Who Am I?

It’s been nearly a month since I left my job and it’s been both awesome and stressful.  I keep going back and forth from “I’m so glad I left” to “Holy crap! Why’d I leave the comfort of a full-time job?”

After a recent church class I realized that my angst is tied up in identity.  Who am I now? Who am I if I’m not Kim the tax accountant?

I’m Kim, Who Lives at Home.  I’m Kim, the aspiring author.  I’m Kim, who volunteers with kids. I’m Kim, who wants to work with kids.  I have to remind myself of that everyday, sometimes several times a day.

I do have plans but I want to take it one week at a time.  God has told me he wants me to spend more time in prayer and I’m making an effort.  I realize that I have to be patient and wait for Him to tell me where to go next.  The last thing I want is to screw this whole thing up.  This time is a gift from God and I’m not going to squander it.

I Want to Be Radical

That’s right, I want to be radical.  Have you watched Darren Wilson’s films?  If you haven’t, see them.  They are amazing and life-changing.  But what I want to say is, someone said that the people in Darren’s films are “radical.”  I want to be like that.

I’ve said in my About change that I’m “sold out” to the Holy Spirit, meaning that I want Him to lead my life.  No one else.  Period.  That’s why I quit my job.  I felt God leading me away from accounting and it was a big “put up or shut up” moment.  I might even go so far as to say it was radical.  But that’s how I want to live my life.  I want to live from one of those moments to the next.

I can’t really think how my life could have gotten more boring as it was.  Now I finally feel excited to be doing things.  I get up expectant for what He has for me.  I do have a few tentative plans but nothing major.  And that’s just fine with me.  Here’s to being radical.

“‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord.  ‘Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'”  Jeremiah 29:11

 

Next Chapter: A List

Now that I’ve given notice on my job, my mind has turned to what won’t be happening anymore.

Things I won’t do in the next 12 months:

  1. Tax Season (oh, sweet relief!)
  2. Take only a couple days off at a time because of work obligations (and the fear of being told I’m not good enough)
  3. Try to make up an excuse to get out of the Christmas Party
  4. Stand around in the conference room and celebrate every other thing (birthdays, Boss’s Day, Administrative Assistant’s Day, these people really like to celebrate)
  5. Listen to whining from people who have no right to whine (well, that may still happen, just different people)
  6. Listen to my bosses blame me for things that aren’t my fault (again, could still happen but different bosses)
  7. Feel guilty that I’m not doing enough
  8. Beat up on myself
  9. Be paranoid about what others think of me
  10. Do everything for everyone else and never for myself

There’s a lot of work on me that has to be done.  It starts with taking a break and then figuring out how to move forward.  God has a plan and my job for right now, is trusting Him.

Next Chapters and Such

So, I, uh, well… I kinda quit my job.  Yikes.  I actually wrote it.  I quit my job to be a writer!  Yay!  Just kidding.  Kind of.

Let me back up.  I ran into a friend of a friend at Barnes and Noble the other weekend.  I went to buy a copy of Thirteen Reasons Why and drink iced coffee in the cafe like a legit hipster.  She’s going to a local college to get some kind of Masters and working there to make ends meet.  I asked her how she was doing and she said she was happy doing that.  Happy.  I had a total epiphany.  I have savings and I hate my job.  What am I doing?

I’m just so over it.  I’m over accounting, I’m over the utter crazy that is the management and I’m over being depressed about how my life turned out.  So I didn’t get married in my twenties and get stuck in a job I hate because I’ve got bills to pay and kids to buy stuff for.  That was the dream, right?  Well, screw that.  I just turned 30 and I’m going to take this opportunity to make myself happy, because I’m so tired of being practical and sucking it up for everyone but myself.  And I may never get this opportunity again.

I also feel like God has something more for me.  More than just this job and all the crap that goes with it.  More than being single and yearning and all that blah, blah, blah.  God is leading me away and I have to follow that no matter what.  Like I’ve said it’s about trusting him even if others think you’re crazy.  And trust me, there are some people who think I’m nuts for doing this.

