This morning

I woke up earlier than everyone else per usual. I had gotten a pretty exciting phone call on Tuesday letting us know our tax refund was going to be released by Friday (most adoptive parents claiming the adoption tax refund were “audited” as it were, we were stuck in that for these last months). As both Zach and I are the “we’ll believe it when we see it” kind of people, we checked our account every 15 minutes hour.

This morning at 6:35am it was there. I waited until 7:30 to wake Zach up and deliver the good news.

Then at about 8:30 we sat down in his office and paid bills.

All of them. Cars, school loans, doctors, all of them.

It means one thing.


A huge day for us. It’s been a long time coming. It’s been mentioned here before that Zach and I were a little reckless with our finances when first starting out as a married couple with (then) 2 incomes.

Since coming home from Ethiopia, everything changed. What the hell were we doing trying to keep up with the Joneses? And who the hell are the Joneses anyway?

It was then that we created a pretty strict budget and, more or less, have stuck with it (and even made it stricter from time to time!) for the last 4 years. We whittled down a lot of our past mistakes and gave little toasts to each big bill we paid off.

Today, was just that multiplied. Writing “paid in full” on some of our larger bills? Oh my.

Nothing exciting happening since getting out of debt. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that we now no longer want stuff just to have stuff and now is the first time in our married lives when we can afford stuff.

I know people don’t like to talk about money, I know that. But I’m doing it today to let you know that if you’re in over your heads, it’s not impossible to get out. Believe that. If we can do it, so can you, I promise. But it’s going to take so much work, and probably a lot of time. You let me know and I’ll pray for you, I’ll support you and I’ll love you through it.

Cuz it’s so worth it. Holy cow is it worth it. I’ve been debt free for 12 hours and I’m quite convinced I’ll sleep pretty well tonight.


12 thoughts on “This morning

  1. Oh, Tesi, congratulations!! This is HUGE!!!Being debt-free is such an awesome feeling. I know this first-hand. When I threw out my ex-husband 16 years ago, we had just purchased a house and had a baby, and I had just quit my job to be a stay-at-home mommy!! I can't even describe to you what those first years as a single-working-mom were like. After scrambling to find a job, I spent many, many years literally living check-to-check, and sadly having to occasionally rely on my credit cards. I remember so clearly the feeling of slowly digging myself out of that hole. I now live a very frugal life, more out of habit than anything else. I met with a financial planner not that long ago, who happens to be a close friend, and he laughed at me in his office. "Do you have any idea how far BELOW your means you are living?!" Yes, yes I do, but I don't ever want to go back to where I was!!Again, congratulations on such a HUGE accomplishment!

  2. I'm very happy for you all! What a liberating feeling. PS: We missed you at the Mehaber. We would love to meet the WHOLE family sometime.PPS: By the way, the Jones family lives next door to us…literally! 🙂

  3. What an amazing accomplishment! A million congratulations! I can only imagine how amazing it feels to be debt-free. I feel like every time we come close to paying off our debts, some catastrophe occurs (like coming home from vacation to a collapsed ceiling and learning we need a new roof! ugh!)I'd love to hear more about your debt payoff strategies. I also *really* want to have an emergency fund saved up. Of course we keep using that fund to deal with the aforementioned emergencies. argh!

  4. Congratulations!! Getting serious about our budget and paying off debt was a turning point in our marriage and made such a difference for our whole worldview. Can't say we're entirely there (darn student loans), but I know the liberating feeling that comes with every step. Celebrate!

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