It was every family’s nightmare.
My wife and I had the day off work, and we had taken our son out for lunch and some family bonding time. But as we approached our home, something felt off. I had a growing sense of dread the closer we got. As our house came into view, I could see that the front door was wide open. Someone had broken into our home.
I told my family to wait outside, in case the intruder was still inside. They obliged, and I slowly and silently made my way through our house. As I stepped into the living room, I saw broken furniture, nothing in its correct place, just utter chaos. Was this person looking for something? Did they have malicious intent? Why our home? Why us?
Next, I walked to our kitchen. The fridge had been emptied. Dishes and food were thrown all over the room. What kind of person had broken into our home? A homeless person who just needed food? If so, why had they destroyed the living room?
That’s when I heard it. Footsteps in the bedroom. The intruder was still in our house. I took a brief moment to be grateful that I had asked my wife and son to wait outside. It was impossible to decipher this person’s motives so far. But I was about to come face to face with the person that forcefully entered our home. And I would demand answers.
I crept toward the bedroom slowly, slowly. I approached the door, and focused on the sliver of light slipping through the crack. I could see faint shadows dancing in the light. I raised my hand, placed it against the door, and took a deep breath, readying myself for whatever may be on the other side.
I pushed the door open and stepped through the threshold with authority. I couldn’t believe my eyes. I actually rubbed my hands over them, thinking I was imagining things. There, in my son’s bed, was a young girl with curly blonde hair.
She stared at me with wide eyes. She must have been terrified. I must have been a few feet taller and at least 100 pounds heavier than her. I must have been a sight to see for that little girl. But she should have considered that before breaking into my home.
I called my wife and son to see what I found.
“Is that a human, Papa?”
“Why yes it is, Baby Bear. That’s dinner.”