It’s Tuesday at the time of this writing, and already it’s been an … interesting … week. I think someone is trying to kill me. I don’t know who might want me dead, but whoever it is, he or she is trying very hard and through some very creative means.
It started last Wednesday. I had plans to drive to Tampa Friday night and spend Saturday morning with a friend visiting from Chicago and then the rest of the day at Disneyworld with a high school (elementary school, to get really specific) friend I hadn’t seen in ten years and with whom I only recently got back in touch (et tu Brute). Needless to say, I was pretty darn excited to go on this little trip.
Then I got in my car Wednesday night to go buy a new one-piece bathing suit (mine is pretty worn out and I don’t like to lap swim in a bikini). My car wouldn’t start. Nothing. A little clicking, but it was obvious the battery was not working the way a battery should. Chris pulled it out and we took it to the car store (yes, I know, I’m a girl!) to get tested. The battery was fine. That meant it was either the alternator (unlikely, since it would drain the battery) or starter. Neither of which would get fixed in time for my trip. I wanted to punch a hole in the sidewalk. Or perhaps my car, which only recently gave me the gift of a dead transmission.
After some tinkering, we figured out it’s a problem with a wire that isn’t always touching something in the right place or way or whatever, but at any rate, moving it around temporarily fixes the problem and my car started. Chris is going to fix it one day soon, but in the meantime, I get to have a surprise every time I try to start my car. The anticipation and excitement of wonder every time is exhilarating.
So, I got to go on my trip and it was quite nice. But then I drove back home on Sunday. Traffic was mostly light. Almost home, I’m driving 80 miles per hour in the left lane of I-10, passing someone. There are hardly any cars around. And then … a man driving a humongous gold SUV of some sort, without bothering with his turn signal, switches lanes immediately in front of me and slams on his brakes so he can make an illegal U-turn at one of the emergency turnaround spots.
Thank goodness I have good brakes on my car! And that guy is lucky I don’t carry a gun. Just sayin’.
Fast forward to Monday. Now, my child support normally shows up all shiny and new every other Friday in my checking account. Except for after a holiday, this has been the case (although at first it was in check form, then debit card and finally direct deposit) for the last seven years. The one time it was late and it wasn’t because of a holiday, it was because Emma’s father switched jobs and there was a mixup and I didn’t see it again for several months after. So, when it wasn’t there Friday, I got a little nervous, but decided to see if it showed up Monday. Nope.
The state gets the money about a day before I see it, and I can check the child support website to see if it’s there. As of Monday night, just before bed, the state did not have it. I dashed a frantic e-mail to The Father to find out if I needed to plan for this deficit long-term or if it was just a fluke (as of Tuesday afternoon, I haven’t heard back). I started looking through want ads for a second job. I lost my appetite. I wanted to throw up.
First of all, I hate that I rely so much on this money, but I was a teenage mother and didn’t get any support for eight years and I’ve moved twice in the last five years, so I have some debt. I’m working my way out of it, but things keep happening — like my transmission biting the dust. If my luck improves, though, I can get out of debt in less than two years and the child support won’t matter anymore. For now, though, losing it for even a little while would hurt pretty bad. Monday was a very bad day.
The final two straws happened Tuesday morning: I woke up with a very sore, stiff neck. I guess I slept funny. And then, on the way to work, I almost died in another near car accident. The diagram provided shows the road of the office park through which I drive to get to work every day. As you can see, I had the right of way, as I was on the “open” part of the road while the other car had a stop sign. My lights were on. I was in that exact spot when some guy coming from the part of the road with the stop sign decided he could turn left at full speed. If he was looking forward, he would have seen me. If he had stopped at the stop sign a split second before and looked to his right, he would have seen me. Obviously, he didn’t stop, look or even pay any attention whatsoever.
Luckily, I was looking and my stiff neck from sleeping wrong is the extent of my injuries from that particular attempt on my life. Then I got to work, checked the support website and saw my money is safely in the hands of the state and should be shiny and new in my account tomorrow morning. Please pause for a sigh of relief. Thanks.
So, it seems by stress or by car, someone out there is very determined. Hopefully, I’ll “see” you all next week.