“My step-dad got a new work truck, so I can drive the car now and don’t need to be picked up anymore!”
Little did I know that sentence would be the beginning of the end of my money. I have been very good at saving my money and not spending it on trivial things. If I earned money, most of it was put into savings. I knew that I may not have enough time for a job while doing full-time co-op with abnormal hours, but I thought it was fine because I saved up my money from my summer jobs and I thought it would get me through to second semester, with some to spare, until I could get a part-time job. I got through a few months completely oblivious to how fast my money was going. Two weeks ago, I took a look at my bank account expecting to still have a decent amount left, but my jaw dropped when I realized I only had $30 left and the next tank of gas in my car would leave me at $0. I started thinking about all the trips I took for meetings I attended at various Starbucks, coffee shops, and the team’s houses, and all the coffees and lunches purchased when I was there. It really added up fast and I could not believe how easy it was to drain my bank account.
My mom has always taught me about saving money and being responsible with it. I thought spending too much money and not having any left was a lesson I didn’t need to learn because I knew that it was important to save up my money for when I need it. But evidently it is a lesson I learned the hard way. I am not like some other teenagers, I don’t spend much money on movies, clothes, drugs and alcohol, or electronics, so the lesson I learned was that it is not hard to spend too much money in unexpected places.
I am glad it is a lesson I learned now and not further down the road when my parents can’t bail me out as easily, because I can now see how people blow through their wedding and event budgets when a purchase seems small and then it quickly adds up if you do not consider every purchase carefully. But it is a hard lesson to learn at any age or in any situation and I hate to see my money go faster than it came.