Saturday, August 28, 2010

A Very Small, Very Adult Victory

Back during the early days of this blog, my life was, shall we say, "interesting."  And you know how that old curse goes:  May you live in interesting times...

I was working in a school where I wasn't a particularly good fit, even though everyone was cheerfully ignoring that fact and trying to make it work.  My truck decided to do throw a tantrum or two, including what the service center referred to as some kind of "explosion" deep within its inner workings.  I was stricken with a case of pneumonia that kept me flat on my back for a week and left me limping and wheezing for over three months.  Some of these things, in addition to being interesting, came with a rather high price tag.

I don't care where you are in relation to me geographically or how well your ability to focus compares to my pathetic skills in that area...chances are you heard the sound of my finances crashing from time to time.  This was also very interesting, now that I think of it.  But not much fun.

Don't get me wrong.  It wasn't all doom and gloom.  It's not like I lost the farm.  I don't happen to have a farm and, if I did, I'm fairly certain I could have convinced the cows to increase milk production until the lean times passed.  I'm good with cows.  I think.

But my Farm Sense is neither here nor there.  The point is that I had my friends and my family.  The knitting and spinning were finally at the "Oh, I get it!" stage and I was meeting lots of cool new people through the blog.  Yes, there were challenges, but what are you gonna do?

The fact of the matter is that, while not everything was my fault, it was my responsibility.  And I could have made other choices along the way or planned ahead for a few things that might go wrong.  I'm an adult and that is part of the game.  You can complain about the unfairness of things but, in the end, you need to own your piece of it.  I put on my game face and dealt with matters as they came, including the dental situation.

That little turn of events also falls under the heading of Things I Should Have Seen Coming, but this didn't make it any less unpleasant.  I spent almost a year of my life going back and forth to the dentist to repair the things that I let go during my Period Of Dental Denial.  Insurance covered some of it, but not all.  Again, there wasn't much to be done for it.  I gritted my teeth and wrote the checks.

Well...I gritted my teeth metaphorically.  At that point, it was impossible to do it literally.  However, I did grit and I paid my bills like an adult.  That is how it is done.

Except that sometimes you're allowed a little bit of childish behavior.  Maybe even some barely justified smugness.  Say, for example, you've recently had three fillings done (the first in a while, thankfully) and written a check to cover what the dentist estimated insurance would not.  You might, perchance, go to the mailbox a few weeks later to find some correspondence from that not-so-hallowed office.  When you open it you might find...

A check for twenty dollars!!!!

It is a small amount and does not begin to compare to what I shelled out lo those many years ago.  But, in that moment, it did not matter.  The dentist was paying ME!!!  BWAH-HA-HA-HA!!!!  Victory is mine!!!

I couldn't even enter the bank to deposit the check.  I had to use the ATM because even days later I was still prone to fits of smug giggles.  When I went to visit with The World's Greatest Stylist And Life Coach today, I had to park waaaaay on the other side of the lot because the dentist is in the same shopping area as the salon and I didn't dare walk past his office.  I feared I might fling open the door, leap into the waiting room and scream, "How do you like me now, Suckahs?"

I am an adult.  Most of the time.  Honest.  I do all kinds of adult things and I like to think I do some of them well.  But a twenty dollar check from the dentist?  I'm sorry, but that is just too much temptation.  I think I was entitled to a little childish glee on that one.  Besides, it's not like I taunted them with their error.  I kept my little victory to myself, which is a very adult thing to do when all is said and done.

Let's hope I can keep up this attitude until my next six month cleaning.  Waving a deposit slip in the dentist's face while chanting "neener-neener" is probably not going to result in careful use of pointy instruments...

SA

8 comments:

Teri S. said...

Amazing! A refund from Dr. de Sade! I'd be chuckling with glee, too.

But cows? I'd think that you'd be persuading the alpacas to increase fleece production...

Mia said...

People actually DEPOSIT money at atms???? How did I not know this?? The only word I ever notice is "withdrawl".

Good for your victory!

Kath said...

An refund of $20 would make me pretty darn happy. But from the dentist? I'd be dancing in the streets.

trek said...

A wise decision to use the ATM. Banks are sedate places. Bank tellers and trustees, in my experience (which, granted is mostly limited to the representatives of the Dawes, Tomes, Mousely, Grubbs Fidelity Fiduciary Bank), do not deal well with patrons in the grip of exuberant glee cavorting about the lobby.

Ooh-ohh, take the money and run...

Karen said...

Wow. I didn't know dentists could mail anything other than bills. I'm impressed by your restraint:)

Beth said...

Getting checks in the mail is the best thing ever. Yea!

Donna Lee said...

It's the little things that keep us going....

Cathy said...

What good news! I never get a refund from any dentist. OTOH, as long as I see them as infrequently as I can, that's almost as good. ("Infrequently" = quarterly... oh well)