And here’s how…
You are the future. You are the leaders. Keep the faith. I love you!
As you know from my previous blog stories, I got divorced last year and was living with my sister. I am so proud of her because she finished her master’s degree and got a job as a special education teacher in another city. I have been paying the internet bill since last August. When my sister changed her address, I had to change the internet bill into my name so it would not get forwarded to her new address with all the rest of her mail. Luckily, I got this nice letter from our internet provider:
As you can see from my handwritten notes on the letter above, I first spoke with Greg when I called 855.320.0472 as the letter says to do. I asked Greg to simply change the first name on our account from “Gunda,” my sister, to “Marie,” myself, since my sister had to move to another city and, therefore, had to fill out the change of address form with the United States post office. I wanted to make sure I would continue to receive the bill so that I could continue paying it. Unfortunately, Greg could not change the name on our account, so he transferred me to Chris in customer service and I had to tell my story all over again. Unlike Greg, though, Chris assured me that our account would be switched to my name, that there was no term agreement or commitment, that I would not be charged a deposit, and that I would receive the sweetheart deal detailed in the letter above. Chris seemed so very nice over the phone, and I thanked him sincerely for the great service I had been receiving that I was happy with.
I did not share this with Chris, but I will let you know that I do think that $50 a month is plenty to pay for internet service. In fact, since the internet was dependent on public funding, it should be available to every citizen, just like healthcare and education. But I am not like a Jehovah’s Witness who goes around trying to force their beliefs on others. I feel no need to, and I think it is wrong to knock on doors on Saturday morning, especially to tell people that gay is not okay. That is all wrong, and that is another story.
Imagine my surprise when, a few days after calling CenturyLink, a couple of CenturyLink contractors were banging on my door, upset that I was not expecting them, and insisting they were there to fulfill an order. I have PTSD and the whole incident scared and upset me a lot. I told them I did not order anything and did not know anything about it and did not need anything because my service was working fine. They called CenturyLink and we told them the same thing over the phone. Finally, the contractors said they would leave but that I should not be surprised if an actual CenturyLink employee showed up. That was nice of them to give me the heads up. They seemed to recognize how upsetting it all was for me.
Sure enough, it was not that long before the CenturyLink man himself was knocking on my door. As fate would have it, he was a very fine example of a very appealing phenotype to me: tall, not white, not too old or too young, very sharp, a soothing temperament of one who at least understands even if his hands are tied, very physically fit and very handsome, at least to me. His whole presence stunned me so that I had to focus on his wedding ring and the 10 commandments of our Lord, particularly the one forbidding adultery. He said my service had to be upgraded to the latest, greatest technology, even though I assured him it really was not necessary since everything was working so well. Also, I was looking to pay less, not more. He didn’t really know anything about billing and such, he said. He was just trying to follow his orders. And why should I obstruct him? He gave me no reason whatsoever. On the contrary, I liked him. My service was virtually uninterrupted the whole time he worked. When he was finished, I connected to the Wi-Fi without a problem.
Then I got a letter entitled “Your Order Confirmation”:
On February 8, 2017, I called Customer Service at 1-866-450-6152, as it says to do in the letter. I did not order any of these services; I just asked for the first name on account # 303 936- 647 to be changed from Gunda to Marie. I spoke with Elizabeth. I told her the whole story you just read. She transferred me to William and I had to start all over and tell him the whole story you just read again because he did not even know who Elizabeth was. I guess William could not help me either because he transferred me to Sandra in Financial Services. I told the whole story for the third time to Sandra, who said she could help me if I wanted to pay my bill. I tried to explain to her that my bill was incorrect. You see, my previous bill looked like this:
Why were they now charging me $74 plus a $9.99 modem lease fee for the same service I was paying a total amount of $62.99 for? Even with the mysterious one year discount of $34.05, the new bill for $66.82 was more than the $62.99 that I had been paying:
Look, they even changed the account number from 303 936- 647 to 303 922-9 75. Sandra transferred me to Ivory, and I told the whole story for the fourth time. By now my PTSD was triggered pretty badly once again by CenturyLink. Thankfully, Ivory was the best customer service representative by far. She made the corrections I requested and gave me a new balance due amount, but she was unable to issue me a new bill for my account # 303 922-9 75. Why not? The bill was not due until February 18, 2017.
Then, believe it or not, I received another bill for account # 303 936- 647. Now CenturyLink is sending two different bills under two different account numbers to the same address for the same service.
Receiving this bill in the mail on Saturday evening triggered my PTSD and upset me so badly that I had to call my ex-husband and have him talk to me over the phone and help me make it through the night. Neither one of us slept that night. I could not stop crying once the mental trigger released a cascade of signals throughout my body that could not be turned off. I sweated until my whole bed was soaking wet. I cried a river of tears. I probably said terrible things that I do not really mean to my ex-husband, and for sure he was upset too, and we prayed and prayed and prayed. I could not sleep. I felt like my livelihood and ability to work were once again being cruelly, greedily, and unjustly threatened. All my muscles tightened up and every one of the myriad injuries I have sustained screamed in pain. I felt oppressed and frustrated and violated and fucked with. At times, I could not even walk. PTSD is a nervous breakdown, an injury from too much stress and trauma. It is extremely painful when triggered.
This is what PTSD looks like:
During the worst of it, it is not certain whether or not I will make it. PTSD sufferers kill themselves every single day. During the worst of it, I just want it to stop.
Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. (Luke 23:34 KJV)
We made it through once again. In fact, I am getting much better all the time. All the hard work and faith and love are paying off.
I was pretty unsuccessful at getting any customer service on the weekend, so I sent two emails to CenturyLink through their website. I have received no record of either of my emails so far, let alone any response or indication they have been received or anything so far except the boilerplate message that appears after you hit the send button assuring you that CenturyLink will get back to you in a few business days. In the first email, I asked that account # 303 922-9 75 be closed, since those services were never requested nor authorized by me. In the second email, I once again asked for the first name only on account # 303 936- 647 to be changed to Marie as was agreed on January 23, 2017. If they cannot apologize to me and make it up to me and fix their errors of over-charging and double-billing me, then I asked that their service to my address be cancelled.
I will keep you informed as best I can, my beloved readers. There may be some upcoming interruptions in my internet connectivity, but you know how ingenious and tenacious I am, so keep the faith! The Lord always lights the way for us…