I am sitting in a community centre while my husband, Texy, gets counselling as a victim of crime. I am here so I can help understand the compensation process that we need to go through, which is the next session.
A week ago, Texy was ambushed by 3 ‘thugs’ waving machetes in his face demanding cash.
Texy had returned to his old job for a couple of months. He had just spent the last 10 months as a SAHD. Texy is a night driver collecting gourmet food orders from small businesses that produce them. He goes into about 8-10 places each shift. Often they are empty and he access them with keys and alarm codes as required. Texy was at a place he knew well, the second collection of the night. He collected the stock and loaded into the back of his van. Texy thinks he had just got back in the driver’s seat when one thug, wearing a black mask/stocking appeared on the driver’s side. Then one appeared on the passenger’s side. Texy’s natural instinct was to move into the middle of the van; his fists up around his face. From each side they waved their machetes demadning cash. From what he tells me his fear increased at this point- he didn’t have what they wanted, a mere $10 in his wallet. He could hardly speak as he indicated where his wallet and phone were. They took the keys to his van and they were gone. He says they were like ghosts. The whole incident probably lasted for less time than what it takes to read this.
Once he was sure they had vanished he climbed out of the van and had to run, out to the main road where he knew was a petrol station. At each corner he stopped to see any sign of the thugs before he proceeded. A taxi driver at the petrol station called the police. From there the local police arrived, then armed robbery squad members and the dog squad as well.
Texy has no idea about who these thugs were. Where they kids or adults? The black stocking they wore over their faces freaks him out. One week on the sight of someone in a black hoodie gives him goosebumps.
It took a couple of days for the adrenalin to subside. Now the reality of trauma is setting in. I pick up a pamphlet about the typical reactions a victim of crime experiences and he had them all. I never really had any fucking idea or imagined what it would be like to be a victim of crime. It is horrific. For an ordeal that lasted less than a minute will have long-term implications.
I am also finding the some reaction from people to the incident is much like how some ill-informed people view depression. You know, why can’t he just get back on the horse and get another job and all will be good.
Unfortunately it is not just as simple as Texy going to find alternative work in a ‘safe’ environment. He needs to deal with his trauma. There is no expected timeframe when he should be OK.
Right now I need to summon up all my energy and support him and keep the household running as smooth as possible. All this whilst I work full-time in a job I currently despise. I feel like I am going to explode.
Thanks for reading.