Friday, June 11, 2010

Shevy, Reappearing

Interesting, no?  One minute I'm here, if a little busy with Life.  The next, nothing.  Two months plus of nothing.

And the answer is: I had a little crisis.  I don't quite know how to describe it.  Of confidence.  Of identity.  Of how I see myself.  Of how others see me.

What brought this on?  The silliest thing, something totally innocent.  Praise.

I've known pretty much forever that I'm not great with criticism.  Who knew a casual line of praise could totally undo me?  Well, certainly not my blogging friend who emailed me a short note that included the following line:

"you are so good at staying committed to your goals".

I read it and a voice from deep inside said, "You don't deserve that praise."  And I quietly fell apart.  Couldn't post.  Couldn't hide that truth.  Couldn't speak it aloud.  And, as time went by, things just got worse and worse.

I originally felt unworthy of praise because I'd just come through the whole financial devastation that is Passover.  I'd charged a lot of food, matzo, wine, you name it on the credit card for Passover.  I'd had to pay for Dog to go on his annual Pesach vacation.  And I was starting to fall a little behind on certain things, while trying to pay off Dear Child's dental surgery.  It seemed ludicrous to say that, because I was diverting $50 a pay period into my Tax Free Savings Account or $10 per week into my Baby Emergency Fund, I was staying committed to my goals.  There were so many places where I was bleeding money.

In the interim, things have just gotten worse and worse (as I said).  I bought the laminate flooring for Dear Child's room (and my Son-in-Law installed it!).  More money, but money well spent.  DC's room is finished except for baseboards.  I also bought four new upper cupboards, IKEA ones, about the week before Passover (because I wanted pantry shelves on which to put my food).  I spent about $500.  If they were in and being used, I probably would also consider it money well spent.  They're sitting in their boxes in my foyer.  Apparently, if (at some point) I put them together my Son-in-Law will demo the existing (mostly broken and unusable) cupboards and hang the new ones.

I started having terrible tooth pain and ended up with a major root canal that now needs to be finished off with a crown.  And my husband has just had pretty much the same thing.  Net result, big increase in the credit card balance.


Despite paying off as much as possible pretty much every payday we owe way more than we did in March or April.  I have a spreadsheet that tracks all the additional charges we've made to the card and when I've made each payment (in addition to the $90 per pay period that is our normal payment).

And I have continued to put money into both the Emergency Fund and the TFSA, as well as restarted deposits to my RRSP.  It just seems like such a drop in the bucket compared to the other.

So, that's my story.  I'm going to try to get back to writing here though, because (for all the embarrassment of having to admit all this) I find it valuable.


Grace. said...

Isn't confession supposed to be good for the soul? Actually, it's good for ME to hear from others like YOU that life happens while we're trying to get our finances together. It really is a roller coaster and there are bound to be low points along the journey (to mix a few metaphors). So next time, don't leave us out of the loop!

Anonymous said...

I came here through Grace's blog.

Don't beat yourself up so much! Life happens. You can only be "gazelle intense" for a certain amount of time.

At some point you just have to reset and re-align your income and outgo with your goals and values. Things change, and your goals can change too. Or maybe they haven't changed and you want to get back on the same track. It is up to you and not to some external person judging you whether for good or ill.

Baby steps, to wherever you're going.

And, like Grace says, at least you're not that guy at Our Debt Blog. Not that we should be comparing ourselves to others... but sometimes a little perspective helps. :)

Anonymous said...

Glad you are back.


Revanche said...

If nothing else, Shevy, I find that confession takes the guilt of hiding the facts off my mind. Sometimes it even helps me find balance and focus again, but that's usually because the act of writing is cathartic.

We all make mistakes, we all make decisions that are right for us and LOOK like mistakes, and we all stumble or struggle with the public eye. I enjoy sharing the journey with all ups and downs with my blog friends, and hope that you'd feel better about getting it out there than hiding it away.

We like you for you and it's your story. Sure would like to hear it.

Shevy said...

Thanks everybody! I really appreciate the support!

Denise said...

Very interesting article. Can't wait to read more.

Deb In Portland said...

Oh girlfriend, there is no shame. Life is not a finish line, it's not a destination - it's a journey. It's a twisty turny road and none of us can see what is over the next hill or around the next bend.

And if you knew THEN what you know NOW, you wouldn't have had nearly as much fun back THEN.

You haven't failed at a single thing. You're still plugging away, still working it in spite of a spat of unforseen hardships. You haven't let anyone down with your real life experiences! You're among friends here, Shevy.