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I Have $3.26 Cents in My Bank Account

by Melissa Steussy 5 months ago in Humanity · updated 5 months ago
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And less in my savings, but it's Christmas, right?

I Have $3.26 Cents in My Bank Account
Photo by Kira auf der Heide on Unsplash

My card declined for a 10 dollar purchase yesterday with my son. I had only $9 and some change. It’s Christmas time, right?

We should have saved all year to get to this point. We should have been better prepared, it comes every year, right?

We’ve done Dave Ramsey twice, shouldn’t we have a savings account and an emergency fund?

We are one step away from our demise, but we keep going.

We have enough for food and gas most of the time.

We each work full-time jobs. We have a child.

We should be better off than this, right?

Is it the universe conspiring against us? Did I not pray hard enough?

Where is the abundance we crave?

Where is that extra money to invest or save?

What about college? What about vacations?

What about car maintenance and things breaking down?

What about a backyard and a new bike?

It’s Christmas, right? We shouldn’t be so broke.

Our dreams should come true at Christmas right?

Or should we keep pretending that we can afford to buy others gifts?

Should we keep our big grins on our Christmas card with our matching outfits neglecting the fight we had last night about the holidays?

Should we brush our anxiety about finances and family under the rug to grin and bear it for one more year, until the year only one of us shows up as our marriage disintegrated under the pressure?

Wouldn’t it be easier to be upfront about issues with money? Wouldn’t it be better to tell the truth and say we can’t afford to do gifts this year and we don’t use credit cards? Wouldn’t it be more realistic and honest to tell the truth instead of pretending?

I know millionaires who are unhappy, but I also know being broke is stressful. It keeps things really simple though if you embrace it.

There are certain things we don’t have to think about. We don’t have as many choices. We can’t go out and buy what we want, we must weigh it against bills and food.

We don’t feel a lot of freedom around money and sometimes it feels like it has a noose around our necks.

There is a stigma about being poor so we try to have the right outfits and cars so we can prove our worth, but what about acknowledging the truth and saying it out loud, “money is a huge issue for us.”

We have some inherent beliefs about money, maybe that we are not worth having it. My husband is miserly and goes without. I buy more than enough to feel secure and it isn’t working for either of us.

I see my kids and see they don’t have that gaping hole that they are trying to fill.

I know money is not the key to happiness and I will be satisfied with my daily bread. I have enough.

It’s humbling to have to put things back at the market, but I’m not willing to live beyond my means anymore.

This is me telling the truth about my money situation. It sucks, but I am done pretending,

It’s stressful and the debt of my past student loan looms in the distance. My fear around the future looms and my fear of people thinking I am inferior is real.

I’m surrendering to my brokeness, my brokeness, not my brokenness.

I am not broken.

I am rising up from my surrender.

I am ready for this or something better.

I am coming out of denial.

This is where I am at.

Fully surrendered.

My means will not define me.


About the author

Melissa Steussy

Author of Let Your Privates Breathe-Breaking the Cycle of Addiction and Family Dysfunction. Available at The Black Hat Press:

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