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Blast From The Past…

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Hi Friends! It’s Beks! I blogged from 2009 – 2012. I slogged through some pretty miserable debt during those years. I’ve been invited to do a cameo post. What have I been up to since becoming debt free?

Whelp, I went back into debt…to the tune of $70,000. And no, that’s not a typo. SEVENTY THOUSAND.

Yeah. Y’all would have lost your minds if I had still been here.

Around 30K of that was within 6 months of becoming debt-free. I was pregnant with my second child, incredibly emotional, and driving a car that died at stoplights. Rather than do something silly like fix my car or buy a car we could actually afford, we bought a brand-spankin’ new car. Then, because heck, we were already in debt, we just. kept. going.

We continued this irresponsible behavior until I was on maternity leave with baby #3. I could only afford 6 weeks with this precious bundle. I was looking at our debt payments and realized I could be a stay-at-home mom if we hadn’t been such financial idiots.

I felt sick.

It took three miserable years to knock out the debt the second time. We had baby #4 during that period (kids are awesome). We always followed Dave Ramsay’s advice to set aside extra debt payments until after babies are born. Without going too far into it, we learned why that was good advice. Emergency C-section, NICU, delayed recovery. All painful things that would be made more difficult without a financial buffer. We brought the baby home, paid off the rest of the debt, and cried really, really, really happy tears.

Here’s what I learned… living debt-free needs to be a lifestyle, not a temporary diet. It was a lesson we had to learn twice.

We have been debt-free for 2.5 years now. We’ve paid cash for everything since including two cars. We have an emergency fund. We invest. We have become more generous. We have peace.

In a couple weeks, my husband will become a stay at home dad. It took 7 years longer than I thought because of self-inflicted stupidity but we made it.

You can too.


12 Comments

  • Reply Christy |

    Hey Beks! You were blogging when I first started reading this site! I’m so glad to hear you’re doing well. And 4 kiddos! That’s awesome

  • Reply Katie |

    Good to hear from you!! I love these update posts from past bloggers. Congrats on the family and getting debt-free again.

  • Reply Cwaltz |

    I was not here when you blogged earlier but it so nice to hear and see someone who made it to the other side and now has been practicing good choices for awhile now. It might be nice if the owner offered you a job and let you talk about some of the financial principles you learned the hard way.

    • Reply Cheryl |

      Yes. It would be great if you could let others know just how you managed to change your life.

  • Reply Sandra |

    Hi Beks! ‘Good to hear from you. Years back it seems as though your brother was temporarily staying with you and your husband, and you were doing some remodeling to your home. It’s great to hear you have a lovely family now! Were you able to fit all six of you in the same house?
    By the way, congrats on your getting back to a debt-free lifestyle!

    • Reply Beks |

      My brother moved out shortly before my first son was born. Good memory!
      Yes! We still live in that house. Six months ago, we debated selling our small home and started looking at larger homes but realized that it would create a tight budget. We are so debt averse that we decided to stay in our current home a few more years until we can save up a larger down payment. We are in a 3 bedroom/2 bath home. It’s tight, but all six fit. : ) We spend most weekends camping anyway.

  • Reply Canan Onat |

    Hi Beks! great to hear from you again. You did such a wonderful job while you were posting here. Sorry to hear that you needed another debt load for the lesson to stick. Congrats on being debt-free (hopefully for good this time) again and on the babies.

  • Reply Sandra J |

    Thanks for the update! Can’t believe it been so long. And congratulations!

  • Reply Laura |

    I miss your writing! Your honesty, determination, and perseverance were inspirational! We raised four kids (all but one are grown and flown), so I know how very busy you must be to write here again. Great update—even with the step back because you didn’t stay there!

    • Reply Beks |

      Aw! Thank you! Always good to hear that people survive after raising four kids! It’s crazy but seriously amazing. If they weren’t so darn expensive, we’d have more!

  • Reply Angie |

    I appreciate your honesty and humility. You could have easily ridden off into the sunset and pretended you stayed debt free forever.

    I do find it interesting that you copped to a new car (that can be easily explained and deemed necessary though not 30k necessary). But then there was 40k in “other” debt. Did you just maintain your lifestyle for years on credit cards or did other big life events (funerals, medical costs) cause this number?

So, what do you think ?