Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Blessing - or coincidence?

This past Sunday in church, the closing prayer included prayer for those in the church who had any type of need that it be met - financial, emotional, spiritual, physical, etc. One of the specific things mentioned was "checks in the mail" and another was "inheritance not planned on."

On Tuesday we received not only a check in the mail, but also an inheritance check that was not planned or expected. When Ron's step-dad died in 2004 he owned a full-sized van that had been converted to a handicap accessible vehicle, complete with an electric ramp. Gene (the step-dad) was a bilateral amputee so this was a great thing for him to get around in. It was set up with hand controls and since the ramp was electric, all he had to do to raise or lower it was to flip a switch. Ron's sisters offered it to us after his first surgery in 2006 but it was in Florida and we were not. I didn't want to drive or fly down there to get it and then have to drive it back.

They ended up taking it to Arkansas when one of his sisters moved there, thinking they'd use it with his mother. She had been in a nursing home in Florida and they decided that she could go live with the oldest daughter in Arkansas. That lasted less than a week and she was looking for a new nursing home to place her in. I had tried to tell her that mother was a lot more work than she realized and taking her to AR was a mistake. (It ended up being a big mistake that cost the siblings thousands of dollars from her annuity because AR does not look at property the same as FL so her nursing home expenses ended up coming out of pocket, instead of being paid for by Medicaid and Medicare.)

When Ron's mom died last year they asked again if we wanted the van. We still did not. Although it was closer now, in AR, we just didn't think it would be a feasible thing to get, have to maintain (the lift needed some work), and it got terrible gas mileage. They finally decided to put it up for sale and last week they sold it.

The asking price (to us) would have been technically "free" but would cost us money off of any inheritance they received (no one ever said a price). We just didn't think it was worth the trouble. They put it in the paper for $2500 and they were offered $2,000 for it.

When the buyer tried it out, the lift wouldn't work at all so he only paid $1700 for it. After expenses, each sibling received $538.00

That was check number one.

Check number two came in the form of a life insurance payout that no one was expecting. We knew there were a few small policies ($1,000 - $2,500) but not entirely sure about who had them or anything else. My SIL had told us about a policy she was trying to get information from but did not say she'd received anything. We received a check for $718 from the insurance company and the information on the stub said it was his share of proceeds as a co-beneficiary.

Those two checks absolutely made the difference between us making it this month and us not. After I paid all of our expenses for the month, I had less than $100 left and that had to go for any additional medications we need (two of mine are $30 each and I was out), gasoline, food, and doctor co-pays ($20 each). No matter how I added it up, $100 wasn't going to cut it.

Now we have enough to pay our bills, buy the groceries, pay the co-pays, get gasoline, get the medications - and still have a bit of cushion in the bank for next month. We're also buying a scooter hitch for the back of his car but I'm trying to find the best price for it. The cheapest I've found for his Class II receiver is $485 and that is on eBay. Locally, $950. Ouch!

So - did we experience a blessing or coincidence? Personally, I believe it was a blessing - and a blessed coincidence.

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