Two weeks into the New Year and I'm still working hard at making the little changes to help provide for not only myself and husband in the future, but for my children as well.
We were a young couple, married at 18, our second child on the way before I was twenty. We have come a long way but I think there were some important life lessons, at least financially, that we missed out on. We were too young to take into consideration how important being financial responsible was and to realize how much it could, and would, impact are future in the later years.
We got a first apartment, my husband was doing well, working two jobs and the credit cards were just rolling in. Sometimes credit can be a blessing, but put into the wrong hands, and it can be quite dangerous. I am not ashamed to say we racked them right up! Looking back I wish we would have at least made are purchases on credit worth it, but again, we were young and enjoying what we thought was the freedom of spending and living it up. To us it wasn't a big deal as long as we were making our payments, and we were. As a matter of fact, the more payments we made, the more credit card offers showed up.
Fast forward another year or so. My husband was down to one job as his main employer had since closed their doors. I was at home with two children and no real experience in the work force under my belt. In fact, it was going to cost me more than I would have made to even place my kids in daycare. That, however, did stop those credit card bills from rolling in, and we were drowning quickly. Then we got an offer from one of our credit cards companies that sound appealing - "merge your debts onto one card." In our young minds this sounded great so we started transferring balances from card to card. Eventually we were even using card A to make a payment to card B and so on. Yes, we were headed down a long sticky road!
After a few more long months of struggling, we saw an ad for debt consolidation. It seemed like we had exhausted are other options, and we were not financially stable enough to keep up with our payments as they were. We figured, what harm could come from finding out a little more about consolidating. This actually turned into a great option as we were given a flat balance that we could afford to pay monthly. It took some time, and a hard lesson learned, but we finally got help with credit cards and learned a valuable lesson.
Here we are now in our thirties, and sometimes I think we never learned to budget correctly. I mean our bills are paid on time; we have food in the cabinets but don't save a dollar. We have always had that "you only live once" motto, so why not spend it while you can. I quickly see us on the road to putting more things on credit, and saying we will worry about it later. However as my children and I age, I realize that we should have been saving all along. Time goes by way to fast. I don't want to worry about finally getting out of debt in my golden years. I don't want to struggle to find a way to provide for my kids college education - especially with four of them! I realize credit cards are valubale in emergencies and the unexpected, just make sure you grab the best card help you can when picking a card right for you and your needs.
I have added a lot to my plate this year to better myself and my family. I know with a little hard work and dedication everything will come together.
* Read my disclosure located here