Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Money Money Money

It is my biggest worry every single day. (Well, that and food choices/excise time battle for top place sometimes). I love money and I hate it. It has almost become a dirty word though. It is the root of all evil. I wish it would just go away sometimes, but it is like air, water or food- you need it to survive. And people can be so judgemental about it sometimes! A wise Jewish woman once told me "Don't look in other people's pockets"- meaning don't be concerned about other people's money situation, just focus on your own. I think that is good advice.

But I just got an annoymous comment on my last post and I felt I should address it. This person expressed that I was materialistic and frivilous with my money and that is why they would not be contributing to my mission trip fund.

Dear Anonymous-I'm sorry if you feel I am materialistic in my posts. The reason for this is probably because I don't get to shop anymore, so I have to dream. I will address your specific concerns though:

a) my dog- I spent $46 on a photo shoot for my dog. This also included shooting my mom's dog which will be part of her mother's day and maybe even birthday presents. In my opinion it is better than blowing $30 on something she may never use.

b) yes I want to remodel my kitchen but I have had to modify my plans. Instead of getting new appliances and hardwood floors, I bought about $20 in accessories and some knobs and drawer pulls for about $20. I want to get a new faucet for the sink and new light fixture, but have not found a good deal on those yet. But I estimate this will be less than most people spend on their monthly cable bills.

c) I have not been on an online dating site in a year. That was pre-layoff and I would never spend money on that now.

d) As far as what would happen to the money people donate should I not raise enough- this money goes directly to the church. The checks are made out to "The Summit Church" and online donations are sent directly to the church. None of this money goes to me personally. Should I be unable to raise enough funds to go, this money will be used to fund other people on mission trips through the church. They have a scholarship you can apply for as soon as you cover the cost of your airfare (in my case that is $2000). If I were unable to go or didn't raise enough funds, the money I raised would be put into that fund.

Mr. or Miss Anonymous, I am sorry you find such faults with me as a person and feel that I am materialistic and frivolous. I may post about what I am lusting after or good deals I get when I go shopping every so often- I spent about $50 this month trying to get more organized and make my house feel more homey, but I can asure you 80-90% of my money goes to just living and bills. I do not feel frivolous when I have no home interenet and approximately 3 channels on my TV. I do not feel frivolous wearing the same 3 pairs of pants and 2 pairs of jeans each week (not even enough for a whole week!). I do not feel frivolous when I am driving and scared to death of getting in an accident because I do not have health insurance right now. I do not feel frivolous rotating the same 2 pairs of shoes (one black, one brown) each week. I do not feel frivolous when I am freezing in my house because I have to keep the thermostat on 66. I do not feel frivolous when I get down to less than $10 in my checking account each month, but still manage to not carry a balance on my credit card.

If you would like to give me some finacial advice, I invite you to email me. I am always looking for where I can cut more from my budget. But please keep in mind that you only see a snippet of my life on this blog. And since I spend money so infrequently on anything out of the ordinary, I want to share it. It is a HUGE deal.

I do realize a lot of things on this list require money to do. I will admit I did not think much about that when I made the list and had no idea I would be laid off in the middle of trying to complete it.

It may seem strange to try to go on a mission trip when money is so tight for me, but God has lead me to this mission trip at this time and I am trusting Him to provide for me through people who are able and willing to contribute.

I appreciate your comment and respect your decision to not contribute. However I would appreciate if you have concerns with me to not just annonymously jab at me. If you care enough about me to continue to read my blog, you should know I would welcome an email from you with constructive criticism and love to discuss how you think I could do better. I however do not appreciate jabs at me made annoymously.

I am thankful for what I have and I hate even having to write a post to try to defend myself. Could I cut more from my budget? Sure, but I am doing the best I can to try to adjust my lifestyle to my new salary. And I think I have done a pretty good job so far. I don't write about the sacrifices I make like missing out on the annual ski trip with my best friends or not being able to make a trip to Charlotte to celebrate my old roommate's 30th birthday.

Because I know I have it good. I am not sleeping in a tent everynight. I do not have to ride the bus to and from work everyday. I have food in my cabinents. I have indoor plumbing. But that doesn't mean I haven't had to go without a lot of things I had become used to and with each one I see go, I am mourning the loss, and it take some getting used to.

You should know your comment really did effect me though. I am very hurt by your words and I am constantly beating myself up over how I could do better in life, be a better person, and help others more. I hate asking for help in anything. I mean hate it! This fundraising thing was the biggest hurdle for me to accept when deciding to go on this trip because I did not want to ask for help. And that one little comment just reinforced all of that. I never cry and just that one little comment brought tears to my eyes.

So yeah...I couldn't just respond with a comment back, it required a whole post. That's all I have to say.


Carly said...

Hi Suz,

I am soooo sorry you have to put up with anonymous B.S. I definitely would have been affected by the mis-informed comment as well. I love how people feel the need to comment on something they didn't fully read... Your post said who to make the check out to. Geez!

