Push came to shove - why I am powering down

5 months ago

I honestly hate that I have to power down but push came to shove and this was my last resort.

If you've been following me on social media you know that my two youngest boys joined the U.S. Marine Corps.

Jeremy in-processed on May 1. My youngest, Josh, was offered an opportunity to go in early and he in-processed on May 22 instead of July.

What does this mean?

It means my husband and I are committed to attending both graduations.
It means two trips from Florida to South Carolina within 3 weeks of each other.
It means coordinating vacation time, travel time, and saving up for our expenses.

I spent months scrimping, saving, and trading

I knew months ahead of time that my kids were going in.
I'm not made of money. We're paycheck to paycheck and we rarely have anything to spare.
Only recently have we paid off some high interest debt and have been able to squirrel some "mad" money away.
I took a bit of my liquid Steem and SBD and have been day trading, earning profits with each transaction. Combined with the rising value of BTC, I traded up to $1400+ for months before I cashed out. I'm pretty proud of that accomplishment.

This money is earmarked to give the car a tune up, get a hotel room for a couple of days for Jeremy's graduation, and rent a house during Joshua's graduation week. Houses and hotels near Parris Island are booked months ahead of time and I knew I was prepared. I DID IT!

And then this happened.

So, with my accumulated BTC I used LocalBitcoins to transfer to my PayPal account.
I've used them several times with never an issue.
I found a trader with 100+ confirmed trades and a 100% feedback score.
The transaction was quick and smooth.
Then about two days later the bastard put in a dispute and now those funds are on hold!

He's trying to rob me!

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Naturally I responded with all the screenshots and communication I had to confirm that this was a legitimate transaction but with my funds on hold for a minimum of 15 days and no guarantee that I'll get it back because, you know, Murphy's Law or "Luck" - I find myself hitting the power down button...and I'm sick about it.

You can imagine my stress level: first with barely any communication with my boys and now this.

I very nearly lost the house reservation because my money is tied up. The man renting the house gave me an extension to come up with the money. I literally burst into tears with gratefulness because he didn't have to do that. He could have been a cold-hearted businessman and delete my reserved dates. But he didn't....At least not yet.


This is NOT a crowdfund plea or payitforward initiative

#firstworldproblems


This has been one pile of stressful bullshit that I didn't need. I'm already a basketcase. My poor mail lady probably thinks I'm rabid as I await for letters every day and usually walk away empty-handed and now my stomach has been in knots with how to move forward.

This is my Plan B

My power down will only be one week - two at the most - and only to cover these expenses. IF PayPal comes through for me in their investigation then the power down stops immediately. I just can't take the extra stress of not knowing and I'm so mad that this is happening! I'd rather be safe than sorry.

As a side note:
I am so very thankful that I have Steemit as a Plan B.
I've recently hit a couple of milestones:
10 months on Steemit and 947 followers and friends!

YOU make Steemit an amazing place to be.

Thanks for listening


This is a 50/50 post to help offset travel expenses so I can attend both of my sons Marine Corps bootcamp graduations (July 28th and August 18th)

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Mighty Mikes
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Easy (or Evil) Echo

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All images are mine except the green guy and the robber. They are from Pixabay under CC0 public domain.
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i am brand new to steem, but i found your story compelling, two sons in the Corp, Paris Island trained and willing to defend our country, you have raised two fantastic young men it appears. I i only have 4$ and some change in steem is there a way to transfer it to you? i dont really understand all of the ins and outs of how this works.

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@bdl1165 - thank you for your amazing gesture and welcome to Steemit!
I am so proud of my sons. It really was a decision they made on their own. As a person who's been on Steemit for nearly a year I highly recommend you take your funds and POWER UP. Get your vests up. Accumulate. And you can use it for a rainy day just like I'm doing. Your offer makes my heart sing and I appreciate you for it. Trust me, I'll yell for help if I get to that point. <3

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please do, a paltry gesture on my part compared to you and your sons commitments , thank them for their service and tell them we will always have their backs.

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SEMPER FIDELIS

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“From the Halls of Montezuma
To the shores of Tripoli;
We fight our country’s battles
On the land as on the sea;
First to fight for right and freedom
And to keep our honor clean;
We are proud to claim the title
Of United States Marine.

Our flag’s unfurled to every breeze
From dawn to setting sun;
We have fought in ev’ry clime and place
Where we could take a gun;
In the snow of far-off Northern lands
And in sunny tropic scenes;
You will find us always on the job
The United States Marines

Here’s health to you and to our Corps
Which we are proud to serve;
In many a strife we’ve fought for life
And never lost our nerve;
If the Army and the Navy
Ever look on Heaven’s scenes;
They will find the streets are guarded
By United States Marines.”

