Thursday, September 29, 2011

Broke as a Joke.

My husband and I live in a constant state of "brokeness."

If you've ever had a period of life like ours, you know what I'm talking about.

You also know that it is very frustrating, humiliating, humbling and yet thrilling all at the same time because there is this promise of the future when things will be better.

The part that is frustrating is that I can't just run out for lunch every day because it is more cost effective to buy groceries and make meals from home, then it is to go for lunch with the girls. It is equally frustrating when we have to save every last penny just so we can have a date night on occasion.

The part that is humiliating is that we don't get to wear the cool clothes or talk about all the fun concerts or how we vacation every six months. Because those things don't happen. We know we're working towards that goal, but for now it's extremely embarrassing to tell people that we can't go somewhere or do a fun activity because we don't have the money. The part that is humiliating is the very reason I don't talk about it on our blog. There are some things that I don't need written down or documented to remember how hard this part of our life feels and is. (So don't be surprised if I don't talk about this on a regular basis.)

The part that is humbling is writing this very post. I am putting our life and our hardest struggles out there by typing that we are in a phase of our life where we are poor. I know poor is relative especially for American standards. But, I believe that just because it may not seem hard to others does not mean that is not hard. Elvis Presley once said, “Don't criticize what you don't understand, son. You never walked in that man's shoes.” It is equally humbling to hear stories from people who have been there and are at a point in their lives where they can live the life they wish to live.

And while I'm here, I would just like to say that I'm not asking for millions. I just want to be in a position to be able to help another financially like so many have done for us. I want to be in a position where we can tithe regularly and not have to worry about choosing about whether we should or not. Also, while I'm here, I want it to be made clear that this is not a pity party in any way. I also am not writing this so you think we're strong and brave and all that crap.

There is also this part that is thrilling. This part is the part where we get to daydream all day long about how some day this part of our life will pass. It's no secret that #justkeepswimming is my motto and even battle cry for law school. It helps me to keep moving along because there will be an end to this time in our marriage known as that one time we moved across the country so I could fulfill my life long dream of becoming an attorney even though we were broke as a joke the whole time.

BUT there is also a part that is equally thrilling and that's the part of being in the middle of living out and being in the moment of this period of our life because one day we'll look back on it with smiles.

And that's the part that gave me the courage to write this post to tell y'all that we need your prayers again.

Brandon is currently working, but he has an opportunity for a different job. It's in his field.

Now God has had his hand in every step of the way with our journey here and I'm not just talking about our move to Michigan. I'm talking about from the very beginning. God knew the struggles we'd face from start to finish. He also knows whether this job is in His will too.

So I'm asking if this community will lift us up in prayer. We would greatly appreciate it.

Happy Thursday.

Note: This is about as out there that I'll ever be about our working lives. If you don't like it, well too bad. It's my blog.

8 comments:

leslie a. knight said...

We are doing our best to watch our spending. And to not just focus on how much money we are making now (thanks to lots of OT for Justin). We are trying to save and to plan. To remember that it is okay to not go on a vacation like our friends. But it is oh so hard (and everything else you said).

So I understand. We are, in many ways, where you are. Some of our circumstances are different - like owning a house. But we are there.

I would say to take things slow. That is one thing we did not do and we are paying for it. I also didn't say no to going out as much as I should have. I tried too hard to be the same as everyone else. And it hurt us in the way of unneccesary debt.

But I know we will make it. And that you will as well. God is so present through it all.

Brittany Ann said...

I have been there. Heck, we're still semi-there. It's gotten better as of the last year or two, but it's always tight for us still. So I understand. And I'm praying, dear friend.

Christina said...

All I can say is, I completely understand. We are there a lot. We sacrifice A LOT so that I can stay home and be the one that raises our kids. I know it is very worth it, but it's not always easy.
I am praying for you and your hubby.
xo

Susannah said...

Girl, I think most of us have been there. Keep up your hard work, it will all pay off!

Lil' Woman said...

Been there girl.

When Big Man and I got our first apartment together we lived like that. With both of us working two jobs and trying to go to school, we were barely keeping our heads above water. There was more than one occasion where we had to decide 'Gas or Groceries?'

Though we have better paying jobs now and are cost of living is extremely lower, we still live most of the time with our 'poor' mindset. It's hard to spend money friviously when at one time you had none. But I think going through that struggle made each of us as well a couple stronger because we needed to make sacrifices and learn how to handle our money.

Denise said...

Been there... and I am still there, just not quite to the degree that I was.

Last year was... just... I never, ever, ever want to relive 2010. EVER. I've never lost more sleep. I've never lived in such fear. I'd never paid the rent over 15 days later before. I never thought I'd ever call my parents at LEAST every other month for, "just a little help?" Fear. Shame. Sadness. And, seriously, just keep swimming is STILL my mantra!

We made a LOT of huge changes beginning of this year, and now we're treading water again. We can actually go out and not feel TOO guilty... and sometimes actually buy friends a round of drinks, versus everyone buying us stuff. I actually have a friend who runs a hot dog stand, who fed us for free more times than I can ever count or repay. Now I can actually buy my hotdog AND leave him a tip! Things have gotten better.

The COOLEST thing that's come from our hardship last year: we are much MUCH more aware of cash flow. I always used to play the, "Oh we'll figure it out later!" card. Now? I know there may be no way TO figure it out later. Figure it out NOW. How much $$ do we need? How much do we know is coming in? Is there some left over? GREAT! Are we short? Well, NOW is the time to figure out how to make up that deficit. (December and January are months I am nervous about... but at least now I am working on that two months in advance versus going, "Oh crap! Now what?" when it gets here.)

I feel wiser. I feel freer somehow. Money is still tight, but its gotten better. I'll definitely send you prayers... I hope the same for you soon. Just keep swimming. Keep your eye on the prize. Remember this one thing, too: YOU ARE NOT ALONE. Not only are others dealing with the same problem, but God is with you. Just when things seem hopeless, hope will come. Believe it.

A Nerd and A Free Spirit said...

Right there with ya. I called the last couple of months the EXTREME BUDGET LOCKDOWN. I eat out once a week for lunch, but for a month I didn't even do that. If you guys are brave, you could look into donating plasma. Mark does it (seriously) he LOVES it because he reads the whole time and isn't afraid of needles and gets $55 a week. So more power to him. Our big problem is our student loans. BOO. constantly trying to pay off debt. I am with you, though, hoping for a better future. And, I know the Lord will always provide our NEEDS. The last few weeks I have been in a stage of "I want new clothes!" but I can't have any. And we didn't take a vacation this year. Boo. Oh well. It's always something. But at least we are living within our means. Here's to a brighter tomorrow! (-:

~Kathryn

brown eyed girl said...

Oh girl, I feel you. It is incredibly hard and that sinking feeling in the bottom of your stomach is the worst when I think about finances sometimes. But, I know in my heart of hearts that you're doing the right thing, that you're working hard, and that your work will pay off in the end and you'll experience financial security.

I'll say a prayer for you and B, if you need to talk about it, you know where to reach me.

XOXO

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Hi y'all! The name's Samantha. You can call me Sam if you like. I am a lover to a boy I met at Falls Creek in the summer of 2005, that is a student of Jesus, a Sooner born and Sooner bred and when I die I'll be Sooner dead, Democrat by party, blonde to the core, and oldies but goodies kind of girl.
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