Two friends of ours just had their first baby, and they’re still in that new baby fog! My first son is five and a half, but I remember that stage well. In fact I relived it with the next two kids that came along as well, so I don’t think it’s unique to first born children.
In a way, the journey that you go through when having children is like the journey towards being frugal. In the early, helpless newborn, stage, you might be confused and panicky. You’ve just gone through the physical ideal of pregnancy and birth, and now you need to take care of this helpless squirming thing round the clock. When left unattended, it yells and spits up milk onto your already smelly self. When you first start on the path to getting your financial life together, it can seem an awful lot like having a newborn. Maybe your ordeal has been credit card debt that keeps getting higher and higher, or enormous student loan payments kicking in. Creditors might be calling your house at all hours of the day and night. Then you start trying to change your ways, and cutting back on spending can lead to physical withdrawal symptoms!
As with a newborn baby though, living life frugally does become easier over time. You might not even notice it at first, but the baby starts to sleep better and longer, cry less and for more discernible reasons and finally starts to smile. Your finances start to fall into place too. Suddenly it’s normal not to go shopping as recreation. Buying generic really does add up. And someday, you will finish the month with a positive bank balance.
You can do it alone, sure. But why? Just like parenting a newborn is so much easier when friends bring by meals ready to reheat and serve, and you have an extra pair of hands to hold the baby while you do such frivolous things as showering, having support for your new financial journey can make or break you. I know that the support that I’ve found on the internet, on blogs like these, as well as in real life has helped me to keep going when the night seemed very, very long. It is easier with help. Don’t be afraid to ask, either to receive help or to give it. I’m sure your request will be warmly welcomed.