Last month at about this time, I wrote a post about how life seemed to be throwing a lot of shit our way and was beginning to wonder just how big of a shovel I’d need to dig myself out of it all. We’d just been (predictably) stung with paying two insurances, (home and vehicle) the weather continued to suck with grey skies, sleet, and of course lots of rain, rain, and more rain darkening the city skies. We discovered that our van was in desperate need of a single repair to the steering column, which was estimated at $1,000; and let’s not forget that our washing machine had also abruptly decided to stop working at the exact same time causing me to believe I would probably have to replace, and the “Held-Together-By-Duct-Tape” dryer that lives atop it.
As you can tell, these were not exactly all components of the “Debt and Stress-Free Life of Luxury” I’d been hoping to live, right? But in the end I decided that it was “Just the way it goes”, and sucked it up because (a) I really had no choice, and (b) we needed all these things taken care of if we were to live our lives properly and – in the case of the van – safely. To say I was financially freaked out is an understatement!
Anyways, it’s almost 30 days later, and I thought it would be interesting to see how each of these 4 key factors actually played out, mostly to see if they were really worth all of the grief and stress they caused me at the time. So here they are, in order:
Insurances Paid Off – Eh, no; both amounts are still sitting on my credit card to the tune of around $1,100. Freaking out was definitely warranted.
Crappy Weather – This definitely got much better! It’s not perfect, but was good enough to inspire a photo post about Spring in Victoria. Oh, we still see a fair bit of rain, but at least we aren’t in Atlantic Canada right now!
Van Repair – Ugh… no, and it got worse since the bill actually came in at $1,291.42! Mo-fo!! So just like the insurances before it, this large amount is also sitting on the visa waiting to be taken care of; pass the tissues please – I think I’m going to cry…
Washing Machine – The one bright spot out of this whole mess; Paula decided this was probably a broken drainage pump (you know, the one we replaced last year) so I did a bit of hunting around and picked one up for $124.57. This was seriously a whole lot cheaper than buying a new washer / dryer combo! Paula installed it and – Yippee – a savings of over $1,900 was realized! God I love that woman!
In the end, we still had to rack up a fair bit of debt (Around $2,500) to take care of these items; but the good news is that we are fully insured, have a van that’s safe to drive my family around in, and a machine that both washes AND drains our clothes; and as I write this, the sun is shining outside! Even better, is that we have already filed our tax returns and will get enough back to (a) pay off this debt, (b) pay for our annual vacation to Puerto Vallarta, and possibly (c) have a wee bit left over… if that’s the case, I will say “Hello!” to a brand new 55″ Big Screen T.V. and Blu-Ray player! Woo Hoo!
So what’s the moral to my story? Pretty simple really: I feel it’s best to just deal with all the stuff life throws at you – regardless of how shitty and inconvenient it is – because it’s important for your lifestyle to do so; that means always take care of the important things like vehicle repairs, insurance, etc. It’s also wise to be as cautious as you can with your money; don’t be foolish and buy something new when you can as easily repair an old one; always hunt to get the best deals on everything, and ultimately know that tough times will eventually pass, and that YES, the sun WILL shine again one day! But here’s the thing – if you are cautious and diligent about handling these things, like us you may also be surprised at the end of it all by actually coming out ahead.
If this is the case I highly suggest you reward yourself by visiting a gorgeous beach or poolside cabana bar somewhere hot and exotic! You certainly will have earned it! Cocktails, anyone?
Readers: Do you stress out when life seems to throw a whole bunch of problems at you all at once? Or, like me, have you ever looked back a while later and thought “Hmmm… that really wasn’t THAT bad…? Let me know in the comments below!