Well, I, for one, think you are doing an exceptionally good job handling your current financial situation (and, I DON'T know you personally!) Could it be better? Maybe. But, it is extremely tough to not treat yourself to any "luxuries". We all still have to live...

Maybe "anonymous" posts every single detail about their life out on the internet (although, I HIGHLY doubt it, if they are calling themselves "anonymous"...) but c'mon, who really thinks people put EVERYTHING out there for EVERYONE to read?

Keep your head up. I think you are awesome (as I am sure MANY followers of yours do. . .) Don't let one "anonymous" idiot get you down!


Jen said...

Oh Susan! You made me tear up at work! :( You don't have to defend yourself at all to anyone, but I understand why you did and I'm glad you put it all out there for anonymous to see the real you. I don't understand passive aggressive comments like that. There was a gal I was following once, and I decided I didn't like her blog, so I just stopped following.


Jen said...
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Akirah said...

Suz, do NOT stress yourself out over people's comments. We are able to get to know you thru your blog, but at the end of the day, it's merely a blog. People like that don't actually know you and your heart. Your money situation is your business and yours alone. If someone doesn't want to help you fundraise, so be it. But they should not use that as an excuse to judge something they know very little about.

Hang in there.

Kayla said...

It suck that you have to deal with that. I have been reading your blog for awhile now and I do not thing you are "frivolous with money". In fact I think you do a good job of describe things in your life that make you happy but you do with very little money (e.g your kitchen renovation, volunteering at the church and cleaning). I also admire you for dealing with the comment so head on by addressing it in your blog!

Thanks for staying positive!

Erin Kathleen said...

Ignore them! I would never have pictured you like how this anonymous poster has. Hang in there and good luck with your fundraising.

Aritza, Goddess of .. said...

Ughhhhhh. I am sooo annoyed that someone would judge you / critic you like that. You shouldn't have to defend yourself and I think it is very clear how you are doing everything you can to keep your expenses at a minimum. Also, I totally support your decision to go on this trip.

I think that because you work and don't have to worry about living in a tent and have running water, you are allowed to manage your money the way you see fit and the best way you can considering all your expenses. If that person doesn't want to contribute to your trip, that's fine but that shouldn't keep you from fundraising and wanting to go!

As I said, I support you in your decision to go and I will contribute financially as soon as I get a new job :)

Hang in there, xoxox HUGS xoxox

Aisha said...

Well said! I recently started following your blog after searching for help with my 30 before 30 list! You have inspired me to do a lot of new things and open up more about my life. Like you stated we don't know everything about you, but from what I do know I think you are a genuine person. You spend your money the way you want to and that is all that matters. If someone wants to help you for your trip then good, for those who don't they just need to opt out and move on. Don't let the negative people get to you because for every one anonymous bozo, there are 100 others who like your blogs and think what you are doing is great!

Laurnie said...

I never understand anonymous commenters. If you wanted to make such a point, have the balls to out your name with it. Blogs are here for your free speech really. If you dont like it, stop reading it.

Good post :)

AnnQ said...

People should never judge others - they NEVER know the entire story, even if they think they do.

And to me, the stupid part is, even if they thought you were frivolous, it's not as if you're doing Fundraising to get a new 50" flatscreen...it's to help people!

Ally said...

I hate to say this, but this is why I don't allow anonymous commentators. I need to be able to see who's talking smack about me so I can kick their butts. Ha ha. If it makes you feel any better, most of us are broke today as you know.

Tales Of A Fourth Grade Nothing

AuntBT said...

Fantastic response!!! If you're going to tell someone they're doing something wrong, have the balls to put your own name behind it. You are doing what you can, and you're trying to better someone else's life along with it.

Kudos to you, please don't let that person bring you down!!!!

Lorie Marsh said...

Good for you, for standing up for yourself. I'm sorry that someone's comment jabbed you so sharply, but ironically, I think your response paints a clear and beautiful picture of all the things you're juggling (well!) on the eve of your 30th birthday! So, phltttt! to your anonymous naysayer, and keep faith in yourself and the friends and strangers who think you offer some glimmers of inspiration from your journey(s).

Lindsey said...

I too don't allow anonymous comments on my blog for that reason. if someone has something to say, they should not hide from it.
That being said, i have a blog about shopping. So, if all anyone judged me on was that, i would be the most vapid girl in the world. But, i like having a blog that is happy and fun and an escape. anyone that doesn't like it can go pound sand.
Anyway, i also thought i would let you know that i painted my kitchen cabinets (was a big pain, involved taking all the doors off and sanding, multiple coats, etc) and i changed the hardware and it feels like a new kitchen. it's a dramatic difference. Also, just this weekend, i replaced my kitchen faucet (which leaked horribly) and that alone has made me feel like a million bucks. Small changes can make all the difference.
Don't let anyone else get you down. As Mother Theresa said: you are exactly where you are meant to be..." and that means doing what you are meant to be doing.
take care and continue blogging because i love your blog,
PS Sorry that was so rambly. Just wrote as i thought...