Wednesday, April 24, 2013

FIND OUT WHAT HAPPENS WHEN SETH LIVES ON CRUTCHES...NOT CUTE!


Click Here for Pic

Today is going to be all about me.  It is, after all, my blog -- and I can cry if I want to...and this week I have wanted to cry like no other.  For those of you who don't read my blog religiously, I am on crutches now.  At first the idea of crutches was cute and sweet.  Now, 10 days in, it's just painful.  End of Story.

Not having a boyfriend these past two weeks has really sucked big time.  He should have been here taking care of me, walking the proverbial dog, making my fabulous dinners, and awaiting news from the other side of the bathroom door.  Of course, it's been made very clear to me over the past few months that I wouldn't even recognize an incredible guy if they were standing right in front of me.  :(  

Enough about me pouting.  This blog, actually, was conceived when speaking to my father this past weekend on the phone.  I had him in stitches telling him my trials and tribulations of a gay-crutched out boy at a professional services firm.  So, here goes...

I had been sick to my stomach all week.  When I say sick, let's just say I never knew if it was the nausea or the exploding diarrhea (yes, folks, haven'd had that in a while) that would be my ultimate demise.

Picture the following.  Seth, in a cute little corporate outfit, on crutches.  Seth, with perfectly coiffed long-er hair with a big, and I mean, BIG boot (picture below).  Seth, sitting at his cute little corner cubicle/office (dreaming of someday soon when they might hire me full time.  Fingers crossed).  There has been my amazing co-worker who has prepared my Honey Nut Cheerios cereal every morning since the surgery.  Even being doted on, I still felt like crap.



I believe it was Thursday that was THE actual worst day of all.  I literally had to "run" (aka crutch real fast) to the bathroom five to six times throughout the day due to tummy issues.  It was horrible.  Each time, I had to go through the following steps and each time, I knew I only had a few minutes to make it to the men's bathroom all the way on the far side of the office.  Are you ready?

The 5-Mile Run to The Bathroom.
My stomach would rumble.  The wave of nausea would come about and then the wave of intestinal disturbance would soon follow.  Sometimes I would be able to guestimate the amount of time I had before I might have an accident.  Sometimes not so much.   I would collect my crutches and start my (what seemed like) a 5-mile journey to the men's bathroom.  You see, the bathrooms are literally at one end of the office and I am very obviously at the other end. (Murphy's Law!)

So, not only would everyone hear me crutch down the halls, but sometimes the people that hadn't already asked me, would literally stop me to ask what happened.  Um...not now.  Clearly, I'm about to have an accident!  It was at moment's like these that I would politely tell them that I was taking some very hard antibiotics and I had to "run" to the bathroom.  That would pretty much shut people dead in their tracks.  Okay, I only said that a couple of times, but people got the hint real quick.  Drama queen. 

As I made my way to the FIRST bathroom door.  I don't know why my office believes in doors so much.  Sometimes it has felt like behind every one door is a second door and sometimes even a third door.  What a waste in my opinion.  Anyway, near the entrance to the first door, there were two lovely gentlemen who would frequently offer to help me open that door.  I never knew that a first door could be so heavy, but after seeing me struggle three or four times, both gentlemen knew to quite ceremoniously rise from their comfortable isotonic, rather ergonomic, desk chairs and assist the poor little handicapped novelty item in the office.  After the first door, I had learned to just back my tuchus into the second door and spin around on the crutches.  If only we had had a camera.  In fact, I have done many a sad (to me), funny (to everyone else) little things over the past week.

Finally, I would arrive to the bathroom.  Great.  Now everyone in the office knew I was in the bathroom.  Yay!  (Note the extreme sarcasm).  My intestinal IBS-like condition was definitely no fun and it definitely was not a silent issue either.


Decisions.  Decisions.  Decisions.
Decision One.  Which stall?  There were two stalls.  One was clearly too small.  Yay!  First decision down.  

Decision Two.  Where do I put my crutches?   I've often wondered if those metallic bars, specifically and strategically placed above the toilet, really helped anyone.  Answer: They didn't help me one bit.  Okay, leave the crutches just to the right of toilet.  Far enough that I won't bump into them when I sat down, but close enough so that I could grab them at a moment's notice.  Balance them well.  That always took a minute.  (Stomach growl)).  Time is running out.  Ouch.

Decision Three.  Do I attempt to use the already prepared toilet seat cover or just spread out three pieces of toilet paper?  Oh my god, really?  I always opted for the three pieces of toilet paper, just cause those toilet seat covers are a pain and you pretty much need at least two hands and perhaps even a third hand to rip it off perfectly.  Ok, done.  (Stomach rumbles again).  Oh god, I just wanna sit down.  Please.  Please.  I'm almost there. 

Decision Four.  How do I sit down and not squish my man parts?  Now, here's where it gets interesting!  You see, my "boot" was so big that I couldn't just pull my pants down.   Nah.  That would have been too easy.  In fact, I had to gently and cautiously pull my left pant leg down as far as they could go over the boot.  This easily took about 15-30 seconds with my stomach growling something fierce.
  
Decision Five.  Adjust or not too adjust?  I mean, even when I sat down, because of that damn boot, I had to sit a little sideways to properly cover the toilet seat and be careful not to push off the homemade toilet paper seat cover.  Sometimes I was successful   I'm not gonna lie, sometimes I wasn't.  Whatever.  And since my man parts were pretty squished, I just had to shift my seated position at least twice, if not three times to un-squish myself and be able to continue.  I'm proud to say, I never had an accident.  Yay me!  It's the little things, I tell ya.

Decision Six.  Where are the baby wipes when you need them?  I just always had to wipe the best I could and then some.  Ugh! 

God, sometimes I made it just by the hair of my chinny-chin-chin.  Truth be told, I'm getting a headache just thinking about it.  Next!?!


The After-Party.
I'll spare you the details of the goings-on but just know that it was NOT silent and NOT pretty.  It was humbling and embarrassing because everyone knew who had the crutches in the office, so therefore everyone knew who was in the bathroom stall making those funky noises.  Oy.

Washing my hands was always fun too.  Sometimes, after I finished washing my hands, I would wait until the next person entered the bathroom and kindly ask if they could hold the door for me.  (Listen, a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do).  Then, I would gracefully walk out (rather, crutch out) of the bathroom and down the hall to my little corner of the world.  Bow my head in complete shame and embarrassment and then get back to work.  It was all I could do.  What are you going to do, mope about it.

When I sat back down at my desk (more like plumped down), sweating on my forehead and smelly from the multiple sweat stains under my arm pits, I was exhausted.  Anyone know a fail safe deodorant because this week I have been seriously considering botox in my pits!!  (Wow...today, you are just learning all sorts of great things about me.)

Sometimes I let out a laugh.  Sometimes I shed a tear.  But I would always let out a chuckle when 30-45 minutes later, the stomach grumbled again and then the intestine would gurgle.  Back at it again.  Grab the crutches and here we go!  Wish me better luck next time, right?

To top off the wonderfully hilarious and painful day I had, I went home and proceeded to spend three straight hours in my bathroom.  I was literally scared to leave.  It was my worst and most painful night in quite some IBS-free time.

And Now...
I am happy to report that though the nausea has stopped, the other ailment has not.  The End.


FINAL THOUGHTS:
1)  I am proud to announce that my new book, "How I Learned To Smile From The Inside" is now available in its e-version form at the Kindle Store and the Nook Store.
2)  In my crippled state, I have made one discovery.  I swear that from now on I will ask people on crutches at Whole Foods if they need help.  First of all, they tend to be better looking than average people (at least the one nearby my house) and secondly, if you only knew what it's like to struggle to pick up Honey Nut Cheerios and their delicious Mediterranean chicken buffet dish.  Please consider helping crutched-out peeps like me in the future.  It will feel good and it will definitely make their day...and who knows, you might meet someone special.  Here's hoping!
3)  I must apologize that I have not kept you up to date on RuPauls' Drag Race (#DragRace), but it sure has been as incredible as any other season.  The talent this year was amazing.  Ru-Paul's Drag Race.  GO and VOTE NOW for "Jinkx Monsoon" or "Alaska".  They both deserve to win!  Even if you haven't watched it, go and vote now!
4)  Apparently, you can now avoid jail for tax evasion charges (Lauryn Hill) because Sony will pick up the tab!  Read Here!  I'm just excited for her new songs!  Anyone else?

Click Here for Pic
A Smile From The Inside Production :)

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

I CAN'T BELIEVE THIS WAS MY WORST INTERVIEW TO DATE - PART TWO!


Click Here for I "Heart" Boston Pic

So...finally...it's here.  The second part of the worst interview of my entire life.

Post Dirty-Mouth Rabbi.
I was truly stunned by the amount of times the Rabbis said "fuck" over the process of those few minutes.  Am I the only one that believes that Rabbis (of all people) must set the example for the rest of us?  I am totally okay with progressive Rabbi's who swears once in a while, like everyone else, but this was a bit obnoxious.  I do not consider myself a religious man, however, I do consider myself a spiritual man.  It  has reminded me of how I look to others as I swear from time to time.  I have since been watching my "naughty" language.  Every day.

Me:  What's next?  More scenarios?  I am beginning to enjoy this!

Just When I Thought It Couldn't Get Worse...

The Scenarios didn't end there.  I wish I could say that was it...but it wasn't.

Pro Bono:  Well...it sounds like you understand your role is protect the Company.

Me:  I'm sorry, what was that?

Pro Bono:  Your role is to protect the Company.

Me:  (um...what?)  As an employment attorney, you know that the HR Department has a dual-function purpose, which is to protect the rights of the Employee while limiting the potential exposure to liability and risks to the Employer.

Pro Bono:  No, your role is to protect the Company, the people who pay you.

Rabbi's Assistant:  I think she's right.

Rabbi:  Of course, she's right.  She's the lawyer.

Me:  I'm sorry.  That is not what seven years of Corporate HR experience has taught me.  Yes, the Company pays me to protect their interests, but by California Law and Federal Labor Law, I must protect the rights of the employees...

The next minute was awkward.  Glaring at me with such distaste, Pro Bono started to babble more heated considerations my way.  The Rabbi's assistant started questioning my aptitude in HR, and the Rabbi tried to calm them both down. 

My Most Uncomfortable Moment Ever (In An Interview).

Pro Bono:  Are you serious, right now?

It was at this moment that I took my final sip of water.  I thought to myself I am actually being harassed.  Perhaps I really should just pick up my things and leave.  If I leave, it could make the Chairman look bad.  So, I stayed...and instead... 

Me:  I have to say, I have never felt so uncomfortable in an interview.  I actually feel harassed at this moment.  Why do you think I feel that way?

Pro Bono:  I don't know why you would feel that way, we are just asking you questions.

Me:  No, I feel attacked.

(Boy did that shut everyone up and quickly!)

Rabbi:  We are simply trying to make sure you know what you are talking about.

Pro Bono:  (After a brief pause) Let's continue.

Rabbi's Assistant:  I have a couple questions.

Me:  Oh boy, I can't wait!

The HR Business Acumen.
The Rabbi's Assistant proceeded to inquire about the hiring and firing process.  I thought to myself, please!  You mean, on-boarding and off-boarding.  Those just happen to be my specialty.  After wow'ing them with my in-depth knowledge of on-boarding, off-boarding, and background checks where I schooled them all a bit on the subject, the room fell silent for a moment.  I really hoped we were done.  My fingers were literally crossed.

My Polite Correction.
Pro Bono:  Under California State Law, what forms must you give to new hires or have them sign?

Me:  Really?  You want me to run through all of them?

Rabbi's Assistant:  And Federal Law?

Pro Bono:  Yes.

Me:  Okay.

And I proceeded to go through each one.  I was very articulate.  I did not stutter.  When I mentioned a new(er) form, Pro Bono winced.

Pro Bono:  That's not one of the forms.

Me:  Actually, Pro Bono, it's new(er) as of January 1, 2012.  If you want, I can forward you the document once I return to work.

Pro Bono:  Yes, please do that.

I explained that particular form in more detail.  You bet I did.  Take that!  I will admit I was a bit condescending but at that point, I knew I would NEVER work with them NOR would I ever have good things to say about her.

My Last Interjection.
As Pro Bono turned to Rabbi's assistant inquiring about time, I thought I would just throw out one more piece of information about me that they probably would never have guessed.

Me:  I also enjoy hiking and I am an urban farmer with two goats and four chickens in my WeHo backyard.

Pro Bono:  What?

Me:  Well...you didn't ask about anything about my life, so I thought I would offer you something special.  (I was a bitch!)  Rabbi, you should come over and see them sometime.

Rabbi:  I don't really like goats all that much.  haha.  (He laughed and snickered).

Pro Bono.  Okay then, well, thank you for your time.

Me:  No, thank you for your time.  (I had to be a gentleman because that's just who I am, right?)

The Walk of Redemption.

Rabbi:  I know you felt a little uncomfortable and Pro Bono can definitely make people feel uncomfortable.  (ya think?)  We are trying to make sure that the HR person comes in here and not only knows their stuff, but also can handle any and all situations.  It's quite challenging here.

Me:  I know HR.  I don't know if that's the best way to do it, but I understand.

Rabbi:  I'm sorry if she came off too much for you.

Me:  Just be careful with her.

Rabbi:  (as we arrived at the entrance/exit) Well...Thank you so much, Seth for coming in and interviewing.

I took one look at the entrance/exit and was glad I would most likely never step foot in that "Center" again.  Ever!

The AfterMath.

What I failed to mention was that I had actually brought my yarmulke to wear during the interview, but after seeing the space before the interview room, I quickly shoved it back into my murse.

When I got to my car, I almost cried.  I felt defeated.  I felt disappointed in myself.  Then, I realized I really was honest and I really did know my HR stuff.  Yuck!

When I returned to my office, I forwarded her the requested document and thanked her for her time once again.  I just couldn't help myself.  Also, though, I did appreciate their time

I wrote an honest email to the Chairman who's somewhat immediate response was apologetic but politically correct.  Clearly, he would have preferred my first impression be a better one.  Me too.


What I Have Leanred.
Number #1:  Sometimes too much honesty is not the best, especially in interviews.
Number #2:  I probably should have done more research off-line instead of online.  I could have found out the "environment" into which I was about to enter.  It turns out a couple of my friends were not surprised. 
Number #3:  No matter how uncomfortable an interview may be, stick with it.  It shows tremendous inner strength and you will fell all the better for it afterward.
Number #4:  Sometimes, it's the other person.  No matter what happens, I will never change the core of who Pro Bono is.  I won't be able to help her discover the bitterness and sadness within her life.  Unless, of course, she comes for some coaching.  Now, that would be fun!   Perhaps when my next door neighbor's pig, Delilah, flies.


The End. 



FINAL THOUGHTS:
1)  My heart, thoughts, and prayers are with Boston right now.
2)  My ankle surgery was successful.  It has been very humbling to accept help from others.  In fact, I really don't like it at all.  It's an experience for me.
3)  Belinda was a God-send this past Friday for my surgery.  She waited on me hand and foot.  Thanks to my other friends (and co-workers) too for their support -- especially those who helped me shower (humbling), brought me matzoh ball soup, and for the delicious cupcakes.
4)  Forgive me if there are errors, I'm not feeling too well now.  A little lightheaded and am feeling terrible nausea.  I hope it passes quick.


Click Here for Pic

A Smile From The Inside Production :)



Wednesday, April 10, 2013

I CAN'T BELIEVE THIS WAS MY WORST INTERVIEW TO DATE! -- PART ONE


Click Here for Pic

This past week, I had the worst job interview of my life...and it wasn't all my fault.  I swear.

