I've been in Step 1 of Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace/Total Money Makeover plan for about a week now.
Step 1 is to build a $1,000 emergency fund. Dave warns us several times that as soon as we've made a commitment to financial peace, Murphy's Law is going to come into effect. For some families the emergency fund is something they are able to do quickly, for most of us it takes several months because stuff comes up before we can accumulate the fund.
I stopped using credit cards and had a few hundred dollars in my emergency fund. Last Wednesday was my first court date and I was a nervous wreck. I had so many people lifting me up in prayer, however, and I felt it. Unfortunately, I allowed my nerves and all the decongestant medications I'm on to get the better of me as I was getting out of my driveway.
Our neighbor parks his car directly across the street from our driveway. It's a narrow street so when we back out we have to turn pretty sharply to make sure that we don't hit his car. So on the day that I was already a basket case, for the first time in the 26 years I've lived on this street, I backed into his car.
Oh, the horror when you can't blame your mishaps on somebody else! This was completely and totally my own fault. Fortunately my neighbor was very nice about it, as was my insurance agent. I've never had to make a claim before. The previous traffic issues I've had have been the other driver's fault. So there goes $100 from my emergency fund to pay my deductible.
It could be SO much worse! As a matter of fact, I picked up a sub assignment at the last minute yesterday that practically covers what I had to take out.
As for the court date, it was a big nothing. My attorney prefers that his clients attend in order to get that first time in court under their belts and not feel so intimidated with the process. We also had a chance to confer before and after the appointment time. It was strictly a status conference and I didn't even need to go in.
This Tuesday will be a meatier date to address spousal support and attorneys' fees. Amazingly, I'm not worried anymore. Between my friends having my back, my faith, and the wisdom of my lawyer having me go last week BEFORE I ever have to see the magistrate, I'm feeling pretty good.
Murphy's Law WILL strike at you, especially when you've made a decision to better yourself. I'm already learning to stay the course and have faith in the process.