Although I have not been up front and present over the past several weeks, I have kept up with all that has been written in our world of “mortgage fraud” that saturates my Facebook page on a daily basis. There are times when you just need to take a break from the mental-ness that all of these stories can create within a being. In my world, for years, it was “just us” fighting this lone battle; however, once I opened myself up to realize that we were not the “only ones” my eyes have been opened in a way that I never expected. I see the anger that was in me throughout our ordeal writhing through the words of emotionally and financially devastated people from across this country and I revisit those feelings, with relief that I have moved to a higher plane and am thankful that we have survived what we have. So many have such a long journey ahead of them; and even though our journey is not over, it is in its winter season. I have reached a point in all of this where I have accepted that it was a higher power that put me in this position; because that higher power knew that I would come full circle with this circumstance and I would come out the other end a more faithful and whole person. However, being an empathetic soul, the pain of others tends to take its toll on me at times and I have to step back.
This time of year is always a reflective time for me and I will most likely always take a few days to myself during this time of year. August is the month that I lost my father in 1997; and would be the month, ten years ago, that I would lose a precious son-in-law and grandson to tragedy. I reflect back on those summers that left a scar on my heart, and I see that through it all I have always remained faithful; believing in that greater power I have always considered my friend and savior. I didn’t always behave in a manner that was befitting a child of God, but I have always believed. Youth blinds us to the truths in this world and sometimes our minds blind us to the truths that are right in front of us. It is only through the rough terrains in life that we discover how to appreciate the paved roads; how else can we possibly gain the strengths that make being unconditionally faithful possible?
For those of you who have been following this blog, you are aware that we have been fighting for an insurance check that was issued to fix our roof and inside damage caused by the unstable roof since April. Our court date on the Show Cause hearing was set for July 10th, where the bank, in their infinite wisdom, did not show. The court ordered them to turn over the check to our lawyer within 24 hours of notice; and again, no response. It would be two weeks later, when we requested a default ruling that the bank would decide to retain a law firm out of Detroit to represent the contemptuous bank and try to “negotiate.” However, for the privilege of negotiations, the bank demands that we withdraw the motion for default judgment. We still don’t know where we stand with this. We could either get nothing or we could get the default judgment amount, however, whatever we do or don’t get will be up to the judge and it will be what it will be. I find it interesting that they are so concerned over this default judgment. Is it because they have no good excuse for ignoring all correspondence from us until the default judgment was on the table?
As I suspected when I first took on the challenge to file an insurance claim on the house, the banks are doing everything in their power to drag things out. That is how they played the last time we played ball and I find it as no surprise that they have turned a 24-hour turn-around order into a six week ordeal. They did finally submit the check to our lawyer, however sans any bank signature, which still constitutes conversion of the funds. They had the check in their possession since May 3, 2013 as evidenced by their own date-stamp, yet, they didn’t receive any of the ten or so documents that they were sent prior to and after receipt of the check. It will be interesting to see if the court deems that we should be responsible for the irresponsibility and inadequate bookkeeping and office practices of the bank.
The next course of action will be the bank issuing a motion to the judge requesting that the default judgment be set aside for some “meritorious” reason, which the judge can either grant or deny. I put myself in the shoes of the defendant. What possible reason can I give for not 1) answering our lawyers’ correspondence(s) or returning his phone calls, and 2) ignoring a court order? I am almost positive that the response will be some type of miscommunications excuse. For those of us who have worked in government and/or the corporate world, we are aware that there is protocol in every aspect of paper routing and dispersion within all of these types of “corporate” structures. Mail does not just disappear. It goes through a process of opening, date-stamping and then is routed to the correct departments and the correct recipients. Those recipients’ then keep it progressing until whatever needs to be done with that document has ran its course and it can be filed appropriately. I know, everyone makes mistakes, but considering that they were sent several different documents at several different times and that the odds of that happening to every stitch of mail sent to them by us would somehow have fallen through the cracks each and every time would be highly unlikely. Yet, the money, i.e., the check, was received and date stamped for May 3rd? These, of course, are all assumptions on my part, but after the journey that we have traveled in the “mortgage fraud by the bank” world, we know that some of the lamest excuses are sometimes bought by the somewhat smartest of judges.
