Friday, February 22, 2008

Hitting Below the Belt!!!!

As many of you know, I retired from teaching this year....and what a "paper nightmare" that has been! First it was all the retirement forms, buying back years of teaching retirement, pension forms, buying back years of Social Security years, Home Equity Loan to buy back, Social Security forms and meetings, insurance forms...part A, part B, part H, part D......and on and on..........!~!@&^$^
At every turn in the road there have been a few surprises....and I don't mean the good kind wrapped up with a bow:( Well, yesterday, to put the icing on the hubby went to have our taxes done! Considering I am an artist and VERY RIGHT BRAINED.....I muster the energy every year to become the accountant and get all my expenses in order along with all my little side earnings....
I sent Rog off feeling secure in the fact that I would be getting a nice fat check back (as I always do) and pondering what I wanted to do with that money this year!!!!!!!!! Maybe a trip to our beloved Oaxaca, Mex. or maybe that serger I have been longing for:D
At 12:30 I get a call from our CPA saying there is a little "snafoo" going on! It appears that when the teachers retirement system figured my retirement settlement....they didn't take out enough taxes and I will need to pay over 8,000.00 in taxes this year.....OMG!!!!! I could hardly catch my breath! That can't be we went over the entire tax deductions available....but...NO RELIEF@!@#@$ Well..............................there it was....................right from the horses mouth (so to speak). Not only have I been able to pay back every cent I ever owed to ANYBODY in the past two years.....I have also learned to live on Half of what I am used to! I have almost knocked myself over patting myself on the back! is what it is.........I now have to consider taking a part time job just to pay the taxes on my retirement plan:(
O.K...........I have resolved myself to even a MORE THRIFTY life for the next year.....this might be the forced diet I needed to lose that 15 lbs....LOL I have always been a very positive person and I am sure I will use this as but one more challenge and enjoy getting through it:D
Now comes the "below the belt" hit that hurts more than the tax situation:( While thrifting the day before yesterday.....there....hanging on the rack of used children's clothing....were many of the clothes I made for one of my loved ones........I looked...and couldn't believe it! My heart sank.....I looked more closely....yes, they were my outfits, never worn or washed, hanging there with little price tags on them. Were they outgrown?....No, I just made them a couple of months ago:( I took a deep breath and tried not to look to upset.........there was this awful feeling in the pit of my stomach.....and....all I wanted to do was get out of the store without crying. I got to the car and tried to catch my breath. There is no challenge here, no resolution....just a broken heart.
I have been up the last two nights with hives.....worried and trying to understand these situations and coming up with solutions.....I am writing this because it seemed like getting it out might ease the anxiety of it all......Thanks so much for letting me vent! I don't normally like to let people see my hurt, but getting it out seems to have helped a little:D


Linda said...

Omigosh, I feel like I got hit in the gut reading your post--how awful X2!!! Makes me wish somehow Mr. Huckabee could miraculously get elected so he can make the IRS go AWAY! I hate to say this, but there are few of us who have never been hit below the belt like that by greedy Uncle Sam (it's all in the name of robbing the hard-working to give to the politician's promises to those that want more for nothing--don't let me go there!)

THEN the issue of your gorgeous children's clothes being SOLD in a thrift shop--Oh my goodness. I'm devastated. (And after all the angst I've suffered at being such a bad grandmother for not making little pretties like that for my own grandchildren.) Where was this shop, that your own family thought you'd never find them, anyway???

My first thought is that maybe your family is having unexpected tax burdens, too, and are having to sell everything they can to pay them. Maybe there really is a financial need there. BUT, if NOT, I'd say it's time to rethink the gift-giving in that department. Maybe it's time to use your talents where they will be more appreciated? From now on instead of pretty handmade things, just give the grandchildren all the Twinkies they want, instead. Isn't revenge sweet? :-)

Meanwhile, what to do with your poor crushed heart? I can only offer my sympathies and love. Someone else's lack of gratitude does not reflect on you, dearheart--only on them. What really matters is that you gave of your time, your talents, and your finances, right out of your great big, BEAUTIFUL, wonderful heart. Be good to yourself today. Soon the brutalities of February will fade into a new spring.

