You see this girl?
She has no clue what it takes to pay a mortgage, to stretch a budget, to save for the future. Her biggest concern on the planet is if she can have more fruit snacks. She is a baby. She has not a care in the world. She has it made for at least the next 20 years.
You see her?
She knows all about paying a mortgage, stretching a budget, and saving for the future. And selecting insurance plans, doctors, and relocating an entire family cross country all from the (in)convenience of the internet. She is an adult. She is pretty darn stressed. She wishes she were a baby.
When I snuggle with Beatrice before naps and bedtime, I marvel at the fact that she has no idea what it takes to make her life good, comfortable. She just has to wake up and her day is automatically going to be filled with food, drinks, toys, clean clothes, love, and fun. While she is peacefully snoozing away, Mommy and Daddy are making the tough decisions in life to ensure that her life stays good, comfortable. As she slumbers, we are sacrificing to make sure she always has food, drinks, toys, clean clothes, love, and fun in her life. And while I would do anything to guarantee that she always has those things, the stress of knowing that we are making the right decisions makes my stomach hurt. Quite frankly, it makes me want to barf.
Honestly, this is the first time in my life that I have had to make such hugely important financial decisions. Planning this move has been the most grown up thing JD and I have ever done. Which is pretty weird considering having children is a pretty grown up thing to do, but strangely, having babies seems like a walk in the park compared to moving to the most expensive place in the galaxy. It is scary enough trying to plan a budget that we haven't had a chance to live yet, but add some sweet babies into the mix that need to eat pretty regularly and the stress-o-meter reaches new heights.
Dealing with the burdens of financial decisions makes me realize how awesome my parents were at making my own life pretty good, comfortable. We were very middle class, maybe even a tad lower class during my childhood. My mom says that when we were little, my dad gave her $50 a week for groceries. That wasn't a lot of money, even back then. But we had plenty to eat, plenty to drink, and we always had new clothes every school year. Us kids never knew that my parents had to make sacrifices to make sure we had the things that we needed and wanted to make our lives plentiful. We went to bed knowing that when we woke up, we would have what we needed. It was pretty awesome. Oh to be a kid again.
Being in my shoes now as an adult faced with a bazillion decisions that could end up being the wrong ones for our family is no fun. For 29 years I have managed to avoid all insurance pamphlets and have not had to make any budget decisions larger than whose car to pay off first. We have been blessed to not have a financial stress at any tax income bracket (and we've been all over the bracket range). Until now. Now it is different. Now we are having to plan for a hypothetical monthly budget (hypothetical because we are totally guessing on what groceries cost, how often JD will have to fill up his gas tank with his commute, etc). And it is really stressful. I just wish we were there already and settled into our new budget so I can relax. I don't think I would be so uneasy if we didn't have babies' lives to make good, comfortable.
JD says that it will all work out, and I believe him. I have adopted the promise that "God has plans to prosper us and not harm us, plans for a hope and a future" (Jeremiah 29:11). I speak that verse out loud several times a day, just so I don't forget. Surely God did not open up every shut door with this move and not have a financial plan for us too? I have to believe that He does have a plan and will make a way. He has proven to be the ultimate Giver of good, comfortable lives and I am leaning on His promise to meet our needs like slumbering babes, totally unaware of the stresses involved in making our lives plentiful.
Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? Matthew 6:25-27