I’ve shared bits and pieces of my financial journey in the past. I do so in hopes that someone will read it and see that it is possible to take baby steps and change your financial future once you open your eyes to the reality that it is even possible!
All of my earliest memories regarding money have to do with how little of it we actually had.
My mom was a single teenage mom with no real financial skills. We were given a few hundred dollars a month for groceries from the state and yet it never seemed to last through the end of the month, and we would find ourselves scavenging for food and my mom would come up with the most creative things to call dinner.
Today I realize how much I could get for a few hundred a month, but for someone who doesn’t have the skills to make the most of their money at the grocery store it was never enough money.
I won’t go into all of the details of how my childhood was shaped by poverty.
I realize that my mom did what she could. But I also realize that as little as she had, she could have made better choices. She needed to change her financial perspective and make some tough choices to get out of the pit she was in. But as she told me a couple years ago, she had no one to show her the way and in fact she didn’t even know there was a way out.
This is one of the main reasons why I share what I have been through here at Saving Dollars and Sense. I know I have a long way to go, but if you are like me and have made it out of the pit and down any length of the road to financial freedom, even if it is only a couple steps, then I feel it is our responsibility to light the way for those still stuck in the bottom of the pit who can’t even see there is a way out.
When I moved out with my husband I took with me many of the poor spending habits my mom had shown me, as well as picked up a few new ones involving credit cards. Unfortunately my husband had a very similar upbringing and had learned just about as much about being financially responsible as I did.
All we knew was when you had money you spent it all, and when you didn’t you were broke.
There was never an in between. And we lived broke a lot of the time.
It took almost losing everything before my husband and I opened our eyes enough to see that we did not have to accept the legacy of debt or poverty that our parents had handed us. In fact we had the power to change our perspective and give our own children a whole new legacy!
We made some huge sacrifices to save our home and get out of debt.
You can read more about that here.
Today, it is not so much about how little we can spend, although we do try to live simply. But instead it is about using the money God has given you in a responsible way so that you do indeed have more than enough to live and give to others.
This is the kind of legacy I want to leave, will you join me?