As I think back over the last 365 days, I am astounded by all we have come through. Not even just the last year, the last seven years have been so challenging. Three times I seriously wanted to give up. Not once did that thought win. I knew that God was using me, my situation, my children, and our life to build our testimonies and our characters.
2018 brought me not only freedom from cancer, it brought me freedom of fear of cancer. You’d think fighting for my life would have already taken care of that fear…you’d be wrong.
The final release of the fear and dread that had been following me meant I could finally move beyond cancer. I can move through budget planning, career planning, family planning, and spiritual growth.
I am so excited to start January by giving notice at the job where I am so miserably miserable. I have made connections with staff and students at the elementary school as I had wanted to. I have prayed for my coworkers daily.
I cannot continue to work in a place where my integrity is put into question. Being forced to break rules has been so very difficult. I have brought the issues to light with my boss and it is all I can do. I can only continue to pray vigilance on their part to make the necessary changes to how things work (or don’t work) in that kitchen.
I am looking forward to being a substitute paraprofessional within the school system. I did it at the high school while I was still doing chemo and loved it. Now that I know the kids at all three schools and the staff knows me at all three buildings so my potential is much greater than it was two years ago. Even then I was working (at just the high school) at least 2 days per week; often more.
Working 2.5 days as a para-sub nets me the same as I am making now working 5 days a week in the kitchen. I am confident that I am following God on this one; just as I did when I listened and switched jobs to go to the elementary school.
Even with the trip the boys and I just took to Minneapolis for three days, I’m still able to pay my rent on the first of the month. The substitute work as a cleaner has definitely helped to get us back on our feet. I will be able to continue doing this after leaving my kitchen job.
January starts a new year, a new budget. Recently I have been using more of a pray and hold on type of accounting. Not a true accountability of the money as it comes in and out. Only that I know I have enough to pay the rent on the first and to make the required payments as the month continues.
Actually sitting down and beginning a cash accounting system with a balanced budget and a name for each and every dollar that comes in will be so freeing. I know some people struggle with a budget being restrictive. What they truly don’t understand is that having a balanced budget actually leads to a freedom like none other.
With a budget, I know already exactly how much I have available for A, B, or C. I actually am able to do much more with what little we have; knowing it is all taken care of each month.
(I may or may not have just spent a great deal of time figuring out my budget with an irregular income).
Having to set my priorities when your budget cuts it so close every month is difficult, especially when you can’t start the month with the amount you need for each category and instead have to wait for this paycheck or that child support payment to make the payments.
I am confident though that within a few months I will have a baby emergency fund in place and be well on my way to building a future for myself and my boys.
I am SO PUMPED to be on our way!
I told the boys that we would take a trip in April to celebrate two years being cancer free. We definitely are going to take at least one trip a year from now on. This trip come in under budget at just over $700. That included gas, food, hotel, and all attractions. I thought that to be an awesome price for a four day – three night vacation.
Although a vacation fund does not yet get a line in our budget, any $1.00 or $5.00 that are left over from our money in the gas, personal, and utilities budgets will go into that fund. Instead of adjusting the budget, I know I’m giving us a little wiggle room. I’m doing that as I’d rather be long than short and try to figure it out.
I’m going back to more budgeting…
Both boys are still awake…and trying to stay up until midnight. With only an hour left I might even make it!
Happy New Year Everybody!!