The Job.
There was a Director, HR position at a relatively well-known Los Angeles Jewish Community Center.  No, I'm not going to tell you which one.

The Intuition.
I thought this position would be perfect.  I applied faster than ever before.  I knew I could do great things there.

The Pre-Screen.
Within 24-hours, I received an email from the "Pro-Bono" Attorney performing the search.  I always get scared when attorneys lead the interviewer process.  No offense to my attorney friends, but interviewing is usually not their strong suit.  I digress.  She told me that my resume was "impressive" and that she would "LOVE" to speak with me at my earliest convenience.  I was psyched!  The next day we had a regular phone screen.  Even as we were speaking, I could tell she was fishing for mistakes, a bit combative, and was testing my every response.  The interview lasted less than twenty minutes and I literally thought I had failed the interview.  This should have been my first clue not to continue.

My Contact.
It turns out that I knew someone influential on the board at this particular Jewish Center.  Gotta love my Gay Jewish community!  That weekend, we spoke briefly about my HR skills, Operations skills, and my objectives and goals for the future.  We had a great and lively conversation.  Once again, stoked!

Well...he must have done something because later that week, I received a phone call from the Pro Bono attorney, with bitterness in her voice, requesting an in-person interview the following week.  I was enthused once again!  Something inside me, however, told me differently.  I figured that if the attorney would be present, things could get interesting.  (Note the not-so-blatant foreshadowing). 

The Rabbi Room.
I arrived early like every good doobie should AND I had perused the website various times tin preparation.  An interesting and alternative man walked up to me and introduced himself as the Rabbi.  I thought... what did I get myself into?  As we walked down the corridor, we pass by what would be the "Corporate" offices.  After enjoying the cushy office spaces of The Guitar Center, Live Nation, and KornFerry, I have to admit, I had a mini-panic attack as I realized the non-profit world would be way closer to my experiences in Mexico than anything else.

We arrive at the Rabbi Room and as he closed the door behind me, he advised me that it will be a three-on-one interview.  First rule of interviewing, three-on-one is never a good situation unless it's in the bedroom.  (And, even then, you have to be careful and situations can get sticky).  It's uncomfortable for the interviewee no matter what the setting.  Red flag!  I tried to convince the inner voice inside which literally said, RUN, that in the essence of time management, they needed to conduct the interviews in that ungodly fashion.

The Pro Bono attorney officially introduced herself and then inaudibly motioned to the random guy to her left.  We all sit down and it is UNCOMFORTABLE.  They all have my resume in front of them.  They all bow their heads as if in a moment of silence and then, the questions begin.  And they're off!


The Wrong Answer.
There were no pleasantries.  There were no salutations.  It was business and they were out for blood.  The Rabbi, quiet for the first few minutes, turned to me in the middle of when I was answering three other questions thrown at me from either the Pro Bono attorney or the Rabbi's assistant.  He inquired as to how I went from Performing Arts and Languages (my major/concentration in college) to Human Resources.  It's a fair question.   Here's more or less how it all started to go south.  And fast!

Seth:  My parents always taught me while being creative is incredible, you always need to have a Plan B.  So, HR became my Plan B.

Rabbi:  Plan B?  So what's your Plan A?  

Seth:  Well...I just wrote and published a self-help book (blah, blah), and as a result I have received three new coaching clients.  I'm a certified Life Coach.  And...

Pro Bono Attorney (interrupts):  I can't believe you just said that in an interview!  I mean, why would we EVER hire you?  Here, I'm Pro Bono, but I normally charge my clients $800/hr and you are wasting...

(Is she for real?  I cannot believe you just called me out like that?  OK.  Perhaps it wasn't the best answer to start with...but I had premeditated a grand finish, to no avail.)

Rabbi:  Why don't we let him finish?   Would you stay here long term?  I mean, I don't want you to leave after 3-6 months if your book takes off or... ???

