(This is a two-part entry. Part one is crazy good. Part two is just crazy.)
So yesterday at 9:30 a.m. I sat my butt in our federal courthouse for my 341 hearing -- pretty much the meeting of myself, my attorney, the trustee, and any creditors that cared to show and speak regarding my bankruptcy. (Tip - creditors never show unless you've likely done something really bad, like fraud or embezzlement or evil.) There were about 15-20 other folks there as well, so I wasn't the only one, but dang was I nervous. This is where I would find out how my bankruptcy would proceed, and how my assets, if any, would be distributed.
I waited. And waited. And ... yeah, waited some more. I got to talking to this old man sitting next to me (And eventually, the guy behind us -- everyone wanted to blab at me! Did I have good hair or something??) and we talked about why we each were in this situation, laughed about it, talked about our pets, and he told me about his 50th high school reunion he just attended. He joked that he couldn't remember half the people that remembered him, and had to keep asking ... "Who the heck are you??" ... and the people HE remembered had to keep asking him ... "Who the heck are you??" We got a good laugh out of it. In retrospect I'm glad we talked; it surely took the edge off of both of us.
And then, at about 11:30, I was called up to swear my life away on the Bible and throw my battered financials on the mercy of the court. At this point I was more hungry than anything; I'd forgotten to bring my muffin from home, and have you tried to find a vending machine in a court building? Good luck to you if you do.
At any rate, I answered all of their questions, and my case was deemed a no-asset distribution. Which means I have no assets to distribute (hur hur), but more importantly, I get to keep what meager worldly possessions I have. And, that my petition passed.
And, that I DID IT. I totally, totally did it. I'm totally done. In 30-60 days I'll receive my discharge notice in the mail, I'll be totally bankrupt, and free free free to start anew.
I really can't describe the feeling of freedom this gives me. A HUGE weight lifted off my shoulders. For the past three or so years I've really been living under stress and fear - it may sound cliche, but I was afraid of everything... afraid of what notice I'd get in the mail that day, afraid of who would call me, afraid that someone would come to the door and give me papers. Being afraid to check the mail just isn't right. Everything felt so out of control, and I felt like I was just being dragged along for this horrible ride. And I remember when I finally realized that I could possibly, just possibly, file for bankruptcy, and I could take control of everything that was happening to me... I just started bawling, in my car, in the middle of rush-hour traffic because I was so happy and filled with hope! It was such a liberating moment, as was this entire process. I really started to feel happy again, like I was getting a second chance at my life without all the stress and the fear and the worry that stemmed from some poorly made decisions.
I'll never forget me leaving the courthouse yesterday; walking down the hall towards the exit with the biggest smile on my face and a bunch of excited exclamation points bumping around in my brain. It's one of those moments that I'll remember, hopefully forever, but who knows with my memory...
And do you want to know the first thing I did when I left? (I know you do!) I walked right down the riverwalk to the chocolate shop and bought myself some malted milk balls! HECK YES! (I bought Matt a peanut butter cup too, because we were there this past weekend, and he was looking at the peanut butter cups longingly, and he was about to buy one but my stomach suddenly got extremely uproarious, and it was most certainly not because I devoured half of a humongous brownie sundae after dinner, okay maybe it was, but anyway we had to make a hasty exit and I felt bad, but that's a whole other story.)
Oh and I got a call for a job interview while I was sitting around waiting to declare my what-have-yous, so I have an interview tomorrow at 11 am! Double awesome!!
* * * * * * * *
So I'm driving home yesterday and this massive thunderstorm opens up, like torrential rains and hey I can't really see the car in front of me and wow that lightning was right in my face. I make it home -- praising the new tires I had put on a month ago -- and I'm making lunch when... CRACKA BOOM, out goes our TV and internet amidst the monsoon outside. Little did we know it also blew out our electric garage door opener, and ALL the electricity in the garage... but we found out when we tried to leave for dinner... TRAPPED, in our own garage!
Will that stop us from getting dinner at dollar taco night?! (A lot tastier and higher quality than it sounds, BTW.) HECK NO. We busted our way out anyways with the help of our P90X muscles and the garage door book that told us how to open it manually. Strangely enough it seems the whole blocks garage doors weren't working, and we got a chance to meet one of our neighbors who has a personality very much akin to a bag of turnips. (Hopefully some of our neighbors moving in next month will have personalities more like bags of freshly cut daisies, or lab puppies, or piles of fresh blueberries!)
So, what do we do when we have no internet, no TV, and nothing to do for the night? Why, buy a bottle of chardonnay and watch Monty Python and The Holy Grail on DVD, of course! You silly English Knnnnnn-ig-its! Bwahaha.
Obv. today we have internet back, and TV as well, but the garage door is still going on a wing, a prayer, and a maintenance ticket. At least we can get out, though. Don't stifle my freedom, electrical storm.
Okay, that's all. I need to take a picture for my 52 this week, and I was planning on going to some local gardens and doing something fun and cool, but the weather is farting in my general direction so I may just go flail about in the marsh behind our house thanks to all the rain! Ahh, getting in touch with nature... :)