Spent most of the late morning and early afternoon at H & R Block. I had to run home for the boys' social security numbers and that added 30 minutes (my error - I should have thought to have them on me). The first draft had me owing around $700.00. But redoing the numbers with another exemption brought it down to owing nothing, thank goodness, the first time since my husband's death that I am not paying the IRS in April! H & R Blocked charged me $349.00, I thought it would be less. I delayed paying them and having the taxes transmitted because the due date is still a month off. I'll wait until I receive my first paycheck next week - it will only be for a couple hundred dollars but right now I am fearful of running my small checking account balance down and overdrafting. I would rather be safe than sorry. At least I know that the damage isn't going to involve owing the IRS money that I don't have. That is a blessing.
The cold/flu thing I have is still with me concentrated in my sinus area and chest. I have to cough and my voice is hoarse. But I am better, on the mend I would say.
I made the boys go to the free dental clinic they had at the school, which is available to all students regardless of income. The first thing my youngest said when I picked him up from track was "I am never going to that dental clinic again." He disclosed that he was the only non-minority of the 10 kids there. He also said that he does not think my oldest went and will blow it off. The boys have not seen their dentist since last April so I thought it would be a good idea for them to go. It was at the school and I talked with the nurse about the boys being embarrassed. We'd arranged that they would see her for passes so they wouldn't have to be called out of their classes. I just figured it was worth getting done because it was free and would avoid me having to take them in the future and wait for future appointments, etc.
My son's comments upset me - I feel for him. Luckily, he does not need any work done (he got a cleaning). We are the family that had to move to the other side of the tracks. This can't have been easy for my boys. If they rode the bus to school, they would be the only non-minority kids riding. I'm not sure how to process that. Does it make our situation worse to now live in a community where we have become the minority? I have no problems or complaints about our neighbors but I do understand my sons' wariness about riding the bus. They want to avoid trouble and I suppose also want to avoid feeling embarrassed. I feel kind of crappy that I forced my sons (at least one) to go to the dental clinic. I thought it made sense, was worth it and helpful to me besides. Anyway, at least I don't have to worry about getting one of them to the dentist now. I wish I could have gone - you can bet I would have taken advantage of a free cleaning as it has been almost a year for me too.
What I keep being reminded of is that my boys have been deeply touched by my husband's death. In some good ways and in some bad. I continue to feel hurt for them that so few people have ever really stopped to think about how this experience has impacted them. That old cliche "Kids are resilient" doesn't stand muster with me. I have come to believe that kids can be very wounded too. They don't bounce back as easily as we may want to believe.
I needed to stop to pick up something for dinner when I got my youngest. He complained that he did not want to wait for me to even run into the store quickly, agreeing to eat a BLT sandwich tonight with soup since I have those items on hand. I still needed to run into the store for two small tomatoes and to get money for the laundry card. Then I had to fill my little sedan up with some gas. The mileage is great - $20.00 fills the tank and lasts a month!
My son then got annoyed with me and I had to listen to his complaints about my not having signed him up for driver's ed yet - he is 15. He was supposed to register for it at school but did not. Now it will cost me $400.00 or so to get him signed up at a local driving school. While he badgered me with the fact that I love my older son more, I was frantically thinking about the H & R Block bill due, the 4 tires I need to replace on the car, the auto insurance due in mid-April and the fact that I still need to come up with the remaining $400.00 owed my bankruptcy attorney. I was getting irritated at my son, short and snippy but at the same time felt sorry for him because he went to the dental clinic so I didn't want to bash him. But still...
We get home and I realize I have forgotten to pick up bath tissue yet again from the store. I run back out to put $10.00 on the laundry card so I can wash towels tonight, of which there have not been any clean ones in the past few days. The boys go through them like no tomorrow and I am considering hiding them and rationing them out. It is too expensive to be washing as many loads of laundry that I do weekly now and the machines here do not wash or dry particularly well. And I hate having to drag everything down to the laundry room - it is so dirty in there. I really do miss the huge, extra large capacity washer and dryer I had when I lived in my home.
So there is my day and I am tired. I am not sure if it is because I am still recovering from the flu/cold thing I had, or getting the taxes was emotionally draining or the prospect of doing laundry depresses me. But I feel drawn out and not looking forward to fixing even the simple BLT sandwiches on the menu.
I am grateful:
1. The taxes were done - not the most pleasant job to get done.
2. That I do not owe any taxes.
3. That my youngest (at least one out of the two) doesn't need any future dental work.
4. I am feeling a bit better, slowly but surely.
5. There is food for dinner, gas for the cars, electricity for the appliances.