So there’s no witty opening to this one… my shit got stolen three weeks ago from my gym locker and it sucked. I’ve lived in New York all of my life and I’ve been one of the fortunate few that has never had their things stolen. I’ve also luckily never been robbed (and I pray to God I maintain that streak of luck).
However on May 4th my shit was taken out of my locker at Blink fitness. Everyone around me was very positive and helpful and truly made the process easier than it could have potentially been. Now after I cried, screamed, kicked, complained, and talked shit about the situation for several days… I had to come here to turn that negativity into something positive. Because that’s how we learn right?
I have learned several things in this “healing” process so to speak. And I know I know… I sound super dramatic right. I didn’t get hurt, and oddly enough the thief returned many of the things inside of my wallet like my license, health insurance card, student ID … etc. So why do I care? Well besides the fact that my wallet, glasses, and iPod were stolen there were two other things taken from me. My sense of security (which I guess in this day and age you really shouldn’t bank on…) and my nostalgia.
I loved that wallet, yes, but I wan’t sad about the stolen wallet itself. It was one thing that was inside of it that I really wanted back, something that had absolutely no value to others and I can never get back. My iPod I’ve had for 10 years… it was shitty and not even worth more than 50 bucks I’m sure… but it was mine. It reminded me of so much and had every song I’ve ever heard on it! And my glasses… well those who know why those glasses are important to me… know that a piece of something extremely important was taken from me with those glasses. Okay I’m complaining again… let’s get to the actual purpose of the post right?
What are you supposed to do when your shit is stolen? And how quickly should you do it? Let’s walk through the process I took
How To Recover When Your Shit Gets Stolen
1. Cancel Everything: When I walked into the locker room and saw that my lock was missing my heart froze. I opened up the locker pulled out my bag relieved to see that it was still there. I opened up my bag noticed immediately that my iPod, and wallet were missing. So what did I do I put a lock on all of my cards. I had been working out for an hour and had no idea whether or not the thief had tried to use my cards yet. Luckily they didn’t get a chance to, and I cancelled everything immediately.
2. File A Police Report: No matter how trivial or small amount of hope is offered, file a police report for your missing shit. Because of the fiscal value of the things that were stolen this bumped my report up to Grand Larceny. The wallet, cards, glasses and iPod totaled way over 250.00 bucks. Also filing a police report helps to protect you against the things you don’t think about. For example my license was in my wallet. This means someone could commit crimes, break laws and pretend to be me. Stealing a wallet is an identity thief’s dream. Most of my things in my wallet were returned (of course the wallet was not) but that doesn’t mean that they haven’t made a copy. So I am still on high alert about things that may appear on my record that I haven’t actually done. Even if you don’t get your things back file a police report.
3. Check things for sale: The detective that was/is working on my case made me think about something I hadn’t really thought about. He told me to keep an eye on sites and apps that let people sell their things. He told me to see if I saw any of my things on sale in the area. Because my iPod was so old I couldn’t find the serial number and it didn’t have “find my iPhone”. It was on iOS 6 guys… very very old. So I checked Craigslist, Offer Up, and LetGo for about a week to see if I saw my wallet, glasses or iPod for sale. The detective also checked the local stores in the area that sold used items.
4. Get an Identity Tracker: This is more so if you’re paranoid or worried (depending on what was stolen). I’m looking to getting LifeLock for a year just to make sure that no new accounts are being opened in my name, and that there are no new incidents added to my Driving record abstract that have nothing to do with me. This gives me the peace of mind that the thief stole from me when they stole my shit. I highly recommend getting an identity tracker because identity theft is no laughing matter and I highly care about my freedom and my credit!
5. Talk about it: I think what was really difficult besides replacing all of my lost things was the fact that I felt alone initially. My family and friends gave me the time and opportunity to recover (and again I know I may sound a bit dramatic… just bear with me the post is almost done) from feeling like my whole world was upside down. They helped me also focus on the fact that my things were able to be replaced, life was able to go on and that I wasn’t physically hurt.
So I say all of that whiney stuff to say this… at the end of the day and a few weeks after this situation… I realize that all of those things… even the nostalgic things are just “things” and can be replaced or at least remembered. No longer physically having them does suck, but with time I’m sure I won’t harp on it often (well… I might… who knows). When your shit gets stolen it is easy to feel like a victim because in a sense you certainly are, but the most important key to recovering is to move beyond that point. Don’t unpack and live there (though if more important things like my social or passport were stolen I might’ve stayed there a bit longer) because it isn’t healthy.
What steps have you taken to recover your lost items? Please share. Even if the tips don’t help me they may help others trying to revere their shit too!!