Hey, great to see you and glad you stopped by!
I’m going to open up with providing a bit more background on me, my situation, and my motivation in creating this blog. There is a summary in the About page, but this is intended to be a bit more expansive.
I’m a early-40s Gen-Xer who has recently finalized my divorce. I started out working in tech after leaving college early without a degree. In the late 1990’s tech jobs were prevalent, even for the non-degreed, as long as you had the needed skills. I found my passion at the time in networking and was able to land a job at a major networking vendor. I had grown up on the lower end of the middle class. This was a huge change in circumstance for a 22-year-old, suddenly having much more disposable income. This continued to grow at a pretty good clip for the next few years, putting me in a fairly comfortable position.
Unfortunately, I did not have good perspective on how to manage my money. On one level, I knew what I should be doing, however I wanted nice cars, luxury apartments, and fine dining. I went the route of wasting my money, figuring I could always just buckle down and make up for lost time. Yeah, not exactly bright, I was enjoying the instant gratification. At that time, I did at least have the sense to avoid racking up a ton of debt, but I didn’t grow my investment and retirement accounts. I lived paycheck to paycheck, like so many do.
I ended up getting married and having three kids in my late twenties. They are early to late teens, with the oldest about to venture off to college.
Over the next 10 years, we would move every 3 years on average, either for personal or career reasons. This ended with us buying and selling houses that repeatedly ate away at the initial nest egg investment, which had come from employee stock options early in my career. Sometimes the house sale would be higher and sometimes lower than the original purchase price, with realtor fees eating up any gains made through paying down the mortgage. Overall, a terrible idea financially.
The story of my financial life through my 20’s and 30’s is one of impulsive decisions, instant gratification, living at or above my means.
This ultimately ended in a high-conflict divorce, that saw tens of thousands of dollars spent in legal fees, negative monthly cash flow maintaining multiple households over a 30-month period, and two 6-month periods of unemployment. I’ll talk in more detail about my current financial state in a later post that starts to break down the hole that I dug for myself through irresponsible spending and financial mis-management.
Over the course of the last two years, while struggling with job searches and unemployment, I finished up my BS in Information Technology and then completed my MBA.
So, where does this leave me now? Well, I am standing at the bottom of a very deep hole that I dug for myself. It was my decisions that put me here and now it is my responsibility to figure out how to pull myself back out.
This blog will take you on my journey as I work to fix the mess that I created. Over the last couple of years during the divorce process, I’ve had to learn a number of hard lessons, which I will talk about in future posts. During that time, I did not have a lot of control over many financial aspects, which ended up being disastrous to my overall situation. Now that I have much more control over my own financial destiny, I’m looking forward to actually seeing the full benefit of being able to implement many of these lessons across the full scope of my financial landscape.
I’m very excited to take these next steps in rebuilding my life and sharing the result of that process with all of you. Hopefully, you find it valuable or at least interesting.
Feel free to leave comments or Contact Me, I look forward to hearing from you!