Proverbs 22:7

The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Yes, it's real.

It's come to my attention that there are some people who doubt the progress we've made in our journey to debt freedom. Let me address some of the comments I've heard.

I was NOT born into money. I did not grow up with a silver spoon in my mouth. I didn't get everything I always wanted, but my parents knew how to give me what I NEEDED - you know, basic necessities. And yes, this included after school activities to keep my butt busy enough to prevent me from having time to become a troublemaker. Band, softball, and Girl Scouts = a child who doesn't get wrapped up with the wrong crowd and potentially damage the rest of her life with drugs, a baby as a teenager or an addiction or some other kind of garbage.

We have NOT been mooching off my parents for the last 2 1/2 years. They are NOT the reason we've paid off $42K in debt. Well, I take that back. They've supported us. They've been cheerleaders. They tell us how proud they are of us because we are taking this action now, rather than getting so far in debt that we struggle the rest of our adult lives. We've paid off $42K in debt by the grace of God's mercies, and our willingness to be taught and disciplined. So YEAH, it is a BIG deal. The last time my dad gave me money was a $100 bill to buy gas for my car and to pay my electricity bill my junior year in college. It was the most humiliating, and yet humbling experience ever, and I vowed I'd never put myself in a position to ask them for money ever again.

I joined the military 3 weeks shy of my 19th birthday. My parents didn't pay for my first cell phone, I did. My parents didn't pay for my car insurance, I did. Except for a few extenuating circumstances, I became independent the day I left for boot camp. After boot camp, I was mortified by my high school friends whose mommy's and daddy's were paying for their cell phone, car, gas, insurance, etc. Sure, they were college students, but their parents were holding money over their head. I joined the military to build my own independence. I didn't want my parents having to "take care" of their legally-an-adult child who should have been responsible enough to pay for her own cell phone bill. Sure, as I mentioned, I had a few hiccups in my early twenties, but the majority of the help my parents gave me was the discipline to take care of myself.

If you're a college student reading this's up to you whether you take offense to this. I have my opinions on this subject, which may differ to yours. I personally feel that if you need a phone, you should be able to pay for it yourself. If you need a car, you should be able to pay for it, the gas, and the insurance yourself. It's the lesson that comes behind paying for these "necessities" on your own. You will appreciate these items more when your own money pays for it, rather than it being handed to you. If you disagree, so be it.

At any rate, it completely makes sense now. NO WONDER our accomplishments havn't meant jack squat to some of you, and haven't made the slightest bit of impact in your lives. You don't take our accomplishments seriously, because you think we're lying about the progress we've made. Well, maybe lying isn't the correct word. Over-exaggerating, perhaps? Do you think we're making a big deal out of something that's not really a big deal because we haven't really done the work? After all, it's just not possible for a couple to pay off $42K in 2 1/2 years when only one of them is working full time. Actually, you would be wrong, because it's very possible. It called discipline. It's called giving up CRAP that's not important. It's called planning your grocery and shopping trips, and not shopping on a whim. It's called a BUDGET. It's called responsibility. We screwed around and got into debt, but now we're trying to make it right. Who are you to knock us down for trying to make something better of our lives?

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