Nov 11, 2010

13 is not as good as 25.(Swiper don't swipe!)

I can explain! I'm talking money.
When I was little (don't you love when I start my posts out like that?), money was tight. Not only my mom was a single mom, living on meager salary, I also grew up in Soviet Russia - in a small town in Siberia. I think the richest girl I knew had her own room, a small fur coat and smelled really nice. Oh, and her parents could afford getting her the lacy cuffs for her uniform, instead of the plain white ones. But more about those later.

Anyway, growing up, I was no stranger to not having things. My mom rarely brought up the money with me, because - why bother? I lived in my own world of blissful childhood daydreaming. She got by with the help of her friends and family. One day, walking home after school I found a 25 ruble bill in the snow outside of a store. Now, back in the day - that was actually a lot of money. It's like finding a 100$ bill. Since I found it, I got to keep it, although me and my friends did stop in the bakery and treated ourselves with "muffins". The rest I brought home to my mother, because I really had no idea that I would ever need to keep the money or buy anything for myself.

I don't think I'll ever forget my mother's face when she saw the money. I think (and that is something that me and my future therapist are going to discuss at length) - I've ever made her happier. It was as if I handed her the moon itself, only better. She said that she did not know how she was going to buy presents this year or even food for the holidays. That money - basically saved us. I was so excited, seeing her happy and relieved, like I actually did something amazing. I kept going over and over, about every detail how I found it.

Eventually the excitement wore off, but I could not forget her happy face. I wanted to bring the joy back. So, I must admit I did something horrible and despicable to make my poor mother happy. I stole money.

Wait for it. Now here comes the somewhat funny and really bizarre part. I stole it FROM my mother. One day, when she was not looking, I stole a few bills (about 13 rubles worth) out of her wallet. I wrinkled it up, dipped in water, dirtied it up a bit, and as soon as the opportunity presented itself - gave it back to her, with a grand tale of how I found (can you believe it?!)some money again!

Of course, my mother was skeptical. No doubt she noticed the stack of bills missing from her wallet. AND I was never a really good lair anyway.
She was not genuinely happy. I was not happy, but ashamed. I stole from my mother so that I could make her happy. Not the brightest idea, but heck, I was only 8 or 9 at the time.

I think about this incident whenever the money gets tight in our household (which is too often). Year after year we get by, get ourselves in a hole at the bank, miss payments, and yet - there is God with "found" 25 rubles. No matter how bad things looked, we always had food on our table, roof over our heads and a promise that tomorrow will be better. But when I start stressing over the money, all it does is just that: stress me out. It changes nothing. It doesn't fix things. But God does. Miraculously, every time he provides for a way to get us by. Like that sparrow in the Bible, only we are His children.

Just wanted to share this story, and confess my dirty little secret that I'm a dirty little thief. But God is awesome to me, nonetheless. Thank you.


Kim Foo Young said...

How is it that you can make me laugh and cry at the same time? I just love you - you dirty little thief :P

Suzanne said...

Hi Catalina
Just got your comment over at for the give away donation. I just realized there are two #3! The family values canvas and the aprons are both listed as #3. Which one would you like to be entered in?

Sorry for the confussion!


ps. just became a follower


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