Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Proud

Our credit counselor that we met with on Saturday was a transsexual. As soon as we walked into the appointment, and the six foot plus woman extended her gigantic hand, and shook my own, I noticed. She had a very deep voice, and an Adam's apple. She wore a terribly dowdy sweatshirt, and jeans. Open toed Birkenstock's exposed her big feet, complete with a tattoo on her foot, of a conch shell. She had minimal makeup on, and her red hair was carefully styled, half up, half down. Earrings completed her look. She had intense eyes, and a serious demeanor. All business. No funny stuff. I kept trying to figure out if having her as our counselor was some sort of irony, or sign. Not that everything means something, but surely, here we are, hoping to save our home, and maintain stability for our children, and the person we are about to reveal all of our personal financial yuck to, may or may not have a penis. This kept going through my mind, and each time she got up to retrieve form after form from the printer, I kept looking at her crotch, somehow, looking for something. A bulge, or some obvious smoothness. The curiosity was killing me, and it became very distracting. At one point, I made a joke, and she laughed. Really laughed. The laugh was deep, and that of a man's. David and I glanced at each other, both of us taken by surprise.
I was dreading this meeting. I thought that we would be turned away. Told that we could not be helped. I am not sure if we can be helped. The application process is months long. We will not have an answer for quite some time. But toward the end of our meeting, and all of her lengthy questions, and dissection of every penny we spend, and accounting for each and every dollar, she said something that made me cry. Right there, in her office. She looked at us, and really made intense eye contact with both David and I. She said that what she saw, right before her, on the pages spread across her desk, was nothing bad. She said that we did what everyone dreams of doing. We got married, and had a baby, and purchased a home. She said that David had a decent paying job, and then, through no fault of his own, lost it. We suffered a painful period of unemployment. David had to take a lower paying job, but it was a good job, with the government, and that in itself, is a huge achievement in this economy. She said that we had no credit card debt, were in no way living above our means, and we have just had a series of crappy things happen to us. She said that we were doing everything right.
I cried. She made me feel validated. She made us feel validated. I suddenly didn't feel ashamed of our life. I felt proud. She said she has seen it all. The people who come to meet with her have made such terrible choices in their lives. Credit card debt, and living well beyond their means, have brought them to her. All things they chose to do. We did not choose any of this to happen to us. It just happened.
She also said that we can't choose to be victims. We aren't. And then she stared me dead in the eyes, and she said that we were going to get through this, and we were going to be OK.
I believe her.

4 comments:

  1. :)! I believe her too.
    -dc

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  2. I do feel better Becky. I have actually been sleeping, panic attack free. Thank you!

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