Difficult Times

I keep thinking that things are going to get easier in my life, and then I’m always wrong.

At the moment, I’m still in a rental car, still staying with a friend, and there’s a problem with my phone…

And my finances aren’t exactly great. Instead of being able to save up to get either a new car or into a place of my own, all my money goes to that silly rental car.

mini-cooper-auto-model-vehicle

The problem is that it’s not even a good car. I mean, don’t get me wrong, it’s not a crappy car exactly, but it’s not what I would buy for myself. For one thing, the Nissan logo fell off the front of the car. I accidentally popped the hood instead of the gas cap, and when I shut the hood, the Nissan logo fell off onto the ground…

Seems a little ghetto…

And don’t even get me started on the old lady smell! Although, admittedly, that’s almost gone thanks to a friend of mine giving me a clip-on air freshener that goes in the air vent.

So it is better than no car at all, but then today I woke up to a flat tire.

No problem, right? It’s a rental car, so all I have to do is call and they’ll take care of that… but I’m having issues with my cell phone at the moment and can’t make outgoing calls. And I can’t afford a new one at the moment, nor could I go pick one up if I could because of the flat tire!

And my roommate had already left by the time I noticed it.

So I limped over to the nearest gas station, bought a can of fix-a-flat, and prayed. Now I’m at the library, trying to not panic, and just hoping that I can figure out how I’m going to get everything done, and all the financial things worked out.

walletsqueeze

Mostly because I don’t want the Boy to even know there’s an issue.

Something tells me he’d react the way the Artist did, and tell me that my situation proves I’m not as stable as he’d thought I was… mostly because I’m not.

He had asked me one time if I was good with money, and I’d told him I get my bills paid, but that I don’t really understand it, so I’ve always known that what I needed was someone to take care of the important things and then just tell me what was left over that I could spend.

I don’t think he thought that was a good answer, but it wasn’t a bad enough answer for him to decide to get rid of me before we’d actually gotten to know each other.

But he’s also said that he’d be more seriously analyzing me to see what kind of person I was if he thought there was a possibility that this had serious long term potential. He’d said that the one thing he really didn’t like was a woman who felt like everything had to be done for her. My answer about not wanting to deal with money may have been a strike against me.

strikeone

If he knew that I was struggling just to make ends meet all the time at the moment, he’d probably want to run far, far away. Not that I’d blame him. It is frustrating to me, and I am the one trying just to survive!

I read this article the other day (I’ll be damned if I can find it again) that was talking about how when you’re poor, things that are only an inconvenience for people with privilege are serious obstacles when they happen to you. Since I’ve been stuck paying for my rental car, I’ve overrun my checking account every pay period, and then my next check is short to cover the overdraft fees.

Which then means the next check is even shorter, and I overrun my account faster, and yet, half the time, the amount I overrun it wouldn’t have been overrun if it hadn’t been for the fees from the two weeks before…

It’s a vicious cycle.

tripletsof belleville

I need a random extra pay check in order to get caught up… and until summer, I don’t think I’ll be able to make that happen. I’m not one of those people who can work two jobs at once. I can’t focus well enough for that. And all those “work at home,” “get rich quick” jobs never seem legit.

I did tutor for a while. I enjoyed that, and it didn’t really feel like a second job, but you have to actually get a client base put together in order to make that happen, and in order to do that, you have to work for someone first, which means you make a third what you would make working for yourself.

Plus I don’t want to stay in this area to live, so it would be a bad plan to stay around here to tutor. It just makes it more likely that I’ll be driving in rush hour traffic more often. And if I end up changing school districts, then I’ll have to go out of my way to keep my tutoring students. When I tried it before, the biggest issue was that my students weren’t anywhere near each other, or even near me, really, so I was spending almost everything I made in gas money, which led to a lot of road rage.

roadragesimpson

It was not a good plan.

We do have an after school program at the school that someone asked me if I’d do to help the football players, since I stay late most days anyway. It’s an extra $30/hour, and that might be what I need to get caught up, but it doesn’t help my immediate situation.

To get back to that article for a moment (because I found it!)…

In the article, she talks about how she lost her job over getting her car towed. The amount it cost to get it back was more than she had readily available, and by the time she had the money in hand, there were a ton of extra fees that made it still more than she had. The result being it was cheaper to sell the car then it was to pay for it, but that left her without a vehicle, causing both her and her husband to lose their jobs.

And that’s the sort of debt situation I’m up against, and why I don’t talk about it with pretty much anyone, oftentimes including my mother.

People who know that I’m a teacher assume that I just blow my money, but they don’t know what I’m up against with the debt (student loans, previous credit card debt, and various other things) already. So when they hear things like I’m staying with a friend and paying minimum bills, they assume that I should just be saving tons of money, and that just isn’t true.

And because I’m technically middle class, there’s no real support I can get. The one time I tried to get government support, I was in college, and the response at that time was that if I dropped out of college, I could work enough hours to not need assistance. And now I work enough hours, but still need assistance, but on paper make too much to get assistance.

So round and round I continue to go.

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And constantly trying to make ends meet when it’s just not enough means that I end up making bad financial decisions just to survive… Mostly because the constant struggle means my credit is so bad that I can’t even make a smart decision to get myself out of trouble.

It’s frustrating. Let me tell you.

Even filing for bankruptcy is going to be a bit complicated for me because there’s been an issue with my taxes in the past, and I’ve moved enough that I don’t know exactly where all that paperwork is at the moment.

Super duper frustrating.

angryscream

But I’ll figure it out somehow.

In theory.

Thanks for listening to me; I really needed to vent today.

And keep your fingers crossed for me, please.

 

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4 thoughts on “Difficult Times

  1. Trenette Allen says:

    I feel your frustration. Have you looked into financial counseling? A lot of churches have and it’s free. It could help you with budgeting and maybe even debt consolidation. I do night school 2 nights a week and that helps me. I’ll also be teaching both day and night summer school. All so I can pay off some bills. It’s tough but sometimes you have to do what you have to.

    • My bank offers it as well, but right now I’m just in survival mode. I’m definitely going to take them up on the after school tutoring thing for the football players, and I was planning on doing a summer job, I just don’t know what yet. I’m not sure I’m staying at the same district next year, or at least not sure if I’ll be at the same school, so I’m not sure about summer school, but I know the money’s worth it.

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