I’ve spent some time reflecting recently – I always do this in the springtime. Generally, I take a little time out of each day and journal some of my thoughts/feelings. I consider how far we’ve come (myself personally and us as a family).
Our lives as a married couple started four years ago. We got married on March 18, 2019, and promptly moved to Atlanta from Charlotte four days later. At the time, my husband had got what seemed like the job offer of a lifetime. So, we canceled our larger wedding plans, got hitched at the courthouse, and moved within two weeks’ time.
When we made the decision to move to Atlanta, we both thought it would be a positive change. However, when we arrived there, we discovered it was anything but that. Not only was my hubby’s dream job not what it seemed to be, but we were also close to being homeless again as soon as we got there. Here’s how it all unfolded…
Discovering The Scam
Before making the decision to move to Atlanta, my husband and I went down to scope out the area. Plus, he would be in charge of running a Porsche shop there. He had to sit down for an interview and get to know more about his responsibilities. Over the weekend that we visited, we both felt like this would be a great opportunity for him. Both of us were also excited to live in a new city too (we’ve always had the travel bug).
After getting back to Charlotte, we told our family and friends that we’d decided to make the move. We set a date for our quick wedding and made our plans to leave.
We were in Atlanta for less than a month when things started going wrong. It was clear that there was something amiss at the shop my husband had been put in charge of. His paychecks were irregular, if they came at all. Eventually, customers started coming to the store asking about the owner and accusing him of stealing their expensive cars.
As it turns out, that is exactly what happened. The owner stole these Porsches, put them on a boat, and sent them to Germany – where he was. He had no intention of coming back and things were going down hill quickly. On top of that, we were staying in his home (as part of my husband’s pay).
When the mail came, we were getting foreclosure notices, along with a lot of other worrisome details. So, I decided to do some background checks on the employer. He was an international criminal and we were stuck living in his home, my husband working for him. At the time, we didn’t have any connections in Atlanta. It was just the two of us. And it was beyond stressful.
One of my husband’s clients came in and they were talking. As it turned out, he had a studio apartment available to rent. We worked it out to at least get out of the owner’s house. However, we were paying $1,300 per month for a 450-square-foot apartment that had bed bugs, outdated appliances, and plumbing problems.
Better than being homeless though!
And Then COVID Happened
My husband found another job in the area and we started making a life for ourselves in Atlanta. We made a few friends and life was improving. As you know, about a year after we got married and moved there, COVID turned the world upside down.
In Atlanta, COVID restrictions were difficult. Then, the summer of 2020 brought a number of riots to the city. My husband’s shop closed down, he was home with me throughout the day. Things were difficult. In fall of that year, my family in NC needed some help, which had us traveling back and forth to Charlotte a bit.
After some consideration, we both decided moving back closer to home would be a good decision. My mom offered to help with moving costs and that was that. We were back in North Carolina by December 1. Luckily, too, because we found out one month later that we were expecting our first child.
Four Years Later
Things have drastically changed in the last four years. My husband now works from home full-time. We work alongside each other for two very different companies – and I wouldn’t change a thing. It’s great having him home throughout the day and he has a much more fulfilling career. We don’t have to scrape change to buy the things we need and we are making progress towards our goals all the time. It took a lot of hard work to get here, but I couldn’t be happier with how far we’ve come.
All of this to say, if you are standing in the middle of the hellfire that can be life sometimes, hold on. Things can and will get better, especially if you put in the work.
Amanda Blankenship is the Director of Social Media for District Media. In addition to her duties handling everything social media, she frequently writes for a handful of blogs and loves to share her own personal finance story with others. When she isn’t typing away at her desk, she enjoys spending time with her daughter, husband, and dog. During her free time, you’re likely to find her with her nose in a book, hiking, or playing RPG video games.