It was the hubby’s birthday this weekend just gone. This was the first birthday that he’d spent being free from debt in a very long time – in fact, it’s been 18 long years since he’d had a birthday without debt. Without explicitly giving away his age, I can say that this amounts to around half his life, so far.
I said in my debt free post last week that we hadn’t actually celebrated our new found debt freedom yet. So with the hubby’s birthday looming, it seemed like an ideal time to celebrate what we’d achieved too. We decided to go for a meal on Saturday night, just the two of us and we went back home (to the town where we used to live) so that a family member was able to babysit our daughter for us.
Off we went, with cash in our purse/wallet and not a credit card in sight. We decided to go to the local pub, which was within walking distance, so we wouldn’t have to get a taxi. As we scanned the dinner menu, we immediately clocked the 2 meals for £10 deal and spent a good 20 minutes debating over which of the ‘meal deal’ dinners we should go for.
After a while, I said to the hubby, “You know what? We don’t actually have to go for one of the meal deals. We’ve just paid off a ton of debt, we’ve come out with cash and we’ve got a budget in mind for tonight.”
It suddenly occurred to me that we could, if we wanted to, push the boat out a little and have a slightly more expensive dish which wasn’t on the special offer menu. It was a double celebration after all!
It’s the little things that stand out
There it was. Debt freedom in all its glory. For the first time in a very long time, we had a choice. Our money was our own. We didn’t owe it to anyone, how we were going to spend our money was totally our decision and because we had set a budget and brought out cash with us to make sure we didn’t go over budget, there was no need for either of us to feel guilty. I let that moment sink in gratefully.
We recalled how we’d already subconsciously made decisions to try not to spend much money by making sure a family member was able to babysit for us and going somewhere local so we wouldn’t have to pay for a taxi. This happened naturally, without us even thinking about it. Saving money has become second nature to us. And I’m really, really glad to be able to say that, because that way of thinking will enable us to start creating wealth rather than the opposite.
So did we go for the meal deal? Well, yes and no! We decided to allow ourselves a starter each and stick to the 2 main meals for £10 menu. We pushed the boat out a little and thoroughly enjoyed our celebration meal, without a trace of guilt. Apart from the guilty calories of course!
What does debt freedom mean to you?
*Image courtesy of Flickr