Finances cause me anxiety no matter what. I live with a fear of not having our basic needs covered. Growing up we had what we needed but nothing more. We grew up knowing that although we didn't have material things we had what we needed. I was acutly aware at a young age of my parents financial hardships. My mother became disabled when I was in sixth grade and we went from things being tight to things being scary for my parents. My father was always on the brink of being layed off and finally about four years ago the inevitable happened. Another financial crisis for my parents.
Despite my parents financial struggles they have been frugal and have been able to save to help us (not pay for) college for the three of us. They will be able to afford retirement with some comforts like owning their own condo.
Growing up with this constant fear of finances my bank account has always caused me anxiety.
Last Friday I posted our family "announcement" pictures on FB the same day I finished the financial paperwork required for our home study. Between the siding project (planned) and the plumbing project (unplanned) our accounts took a drastic scary turn. I remind myself that savings are for the very reason we used it but my fear could not be consoled.
On top of the financial fear I then was hit hard with the idea of another baby (financial as well as the long list of other needs of a baby). I had trouble breathing this weekend. My chest feels tight, my breaths shallow and my temper requiring more breaths to control.
As if filling out paper work about every other aspect of your life isn't intimate enough. For me writing out our finances to me is like laying naked in our driveway. Its intimate. Its scary. I hate it.
Filling out the paper work was a harsh reminder of where we still need to get as well as what we truly can afford for the holidays.
Are we going hungry? No. Are we late on our payments? No. Do we have luxuries like data plans and internet? Yes. Is some of my financial anxiety self created? Probably.
I just can't justify buying stuff, most of which will be tossed aside, when I'm pulling out from savings for basic needs this month. Dont get me wrong there will be gifts under the tree; however the budget is strict.
So I'm not totally sure if its baby anxiety or financial anxiety or both but it hit me like a ton of bricks.
So my action plan: cut back data plan on phones, cancel the cable and go antenna, and keep to my strict grocery budget. Oh and per usual anxiety coping strategy: clean like a mad woman :) (cuz cleaning is free!)