Seth:   (Pro Bono attorney glaring at me -- wide-eyed, ready to pounce)  May I finish?  (I inhaled a couple deep breaths, taking what felt like three minutes but was actually more like 10 seconds to compose my thoughts).  I love HR and when I spoke to the "Chairman," (who I mentioned by name), he intimated to me that down the line a bit, you might be hiring an Operations Manager.  (Blank stares everywhere).  I am most interested in learning how to run a treatment center like this one, because that's one of my 5-10 year long-term goals.  And...

Pro Bono:  So why aren't you applying for Operations Manager positions?  Why HR?  Why are you even here?   (Probably seeing RED!)

Rabbi:  (trying to calm her down); It's okay...let him answer.

Seth:  I wanted to get in here.  I wanted to start with HR and prove my value and worth, eventually  perhaps taking over the administration of the center.  That's what I really want to do long term.

Pro Bono:  Okay.  I mean, I understand, but I still cannot believe you just admitted that in an interview about an HR position.  Listen, we need to get to the scenarios guys.  I mean, I don't even know if we should continue...

Rabbi:  Let's continue.  (turning to me)  I really like your honesty and authenticity.  Kudos to you for that!  (turning back to them)  Let's see if he knows his stuff.

(It was as this point that I should have thanked them kindly and graciously walked out of the room.  Instead, I shockingly re-considered saving face and, especially, since my acquaintance was the Chairman, I respectfully remained in my hot seat.  That was the first time I wanted to leave.  I lovingly  want to interject here that I am, more often than not, a great interviewee.  I always respond with thoughtful and intelligent answers and my demeanor is happy, easy-going, and authentic.)

The Scenarios.
Granted, I may not have started off the previous answer correctly, but I was definitely NOT prepared emotionally for what was about to happen.  Within a second, the Pro Bono attorney starts to throw out situation-specific scenarios to see how I would handle them.  It started with sexual harassment, then employees showing up drunk to work, and lead to employees embracing other employees at work.

Being from a more corporate environment (save Mexico), I knew the answers to their questions.  However, given the rehab/community center atmosphere, depending on the environment, the precedent of the situations, and the policies of the organization, appropriate measures might vary.  I answered the questions cautiously, making sure to take into consideration the rehab center/community center aspect.  Well...they didn't like cautious or inquisitive at all.   I thought if I drew on my experiences to say how I had dealt with similar situations in the past, they would be satisfied.  They were not down for that.   They were not happy no matter what I said.

Pro Bono:  Jeez, can you just answer the question already?  Under California State Law, how would you handle this situation?

Eventually, I would answer their question satisfactorily, and then they would move on to the next scenario.  They probably tested me with about six to eight various scenarios.  Each time, I would inquire about their past handling with certain situations and each time, they would shoot me down and ask for .  It was not fun.  It was not amusing.

I must admit, when I finally did answer their every-day scenarios, they seemed to be impressed by my knowledge and ease with the answers.  Listen, I'm a straight shooter and I know my Employee Relations issues.  I didn't survive two years in Mexico on my good looks! (Although they helped, I'm not gonna lie!)

The last one is for the record books.

Rabbi:  What if you encounter a manager who swears all of the fucking time?  How would you handle people who complain?

Pro Bono:  Yea.  How would you handle that situation?  What would you do?  Huh?  Huh?

Seth:  (staring at her blankly...really?) - Has the precedent been established that he curses all the time?  And everyone knows it?

Rabbi:  Yup...all the fucking time.  And Everyone knows it.

Seth:  If that's the way he operates, then that's the way he operates.

Pro Bono:  Okay, so maybe you knew your stuff.

Seth:  (Um...seriously?)...

To Be Continued...

Next week, find out more about the potty-mouth Rabbi, my crazy confession, my polite correction of the Pro Bono attorney with regard to one of the California State Laws, and what was The Most Uncomfortable Moment in Any Interview...EVER!  I was ready, once again, to pick up my stuff and leave the room.  It was horrendous.  Stay tuned.


