It’s not fun being in debt and I’m trying so hard to get out of it. Today was my first milestone in getting out of debt. I paid off one of my five credit cards. Growing up I watched my parents get out of credit card debt. I never knew how far they were in it and had a mortgage on top of it. I swore that I would never do that to myself. Losing my job and being on unemployment for a few months three years ago did a number on me. I was in debt to begin with but found myself charging much needed things like groceries and gas, but I also found myself charging stuff that I didn’t really need – books, movies, etc.
The next thing I knew, I was so far in debt that I didn’t know how to get out. I stressed about it which didn’t make my situation any better. It seemed like what I could afford to pay was what I was being charged in interest and what I charged for groceries. What can I say? You need to eat. My parents have helped me a lot, but I always feel a little guilty for them helping to pay for my groceries or other bills when I run short. They always tell me that that is what parents are for. They help their children when they need help. Still, I’m almost 30 years old and not completely independent from my parents.
For the last few months I have debated whether or not I should ask my grandma if I can move in with her and my grandpa. I would be there when she needed help with Pa and save money on rent. I would pay her to help with the added expenses of me living there, but at the same time I would lose the privacy that my apartment has to offer. I know I would live with them for long, just until I can get back on my feet, but I don’t want to lose my apartment. I worked so hard to get this place, but at the same time, I’m at the point where I’m wondering if I can still afford to live here. My electric bill gets to be so high in the winter that I have a very hard time paying it when I have credit cards to pay.
My boss, Charlie, has given me a lot of advise over the years that I have known her and she keeps me focused on living out my dreams. She wants me to succeed in life and has told me that sometimes you have to hit rock bottom before you can get back on track. I don’t know if I’ve hit rock bottom yet, but I know I’m close.
While I have hit a milestone with paying off one of my credit cards, I have a very long way to go. I know that I’m not so far in debt like some people my age. I have it easy compared to them. I don’t have a mortgage, a car payment, or college loans to pay off. At the same time, I’m almost 30 and I have nothing in my name. I don’t own a house. I don’t own a car (mine is legally my dad’s). I have nothing compared to some people my age.
Charlie and I have talked a lot about strategies for me to get out of debt. She said one thing today that stuck with me. Charlie told me that it would be a good decision to move in with Ma and Pa and then buy a mobile home. I got to looking at them tonight and I found a few in the mobile home park where my parents live and I grew up in that, including space rent, would cost me the same amount that I pay in rent right now. If I was to get one of these and try to get the monthly payment less than what I pay in rent now, at the end I would have something that I can call my own. I know it will take me a few years to pay off all of my credit cards and leave Bishop, but at least right now I can try to own something. It’s at least an option to consider and one that I am really thinking about.
It will be the biggest decision of my life.