Guest post by Jen Leo
Three years ago…
My husband was laid off. I was five months pregnant and we had copious amounts of bills from spending six years of marriage living beyond our means. Gratefully, I was still able to work full-time, but the unemployment compensation was substantially less than what my husband had been making.
It took six months before my husband found another job, and in that amount of time, we learned that we could live on much less than we thought.
Fast forward a year…
My heart’s desire is to stay home with our son, and we’ve learned from those six months that we can make it work with a tighter budget. So I quit my full-time job and took a job as my church’s secretary working only about 12 hours a week.
My husband is still gainfully employed but our budget is tight so I start following blogs like MoneySavingMom.com to learn how to stretch our dollars. More importantly, I read a life-changing book by Dave Ramsey called The Total Money Makeover and decide to focus all of our energy into paying off debt.
This past year…
On a smaller income than we’ve ever had, we have managed to pay off two credit cards, two hospital bills, and one student loan (roughly $3000), plus put aside $1000 in an emergency fund.
After we paid off our final credit card, my husband was let go from his job…again. While this was a considerable blow to us emotionally, and our fervent prayer is for him to find work soon, I know that because of our diligence over the past year we can breathe a little easier on the financial front.
This layoff is going to be much different since I’m no longer working full time and we have a three-year-old at home. I’m not going to lie, I find myself stressing over how we’re going to make it. But I also look at the three years he was employed as a “transition”.
This job allowed us to pay off thousands of dollars of debt and has allowed us to have a small cushion to fall back on in this unexpected time. It’s also freed us up for my husband to find a job he really likes that may make less money than we’re used to because we don’t have this debt hanging over our heads.
I will choose to look at this time as another growing opportunity and another example of how God will bless us if we’re faithful.
Jen Leo shares her life with a wonderful husband, an amazing son, and two dogs. Next to her family, her greatest passions are quilting and finding a great deal!