Very proud of my family

I don’t normally talk about my family in glowing terms, but this time I’m doing it.

My brother cleared his student loans last week!!!

Extremely proud.

Naturally, I pushed him to budget (I must have been a really nagging, annoying sister waving my budget spreadsheet in his face), but he’s done it and I think it’s fabulous.

Took him 4 years, and a whole mess with the collections agencies, but he made it out.

He now has an extra $1500 a month to put into savings (must remember to nag about that emergency fund next).

He’s a natural born cheapskate and saver, so I am not worried at all about his spending habits.

He wrote to me in a text message: “Freedom is mine”. 🙂

I know he doesn’t read the blog but I am just so proud of him I could burst.

Moving back to Toronto soon

In a couple of months we’ll be back in Toronto to wait it out for the next contract (long story I’ll explain later), but hopefully to get into the States ASAP.

I called my mom to talk about the subject, telling her that BF and I would be moving into that basement they have, but we’d be paying her rent.

My mom went quiet, and told me that anything she could do to help us would be done and that we didn’t have to pay rent or owe her anything to move back in.

I was touched.

Then I laughed and told her I was okay for money for the next year or two without working, and that we WANTED to give her the money.

She told me that she didn’t want our money because she knew I was not on a contract at all.

And besides, it’s really more of my father that demands exacts the rent, not my mother.

But I told her we’d pay her rent anyway. It wouldn’t feel right not doing so.

I also promised a packed lunch every day (she’s admitted to me she eats out at McDonald’s every day!!!), nightly dinners cooked, snow shoveled (she’s in her early 60s) and any kind of help we can give them around the house that she needs.

She said okay, but asked that I help her type up papers, bake with her and promise to play the piano every night for her.

🙂 Deal. 🙂

I know she is also secretly pleased she will have company every night, as she’s alone in that house all by herself, and gets scared easily.

My dad doesn’t live with her during the week — he stays with my sibling and only comes back on the weekends to work.

My family is pretty awesome

I only talk about the bad things because it’s something that affects me for a long time, because I keep thinking about it over and over again.

And I feel the need to let it out.

I just forget to also mention the good things about my family.

And there ARE good things.

Sure, my parents were lacking in the money management department, lied to me about promising to pay for our tuition and made a lot of mistakes that some might find unforgivable…

But they weren’t alcoholics or abusers who forgot to feed us, smoked drugs or cigarettes around their asthmatic children and didn’t care about us.

They just didn’t know any better.

Which can be a hard and frustrating excuse to accept in hindsight, but it’s better to forgive and forget than to dwell on it.

They were just very “hands-off” as parents, rather than being too involved in our lives.

We never had curfews, got straight A’s through school,  never stayed out past 9 p.m., or drank alcohol until we turned 19, or did any illegal drugs (at least in my case, I can’t say the same for my siblings).

The only “bad” thing I did was move out when I was 19 on my own, picked up a full-time job and worked throughout college, because I was so frustrated and angry with my situation at home.

It helped us grow up to be very independent for the most part, and we learned quickly, the lessons of life.

We’ve all avoided becoming addicted to drugs and gambling, have good jobs, our heads screwed on straight and a relatively normal life, which is all my parents wanted anyway.

So they couldn’t have gone very wrong in the parenting department.

It’s something that can be hard to understand.

But we are VERY close. Not as a bunch of huggers who say “I love you” to each other all the time, but we are pretty tight knit in times of crisis.

I know if I needed anything or if I was in a lot of trouble, I just have to ask for help and I’d get anything I need — money, shelter, food, etc.

But for all of us, the asking is the hardest part, so we’ve just never asked for help and dealt with our problems on our own.

About the Author

Just a girl trying to find a balance between being a Shopaholic and a Saver. I cleared $60,000 in 18 months earning $65,000 gross/year. Now I am self-employed, and you can read more about my story here, or visit my other blog: The Everyday Minimalist.