The Other I

November 7, 2007

About bones and taxes

Filed under: Osteoporosis,Survival Strategies — theotheri @ 8:54 pm

I don’t usually indulge in a double gin and tonic.  I don’t usually indulge in more than one single gin and tonic a week.  But I did tonight.  Not sure about the delays of rush hour traffic I might run into, I arrived this morning at the doctor’s office (known as “surgery” here in the UK) at 8:30 for my 9:00 appointment.  Unfortunately, the receptionist had re-booked me for 4:30 but forgotten to tell me.  There was nothing to do but return eight hours later, which I did.  By then the doctor was running late, and I saw him at 5:30.

But I finally did find out the results of my latest bone density scan.  Basically they are inconclusive.  Things probably – probably – haven’t gotten worse, but there is a built-in error rate when different machines are used, a problem compounded by the fact that different measurements were also taken.  So I’m seeing a bone specialist after a blood test next week to find out if any more light can be shed on what is happening.  Possibly my bones are thinning at a normal rate which, unfortunately, started with my menopause which began 4-5 years earlier than average.

But the shock was to come home to the email from my tax accountant here who estimates that I probably owe several thousand dollars in back taxes, interest, and penalties for the last five years.  This will not drive us into the poor house.  It will not force us, even, to choose between heat and hunger.  But it will cost.  And I am not someone who doesn’t deliberately pay the tax I owe when it is due, so it is somewhat shattering.  I’m looking forward to receiving the forms tomorrow or Friday to see what went so drastically wrong in my calculations.

My survival strategy is not very profound, but it usually works.  Basically, it’s a version of “well, things could be worse.”  This doesn’t work for Peter at all, but I take consolation in telling myself that if I could choose between learning today that my back tax bill is much greater than I expected or that my bones had continued to deteriorate at a dangerous rate, I’d take what in fact I got.  So things could be worse.

On the other hand, I do have to agree with Peter that they could be better.  Well, who knows?  maybe they are.

To see additional posts on osteoporosis, click on “Select Category” in the right-hand column, and select Osteoporosis.

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