‘The Year Of No’ monthly report: May

Even though I felt like this month has felt a little slow, we are now a step away from the end.

For the month of May, we paid off $1,979.39. We have $1,676.75 left.

Through some creative budgeting (it’s fine, really – nothing crazy), it appears the final debt payment will be June 15, 2018. God willing, we are two weeks away from being debt free.

I make that prediction with a strong degree of caution. Things could happen in two weeks. Emergencies could come up, or some tragedy could befall us that would mean it gets postponed.

In addition, we’ll have a child’s birthday party to pay for out of the next pay period. That alone will require a little creative party planning to pull off.

Alas, here we are. Many mistakes have been made along the way, but now we have wisdom. We have tried to wander out of debt, but now we are running. We used to be losers. But now, we are winning.

This will be one of the longest stretches of time in my adult life.

Bring it on.

From a waterfall to a trickle

Things were going so well.

I suppose it’s not fair to say that things aren’t going well, but the momentum has certainly slowed down quite a bit. The extra income has halted, and now we are stuck with simply being patient. That is certainly not one of my better qualities.

Geez. Some people are never satisfied.

As it stands now, we should be finished paying off our debt sometime in June. I have a date in mind, but I’m hesitant to pronounce it publicly. I don’t like to count my chickens before they hatch. I have learned that lesson. So many times I’ve purchased something on credit thinking, “Well, we can afford the payments” or “We’ll have this paid off early” only to have something happen that prevents that from coming true.

That is not a good mindset to have, and it’s one that isn’t part of my thinking anymore. We’ll just be patient, and if it pays off by the date I plan, then great. If not, then we’ll keep plugging away.

There were a couple of expenses that have come up so far this month I forgot to plan for. In our state, older vehicles (definitely ours) need inspected either annually or semi-annually depending on what year they are (odd or even). And of course there’s the annual renewal of license plate tags that I totally forgot about. Granted, these weren’t huge expenses to take care of, but it slowed our momentum down a little bit this month.

That’s all to say that we haven’t cut any more links off the debt chain since April 30. Given the rate we have been paying things off, that feels like an eternity. That’s not to say we haven’t paid on the debt, it just wasn’t enough to warrant cutting off another link. However, the next paycheck is at the end of the month and the progress will continue.

So, we wait. With waiting comes more restraint. It’s so tempting to let off the gas now that it feels like we’re close to the finish line. But now is not the time for celebration. Now is the time to keep going as we have since the beginning of this year: head down, nose to the grindstone, determined and focused.

As others have learned, never celebrate too soon: