One of the problems of transition is that it is expensive. Another problem is that it can make some of us unemployable, and seriously retard the income of those of us who can land jobs. We’re not exempt from the other costs of living, either. These problems nest neatly within each other.
Today I learned that I am several months past due on my student loan payments. I have no one to blame but myself. I conservatively estimate that my current debt obligations, if I don’t take any action to reduce my monthly payment, will top 400 dollars a month for at least the next 6 months. This is assuming I give up on my plan to pay off my credit card by the end of the year and go back to minimum payments.
I want to buy furniture. Soon I will need to buy new clothes. In 3 months, I will be too old to stay on my mother’s insurance, and will have to buy my own. I also need to get renter’s insurance and rebuild my savings.
So what to do about this all? First, keep my job. No matter how much I don’t want to go back to work when my weekend ends, it is my lifeline, and I am grateful for it. Second, reduce my monthly debt load. I think I can consolidate both my major student loans and then extend my repayment horizon out to 25 years. This is more expensive in the long term, but I can switch back to a more aggressive repayment plan later, when I’ve secured better paying employment. Lastly, and this one hurts, I may have to take a hard look at delaying further electrolysis sessions until I’m more sure of my finances. 60 dollars an hour is a mighty big commitment at my level of employment, and my beard has always been light and sparse enough that daily shaving can keep visible stubble under control. A new wardrobe will need to be delayed as long as possible.
Strangely, I feel invigorated by contemplating this. Six months ago, this would put me into a tail spin for a week. Today, it makes me start making a to-do list.
I think I’m getting better.