Linda, too

madrekarin said...

linda- I am so sorry. First, to have to pay that much money in taxes is horrendous. And don't you wish that some sort of penalty could be waged against the ones that did not hold out enough taxes in the first place? Isn't that their job?
But even worse, is to find your lovingly made clothing unworn and cast away. You can take comfort that the person that purchases your beautiful clothing at the thrift will be so grateful to have it. OR, you can march right back there yourself, buy it back, put them on Esty or Ebay and get your money back. haha
Either way, you need to talk to the one who sent them to the thrift store and find out why. It could be as Linda said, they are tight financially as well. Whatever the reason, find a place in your heart to forgive them. They love you and everyone makes an error in judgement now and then. It's hurtful, but losing them would be worse.
Here's a big (((HUG))) for you.


Dawn said...

Wow, Linda..
That is sooooo disheartening.

I hope you can talk this out with your loved ones.


lollysnestegg said...

Oh, I am so sorry you are going through this. I have been through the IRS situation to the tune of $10,000 when my husband and I divorced and he moved to Canada. After 8 years, I just got out from under last year.

As to the clothes you lovingly made - I am heartbroken for you. I do think that it will be hard to get past unless you somehow call them out and confront them about it....hard to do, I know, but it might be the only way to heal your hurt.

Please know that you have lots of blog friends, and as for me, although we don't know each other and I don't comment often, I check your blog regularly and you are just so talented and so appreciated!!!

Sharon said...

My heart is crushing for yours. I'm sure you have thought of a million ways to respond to this and all of the various ways to "get over it". I guess for now, you just have to get the hurt out. Then, you will be able to go forward with new insight. My advise would be to let go of the hurt before trying to face the loved one with it.

I'm remembering a lesson taught to me by a wayward teenager that I befriend about 20 years ago. She had nothing, lived in a "residential treatment center" and had for most of her life. I gave her things...because I could. Sometimes is was a little money like a couple of dollars or something new to wear or some kind of treat to eat. Nothing was ever expensive but it was more than she had ever had. Anyway the lesson that she taught me was to "give with no strings attached". You see it never hurt me but bewildered me to discover that she would pass on my gifts. It was not because she didn't like them. She loved them and the "gift" to her was not the physical gift but the fact that someone gave her something. I think it gave her something to share with the other "wayward" girls at the house. I know it gave her the joy of giving.

Anyway, ever since then, when I give something to my children or friends or even donations to a cause, I say to myself, "will it be OK with me no matter what they do with this gift?" If I realize that it would not be OK with me, then I don't give. It's a simple string thing.

Sorry for the length of my comment.

Lee Weber said...

Oh Linda- I'm sending you lots of love and (((HUGS.))) The tax thing is terrible- but atleast do-able. You can probably file for some sort of extension or relief so you don't accumulate fees. But the clothes thing- so much love and time went into them! Maybe they aren't her taste, but what a sad way to get rid of them. S/he could at least have given them back with an explanation. I think you'll have to address it, just so your heart can heal (even if it's in a phone message on the answering machine- if you can't deal in person). And turn your talents elsewhere... it's probably NOT that they weren't appreciated, but you know how fickle people can be about clothes. You certainly deserve a good cry, and I'm really sorry your feelings were hurt. Oh- if I only had daughters!!

JUST ME said...


Sorry to hear all this news. I truly am...

I am sorry about the IRS/Money part. I can understand because my parents are going through the same thing. There was a mistake made by someone that did their taxes and now being retired they need to pay back all this money..... Hand in there Linda.

What I am really upset about is your second situation. I am so sorry. I don't usually express myself well with words. I understand your heart break. You put a lot of love into your creations and I can tell. My gosh sometimes I wish some of the stuff you create can fit me!

