Last week was an interesting week to say the least. On Tuesday, as I was cheerfully primping before leaving for work, my husband was online checking our bank account balance, and noticed 6 transactions from iTunes. All unauthorized by him or myself, totaling in nearly $800. Pandemonium ensued.
My freshly applied mascara streamed down my face with crocodile tears while I tried calling every hotline number for both our bank and iTunes. FYI, most companies don't make their customer service hotlines clearly visible on their websites. In fact, iTunes itself doesn't have a hotline - they have an online chat. In the event of an emergency, no one wants to sit and "chat." If this ever happens to you, God forbid, do what I did and call every number imaginable until you get a live person so that they can hear the panic in your voice. I spoke with two very compassionate and helpful people and it did wonders for my attitude towards their company.
Needless to say, we spoke with our bank and with iTunes and still had to wait for the "pending charges" to either be removed or validated before filing a claim. It appeared, as of Friday, that all 6 transactions had been removed. Saturday, 2 of them were returned to our account (totaling $200) and I had to finish filing a claim with the bank. The bank credits the missing money to your account until they can investigate to determine whether your fraud claim is true or not. So right now, we have $10 in our account.
All in all, it's been a real roller-coaster ride. I'm angry, frustrated, and tired. I keep going over in my head all of the things we could have done to prevent it, or at least keep it from doing this much damage - we shouldn't have had Matt's debit card linked to his iTunes account. We should have been diligently saving an emergency fund, etc..........
But the reality is that this could have and does happen at random to thousands of innocent, unsuspecting people, and we have no control over it.
The one thing I've realized this week is that what we can control we must control. And that is our reactions. I know too many couples that let money issues break them apart. If my husband and I lived by their standards, our marriage would be very short-lived. Despite my meltdowns, he has been compassionate and strong. And I have been working every day to reign in my fear and frustration and to reiterate every day - "I'm thankful for you. We can survive this together."
Isn't odd, that in our weakest, most helpless moments, that is when we are most in sync? That when everything is completely out of our control, that is when we are most at peace? Thank God.