Skip to main content

Once bitten, twice shy

I wonder how many others obsess about money the way I do. And by do, I mean do, did, and do again.

When hubby and I were both working for however-many years the last time around, I often worried that we did not have enough money, even though we were able to put a nice chunk of change in the banks every month. I cannot explain this somewhat irrational fear, though I am guessing it is mostly related to our making less than many others I knew. And then when I was first laid off, I worried even more, because all of a sudden our income was drastically reduced. So if I was worried before, it made sense that I would have a world of worry at that point.

But eventually my worrying lessened, even though I went several years without a steady income. Being frugal and boring to begin with meant that we did not have to give up too much (oh, we definitely gave up stuff). And caring very little about material things helped tremendously. If we had been spenders who had debt on our credit cards and lived paycheck to paycheck, I don't know how we would have coped. It was challenging enough being the way we were!

Now that I have been working for almost six months, I have finally sat down and looked at our budget, something I had not done in almost a year. Back then I figured there was little purpose; we did our best on the income we had, and my income was so sporadic that it just seemed pointless. But a few weeks ago, the hubby started talking about getting a (new to him) truck. We sold our very old, rusty thing about 1.5 years ago. And over the past year, his not quite-as-old car had been going downhill. The hubby was afraid the car would break down, particularly now that he picks up the kid from school 95% of the time, and/or the next repair would be a real killer. So he started looking.

And I started fretting. The thought of having a car payment, which we have not had for a couple of years, really bothered me. I could hear Dave Ramsey saying, if you cannot pay for it in cash, you should not buy it. But the thought of taking that money out of our savings to pay for the car bothered me more.

Time was of the essence, and the hub found a nice, used truck that seemed, well, really nice. We bit the bullet and bought it. And, yes, we financed it (puts head down and does not look Dave or friend Mel in the eyes). The last time Brian got a car, we financed it for three years, but paid it off in one year. I would love to do something similar this time around, although this truck cost quite a bit more than the last, so that probably won't work.

I am trying to tell myself that we can afford this (we can; so sayeth the budget). And we could pay it off tomorrow (which again, we can, but there are many other things we should spend that money on).

But then that nagging voice inside me reminds me how easy it is to lose a job in this economy (which has improved, but is still not great). Or all the other things that can go wrong.

And then I wonder, do others fret about this stuff as much as I do? Or do they just buy what they want, credit card interest or no money in the bank be damned, and am I just the silly one?

I do not know.

But I am determined to worry a little less this time around.

Here's hoping I did not just jinx myself...


bluzdude said…
There's nothing wrong with being cautious about spending, especially on high-ticket items. I think buying the truck is a prudent use of funds... a big repair is lost money... you'd eventually have to replace it anyway.
Jessica R. said…
I am 100% like you! I go into panic mode any time we have to spend big money. And this impending maternity leave / pay situation has had me losing sleep for months now.
Facie said…
Glad I am not alone. But I have to admit, I was hoping someone would say that they spend until they drop.
chris h. said…
You should feel good that you care so much and are so careful -- waaayyy too many people don't and aren't. It sounds like you made a good purchase (used is the way to go). Autos are a necessary expense -- and it's not like you went out and bought a sports car. We, too, struggle with the idea of financing a car vs. paying cash -- hate the thought of monthly payments, but also hate to see the huge drain in savings.
Mel said…
facie, you can look me in the eye with no fear. finance gurus make suggestions, but every situation is unique and I even have friends who lease (shudder) and I keep my mouth shut. I have no say. I can only say what works for most and what works for us. our savings is still not built up where it should be, but we try to be wise, pray a lot, and trust that God will provide. and He does. so, I suspect you will be just fine. ; )
Facie said…
Thanks, Chris and Mel. Chris, it is nice that someone else gets my concern. And, Mel, I have to say that we were seriously considering leasing. Bri works from home, so he tends to put only a few thousands miles on his vehicles per year (he drives a company car when he travels anywhere for work). But Dave should at least be happy I neither leased nor bought new. :-)

Popular posts from this blog


Lately, I have had some anxiety. I have been waking up within an hour of when I fall asleep (partially because my bladder has its own timetable). And then I lie awake, worrying about various things. Mostly I worry that I am failing as a parent. I worry that I allow my child to be disrespectful to me more than she should. I worry that I am not forcing my shy child to do more things. And I worry that the few things I am pushing her to do will make her resent me. I worry that she gets stressed about school. I worry that she is bothered because she does not have a lot of friends. I worry because I don't know why that is.

I worry that we will be stuck in our house in our bad school district, a place where we would not send our child to high school when she graduates in two years (two years!). Then I worry that our somewhat introverted child will have to go to cyber school. Because there is just no way that we could afford to send her to Catholic high school, for which tuition is curren…

Why I am an "Other"

Last month while I was getting my driver's license picture taken, I tried to change my political party affiliation. For whatever reason, my choices were Democrat, Republican, Other, and None. But first, how I got there.

I registered as a Democrat when I first registered to vote, just before the '92 election. At that time, I was "kind of" liberal (for growing up in a somewhat rural area in western PA), and pretty much all of my relatives were registered that way, so it made sense. I was not really into politics at that young age, however.

As I got into my late 20s, I started to realize I was becoming more conservative, so a few years later, when it was time to renew my driver's license, I changed to Republican. I still remember the day at work when I told my coworker Anne that I was really a Republican. She told me she had known it for years. During the 2008 election, I was on board with John McCain running for president, mostly because I thought he was a good pe…

My first and hopefully my last biposy (or I would rather be at the beach)

This past Monday afternoon I had my biopsy. Up until Sunday night, I was not worried. In fact, I was never really concerned about having cancer; it was the needle part that bothered me. As it turns out, there is more than a needle; there is an actual incision. So it was not surprising that I only got a few hours of sleep. But on a positive note, I cruised right down the Parkway that morning, being the Monday before the 4th, so there was that.

I got there at the prescribed 30 minutes ahead of time; in fact, it was probably close to 35 minutes! I had to wait about 10 minutes, during which I could feel my seat vibrate (still not sure about that; I was tired but I don't think I was imaging it). Then I went back, changed, and waited in the "gowned waiting area" for no more than 5 minutes. Not even enough time to find out whose twins Jennifer Garner was pregnant with! WARNING: What follows will be detailed, though not too graphic.

Then I went back to a room, where someone as…