Thursday, December 12, 2013

Charities vs. Finances

I don't think I talk about my finances a lot - most of the time I keep it a secret so people won't ask me for money. But I need to complain about it this week.

Last Thursday, the night it started icing in Texas, I discovered that a post-dated charity donation I made to a local symphony was pulled out of my account 2 weeks early. I keep a very strict watch on my money, especially since I only get paid once a month. We were getting down to the end of my paycheck, and had already forgotten to pay the rent until the 3rd. That got me a late fee. Then I found out about the early pull of the donation. I was quite frustrated because I knew that the rent check would bounce if I didn't get enough cash to cover my donation.

Friday morning I have cash in hand. But it was the first full day of all the ice, and everything was closed. We've been using my mom's car since ours gave up, and she refused to let us drive to the bank. I understood her reasoning, and respected it. But I was dreading the possibility of the rent bouncing. Hubs had decided that he would walk the 3 miles to the bank, in the cold, so we could get this taken are of for as cheap as possible. 15 unanswered calls later, I decide that the bank isn't open. Saturday I find the non-sufficient funds fee in my account. Ugh. We got it all resolved on Monday, or at least from the bank and apartment's viewpoint. I still have to repay my mom and grandmother for the loaned money to cover it.

Credit: NBC DFW
So I say all this in order to discuss a couple of conversations I had with my mother. Throughout the year, Hubs and I donate to charity when we feel like it. We've donated to dozens of charities over the course of our 6 years together. And at Christmas, we ALWAYS pick out a Salvation Army Angel. Okay, we get 2. We always pick a little boy and little girl. It's our way of getting to shop in a department that usually makes us cry. And we did that this year as usual. Well, my mom decided to gripe at me about my charity donations. I understand why, because if we hadn't picked Angels this year, we wouldn't need to borrow money. Mom said that I shouldn't be spending money on charity since I need to buy a car. Yes, I should have saved the money. She said that I needed to help myself before I help others, like flight attendants always tell you about using the oxygen masks. But I have always been the person to help others. If I ever needed to put the oxygen mask on, I'd probably help the person next to me before I help myself. I'm just that way. Yes, that did backfire on me this month. And yes, I should save my money. But I can't change the past. That's where the frustration of these conversations begins. I try to point out that I can't go back in time and change things. I can't take back my donations. Yes, I'll be saving money from now on. I'm going to do my best to ignore charity pleas for a while. But I don't feel I should be griped at for my past charity decisions. I usually have the money that other people may need.

Ok, rant over. I just needed to get that into words so I could stop replaying it in my head.

Do you donate to charities?

No comments:

Post a Comment