Saturday, August 4, 2012

The Price of Procrastination

Sometimes procrastination is not just an annoyance but a serious enemy. 

I am a terrible procrastinator.  TERRIBLE!!  Not always.  Not about everything.  Seldom will you find me ahead of the game.  Most of the time I am going under for the last time and about to drown when something happens in my favor to keep me from going under permanently.  It's just the way it's always been for me.  I like to say that I work best under pressure.  My oldest sister says she's going to pay off the hearse driver at my funeral to make me late that one last time!!  :-) 

After Son #6 was a couple years old I decided that it was time to get the last 3 children's birth certificates.  That would have put Son #6 at 2 or 3, Son #5 at 5 or 6, and Son #4 at 7 or so.  Son #5's was a big ordeal because he was born out of state and they made a mistake on his paperwork leaving him without a middle name--but that's a whole nuther story!!

I made sure to check the little boxes on all their forms to receive a Social Security card.  What I didn't know is that if a child is over 5 when you file the forms you won't get a card.  Son #6's came right on time but not the other ones.  So it wasn't out of character at all for me to think, "I'll deal with the other ones later."  :-P

I was able to get Son #5's card earlier this year (yes, more procrastination) with just a trip to the Social Security office and some official documents since he was still under 12. 

But for Son #4, who was now over the magical age of 12, he had to go in for an interview and we had to bring several documents to prove his birth and he was our child.  No big deal, right?  I took his birth certificate (plus mine and DH's), and his insurance card.  Well, since his birth certificate was filed after he was 5 years old that wasn't valid proof.  His insurance card wasn't dated so that wasn't valid either.  We left with a very angry DH and my solemn vow not to let him go with us ever again.  :-P

Since Son #4 was a homebirth, is homeschooled, doesn't get sick and need to go the doctor, we don't vaccinate, don't do sports, or any of that "normal" stuff he pretty much has no paper trail to his name.  A great asset for a .007 type or something but he does plan to do higher education, drive and get a job someday!!!   

The second trip I took some official paperwork with his name on it and I dredged up an income tax return with his name on it and lo and behold if there wasn't a SSN next to his name.  So I was thinking I was mistaken and he DID have a number.  I also took in his last year's school report card. 

The paperwork with his name on it wasn't satisfactory and the SSN on the tax return turned out to be the number of a deceased woman (our tax guy was obviously asleep at the wheel on that one!!) and I was warned to not show that to anybody else!!!  ;-)  And the report card--issued by me--wasn't good either (Duh!)!!  

What you have to understand is that when we moved from our house with about 3,000 sq feet (including external storage space) into a 1950s 10x50 trailer with a modest addition--there just isn't room for anything but necessities.  So most of our stuff that we don't use on at least a weekly basis is still boxed up in storage.  And none of it is organized as a lot of it was packed hurriedly by other people than DH or myself. 

The Social Security worker that I am working with called me to let me know that the elusive birth memento I told her that I had somewhere (it wasn't where it was supposed to be in the file with my older children's birth documents!) with his footprints on it signed by the attending midwife was our only option besides trying to track down our old family doctor who did his circumcision that is no longer in business and get records from her!  We are to have it turned in by Aug. 13th or they will deny him a Social Security Number/Card.  How crazy is that????? 

We had some boxes in our bedroom with personal stuff in it that I thought the birth memento paper could be in and started going through those.  I didn't find the paper but I did find that the mice had gotten into some of the boxes and made a mess and tore some things up.  I have been meaning to put out traps but keep putting it off and forgetting (more procrastination!!!).  Oddly we don't have a lot of trouble with the mice here in the fall/winter like we did at our other place.  It's the spring and summer when they start pouring in.  Sigh.

Then there was the last box that I had left to go through that had sat on the floor on DH's side of the bed about a foot or foot and a half away from the end of the bed.  I started lifting stuff out of it and saw something moving.  It was a snake.  A juvenile black rat snake about 2 and a half feet long.  Real pretty too.  Nice shiny scales, white underbelly, beautiful light markings.  I caught him (yes, with my bare hands.  He did try to bite and kept hissing.  The younger snakes are more aggressive that the adults) and showed him off to everybody else around--and then we let him go. 

This is not my picture but one I found on the Internet.  I loved how shiny this one looks.  :-)  This one is older than the one I found too since it doesn't have the brown markings anymore.
Photo Courtesy of John Mosesso, Jr/NBII

I did manage to find the paper that I was looking for in a box of memento birth stuff that I keep separately--so it wasn't nearly as hard to find it as I thought it was going to be.  And before I found it I found some other things that I had been looking for and needing.  :-) 

The thing I'm wondering is since it was left to me to fill out his personal information, will they accept that even though it has the midwife's signature?  I guess we shall see.


Fast forward to this morning.  I'm getting ready to can another load of tomatoes and was putting away the clean dishes out of the dish drainer that I had washed last night.  I opened up the silverware drawer and let out a scream.  There was our snake again!!  I'm not scared of snakes but I certainly wasn't expecting to see him there!!  I tried to catch him again but he got away--into the nether-regions of the lower kitchen cabinets.  I couldn't believe it when DH said, "Well, he won't hurt anything.  Just let him alone and he can catch the mice."  Now is that hillbilly or what?!  I'm picturing Jed or Jethro Clampet!  And I'd be Ellie May, "Aw, he's just a little ol' black snake.  He ain't gonna hurt nobody."

Procrastination is NOT for the faint of heart!!  That's for sure!! 

Now I'm off to can those tomatoes I've been meaning to get to for the past 3 days--before they are too far gone.  :-P

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