So, anyway, I decided I’m going to take a gap year to find myself before I start the next chapter and find my bliss.  Carpe diem, y’all!

 

Caution: Wet Floor

The last couple months have been a bit of a slippery ride.  I had a freak-out in February and ended up at the psychiatrist’s office.  He bumped my Lex and put me on Abilify, which is an anti-psychotic, by the way.  I think that officially makes be the craziest.  Yassss… but I digress.

He put me on Abilify to combat the lack of motivation and energy.  And it worked.  Boy, did it work.  I had energy to burn.  I was churning out tax returns and cleaning out closets and doing yard work.  And then I just… crashed.  The first time I thought it was the Ambien.  I had a horrible night’s sleep and had to take a “mental health” day from work.  I thought it was a fluke.  Until the second time.  This time I went low, both physically and emotionally.  You ever read about people with depression not being able to get out of bed?  Yep, that was me.  It was a weird kind of numb.  I had to call in for a real mental health day.  And the swing was intense.  One day I’m up at 6 and the next I’m sleeping ‘til noon.  My mood has been going up and down but it really went down that day.

You know, I should be worried sick about all the work on my desk but I’m just… not.  I can’t care about a bit of it.  On the one hand, I’m glad that I’m not worrying like I have in past years.  On the other, I don’t have a lot of motivation to do returns.  Eek.

I suspect the Abilify.  That’s okay, we’ll get it straightened out.  They say when you’re going through hell, keep going.  And I will.  I just have to navigate the wet floor for a while.

Grrrr…

That pretty much sums up my week. It has not been the best week ever to say the least. My sinus problems started on Memorial Day and really didn’t let up until yesterday. I’ve been moody and irritable for over a week and that doesn’t show signs of stopping. Seriously, it’s like everything I touch this week turns to crap. Even though things have been really slow at work and I’ve had an almost unbearable amount of downtime, this week has been really stressful. It stems from knowing how many returns are on extension and how many have fiscal year ends and how all of them are going to be due at the same time in September and October and I’m sitting around waiting. So much could have gotten done this week if only clients had brought the information in. Take all that, a dash of paranoia, and throw in one heart-stopping, narrowly-avoided direct deposit disaster and you have one sucky week. Ta-da!

Paranoia did you say? Why, yes I did. I have this strange sense that everyone is out to get me, that there are horrors lurking around every office corner, horrors that are going to make this job even more difficult. That’s probably because that actually happened last year. More than once. Surprise! We bought out the CPA across the street and here’s more work for everybody! Surprise! We bought out the CPA next door and here’s more work for everybody! Surprise! We’re switching everything over to a ridiculous new program that has nothing to do with anything for no reason! If you recall, that last one never actually came to fruition because we mounted a rebellion and got it stopped. Or at least put off. I’m paranoid that that particular problem will rear its ugly head again. There’s no telling what could be brewing behind the scenes. I’ve actually been given permission to divvy up the 1099 clients between all the staff accountants so I won’t be responsible for 210 in 30 days like I was this past January. I can already tell you that’s not going to go over well. Turns out I’m the one lurking behind the curtain ready to jump out and say “Surprise! You have to do more work in January!”

After everything I’ve been through in the last several months, I just want a rest. I’ve been making the most of my vacation days and weekends but when I’m at the office I can’t seem to shake a sense of foreboding. I know I put too much pressure on myself and that’s the root of the problem. It’s a fear of failure, of being seen as inferior, not good enough. This job has not been great in the building self-esteem department but that’s another story. What it has taught me is to trust God and obey Him no matter how hard that might be and to stand up for myself and for the truth when the chips are down. I know God led me to this job and no matter how I feel or what they throw at me I’ll keep fighting because in the end, it’s for Him and no one else.

“Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.” Philippians 3:12 (NIV)

Sh*t My Clients Say

I’m an accountant and you may have heard the profession referred to as “bean counting.”  Now, this implies something serene and quiet, maybe done by yourself in a room with soft music in the background.  I imagine Bob Cratchit sitting at his desk with his quill trying to warm his hands around a candle flame while snow falls silently outside.  Accounting is anything but serene.  And the amount of stress and frustration can be astronomical.  There are many days when actually counting beans would be preferable to what I have to deal with.  I realize that most people don’t know much about taxes or payroll and I wouldn’t if it weren’t my job so I try not to be too hard on them.  But sometimes it’s just too much.  Here are some of the better ones.

The first week of April when the partnership return is due on the 15th and I have been begging this guy since February 1st to bring me his bank and loan statements, he tells me that he’s on vacation and he’ll bring them next week.  And this is after he has brought me a plastic tub full of shit I don’t need.

After being rude when I ask this woman important questions about her personal tax return, she calls up and asks if I’m a CPA.  I say no.  Then she says, “Then why should I pay the CPA price if you’re not a CPA?”  Then don’t.  Go to H&R Block and let them overcharge you, bitch.

This guy brings in his tax return the first week of April knowing it’s due the 15th after having a divorce finalized and says, “We got divorced last year but we’re okay with filing joint.”  Sigh.  It doesn’t work that way.  You have to file single and you have a whole bunch of messy things that have to be untangled and you want a model of how your tax return will look if you claim your kids or if she does.  You’re going on extension, asshole.  Bring it in earlier next time.

It’s April 6th and “I’m going out of town in two days so could you have my tax return ready so I can pick it up before I leave?”  I wish the answer to this question was no.  But sadly, we accommodate these douche bags.  Yes, there are several and they do this every damn year.  And, just for the record, we know you’re lying.

I call someone and tell him I need more info for his personal return.  He says he’ll get it.  A week later he calls and says, “Is my tax return ready?”  

I call this woman an hour before the payroll has to go through and ask where the info is.  She says, “Oh, I sent it yesterday.”  I haven’t gotten it.  “Oh, I meant to send it yesterday.  I guess I just didn’t get that far.”  Really?

The same woman as above calls me in mid-March to ask why the IRA contributions aren’t going to the new company handling it.  What new company?  “Oh, we switched on January 1.  I thought they were supposed to contact you.”  So I’ve been sending money to the wrong company for two and a half months?  You didn’t think it was your responsibility to tell the person who processes your payroll that you switched retirement plan companies?  What. The. Fuck.

A client who got a refund on his personal tax return calls to say he thinks he needs to pay capital gains tax.  Um, no, the thing you sold that you were told may be subject to capital gains has already been taken into account on your tax return.  You’re getting a refund.  “Now, I need to understand this because I was told when that was sold that I would have to pay capital gains tax on it.”  It’s on your tax return and it’s been taken into account with every other income item and deduction.  So, you don’t owe anything.  You’re getting a refund.  “But I was told this was going to generate capital gains tax…”  We went around and around.  I finally told him I’d get the partner to call him and explain it.  And he’s lucky I even did that.  This guy has been rude and obnoxious every year I’ve done his return.  He’s rude to our receptionist and demands that the partner call him back within a specific time frame.  The partner even told me right after that phone call that if I felt the need to smart off to this guy, he didn’t care.  You better watch out next year, buddy.

Last year, our receptionist got fired and I had to sit on the front desk until they hired a new one.  This guy calls up and wants to know how much he owes.  I tell him 401.73.  He replies, “Well, 400.  I’m not payin’ y’all no interest.”  Okaaayyy…  It appears we accommodate this as well.  Interest accrues when you don’t pay your bills and then it’s written off when you do pay — five months late.    

So, in conclusion, I just want to say, if you have an accountant please don’t be a stupid, demanding, self-obsessed asshole like the people above.  We really appreciate it.