Three weeks ago, I’ve seen a folded note lying on the floor in my apartment’s laundry area. I couldn’t remember the exact date and time since I didn’t think it was important. The only thing I could recall was it was on a weekend and I was about to take a shower. I was either preparing to go to the outreach on Saturday afternoon or attend the service on Sunday morning.
I honestly found it weird how a torn page of a notebook would get there. All my neighbors moved out in September. And although it was a bit illogical given the structure of the apartment, I just suspected the strong wind the night before I saw it as I didn’t want to scare myself.
When I was cleaning the apartment at around 8:30 in the morning on October 24, 2019, I picked up the note to throw it to the trash bin. However, when I unfolded it, I read that a perverted coward human being was asking me if I can sleep with him. He told me he will be back at 4:30 AM and asked me to open the door if I agree.
Upon reading it, I felt so scared. It felt like someone has been watching me all those times, and one of the voices I heard from some people talking at the grassy vacant lot across my back door one evening might be from him.
My fear heightened when on the night of the 24th at around 7 PM, I heard someone knocking on the door, just a few minutes after I finished a lesson. I didn’t know what to do. I called my mentor and asked her to stay on the line with me.
After a few minutes, I heard someone knock on the door again. This time it was a bit louder, and I heard a man’s voice. It sounded like my brother, but I knew it wasn’t him because I am familiar with how he knocks and what he says whenever. Also, there wasn’t that annoying sound of his motorcycle.
I didn’t dare to look through my window to check who it was. No one visits me late at night except for my brother and my mom. And my friend who was supposed to come over messaged me to postpone her plan. Perhaps, he noticed that the note isn’t where he left it anymore and knew that I read it already, that’s why he acted on it.
After I told my brother, they checked on me. But I was still left alone at home. My mentor is pregnant and she had to go to bed early. Another friend who was aware of it has a newborn and I didn’t want to bother her. Others who had no idea about it were already asleep. It was almost midnight and I was desperate for someone to talk to as I couldn’t sleep. I was scared he would come back, at the same time I was ill. Good thing a colleague was awake and was waiting for her lesson at 1 AM.
I went to bed after our conversation. I didn’t know my colleague would call 911. An agent reached me and connected me to our local police department. I felt a bit relieved knowing that they would patrol around the area.
But the heaviness in my heart stayed. I’m in emotional distress until now. No one knew who the person was. My heart pounded every time I’d open my door even in the light of the day. I was scared to go out, or even just check and water my plants. I was scared to use the bathroom, knowing it’s across the area where he walked and left the note.
For more than a week, nothing else happened. Until in the afternoon of November 4, I found that my undergarments hanging on the clothesline were gone. Creepy, I know.
I reported it again but no action from the authorities seemed to take place. Another week passed. I saw that my underwear was back (and disgustingly soiled), and the lightbulb near the backdoor was stolen. It was around 8 PM on November 9. I didn’t think of sleeping in that place anymore. So, I asked a sister if I could stay over for the night.
I reported it to the watchmen in our barangay the same night and went to the police station for a blotter the next day.
He’s probably watching me for a long time. The policemen told me of the things that could possibly happen if I stay in that place longer (which I didn’t intend to do anymore). He could do worse in the next days. And considering the stalker might have seen men in police uniform visited the house, he’d either get scared to come back or would find an opportunity to kill me.
Some grills at the back that were supposed to serve as protection were weak and broken.
Now I’m here in another person’s house as I fled from the place I once called home―the home where I once felt safe and secure. I’m trying to fight my fears and doubt, and find another place where I could live my normal life. I’m hoping the Lord would keep me, and give me the strength not to question the things He allowed to happen, including this scary threat from an unknown perpetrator.
“The Lord is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me?” (Psalms 118:6 ESV)
The Lord is good, despite all these. The Lord is on my side. With human beings’ total depravity, there’s nowhere on earth that seems safe anymore. And in the midst of my situation, I wished He would take me home. But even this threat can never separate me from His love. Help me remember always, Lord.