About Alexandra Heep

About Alexandra Heep: The internet has allowed allowed Alexandra to maintain a semblance of life when encountering an unexpected, lingering health crisis. The Internet is a lifeline which not only allows her to remain connected to friends, but also survive, via writing.While Alexandra Heep is her pen name, she does not hide behind it. Instead, she used it to brand herself on the Internet and to create opportunities.

Alexandra published her first book, a collection of her best poems, on July 11, 2012. You can buy it at Lulu.com

Support independent publishing: Buy this book on Lulu.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

When Karma Calls

Last year, at the end of September 2009, I was forced to downsize from my two-story townhouse rental because of a mystery illness that causes dizziness, vertigo, and seizure-like symptoms. Upon the recommendation of an old co-worker and friend, I rented a room from this 69 year old guy, let's call him Dave. When I toured the home, I saw lots of books pertaining to spirituality and self help issues from authors I have read, so I thought this would be a good situation, although not cheap. I paid $ 600 for an 8 x 10 feet room in his rental home, with house privileges including laundry and dryer.

Shortly after moving in, Dave found things to criticize. He did not like that I used the oven and stove, he wanted me to use the microwave because he said it would use less electricity. He also wanted me to use only one plate and wash it by hand over and over, rather than run the dishwasher. Also, he started charging me for toilet paper, he said women simply use too much and with him gone to work he was not using any. At the time, I still thought my health condition would improve, but it was not to be and I was pretty much unable to leave the house for a while. With all this going on and Dave's comments I started doing all my things, like working on the computer and cooking, while Dave was at work so I would not bother him.

Regardless, it all came to a head late February 2010. Dave had received his electric bill for January and it was just short of $ 300.00. Now, we had a record cold winter, plus – as is customary in many locations – the power companies hike their rates during very cold and very hot months. In that light, the bill was not that high, I know of families who had bills of almost $ 2,000. But, Dave blamed the high energy bill on the space heater in my room. I proceeded to tell him about the increased rates and all that (he was from Arizona and probably did not know Virginia ways) and also told him that the poor insulation of the house contributed to the higher bill.

It did not stop there, Dave then said some other things to me, like that he did not need people slowing him down (I guess he was referring to my health problems, although I never asked him to help me with anything really) and that I was not getting better because I was sleeping all the time and needed to get out. I guess he interpreted my staying in my room (out of his way) as sleeping. Mind you, there was no TV in my room and not even a chair – nothing to do really but read or listen to the radio – so that was not exactly a picnic for me.

I then told him he had no idea what a good room mate I was, and that I could find a room much cheaper than I was paying for elsewhere. I also said he should start reading the books on his shelves, that he was spiritually stagnant and that life was not about making money. I then started packing my things. Within seven days I was gone – not an easy feat considering my physical limitations of not being able to lift anything, nor being able to stand or sit or walk for longer than a few minutes; nor being able to drive. Not to mention finding a place without employment or good credit.

From our mutual friend, the one who had set me up with this place, I found out that after I moved out Dave started suffering from increased dizziness symptoms and that he could not lay down at all or sleep at times. He also missed days from work because of severe back pain.

After about four months, one of my friends bought a house in Dave’s neighborhood and asked if I would move in to help with his mortgage. We settled on $ 400 a month and since I was on a month to month basis, I accepted the offer and I moved once again beginning of June 2010 – two blocks away from Dave’s residence on a street parallel to his. Dave of course ran into me sometimes and even told me: "You cursed my house". (Of course I did not) I asked him why and he told me he was dizzy all the time. My sarcastic reply was: "You told me to get rid off my dizziness so I gave it to you". Regardless, we kept civil enough.

Now, yesterday I received a call from Dave. He asked me if I wanted to move back into his home. I was so flabbergasted all I could ask was why. He said: "I need a room mate". I was looking for a polite way out, then I remembered he hates pets and people who have them (in his mind compassion is a weakness). I told him I have a cat now and the phone went silent – he hung up on me without saying anything.

Later on as I prepared for sleep I could not help but smile. While I do not wish bad things on people, obviously he was in some sort of tight situation and he could not find someone to rent his room (confirmed by our mutual friend). Then I realized: This was September 28, exactly one year to the date after moving into his house. We have come full circle.


Diane said...

VERY fascinating account, Alex, of what you've been through this last year living like a gypsy. Karma has its ways, doesn't it? Good for you!

Conny said...

Where I come from they say 'What goes around, comes around'. I'm glad that you landed on your feet.

Grace Alexander said...

My sarcastic reply was: "You told me to get rid off my dizziness so I gave it to you"


Alex, your sense of humor in the face of trials always inspires me :)