Today I cried at a street market. How embarrassing. My only saving grace was that I was wearing sunglasses so no one could tell. I bet you’re thinking I cried because I saw a pregnant lady, or a cute baby, or I just got my period. Nope. I cried because I couldn’t buy some cute hand-crafted souvenirs that I wanted.
Now let’s back up and set the stage. My husband and I are serious proponents of living debt free thanks to my dad introducing us to Dave Ramsey at a young age. So we paid our students loans off within a few years of graduating, and built up a nest egg by being a DINK (dual income, no kids) couple for several years, renting a average apartment, driving old cars and having used furniture. Once we got ourselves established, we started to increase our spending a little. We bought the authentic painting rather than the cheap one made in China. We bought a car with cash. We bought our parents nice gifts because we could. We had earned a slightly above average lifestyle and I was loving it. Enter infertility. (Picture the villain coming on stage with boos and people throwing things at it).
I stopped working to be able to fit in healthy living, doctors appointments, acupuncture and lower stress. We then had to pay for treatments, tests, herbs, drugs, vitamins and all that good stuff. Then, we decided to move home and bought a house. So went from being DINKs with no debt and a lot of expendable income to SINKs with a tight budget and a mortgage. We’d decided that we would not take out any loans (besides the mortgage) to pay for anything we need/want. So now we are at the point of having a tight budget that allows us to save up for some big things in the next year. We’ll need to buy a car when we move home, we’ll need some furniture, and oh yeah, we need to save tens of thousands of dollars for potential fertility tests/treatments and/or adoption. So my husband, being the amazing accountant that he is, sat down and made up a budget based on what we need to put away each month to be able to do all of those things without having to take a loan or cut into our savings.
We both have careers that have the potential to make our lifestyle happen again in a few years, but are struggling with the “right now”. We just need to get from now to a year from now when we’ll both be working and my husband will get his major bonus at work for being promoted (they make you wait a year to get it!). So that means for the next year we are having to make some serious sacrifices.
I haven’t minded cutting costs at the grocery store, not going mall shopping, turning down invitations to do expensive activities with friends. But beautiful handmade crafts?–that’s hard. Now let’s go back to the opening scene of me crying at a market. I have never (husband verified) cried over money before. Normal me wouldn’t be that upset about not being able to get something I want (happens all the time). But it seems like the market today was representative of everything I have to give up to try to have a baby that other people don’t. Giving up things that I love is really hard, and is going to continue be really hard. The hardest part—I’m not giving it up to save $ for a baby. I’m giving it up to save $ for the chance to have a baby. I could go through all of this hard stuff, live on rice and beans for years, but still come out empty handed (literally).
I’m so grateful that with all the hard times we’ve had, and are yet to come, that I have Jesus to lean on and a purpose to my adversity.
Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”
This song came on my Pandora station just as I was finishing this post…I’ve heard this song several times over the past year and it always encourages me when I’m feeling bad about my situations.