Finances and the Future

Each of us worry about the two ‘F’s – finances and the future.  Each of our stories are different that effect how we manage our finances and our goals for the future.

I grew up for the first 10 years of my life with a single mother who worked two jobs for many years.  We lived with our grandma to make ends meet.

Years later my mother was remarried and added a little boy to the family.  Things with the economy were bad in 2008-2009 which was commonly known as the ‘Great Recession’.  My parents were losing the house as I was heading off to college for my second year.  Shortly after that my mom and step dad divorced.  Per my family, financial and college circumstances I ended up moving to the metro area.

These simply explained life events molded me in how I viewe finances and my future.

I have almost always had two jobs and just like many other people – it hasn’t been easy to make ends meet.  At age 22 I took out a mortgage for a two bedroom townhouse.  I really did get a good price for it and since the value has gone up.  Although, my luck with work and finances has been a total nightmare since.  I have gone through unemployment for over 3 months to being forced to take jobs that didn’t pay me enough or allow me enough time to work a second job.  I was lucky to have a friend who has been renting out my second bedroom and now that Mike is home (I will explain in another post sometime) and working things are really looking up.

Even though things are looking more positive it is still hard to not be discouraged with the amount of student loans and debt that I have.  I know there are others worse off than I am, but this topic bothers me immensely.

This is extremely personal to me but I would still like to share my story and my continuing journey with you.

Here is a list of my debt as of today:

Left on Mortgage: about $70,000

Student Loans: just below $30,000

Previous Car Loan: $9,271

Personal Loans: $4,200

TOTAL: $113,471

YIKES!

How is someone like me going to pay this off while only making $21,500 a year and with other monthly bills to pay?

It’s crazy to think that someone can gather so much debt in such a short amount of time.  How can anyone get ahead?  And why does it seem that once you get a head things go south again – instantly?  It is super frusterating to me.  I hate seeing individuals who should be enjoying their retirment spend it working part-time to keep up with the bills because SS doesn’t cover their monthly needs.  This makes me sick.

I have read a few blogs and articles about how to save on daily expenses like making my own laundry detergent, shampoo & conditioner and cleaning supplies.  These sound like a wonderful way to go green and to save a few pennies.  Getting down to saving, and paying off debt is so much more though.  I had to look super hard at my fiances and face the hard facts that I needed to make changes.

When I was recently unemployed I had to go through a juggling act of paying my bills with what little income I had from unemployment.  This caused a BIG snowball in my debt to income ratio.  I felt so lost and helpless and sometimes still do.  A few people suggested that I file for bankruptcy.  I was like “NO way! My credit is bad enough”, but I later came to terms with my situation and am now in the process of filing.

Finances are a BIG anxiety and sometimes even depression trigger for me.  I don’t like to admit it but they are.  I hate the feeling of drowning and not being able to support myself.

Everyone likes to think they can fix the system or has the cookie cutter fix to finances.  In reality no one has an easy fix.  It takes brutal honesty, hard work and support from loved ones that will get anyone through a rough financial path.

I wish eveyone luck on their financial journey and I will keep you updated on mine!

Thanks for reading!

Manda

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