FINAL THOUGHTS:

1)  Still doing my best to figure out how to afford my awesome tax bills.  I'm making strides every day!
2)  This Friday is my ligament repair surgery.  It's all going down at 12pm.  I wish my family were here.  Sigh.  Send good vibes my way, please!
3)  Sometimes the only way through anger is through your anger.  The other side of anger is acceptance and embracing.  Feel the anger.  Express it.  Then, move on!


Click Here for Pic

A Smile From The Inside Production :)

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

WHY AM I NOT FREAKING OUT RIGHT NOW?


Click Here for Pic

Speaking of money, this blog today...it's gonna be short and it's gonna be sweet.  Sometimes to be honest, after a long hard day of reporting, metrics, and analysis at work, I would like nothing more than to rest my feet up and watch the last few episodes of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills or the last few episodes of RuPaul's Drag Race.    Most of the time, I can't!  Lately, I have been working my butt off to earn as much moolah as possible.  I'm sure everyone can relate.  

Over the weekend, just as I was beginning to breathe a little (financially-speaking) due to my new coaching clients, I received some devastatingly upsetting news concerning my 2011 taxes.  Yes, I said 2011 taxes.  It appears that my extremely overpriced and not-nice accountant forgot to include one of my 1099s from 2011 and that amount essentially doubled my gross adjusted income.  How come you didn't look, you might be saying?  I trusted him implicitly.  My bad, clearly.  When I reviewed the numbers weeks later, I figured that being a consultant and having so many write offs, it seemed low, but it had to be right.  Well...they weren't.  It was wrong.  Therefore, now I have this lovely bill from the IRS for a substantial amount.  And, when I say substantial, I mean substantial.

I just want to be clear that I take full responsibility for this situation.  I should have better prepared with quarterly estimated taxes, saved money, etc...but I didn't.  I have no one to blame but me.  I got myself into this mess and I am going to get myself out of it.  All by myself!  Yeehaw!

Obviously, I have confirmed that I do, in fact, need to pay this substantial amount, or most of it.  Hopefully, with some luck, they will waive the penalty.  Fingers crossed.

Now, here are my options.  
1) FREAK OUT!
2) CRY AND THEN CRY SOME MORE!
3) RUN TO ECUADOR.  (I haven't been there in many years).
4) GET BUSY AND MAKE IT HAPPEN.

For some reason, I have been quite calm about the whole thing.  I mean, after my initial moments of freak out and while shedding a tear or three, I decided that Ecuador probably wouldn't be the best choice right now.  Duh!  That left one option and one option only... Logistics.  Do everything possible to ensure that I can pay this substantial amount over the next twelve months.  I say twelve months because the government is not keen on more than a 12-month installment agreement...or at least that's what I've learned.

So, I am making the big decisions, being a responsible adult, and making this happen.  I might even get a part-time roommate for my extremely large one-bedroom or vacate my apartment altogether.  I pay way too much for that muffler, anyway.  Just doing everything possible to ensure success.  

To be honest, it's way more productive than freaking out or being depressed.  Instead, I get to be creative, focus on abundance, and do everything in my power to avoid turning tricks (Kidding, Mom & Dad).  I'm not saying this always works, but it's working for me now.  It must just work for others too!

I forgot to mention that I am having ankle surgery next Friday, so that will be a "little" added expense (Ha!) AND I am about to calculate my 2012 taxes.  These next few weeks will be interesting and I will keep you all updated.  

I still don't understand why I am not freaking out more, but I believe I truly have surrendered to the reality of the situation.   Somewhere, deep down inside, I know the best is yet to come.  It has to be!


FINAL THOUGHTS:
1)  This week, I have been featured by the International Coaching Federation's (ICF's) blog.  Read it here!
2)  I have to be honest that I have taken quite a few deep breaths this week.  Three deep inhales followed by three deep exhales is ALL I need to relax myself.  What works for you?
3)  Stay tuned for more blogs on the ICF website as well as on Huffington Post!


Click Here for Pic


A Smile From The Inside :)