No need to feel guilty about powering down. They are your coins and you earned them. You are free to use them however you wish :) Sounds like they are going towards a good cause!

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Thanks @timcliff and @winstonwolfe - I've fallen by the wayside in the last couple of months but Steemit and its community has always been with me and I've grown with it. I do feel a bit of guilt because I made a commitment but it's my boys and I've already missed so much. HUGS.

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Do not worry, that is your right to use it. We understand that is really hard to do power down.

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Exactly. It's your money. You go take care of you. :)

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COOL! I love these messages @steemitboard - I can't wait to see what I've unlocked :)

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Thank your boys for there service hope you get to go see them have nice trip

I have still been thinking about your living situation since I found out awhile back from you what did not pan out there...

I wish there was more I could do to help you.

The posts are paying less than ever again, so the pool is being drained again, or I am sure many more of us would just send you some to help you, you have helped so many people.

I will try to send you some this week when I can.

I am sorry you have to deal with this and you are so diligent too. Have a good rest of the week Mere.

I have come up with an idea and sent this post to someone just now who has a big heart and I have mentioned how many people you have helped.

Let's see what we can come up come up with here.... hang on.....

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@barrydutton - you are incredibly sweet but I think I'll be okay. It's just a stressful time all around and I'm missing my boys. I cannot stand thievery, lying, and cheats! I'm just blowing off steam...which is why I said these are first world problems. If I was losing my home again, I would definitely be reaching out for help. Bless you for thinking of me. XOXOX

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I noticed and so did my contact in SC who has read your post - there was no location listed.

I figured it must be some well known location there everyone knows about....

So what city in SC do you need to be by?

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My sons are graduating from the Marine Corps Recruit Depot on Parris Island. They are holding the reservation for me until June 9th so I have until then to come up with the payment. I've got positive vibes that it's going to happen come hell or high water. <3

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He will try and help you.

If we can do anything for you, we will. I just sent him a map link to where he is vs. where you are headed.... -- it is 75 miles apart. Chk your FB msgs in a minute.

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I have UV these to keep this practical needs post close to the top to update readers who usually in life want the TLDR version lol.

I am going to copy you now on a FB message to my friend in SC.

He has a big heart like you and I have hopes we can work something out. I can drop out of the chat there after I put you in touch.

If he can help, he will -- he is a very nice guy and I respect and like him a lot, just like I like you.

So sorry that happened, people suck sometimes. Hopefully the dispute process doesn't take forever and the scammer gets shut down.

Please let me know if things get desperate or if you have any issues getting liquid funds in time - I owe you one..

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You're amazing @ausbitbank
I'm not in desperate times yet. I was telling @barrydutton that PLAN E or F was tenting it. One way or another I'll be there and I can be quite resourceful. I'm beyond pride. I'll yell if I really need help XOXOX

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We love you and we are here for you.

Learn to tie some knots if you have not yet, hammocks are so cheap and trees are everywhere if my other ideas behind the scenes do not work out 100% my friend.

(:

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LOL - I was a Girl Scout a long time ago and my father taught me how to tie knots, start fire, and even change the tire on my car. We're gonna make it happen :)

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Hammock Life is a free and practical life

Trees are nearly everywhere despite our humanity clear cutting them at every chance and it gets you off the ground.

Which is cold and sucks the heat out of you and away from bugs and such down there.

Great hammocks are not cheap but cheap hammocks can do you for a spell for sure

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Good job @ausbitbank

I will be doing a post this week and donating the proceeds to Mere.

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stahp. LOL
I'm not at critical mass yet, love. You've got your own issues that need attention!

YOU make Steemit an amazing place to be.

No, actually YOU just did by sharing a very stressful experience in an honest way and without whining about it! ^ Big hug for you, ok? You made it into something we can all learn from.

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I appreciate this. You are so right - no use whining about it but we can all learn and be vigilant. I'll share how it plays out. Fingers crossed and positive thoughts are all I can do now. :)

If you don't mind me asking, and maybe I missed it in your post, but why did you choose the PayPal/ local coins route as opposed to just trading the coin on Poloniex and then liquidating it through PayPal or Payza that way?

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I traded using both Poloniex and Bittrex and liquidated using LocalBitcoins because PayPal is generally faster and I've never had an issue with disputes until now. :)

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I see. What I am asking is why didn't you just use Virwox https://www.virwox.com/ to sell your coin and withdraw to PayPal? The fees would have sucked but, you would get the cash within 30 seconds.

Woulda, coulda shoulda, hindsight is 20/20, not trying to poor salt on wounds. I am just asking because maybe you know something about this not being a better option that I don't know.

