Welcome to the third installment of My Appendage. If you have been following along, I am writing about my debt. I call my debt my appendage, because it grows. However, like any appendage, it can also be cut off. In these installments, I break down my debt, how I got to this point, what it is doing to me emotionally and physically. I write this for others and for myself. It helps me process my feelings, and keeps me accountable. In hopes I can start to pay off the growth and then burn it at the site.
It’s hard to focus on writing when you’re poor. I can only focus on bills, when I get paid, and who I can pay.
I love to write and if the mood is really striking me, like now, I’ll write about what is stressing me out the most — money.
I have been writing about my debt, how I managed to get into debt, and how I hope to crawl out of it. Let me tell you, though, this is a huge hole, it’s raining, and all I have are pebbles to get myself out, and they are losing ground.
In my last installment, I left with how I was taking in all the credit card offers, and spending an insane amount (insane for me) on things I should have paid cash. However, our income,(mine and my ex husband), decreased tremendously, and never returned.
Eventually, I managed to acquire more credit cards after we were divorced. My student loan debt went from 40,000 to over 60,000 and it is now even more because of accrued interest.
When I moved home, I had a modest amount of credit cards, 3 to be exact. I was paying them very consistently. My bill total for everything was about 1200 a month. Not too shabby. My credit score was average, but I was pretty proud of my around 650 score. Especially, since I raised it from a 320. Ah… the delusion was setting in.
Stupidly, I purchased a Jeep. I had a Toyota. The payments were 285 a month. Very do able.
But let me back track slightly. When I separated from my husband, I moved back home. I moved to my parents house from which I have not left, nearly 3 years later. The reason is because I am stuck.
When I moved home, I found a good job making 16 an hour, (this helped with my delusion). I assumed I would love my job, never quit, and live nicely. As a token of my good fortune, moving away, and my new job, I thought it nice to purchase a Jeep. This Jeep has been a huge financial mistake.
At 32,000 plus the 8,000 owed on my Toyota, I paid a nice 40,000 plus taxes on a 2014 Jeep Wrangler. The payments are 700 a month.
Dumb. Never do this. I, however, was blinded.
I was blinded by a multitude of stupid reasons. But it was cool, because I made good money. I would just work it out, pay on it for a year, and refinance.
However, no one in their right mind will refinance a vehicle when your upside down. I am almost out from under the flood of money accrued from the jeep, but not for at least 6-8 months, and the option is shot now because my credit score is shit.
That isn’t the good part.
Wait, there’s a good part?
I lost my job. 2 months into making payments, getting the title (finally), and thinking I had a handle on my life, my “stability” was gone.
*Note that stability is quoted because you are only stable if you can afford something and your job is secure, none of those fit my description.
Stable was an illusion perpetrated by my false sense of reality.
I was out of a job for one month. The only job I could find was a 9 dollar an hour pay cut.
I was fucked.
So I did what any normal person does. I borrowed money from loan companies. When, I was stuck, again, I borrowed some more. I acquired more credit cards. I accumulated more debt.
But hey, that Jeep payment was made, and sometimes it was made on time. What I wasn’t thinking about was how much I was paying in loan bills. In fact, I wasn’t thinking at all.
I’m still not thinking.
I got another job though. It makes 2 dollars less than my first job when I moved here, so that’s a plus, right? 14 dollars an hour? Much better than 9. However, I am in over my head, at the moment, and I am waiting for my first real checks to come through. It won’t be fast enough, and it won’t be enough money. Things will get turned off and things will get taken away.
Luckily, I have a place to stay, for now.
My total debt is about 130,000 dollars.
All my credit cards are behind, and a few are in collections.
I owe the IRS. I feel like I owe everybody.
The debt climbs.
My stress mounts and it effects me to the core. My depression is worse, and my feelings of never making it grow. However, I must continue to fight. I don’t want to be at an age where I can’t work and I haven’t even chipped away a quarter of this debt.
Writing helps. Even if I force myself to do so. It helps me process my thoughts on the matter and it keeps my accountable. My audience now knows of my appendage and are curious to know what I am doing about it, because, frankly, it scares the kids.
I hope you enjoy this installment and I hope you keep following along. Thank you for reading.