I grew up in a home that was filled with paradoxes about money. My parents both earned very high incomes, but they spent to match it. Lots of money was made, lots was spent, and it seemed to be a constant source of stress. Yet I didn’t learn to fear or even respect money right away. I had everything I needed as a child, and often probably more than was necessary, but somehow always seemed to want for more. As a teenager, I fell into the service industry, where a girl of 16 – 20 can make more money than is reasonable or necessary. This world gave me skewed views on money and the ease of attaining it that I still struggle with today. When you know you can walk out of your next shift with 300$ cash in your pocket, why not blow 300$ on something right now? You’ll just have it back tomorrow, right? This also led me to develop the belief that the lifestyle I could afford and was entitled to was much more extravagant than what was really the case. Armed with these dangerous ideas about money and the ease of attaining it, I decided to go to Hawaii for school. How? By taking out student loans and eventually, by subsidizing my lifestyle abroad with credit cards. I was a dummy, and I was getting myself into some serious debt. As my three years in Hawaii came to a close, and I neared the boundaries of my loans and credit, I began to feel my debt closing in on me like an inevitable doom. I was smart enough to know that eventually, the reaper would come calling. For a while, I just outran it, pretended it didn’t exist, plugged my ears and sang “la la la la la la I can’t heaarrrrrr youuuuuu!” But alas, this could only last for so long.
Eventually, I turned to face the building stress about my finances and decided to move home to Canada, move back in with my parents, and face my debt head on. I thought, “If I don’t pay rent, paying off my debt will be SUPER easy! I’ll be able to do it in no time flat!” However, as time passed, I struggled to find work related to my field of education, and my payments changed from interest-only mandatory capital repayment, I realized this was not going to be as easy as I had hoped. I intend for this blog to be a journal chronicling my struggles, thoughts, realizations, failures, and successes (hopefully!) in letting my debt teach me about personal finance and about life.