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I've never heard of virwox until just now. I have a debit card through PayPal and the transaction was very quick (within 5 minutes from enquiry to payment transfer and releasing BTC from escrow). Maybe I was pulling the dragon's tail but with several good transactions from LocalBitcoins to PayPal, I figured it was going to be okay... until it wasn't.

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I have a PayPal debit card too. The benefit of Virwox is that you don't have to deal with other human beings and the possibility they might be having a bad day and just dispute for the hell of it, or worse as a pre-planned scam strategy. Virwox has been around for a while. It was originally the resource used by Sims users who actually make a living on the virtual platform through something known as Linden dollars (SL). Back when bitcoin was still being newly adopted and exchanges required complicated verification processes, there was no feasible way to conveniently buy bitcoin with PayPal. Of course there were many people who wanted to be able to do it, so Virwox enabled people to go on their site and buy Linden Dollars (SL) and then send those dollars to different virtual games. Virwox found its niche when it decided to allow people to exchange SL for BTC.

Now, long after they discontinued allowing people to send SL to Sims, they still work as a BTC exchange, but of course you are paying three fees. One for the exchange from BTC to SL, one for SL to US and then the paypal fee when you withdraw.

The entire process takes about 60 seconds and there is no fear of possible dispute or charge back.

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VERY COOL @vmsolutionsltd - Thank you. Do you have a referral code or anything? I am looking into this service right now.
And you should definitely write a post about this if you haven't already. Please feel free to use my situation as an example if you'd like.

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Why yes @merej99, I do lol. https://www.virwox.com?r=4187d

I have been using it for at least 5 years now. It's legit. My entire family is on it, mother, wife, grandmother, aunts etc...

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Awesome! Thank you. :)

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I always used Second Life Lindens. Never noticed Simoleans on the exchange before.

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@grim-jester LOL ah. Correction. I got Sims with Second Life confused. The only gaming I do is online poker. As far as I am concerned though Sims and Second Life are the same thing.

I know others might disagree.

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So, I clicked your referral link but when I hit the "not registered yet?" link your referral code disappeared from the URL. I hope you get credited!

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Ah I getcha. Been trying to get into Entropia Universe ATM.

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Thats neat, I'd heard about VirWox in the early days of bitcorn but hadn't realised it was still going today. Thanks for the heads up, will use your ref if I end up using it for paypal funds

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No problem. Just a heads up though. A friend of mine who I recommended Virwox and bitcoin to about three years ago, setup a Virwox account and purchased bitcoin, but never logged back in. He recently saw that bitcoin rose significantly and figured he probably had a small fortune. When he logged in the balance was empty because if you leave the account unattended for 12 months, Virwox fines you every month until the balance is empty.
Lesson: It's not a wallet; it's an exchange.

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That's the reason so many avoid paypal, especially cryptoheads tend to despise it. Totally understandable that you made the decissions you made though and I'm sorry you had to take that hit (no matter how this works out).

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Thanks @the-ego-is-you
I tried to proceed with caution. The guy had plenty of transactions, a good history and 100% good feedback but PayPal always makes me a little nervous. I'm not crazy about Xapo and until VIVA issues their debit cards I'm stuck. I'm looking into other alternatives so if you've got recommendations, please let me know. ps - I'm trying to stay away from banks too.

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All I can say is don't meddle with Bitsquare so far... I had a bug cost me a good amount of cash not too long ago.

What I did in the past was use the exchanges to get BTC and then an actual company to do transactions. But this is the costly way.

@merej99, you will be all powered uo before too long. How awesome that you can use this digital currency to finance expenses. Steem On!

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I cannot wait until I can pay directly with digital currency, @runridefly. It's coming - the time is now! In the meantime I have to waffle between the worlds and gamble that this doesn't happen again. :P

I am very sorry dear friend @ meriq99 for what you are going through, I send all my good energy so that this is resolved soon and that it is favorably, you always work in good faith, you will see that everything soon resolves.
I hope with all my heart to know that everything ended quickly and was solved satisfactorily

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Thank you so much @jlufer. I am also hoping for a good resolution but it's so frustrating to go through this. I know I'm not the only one this guy is trying to steal from so I hope his other victims have a good outcome too.

If you need the STEEM to trade for fiat to get yourself out of a bind... that is what it is there for @merej99! Remember, you've earned it yourself and are simply giving yourself the 50% of the paycheck you've been saving for a rainy day in our SP.

Paypal trading is shady sadly. Hope things work out for the best.

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Thanks @klye - I was really hoping that I wouldn't touch that power down button. It's my retirement plan and I'm here for the long haul. I can't even blame PayPal - they're just a service. But some people really SUCK.

I'm glad that Steem can help you out when you need it. Enjoy the ceremonies. You must be so proud!

