Two and a half years ago, we set out on the Dave Ramsey Total Money Makeover (TMM) journey. At that time, I had mountains of student loan and “keeping up with the Jones” type debt staring us in the face. The idea of that debt being gone seemed like a dream. I couldn’t fathom getting rid of 65k+ of debt in the two year time frame that Joe had set for us. Talk about a lofty goal, I thought! But after reading the TMM book, I started to realize that we COULD do it. It was just going to take some sacrifice. I’ll admit, I liked the idea of being debt free…I just wasn’t sure about the whole “sacrificing” to make that happen. I feared that all my “fun” would be taken away, but I quickly learned that living on a budget and telling my money where to go was actually really freeing (and even a little bit fun!).
One of the biggest sacrifices “we” made was when we decided to sell Joe’s BMW M5 to pay down some debt. Now I say “we”, but really this was a HUGE sacrifice for Joe. He went from driving his dream car that he loved (nearly) as much as me to driving my old 1997 Toyota Corolla, “Mary”.
Let’s chat about Mary for a bit, shall we? Mary has been in the family for a long time. Mary first came to us when my sister got her. I think I was maybe 14 or 15 at the time and I thought Mary was awesome. When it was time for me to take my drivers test, Mary was what I used. Then a couple years later, I got to call Mary my own. This was the car I drove cross-country out to Arizona. It was the car I drove my college friends around in freshman year. And, for the past 2 years, it has been the car that Joe drives to and from work everyday. Mary has been with us a LONG time, and while she has been super reliable…she’s old as heck and not exactly fun to drive anymore (sorry Mary!).
When we said Bye Bye to the Beamer in August 2012, we decided that we wouldn’t buy another car until A. we had completed the TMM Baby Step #2 (being debt free other than the mortgage) and B. we would be able to pay cash for it.
We had a few things that took priority over being “gazelle intense” about paying off our debt, namely our 4 adoption attempts, but by God’s grace we still completed our goal in roughly the timeframe we originally set out on. We have officially completed Baby Step #2 and are debt free other than our mortgage! We did it!!! And this week, Joe got to reap some of the benefits of our hard work when he brought home his “new”, paid-in-full BMW 325!
I love seeing this eye candy in the driveway and love what it symbolizes; patience, wisdom, commitment and accomplishment. I’m so proud of my hubby who not only talks the talk, but walks the walk. You earned this, love! Onto Baby Step #3, 4, 5 and 6 <3.
Oh, and in case your’e wondering about Mary…we’re still keeping her! I’m pretty sure she’ll be with us until she dies. Which at this rate will be when I’m in my 50s LOL!
P.S. For those of you who are where we were 3 years ago, let me just say, YOU CAN BE DEBT FREE TOO! I know it can be really intimidating when you have thousands of dollars of debt staring down at you, but you can do it. I HIGHLY recommend reading the Total Money Makeover. It’s an easy read and it may be just the thing you need to get started on your journey towards a debt free life. Take it from me, who was a total skeptic, it is totally worth it. And if you are willing to do the work and commit to the journey, it WILL work for you!