I am not sure where this will all end up, however, I do know is that no matter how it ends up, I will always be good with the fact that we stood our ground and we didn’t back down. I will always be grateful for the fact that we haven’t let the anger that resided in us for so long take root and not allow us to see that beyond all “this”, life is a beautiful thing. When all you see is rain and grey skies your perspective dampens with every drop of rain; especially when it’s coming through your own roof; however, this roof is more than many have right now and I have to always be mindful of the small blessings that we receive every day. I feel good as to where I am mentally in my life right now, even though the storm has not totally passed. I have accepted that I am doing all that I can possibly do for my situation right now and I am allowing myself to enjoy the summer and start tackling Christmas projects that I have planned to take me through the Fall.
We all need to give ourselves a break sometimes, even if it’s only for a day or two; to break away from the burden that this type of fight puts on us. We have to be mindful that what is put upon us is majorly brought to us through our own thoughts and that sometimes it is good to let the mind go elsewhere in life, even if it is just for a little while, so that we can regain our focus and remain steadfast in the reality that this situation is not our life, but only a circumstance in our lives. It is nearly impossible to get to this understanding when you are in the midst of the battle; bruised and confused by the courts answers to crimes that would send normal human beings to be incarcerated, defamed and stripped of all their dignity. Those realizations, that the world is not how we envisioned it; justice is not what we thought it was, can cause a serious breakdown in our spirits and our views. We lose faith in the world around us; but our faith should have never been in the world around us anyways and deep inside we know this. When the devil’s beating at your front door, it’s hard not to fall into the emotional hell that fighting these judicially backed criminals are driving with their unending resources. However, emotion does nothing for you in a court of law as I have discovered. Being an emotionally charged woman, this has not set well with me for many years; but I have come to terms with that. Just the facts madam, nothing but the facts; well, here are some facts that I look at and wonder how we have allowed all this to happen to our fellow citizens by allowing these crimes and corporate greed to continue:
1) According to USA Today, in June 2013, there were a total of 35,507 homes foreclosed on in Los Angeles. This is one city in the country and this is considered to be down 9% from the previous month and down 35% from June of 2012.
2) According to the Los Angeles Times, as of June 2013, homelessness in the city has rose over 16% in the past two years demonstrating an increase of over 8,000 more people within one city that has no place to call home.
3) According to the First 5 LA Commission in their June 2012 report entitled “Homeless Children 0-5 in Los Angeles County” stated that “On any given night, at least 3,000 children ages 0-5 in L.A. County are homeless.” Between 2010 and 2011 the emergency shelter referrals for families with 0-5 children tripled.
This is one city, during one month this year. Now we can assume that a bunch of already homeless people decided to have families out on the streets, or we can accept that in one way or another they lost their homes and that was most likely due to foreclosure. They could have either been homeowners or renters of homeowners who lost their properties back to the banks since the 2007 meltdown. Now here is my idealistic mind at work. You have 35, 507 homes that were foreclosed on and you have 58,000 people homeless. Now considering that those numbers include families with and without children, it seems to me that there is plenty of housing. I know, not realistic in this, “it’s all about the almighty dollar” society; but a girl can dream.
The offending banks and the courts want everything devoid of emotion. The offending banks also know full well that each and every one of these foreclosure fights is going to be emotionally charged from the homeowners’ perspective (after all most victims do feel emotionally battered) and will use those emotions against us. I have traveled this road for too long and I have slowly but surely learned that the only way to get ahold, of at least my emotions, is to sometimes just back off and allow myself to see other things in my world and not let this continued fight consume me. Where ever this journey ends, I know that I can hold my head high in the realization that I did the best that I could and will continue to do what I feel is right; but I will do it on my terms and not theirs. I will keep my faith in God that he will make sure that no matter how this really turns out, my life will still be valuable and I will always be grateful for all that I have in life and enjoy living in the now.