Whatever Made Me Think That I Was Number One I Oughta Know Easy Come, Easy Go Sittin’ It Out, Spinnin’ The Dial Thinkin’ About The Chump I’ve Been

I’m going to go on the record right now as being severely, anti-poverty.  I don’t like it.  I don’t think it’s fair and no one should have to deal with it.  Least of all, me.

Unfortunately, simply stating that fact doesn’t do a whole lot to alleviate the problem, so I’ve had to take additional action.  Nearly two weeks ago, I laid off my therapist, who I had to pay out of pocket, and now that’s $75.00 less per week that I’m spending.  With this being a new year, my optional Health Care Spending account which I used to pay for my Invisalign braces is paid off and no longer part of my expenses.    That’s $550.00 a month more money in my pocket than I had before.  Which is important because I have fallen behind on all of my bills and all three of my credit cards were over the limit.

So it is with very mixed feelings that I now report that today is payday.  I’ve just finished paying bills.  I’m still a month behind on most of them.  But I’m making progress.  The bad news is, I’m still one month behind on almost all of my utility bills.  The good news is, I’ve paid enough on my credit cards that, as long as I don’t use them, and I must not use them, they will not go over their limits when the next round of outrageous  finance charges comes through.

I am, historically, tragically bad at managing money.  It is my goal to improve that these first months of 2009.  This year, I intend to catch up on, and keep current with, all of my utility bills.  I intend, this year, to pay off my credit cards.  In actuality, I only owe about $2300.00 so I hope to be able to do that fairly quickly.  I had intended to cancel two of the three cards, but I learned yesterday from Suze Orman, she of the distractingly unattractive teeth, that canceling my cards will negatively affect my FICO Score so I’ll just put the cards away and forget about them.  If I can complete this task this year, then I intend to build up some savings.  All the while I have to stay constantly vigilant about not spending money, and not buying things because I tend to lose track of what’s come through the bank and what hasn’t.  I tend to spend money, thinking I have plenty of money to spend only to realize that I spent more than I had and now I’m starting off in the hole.  I’m really tired of giving the bank my money.  I’m tired of paying fees for going over limits and overdrawing accounts.

So right now, I’m struggling with mixed emotions.  I feel good to have taken some positive steps to improve my financial situation.  I feel like I’ve done the right thing as far as taking action to get out from under this debt.  I’m also angry.  I’m angry to have to pay out the vast majority of my paycheck, not 12 hours after it went into my checking account, to make that happen.  I’m angry to have to face the next two weeks (really more like two years) having to constantly keep in mind that I can’t spend money.  To have to constantly remind myself that I’m working to not have debt and the only way to do that is to not spend money and not buy things and just pay bills.  It all just sucks.  A lot!

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