Goodbye Cruel Debt!

October 5, 2007 at 3:23 pm 1 comment

I had to get up horribly early today (about 4am/subjective) in order to go to my work-focused interview at the job centre. I dragged myself out of bed, staggered into the city and found I’d arrived just early enough to make a detour to the bank to deposit my latest income support cheque. The interview itself was pointless as expected (they showed me how much I could be earning if I went back to work… it’s a bit like saying “Hey, sicky! This is how much your broken brain’s costing you!”). I also signed up for the condition management programme, so I get to go to an assessment on the 11th.

I wandered into Woolworths on the way home, where I bought a variety of containers with which to store food, as well as a bowl, a pyrex dish, a chopping board and some very cheap cutlery. So I now have everything I need for the all-new food plan.

My great-aunt and uncle died earlier in the year and their estate is finally on its way to being settled. My mum, bless her, has decided to give me some of this money (my siblings are also getting some). This turns out to be enough to clear my debts with a couple of grand left over. So I’ve just called my various creditors to get the amounts I owe them. My total debt is just over eleven grand. One of my credit cards was over its limit, so I spoke to their debt handling team who decided that they no longer want me as a borrower and made me cut up my card and closed my account This is no great loss. I want to retain at least one working credit card for various reasons (it’s just handy to use a credit card in some circumstances), but this one’s always been a bit of a pain. So, while my credit card may be, I’m not too cut up about it.

The advisor I spoke to at my actual bank (whose credit card remains whole at the moment) was really nice and incredibly good at her job, so that was all good.

And next week I’ll be utterly, completely, one hundred percent free of debt. Well, apart from my student loan, but that doesn’t count. This means my outgoings drop by about £200 (and if I go back to work, another £170 from the loan, which is currently covered by insurance), which means I may, for the first time in three years, have enough to live on. For the first time in three years, I’ll be able to look at my bank account and bills without feeling that horrible tingle of dread in the pit of my stomach. I’ll be able to think about budgeting without paralysing fear welling up inside me, because Oh my God, how did I get into this situation how could I have been so stupid there’s no way to make ends meet and I wish I was dead Oh God Oh God Oh God.

I’m not going to spend it all again. I have a few reasonably sensible things to do with the money (buy a small TV (and licence), a heater, a few bits of clothing I need, and take a really good friend out for a meal to say thanks…) but nothing very expensive.

Calling up and getting the details, especially the bit where dire consequences were hinted at should I use the closed credit card again, did make me feel an echo of this. But being able to say “Sure, but it’ll be all cleared next week!” made things so much better.

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Productive Day Mouse: Part V

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Caprice  |  October 5, 2007 at 4:43 pm

    That’s awsome news, man. Getting a second chance to start off clean like that. When it comes to money, I have three rules to keep me out of trouble 1) budget 2) buy only what I truly need 3) when tempted to make impulse purchases, wait a couple of days

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Hi, I'm James. I'm a 26 year old guy from England with bipolar disorder (currently well controlled). I also have a circadian rhythm sleep disorder (not so well controlled). This blog has charted my journey from mental illness, through diagnosis and, recently, into recovery. It's not always easy, but then, what is?

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As of 12th September 2008 it has been forty five weeks since I quit smoking. So in another seven weeks it'll have been a whole year.

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