Payday was last Friday. The money was gone by Monday due to bills and groceries at Costco. We won’t see another paycheck until Friday, Oct. 30. We will need milk and formula before then. Thankfully, I have freelance money coming to cover those costs. This scenario is nothing new. It has been happening since I decided to leave my full-time job to become a full-time Mom more than a year ago.
We live off of my husband’s humble salary. He is a Fireman for the city. I freelance to supplement. Frankly, it is not enough. There are public officials who claim a majority of Fire Department employees make six figures. Yes, on paper that is correct. However, those salary figures include benefits. It is a manipulative and politically motivated message. I can assure you we are not a six figure family. We live paycheck-to-paycheck. We are not saving any money. And, sometimes, there just isn’t enough. But we do it anyway. This lifestyle is a choice we made together, knowing it was going to be challenging.
The challenges are worth it. Why? I am free. I have freedom to stay home and watch cartoons with the kids, to do crafts, to go to the park, or to make a snow angel. As a wife, I have freedom to go for a walk with my husband whenever I want, without answering to anyone. As an individual, I have freedom to express my views without worrying about reflecting poorly on my employer. As a professional, I have freedom to take assignments and clients that I believe in, that do good in the community, that are transparent and genuine. There is nothing better than saying “thanks, but no thanks” to an individual known for selfish motives and a manipulative spirit.
I don’t buy expensive wine. I don’t eat out often. I don’t have a fabulous social life. I own one pair of jeans. My children wear hand-me-downs. But, I am free and for that, thankful.