There are many things in this world I cannot be accused of - being skinny (right now, at least :) ) being rich (until, of course, those winning lottery numbers finally come up for me) being tough (let's face it, I am an easy cryer and bit-of-a-wimp), however, there is one thing I can never be accused of when it comes to certain things, and that is being a quitter. Oh no, if I put my mind to something, then I do all I can to make it happen.
What am I talking about this time? Not visiting Salem next year, that's for sure, as my determination to not let a bank get away without paying me back what I was rightly owed, finally paid off, they've paid up and I now have enough money to take my Mum to meet the family she never even knew she had just 5 years ago. I still need to work on saving some 'spending money' but they paid me back enough to cover flights, car hire (with fuel) and budget motels (at the end of the day we only need somewhere to sleep with a door that locks). I could have given up on them 2 years ago when the financial ombudsman basically told me there was nothing I could do - well, I proved them wrong, just as I will prove wrong all those people who have doubted I will be able to raise enough funds to take the kids road tripping around those mid-western US states I so dream of (they do too, now, or so they tell me).
I had to stop with my efforts for a while - the dog being so poorly and needing money to try and keep her alive took a big chunk of my time, then myself being so poorly I did have to take a step away from it it, try to get myself back together, and make sure I was in the right place (and frame of mind) to tackle this challenge, and I can tell you now, I am back, better than ever, and even more determined than I was before. I failed in saving my dogs life (and raising any money to help keep her alive another 6 months) and for a long while I really struggled to deal with that, blaming myself for her death. I now know the reason I was unable to raise the funds to pay for her, was because (sadly) she was not able to be saved, and had I come up with the money and paid for the operation they said she needed (which she didn't and was purely to line their own bank accounts) I would have only prolonged her suffering. It's no coincidence that the money I got back from the bank turned up after all her vet bills had been paid; had it turned up beforehand (and definitely before she died) I would have used it on keeping her alive. It's taken me a long time to realise that I wasn't meant to save her. I did everything I possibly could (her total bills in the end came in at just over £12000). I spoiled her with love (no different to any other day I'd had her) and the day her life came to an end, was the day she looked at me and I could see in her eyes she was telling me it was her time to go. Had I got the money before that day I would have ignored that look, and put her through a massive operation for my own selfish ends, because I wanted to keep her around for as long as I could. It's taken me 6 months to realise this. Her dying, and the money arriving (meaning I can treat Mum - who I know has felt the dog's death even harder than I did) have proved to me that I am now ready to get this fundraising working for me. I will succeed, one-way-or-another.
As such, the 2nd fundraising site I registered with (who operate souly for people to raise the funds to travel) I have just started with again. The first 2 attempts I had with them drew nothing - not even a negative comment from a troll; I think now that happened because fate knew my dog was about to die, and knew I would have taken the money to pay for her. When I realised I needed to change my original plans, needed to raise the money to treat my Mum (she deserves a treat more than I did) I think I didn't raise anything through the sites because (once again) fate knew what was coming my way; it knew the bank was going to give back what it had taken and that I was going to be able to take her away because of it.
Now though, it's really all about me. This 3rd time is my time, my chance to achieve a dream, and I truly believe that "3rd time's a charm". Life has proved to me, beyond a shadow of doubt, that it works in weird ways, ways I couldn't understand at the time but it all works out in the end. A close friend of mine once said to me "what is meant for you, will not pass you by". I really believe her now. She told me that after dealing with breast cancer, knowing that one day it would come back and claim her life (which is did a few years ago) so it's not always the good stuff that doesn't pass us by; she knew that better than anyone, and as such did what she wanted, when she wanted, enjoying every second of her life. She was lucky enough to be able to afford to live in such a way. Don't tell me she would have given up all that wealth to still be here, for we chatted about that, and she told me that whether rich or poor, she was giong to die because "it is written in life's plan" and she said she would rather die with money in the bank, having lived her life how she wanted, than without. She knew, no matter what, her life would end before she reached 50, and she took all she could from it. Thanks to her philosophy, and kicking myself up the arse as I've had to do in the past year, I get where she was coming from now, I have a deeper understanding, and that is why I know (really know) that I will succeed. Me and those 2 younglings will embark on the adventure. It is what it's meant to be.
Oh yes, we are about to prove the saying "3rd time lucky" as being correct, and I (and I know they) are already beginning to show the faint glow of light before it finally jerks into life and shines as bright as can be.
I really am loving life right now.
I really am loving life right now.