I am so sorry. I feel for you Linda. I am with you all the way.

Love, Angelica

Sue said...

Oh Linda, I think the previous comments have said amost everything I am feeling about your situation. As I am coming to know you through your posts I have learned a few things about you. You have a huge heart, you are strong, creative and resourseful. All these traits will see you through the trying times ahead. Please know the wonderful gifts you give to us through sharing and your tutorials are very much appreciated. I am shocked that anything you made would be sold as every creation I have seen of yours is a treasure. Big hugs to you my friend.

Sue said...

One more thing, Just something to think about. You mentioned a part time job. I see so many talented people selling their patterns or directions online. With your teaching experience and talent it might be something that could work for you and be enjoyable? Just a thought.

nelda said...

Linda, I am so sorry for your heartbreak. I believe God is going to turn the bad situation caused by the taxes into a blessing for you. Your resourcefulness and creativity will shine because of this challenge, and, who knows? Maybe the part-time job will lead you into something greater.

I am so sorry for your pain concerning the rejection of your beautiful clothing. I understand because I have experienced the same thing. Eventually, my head got seperated from my heart and I realized some things about myself; that I was equating my art with love, and, to them, it was only a product that had come to them. I realized that they still loved me but that I needed to find other ways to show them my love. That is when I decided to start selling my art. I think anyone who is willing to put out their money, which represents a part of their life, to own something that I have created, must surely desire and cherish it. To this day, I have never sold one thing to those loved ones who hurt my feelings, but I have sold to many wonderful people who I am so thankful have come into my life. They have become dear friends. I also have discovered the sisterhood of the art community.

Above all, please forgive those who have hurt you, in both situations, not for their sakes, but for your own so the pain will not be bound to you and you can be free to go on to the greatness that is in you.

You are so dear to all of us and we admire you greatly.

Hugs, Nelda

Becky said...

oh lord linda- nothing like adding insult to injury...we got nailed about 3 years ago to the tune of about 8 grand as well...don't tell, but we're still paying it off. and as for the clothing. i just don't know what to say. sometimes there is just a level of rudeness, self-absorption, unthinking, unfeeling behavior that there just are no words for. if i was a quarter of my size, i would pop on one of those monkey shirts or one of those cute outfits for margo in a new york minute! sending love your way. becky

Judy said...

OMG Linda!
my heart is with you, i feel just horrible. I have one of those tax bills to pay too but it is even more enormous and i too am in a very big bind so i do understand totally.
I agree with one of the former comments - you ought to teach your journal making and all your crafty skills because you are so talented.
Regarding the clothes - well I can understand and empathise at just how painful that must be.
hugs to you

cindy said...

Oh honey, I don't think that I can add anything to all the wonderful words already posted by these lovely ladies. Except to say, you are one talented gal. So many of us admire your artistic abilities and your numerous creations of beauty.
Hugs to ya.


sherri (Tied Up In Ribbons) said...

so sorry you are hurting. Looks like you have a lot of friends with options for you. we don't need details, but would hope that things will work out. I think we all have things like this that kick us in the gut.

Wow, I have to say that I would have been squealing with delight if I had found that wonderful stuff in a thrift store. What a score for a thrifter.

lindaharre said...

To all of you that have written.....THANK YOU!!!!! You were just what I needed:D A friend to listen and offer support! You really made me stop and think about the situation more clearly and step back and take an outsiders view:D The situation has corrected itself to and the forgiveness has begun! The person involved had NO IDEA that I would be so hurt....and has told me some of the reasons they have lost touch with the emotions involved! God works in mysterious ways.........I am on the road to getting my tax situation solved also! My kids and my hubby are there to prop me up and pay my bills.....but I don't want that! This is my challenge and I need to take care of it myself:D Thanks again for the support I needed!!!!! I really mean that! hugs to you all, Linda