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Thanks @bacchist - I am very thankful that Steemit is a viable option. I LOVE THIS PLACE!
I am very proud of my boys. One's enjoying swim week and the other is in his first real week of training. I feel kind of silly calling them my chicken wings anymore! :D

I think that's what steemit is it all about. You are doing the right thing to power down. Above all you have a plan. God bless you and yours @merej99 :)

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The outpouring of love and support is amazing. Thank you @mathworksheets. I hope you're reading through some of the comments. There is a great opportunity to learn alternate ways of getting funds out of Steemit to pay for real things.

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Yes, the virwox is even new to me!!

@merej99 ~ Firstly, please know that I empathize with you and I'm so very thankful for your sons service. May they be protected and stay safe always and in all ways.

I am also sending gentle vibrations of love and gratitude to you and yours.

I am sending Universal Life Force Energy to your situation for the speedy resolution and recovery of your funds. It is my hope that you are open to receiving this assistance.

May the flood gates of abundance now open and flow freely to you and yours.

Much Love!

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Thank you so much @reiki-trail - the positive thoughts and gentle vibrations are very much appreciated. I hope for a quick resolution. Much love, abundance, and positivity into the universe for you as well.

Hang in there @merej99 shit happens and that is just the worst of life sometimes.

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I've had some pretty terrible lows @jeff-kubitz but I'm hanging in there. The waiting is the hardest part. If all goes well, bonus! If not, it's been a learning experience. But I do not tolerate theft or cheats very well. That hits my red zone!

Well, that dispute thingi bites. Did you ruin their 100% rating for it? Hope it gets resolved soon >_<

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Oh, I definitely went into LocalBitcoins, changed my feedback to a warning for others, and then wrote a letter so they had it on file. If my response and screenshots is not enough for PP then I am going to have serious problems with that entire system. Think about it - WHY put your funds into escrow and release when a transaction has been satisfactorily complete if your users can then dispute it anyway? It's not good for PP or LBC.

I echo all the sentiments. You earned the coins so they are yours to do with as you please. If Steemit allows you to make a trip to see your kids graduate that's the best use I can think of!

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Thank you @sgtechservices - it's going to be money very well spent. Too bad it's not a time machine so I can go back and hug my little ones again. :)

Sorry to hear about your situation Meredith. I just transferred you some SBD. It's not much, but hope it helps a little.

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That is so generous and sweet @nextgen622
I'm not in panic mode yet. Hopefully the power down will offset any potential losses and you, @klye, @hanshotfirst can get your funds back - or it goes to another payitforward initiative. :) I appreciate you very much.

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You're welcome Meredith. Its ok, feel free to spend it on whatever you'd like. :)

nice...u deserve resteem and upvote...

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Thank you for taking the time to stop by and read my predicament @lautenglye :)

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u r welcome...

Good luck! Hate to see this happen to people. Wishing you the best!

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Thanks @mk40 - I was in a happy place and then that happened and went HULK SMASH in seconds. Thankfully I'm not Bruce Banner wondering where I am and what happened to my clothes. LOL

Everything will be OK, it was the experience that you should learn that, and if once again arises, then you know what to do :)

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With positive thoughts and well wishes like this, I am confident that it will be all right. Thank you for putting this out into the universe for me, @foxkoit. :) I hope this situation is a learning experience for others as well.

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You are welcome :) it is what I just think :)

Dang, unfortunately it's situations like that scaring some people off from bitcoin. Hope it works out in the end. Upvoted this from both this acct and my mitchellj account. Good luck!

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Things like this is why we need to fast-track crypto to debit cards with something that holds a steady peg! Thank you for the upvotes @scaredycatguide (and @mitchellj) You are very much appreciated.

I hope things will improve for you as soon as possible! Fingers crossed!

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Thank you so much @lemouth. It's a waiting game.

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The worst game of its kind... :/

Dear Mere,

I am so sorry to hear about your troubles! );

Best wishes for a complete recovery of your funds ASAP.
😄😇😄

@creatr

Some things are worth more than coins. You should be so very proud of your boys. What a good mama you are! Blessings!

I'm in South Carolina. I imagine the graduation here will be for Parris Island, correct? I live across the harbor in Hilton Head. Congratulations in advance for both of your boys.
Please let us know how it worked out with PayPal. I was thinking of doing something similar (I was a 9/11 responder in NY, I joined Steemit to help with some medical bills). I also found a site about powering down that shows which whales are powering down and the payout:
https://steemdown.com
Does that link help? In reading your post it sounds like powering down is not good? I am new here and rather confused. I thought it was a standard practice.
Once again congrats and good luck!

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P.S. Followed you.