Wow! Thank you so much for the resounding response. I wanted to be sure that everyone knows that I’ve read each and every one of your posts however please forgive me if I do not respond on an individual basis as the count is now well over 300 posts within such a short period of time. I would never have predicted that my experience would have struck such a chord with so many of you. Your posts speak volumes and each one comes with its own unique value.
I feel like a huge weight has come off of my shoulders by all the encouragement you have provided me. You begin to doubt yourself when something shakes your core like this has.
I have not responded to their onslaught of text and email messages yet. When I first received the text's and emails I ran to the phone angry, sad and ready to give them a real piece of my mind. But then I gave myself a time out to cool off and poise myself which is almost always the best way. But I do have the need for closure and to reiterate to them all the services that I provided to them, the facts behind what I earned in comparison to what they may believe, that it is not polite to look into someone else’s pockets and the truth that a closing gift is not a staple of the real estate closing as they have been erroneously informed.
But then a part of me resents the idea of having to defend myself or prove my worth to these people. But I believe that they will continue to hound me until I address this outrageous issue with them. Your suggestions were awesome. I love Sonny's idea with the Bible, that is terrific, and Carol #61 made me laugh out loud, great suggestion! or Kathryn's #82 donation to charity is super too. Leslie #134, you think a lot like I do. Wouldn't that be a hoot! If I only had the nerve to pull it off without my blood pressure skyrocketing while trying to contain myself.
My philosophy has always been to "leave them smiling". This business is so much about the lasting impression we leave with them at the end of the day. I could eat crow and provide them with some worthless little piece of something that they will never believe is enough and take my chances that it’s better to provide them with "something" rather than being remembered as the agent that left them with "nothing" (in their minds).
I think that giving them a gift after they voiced their demand for one trumps the true meaning of a "gift". It would not be a gift anymore, it would be a closing cost. I've done that already. A gift comes from the heart. You can't make demands on someone's heart. It loses all of its meaning.
I am going to give some serious thought to telling them that I purchased a star in the heavens for them to cherish always and it took two months to find just the right one to match their unique tastes. I will point to it high above us using just the right finger. (now that was not professional and please know that I'm only joking). I will let you know the outcome of how it plays out though - while keeping the faith that I will still be able to leave them smiling.
At the very least I will walk away from this situation as the responsible, ethical and professional Realtor that I am and because of all of your support I can do that with more confidence and pride than ever before. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.