Tuesday, July 30, 2013


Universe, you are f&*@ing with me, right? One of these things, I can handle. Two---well, it'd be tough but I could deal. But THREE  anxiety-inducing, time and energy sucking problems (on top of the USUAL work/parenting/marriage cluster) all at once? COME ON!

So these are the things that have me tossing and turning all night (when my children aren't randomly waking up screaming, because, yeah I need THAT right now)

1) An unfortunate combination of home repairs, family traveling, annual bills and delays on getting my conference travel reimbursed layered on  a few months of my own indulgent online shopping habit and our "lets go out to eat" compulsion has completely depleted our emergency fund. I even had to transfer $2K out of savings this week to pay some bills before my paycheck is transferred today. Given that we have 2 reasonable incomes, this SHOULD NOT HAPPEN and freaks me out.

We do have a lot of fixed expenses  (mortgage, utilities, childcare, food in a very high-cost-of-living area), and we always "pay ourselves first" in terms of savings/retirement/life insurance/long-term disability insurance (for me) AND we pay extra on our mortgage each month. So when all the "outs" are subtracted, there is not too much to play with, so here we are.

On the positive side, we are getting serious with our budget and talking a lot more about our financial goals and plans. Living frugally also feels more natural and comfortable to me than the more extravagant, lets-throw-money-at-the-problem way we've been going on for the past few years.

But its scary, not knowing how we are going to FINISH the home repairs we were in the middle of...and how we are going to deal with #2 and #3 without said money to throw at them...

2) B started stuttering, pretty severely...and its getting worse over the past few weeks. Our pediatrician said it's common at this age and should resolve on its own in a few months. My reading suggests that he is exhibiting "warning signs" that this is beyond the typical "toddler stutter". Also there is a strong family history---G stuttered severely as an older child and required intense therapy. My father has a mild stutter. Our insurance doesn't pay for stuttering therapy. Right now, we're watching & waiting, and reading a lot (there are great free resources on the internet with tons of information for what parents can do to help their child). Its heartbreaking, though, when he looks at me and asks plaintively "why can't I talk mommy?"

3) And the worst for last. Oh god. Shudder. We got home from a week away to find...an infestation...of disgusting household pests. (I can't even...write about it...ewwwwww). I am afraid to be at home and especially to turn on a light in the dark, or go to the basement to do laundry. I saw one last night when I went to soothe the crying boys and couldn't go back to sleep for several hours, picturing them.... I have done the most revolting internet research in my life to figure out the...species...and the proper DYI method of extermination. Again, there are fabulous free online resources with information on identification and eradication. Supplies are being picked up tonight, including boric acid (only $2 a pound!), powdered sugar and vegetable shortening.

Wine is not helping. I think I need some short-acting benzos...


  1. Everything has to happen at once, right? We're in a similar situation as #1, especially with my maternity leave coming up. We just spent the last few months spending more than we should have, and not saving enough, and now I'm worried about not having enough savings for when I go off work. I think we'll be fine, but if anything major comes up, we might be screwed (I mean, we have emergency funds, but I'd rather not go into those if we can help it).

    #3 freaks me out --- though I'm curious as to what it is, I don't really want to know. I know it's not the same, but I spent a good portion of my week last week dodging giant cockroaches in my hotel --- it gave me such anxiety by the last night that I could barely sleep and was STILL thinking about it for a few days after I got home.

    (((hugs))) to you and hope everything gets better soon!

  2. I feel you on #1. We're in that situation right now, right on the edge and it is very unsettling. I *like* being able to throw money at problems. I've been gradually loosening up the savings so we have more cash flow, but it's hard to do.

    Good luck with #2 and #3.

  3. Wow. That is a LOT to tackle, especially all at once. Jeez, I'm tired just reading about that.

    I feel you on the money. I checked my account recently and realized that I have blown through half of my share (the lion's share) of the tax rebate in three months. That money is supposed to help us get through the next year and it's not okay that I've spent so much of it already. It's totally my own fault; mostly spent on indulgences. We're definitely tightening our belts right now, trying to figure out how to remain in control of our money.

    I'm so sorry about #2, that is a challenge I don't know anything about. I hope it gets better soon.

    As for #3, we've had a terrible any infestation of late but I have a feeling you're talking about something much, MUCH worse. I hope you can get rid of them on your own. Good luck!

  4. I found out on pulm consults recently that cockroaches are a harbor for atypical mycobacteria. Fortunately, this should not be a problem for your fam.

    (Just thought some mild medicine trivia might make you smile. If it didn't work, apologies.)

    I'm sorry things have exploded and I hope they get better soon.

  5. That's a lot to deal with- three of life's biggest stresses: money, a child's health, and insects... Ok, bugs may not be one of life's biggest stresses, but when they're in your house, they definitely climb up the list a little bit. Hugs to you...

    Hope the boric acid works- we recently used it for earwigs (eeewwwww- 'the other cockroach', in my opinion), and it seems to have worked. Good luck...

  6. Oh dear! How WRETCHED! Does sound like you're being whacked with a lot all at once, on top of the normal lot...