Friday, February 25, 2011

I did it? I DID IT!!

I am horrible at math.  I have never had a knack for it, and it just baffles me.  I have had problems with finances in the past.  I was terrible at budgeting and even when someone helped me set up a budget I could never manage to stick to it.  Things...wants, always seemed more important at the time(s).

At one point Curt and I had someone take over our finances completely.  That got us in a better position financially, but we had NO freedom.  We were not even allowed to have our debit cards, we had to get them once a week to take out money for groceries.  It was very disheartening to be an adult and not have any control over your own money. 

As you can probably guess, once things got better and bills got paid off we rebelled and to back "control" of our finances.  I use the word loosely because at the time we still had not learned the meaning of control or budgeting.  Someone else had been doing everything and when we asked for "control" again it was basically dropped in my lap and I had no clue when anything was due or how it was being paid, etc.

I got it mostly figured out, and we did okay, again I use the word loosely, for a while.  Old habits die hard, and this was no exception.  Before we knew it we were in a bind again.  Not as bad, but surely not in a good place.  I found myself groveling for help again.  Only this time it was supposed to be different.  This time Curt and I were supposed to be part of the process, and learn how to do it ourselves.  The other person was just supposed to be there for guidance and to make sure everything was being paid.

It didn't even really start out that way, but I didn't realize it at the time.  I was just happy to be getting back on track.  From the beginning this person shut Curt out and hardly explained anything to me.  This person just did exactly as before, just with us in the room, and we were "allowed" to have our debit cards this time.  Let me tell you though, we had to get approval to use them.  Curt more than me, and if I was with this person, I was able to spend money we really didn't have (hindsight being what it is).  We were also able to spend copious amounts if we went out with them but not if we went out with anyone other than them. you see a pattern?

Long story short, it took a while, but instead of rebelling this time when we were ready to try again it was a bit more doable.  There was a notebook with all the information I needed, and I got that, and since I had been in the room most of the time, I had a general idea of what was going on.  I also didn't take things over completely by myself right away.  I did enlist the assistance of someone else, someone who let me do everything and just watched for a bit and answered my questions when I had them.

I now do it myself, with no assistance.  We have a savings with actual money in it, not just a few cents to keep it open (it looked nicer before we went to OK, but I never could have gone on a trip like that w/o help before). 

Here's the kicker, and the reason I told you all of this.  I just did our taxes.  Let me expand a bit.  I have always had someone (like the person doing our finances) or H&R Block do our taxes.  Not this year, I DID OUR TAXES!!  No one else, no help, just me, myself and I!  That may not sound like much to some of you, but to those of you who know how I dread math, and for those of you who know how the last 4+ years have been, this is HUGE!! 

I do have to admit my anxiety kicked in a bit and even though I have had them done since before I left for OK, back on 2/9/11 I waited until last night to submit them.  I wanted to be absolutely, completely, totally sure I had everything I could possibly need.  I figured I had given it plenty of time since most years we have our refund by now.

So it's a first for me, and I got confirmation from federal and state that both e-files were accepted today.  I call this a victory!

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