the suspicious visitor himself – a man whom I didn’t recognize. He had grey hair, and it looked like he was trying to peer into our dining room window to see if we were home. And then he came back to the front door and started knocking again, and now I could sense some irritation behind his knock. (Perhaps he knew someone was home?)
And I started whisper yelling to Mark’s mom, “I don’t know him! I don’t know him! He won’t go away!”
So then she made a big leap and was like, “Should I call 911?!”
And my brain was telling me this was completely ridiculous and unnecessary and could result in potential embarrassment, but she’d just laid the offer out on the table, and it had been like ten minutes, and from the office window I could see that our suspicious visitor STILL hadn’t left us, so I followed my heart and was like, “Fine – just do it,” secretly happy that if this situation amounted to nothing then at least she would have been the one to make the phone call rather than me. (I’m selfish in this way.)
So Mark’s mom called 911, and I could hear her “state her emergency,” “Yes I’m here at my daughter in law’s home, with her child at XYZ address, and there’s a strange man outside, and he’s looking in the windows, and he won’t leave, and we think he might be trying to break in!”
I could see Mark’s mom running around trying to lock all of the doors, and I then started to panic more too, thinking, “What if this is the real deal, and he is indeed trying to break in?” I mean, it had been like 15 minutes, and I could still see that his SUV was in our driveway, but I’d lost track of him, so by this point I was scared he would come around back, where we have huge windows, and then he would see us and really try to murder us and put our bodies in his already-open-ready-to-go trunk, and I kind of chastised myself for not knowing the combination to our gun safe and never having taken a firearms class as my dad once suggested, so I started to think about what I could grab but realized we don’t own a baseball bat, and the golf clubs were probably in the basement.
“They’re sending someone over!” Mark’s mom shouted.
I looked out the office window again, and I could see the SUV pull out of our driveway and then creep by our house, until it was eventually gone.
“He’s leaving!” I yelled.
“Oh hold on,” Mark’s mom instructed the dispatcher.
Confident we were in the clear I opened the door to find the most beautiful bouquet of flowers, the card saying, “From Mark.” (He knew I’d had a rough day.)
“Tell them not to come!” I shouted to Mark’s mom, “It was just a flower delivery!”
“Never mind,” Mark’s mom relayed to the dispatcher, “Just a flower delivery!”
Slightly embarrassed, I scooped up the beautiful bouquet and took it in and set it on the counter. I picked up my cell phone (I’d been separated from it from the last half hour) to find a message from Mark, “Are you home?!”
Apparently the florist had called him to tell him I wasn’t answering the door.
I contemplated responding, “Yes, but we were unavailable, as we were calling 911,” but instead I just responded, “Thank you so much! They’re beautiful,” and I sent a picture.
Later I contemplated that the 911 dispatcher might not have done her job correctly. I mean, how did she know that this man hadn’t gained entry and held us hostage, forcing us to claim a floral delivery under duress? So she probably should have sent the police over anyway, but I’m happy she didn’t.
And I feel a little guilty that, because of us, this flower delivery guy was moments away from being stopped by the police. But he was damn aggressive about his flower delivery, so maybe it would have been deserved, though I would have hated to squelch his passion for his career.