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The Bible says, “Thou shalt not covet.” That is so much harder than it sounds. I don’t even “covet” normal things.
I want a job I like. I want to make my house look pretty. I want to go out to dinner without feeling guilty. I want to donate money to trips and disasters and needs around me. I covet financial stability.
It just seems so impossible.
So much debt, so much scraping, so much struggle just to get by. I just want to go hide in my mommy’s basement until it all goes away. The problem is, it wouldn’t. We’d pay off the debt only to jump right back in. We wouldn’t learn.
I feel like my frustration and discontentment has a lot to do with our financial disaster.
I am so scared.
I am scared I won’t be able to provide for my baby. I am scared that we will be stuck here in my small town in PA forever and end up like all the other crazies that live here. I’m scared that I will have to tell my son no.
No, you can’t play soccer-we can’t afford cleats.
No, you can’t go on that field trip- we don’t have the money.
No, you can’t go to college- it’s too expensive.
I had this beautiful illusion that I would go to college, graduate, and live like my parents. Instead, I graduated, got a job making $12 an hour (thought I was making bank), got married, used my little bit of savings to put a down payment on an apartment and buy a tiny kitchen table and bam, let the debt begin!
Neither of us were disciplined, we just wanted to have fun. We went out camping and exploring every weekend. We didn’t buy extravagant things but we also didn’t have a plan and didn’t save.
And then the brakes went out on the car. And then on weekend my husband ended up in the ER. And then, and then, and then, until we were up to our eyebrows in debt.
And all this time I kept saying, where does it all go? How do people live like this? What did we even buy?
I was trying to reconcile the life I grew up with with the life I was living. It didn’t make sense and I wanted out. I was used to yearly vacations, eating out whenever you felt like it, going shopping for new clothing every fall. I thought that was normal. Ha! Oblivion is bliss.
And then I got pregnant and we knew things had to change. We saved enough for me to be able to take a maternity leave (at least). We thought this time we had it figured out. This time we would really get our lives together. This time…
And then daycare happened. And diapers, and doctors visits, and medicine, and baby proofing, and sick days, and the bills kept piling up and the options dwindling.
So now, here we are. In week one of Financial Peace University. All full of hope and illusions that this time we are really going to do it. But the difference is that this time we will and I will document it. Every step of the way. Even if it takes 25 years (dear God please don’t let it take that long). We will be debt free- free to live the life we were meant to.
Baby Step 1: Save $1,000
Sounds easy enough. Except for when you already can’t balance your budget. My husband is working overtime. I am taking my son out of daycare and working on a nanny share with some friends.
Our goal is to save $100 a week. That means it will take 10 weeks to save $1000. Not fast enough.
I could hold a garage sale but all our stuff is crap. And where? Who would come to my neighborhood for a garage sale? I’ve tried craigslist sales, no one ever buys anything.
We are only going to the grocery once every 2-3 weeks.
Just thinking about all this overwhelms me. I want to take a nap. But, that’s not going to get me out of debt.
Maybe I should start tutoring again? But that is less time with my baby. I hate this already and it’s only step one. Online jobs? Time to look.
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Mom. Writer. Lover of all things DIY. My mission is to empower my fellow creatives to show money who’s boss, ditch debt and follow their dreams. Achieving debt freedom isn’t easy but our dreams are worth it!