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Love and marriage, and money and faith

Karen and I have been married for 5 months now. We're all happy and stuff.

Of course, that's not what I was going to post about. Karen just reminded me. She's so good that way. That's why I love her. Well, one of the reasons I love her.

Last night, Karen and I got on the topic of money. I'm not going to discuss numbers, not because I care, but because I don't need to mention the actual figures in order to get the point across.

We spent a fair amount (less than the average, but a lot for us) on our wedding. Which is to say we spent money we didn't have (credit cards) and then consolidated our credit card debt using the house as equity. We owed about the same as Karen's yearly salary in credit card debt. This took all the equity out of the house, but turned a bill into an asset, by making the interest on the money we owed tax-deductible. The wedding was a good party, but if (heaven forbid) either of us marry again, it won't get done that way again.

If you add up all our debt (the house, the home equity loan, the student loans, the car loan, the remainder on our credit cards, and anything else you can think of), we owe approximately 2.5 times our combined salaries. Ignoring the house and the home equity loan, the other stuff alone is equivalent to our combined yearly salary. Do I find this scary? Do I find this pressuring? In a word, no.

A few years ago I was a starving college student. In 1998 I earned so little money that the Federal Government declared that I owed NO TAXES AT ALL. Not one red cent. They returned all the money I'd earned, too. Yeah, I racked up a lot of student loan debt - whatever didn't go to the school, that was what I lived off of.

Now I have an education, a car, a home, and a wife. One of these days (months, years...whenever) we'll have kids, and the bills associated with them. Do I worry? Nope. Why? I feel lucky. I feel blessed. I feel good.

I'm not a deep thinker when it comes to philosopy or religion. Do I believe in God? Yes. Do I see His actions in daily life? No, not on a day-to-day basis...but I do in the long haul. I wasn't the smartest person in my class, nor am I the best pharmacist now. I get through my day, I get my paycheck, and hopefully when it's all said and done, the world is better because of what I do and how I do it. Yeah, we need a bigger house and we have too much debt to get it now. But if we keep this luck, or blessing, and stay on the good side of dharma and fate, I trust that it will all work out.

It's all good. It really is.

Comments

( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
thetaet
Apr. 3rd, 2003 06:54 pm (UTC)
This was a great post. And I'm really happy for you. Congrats on the five month anniversary! :) For some reason, I had the impression you had been married for several years.
sethcohen
Apr. 3rd, 2003 07:53 pm (UTC)
Re:
:) Thanks! We just sound like an old married couple. Well, we're old, and we're married. It sorta works. :) :) :)
allah_sulu
Apr. 4th, 2003 04:12 am (UTC)
Yeah, but we can't call you the Bundys yet.
sethcohen
Apr. 4th, 2003 09:41 am (UTC)
Re:
This is true. This is also something I am very grateful for.
bodnej
Apr. 3rd, 2003 09:00 pm (UTC)
Money, money, money...
So, when do you want Uncle Jon's Lessons on Money and Retirement Funds? You two are welcome to come over any evening during the week. My fridge is now well-stocked with beer, after poker on Wednesday night (I lost $10, but ended up a six-pack).

Mazel Tov to you and wifey on the 5-month anniversary. Hard to believe that it's been that short a time...

-jon
sethcohen
Apr. 3rd, 2003 09:42 pm (UTC)
Re: Money, money, money...
As soon as some of my Copious Spare Time opens up. Sunday evening isn't booked yet. And we have to help you with the beer...Pesach is coming up! :)

Thanks for the Mazel Tov. It feels good.
notchad
Apr. 4th, 2003 05:27 am (UTC)
I agree
Speaking as one in a similar predicament, I agree wholeheartedly. I guess I am speaking out of character now, but what the heck. Right now I am in Florida helping with my Father's ailing health, we had a basement flooding, the bees are kinda back, and I am 1000 miles from K and I realize more everyday how blessed I am to have her. This wasn't a wake up call for me, I know how lucky I am and all of those other things are just things. When Ken got married (and soon Arthur and John) I was happy that they would know how marriage does change the relationship. Everyone says that it doesn't, but it does, and I can't put it into words. It just is, you guy's will see. And if you don't agree I will smack you up bigtime! (that was Lothar speaking...)
sethcohen
Apr. 4th, 2003 09:47 am (UTC)
Re: I agree
(to Jim): Thanks, man.
(to Lothar): I agree! I agree! Uncle!
storvik
Apr. 4th, 2003 09:50 am (UTC)
Re: I agree
Out-of-character posting is usually OK when you're not in a Murgatroid journal.

I'm looking forward to experiencing with Q what you already have with K; and I'm really sorry that you seem to be learning what I experienced just over three years ago...
cellio
Apr. 4th, 2003 08:23 am (UTC)
This is a good post. Yeah, I'm sure you'll do fine; you have the important stuff. :-)
sethcohen
Apr. 4th, 2003 09:58 am (UTC)
Re:
:) That's what I'm hoping.
kyjellico
Apr. 6th, 2003 02:14 pm (UTC)
Yes
Yea brother, verilly
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )