Answer: Yes. It might be worth it if you lose everything.
If you are reading this, then you probably read the original post.
The original post was a channel for me to get out all the pent up disappointment and frustration I had been feeling about my situation for MONTHS. It was published, it was read (my most read post to date actually) and it was out there, for everyone to see. The truth. Family members and friends were concerned and mostly gave me the space I had asked for, because I had said what I needed to say and I didn’t feel like discussing it further. It is what it is.
A week later, and the dust has settled somewhat, although I wake up irritable and frustrated every day because I feel lost, and like I’ve lost my sense of purpose. All is not lost, but rebooting is not a quick or easy process.
In two weeks, we move out of the home we bought just a year ago, I’ve been really sad about it, but at the same time, all the conversations that have come from this one honest post, have given me perspective.
Let’s go back a little bit. The main reason we are sitting in a position where we need to start over, is because both my husband and I, made bad decisions. End of story. We fell into a trap that saw us trying to keep up with everyone that seemed to be doing well. It was like a well kept and managed secret that only we shared. Older family members that have had 20 more years to build their lives and were now doing well, ja, we were trying to keep up with them. WHY? No, we don’t have timeshare, we cannot afford to blow R1000 on lunch, go overseas or buy homes, but we were also JUST married, and in our 20’s. We both felt enormous pressure to keep up. Shit, why don’t we own a house yet, a friend that’s the same age as us just bought one, are we behind? Have we done something wrong? Why aren’t we there yet?
We made mistakes that I’m sure many young people make in the age of ‘things’. Things mean success, or so we’re taught to believe. The latest phone, the new BMW, new flatscreen TV, getting your clothes from Woolies, going to Mauritius on honeymoon… means you are doing well! Well, that was bought on credit cards and loans, so no, you’re not doing well. You’re digging a hole you’re going to regret, and it’s going to bite you in the ass. Yet, it continues.
When we moved to Cape Town, we started to see things a lot differently, because here, there is MUCH more value placed on lifestyle. Eating out, having experiences, getting outside, doing things. Much of the damage was already done though. Just the two of us, alone in the Cape, struggling to make new friends, and never hearing from our old ones. So, we spent time going out, getting stuff to make our teeny little flat prettier and our lives a little more bearable because the change was tough. And then we had a baby! We needed a bigger place and whole lot of baby stuff. We’re now in a credit card cycle, so we increase the limits and get what we need.
Fast forward to 3 years later, and we have gotten a big fat wake up call! And the truth is, whether or not I’d started my own business, we would’ve gotten the wake up call eventually anyway, because bad decisions always catch up with you. And PS – pageants are expensive, both the pageants that I participated in last year cost me a lot of money. More on that another time, but I dove into those events because I knew the platforms would be good for me, and they were. But still, it didn’t help our case.
Alrighty, so why the hell are saying it might be worth it Keri?
Simple, because we learnt a lesson. We learnt a few lessons actually, and now I can share them with you.
- We should NEVER have tried to keep up with everybody else because our journey, is our own.
- Buying things on credit is a bad idea when your’e young and haven’t established yourself. Even if you can pay it off, it becomes way to easy to spend recklessly.
- There are more important things in life than “things”. The real and genuine friends who show up 5 minutes after you’ve broken down on social media, for one.
- Our marriage is going to be fine. We have learnt a lot about ourselves, each other and our relationship in dealing with this trauma together, and we still love each other, and we still want each other, and we’ll get through it together. 13 years and counting.
- The biggest lesson, is that if we had just taken it slow, and been patient with building our lives, we’d be ok right now, because of Deon. While I have been searching for something to do that I love, Deon has been working really hard in his chosen field (which he does love), and building up an incredible reputation for himself. He earns a good salary! If we had taken our time, what he earns on his own would be enough. And everything I earn would’ve been our bonus to have those nice holidays and amazing experiences.
So, in two weeks we move into our little townhouse. Yes it’s sad to leave our house, but it’s also great because this is where we get to declutter, and simplify our lives. Everything that is unnecessary will go, and that does not only include physical things.
We are going back a few steps, so that we can get back up on the right foot, and yes it will be worth it.