I got conned.
Despite knowing that money transfer messages come from ‘Mpesa’, and not a number, and despite knowing that I could always check my balance to confirm that additional funds have come in, I fell to a conman and lost some money.
Granted, I wasn’t alert because the message came in just as I was dozing off for my very treasured Saturday afternoon nap (serves me right for looking when the phone beeped!). And granted, the number looked very similar to my own, (which should have raised the alarm!). And, on top of that, the voice at the other end sounded so credible. (duh!)
I should have known better. No, I know better.
It happens to all of us. We make our plans and comb through for every detail, check each risk, put mitigation plans in place, provide a plan B, review, revise and reconfirm. And then we are sure we have it all under control. Until something happens and it all comes apart.
That doesn’t mean we didn’t prepare properly. Nor does it say we are cursed, or stupid, or all those ugly names we use when we don’t succeed at something. I think that it only says ‘you are not in control of everything’, or ‘you are not perfect’.
And who doesn’t know that? You don’t need your well laid plans to go awry to know that you are not flawless, do you?
Question is, what do you do when it comes crushing down?
I didn’t enjoy my nap, in fact I didn’t really nap, because I was bothered about what had happened. But it took me all of two hours to accept that I had been conned. It’s like I was thinking in slow motion! Then I called the service provider to make a report. They confirmed my fears, and told me it was too late, the money had been withdrawn. But I started feeling better immediately, because I had stopped feeling ‘bothered’ and done something. Hopefully that number has been blocked, or at least black listed, and will not be used on another hapless victim.
So the thing is to accept that you have been had, by the elements, the opposition, the detractors, that innocent-looking-person-that-you-thought-couldn’t-harm-a-fly, or whomever, and move on. Don’t beat yourself up for it, even if you could have been more careful. The fact is, whatever happened, happened. However hard it is to accept that, one thing is for sure, if it’s in the past you cannot change it.
I like this quote from Pema Chödrön’s When Things Fall Apart: Heartfelt Advice for Hard Times
“We think that the point is to pass the test or overcome the problem, but the truth is that things don’t really get solved. They come together and they fall apart. Then they come together again and fall apart again. It’s just like that. The healing comes from letting there be room for all of this to happen: room for grief, for relief, for misery, for joy. ”