My phone rings about 11:00, I look down at it – I don’t recognize the number, so I’m hesitant to answer, “Hello?”
“Hi, is Patricia available?”
“Hi, my name is Jeremy and I’m from blank-blank payday advance company. You haven’t been here in a while and I can offer you $25 on a gift card if you ….”
“No thank you, I don’t need to anymore, but thanks for calling.”
Can you see the smile on my face right now? I wish you could. This is a personal accomplishment, today I don’t have to rely on a payday loan to pay my bills on time and pay an exorbitant fee doing so. Gone is waiting in line, hoping that I can get the maximum allowed for my payday loan. Today, they call me offering money – I can tell them politely “No.”
If you haven’t gotten to this point, don’t worry, it’s possible. I’ve been chasing the debt-free dream for a long time.
At first, I didn’t have a plan, money wasn’t a concern, the lights were on, the house was warm in the winter and cool in the summer. My charge card worked every time and life was good. Forward a few years, and this all changed.
In 2008, my life changed dramatically. I went through a divorce, my mother passed away and I lost my job. Each of these events impacted my life and changed forever. I struggled with managing my bills and life on my own. Everything was an emergency, and I paid reconnect fees left and right because of interruption in service. I didn’t pay anything on time.
I panicked and filed for chapter 13 bankruptcy, desperate to get control of my life, but eventually surrendered and filed chapter 7.
This didn’t make me debt-free, I was still the same person. I didn’t change my behavior, only my circumstances. Sobering thoughts, that a magic wand like bankruptcy doesn’t fix everything.
I remarried, and gladly left the finances to my husband. Again, I didn’t have a plan, money wasn’t a concern; the lights were on, the house was warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Until 2014, when my husband was injured at work and couldn’t continue heavy physical labor any longer.
On my next post, I’ll tell you the rest of the story…