Maybe it's wrong to equate getting my first paycheck and my commuted leaves as the finish line, but that's how it really feels like at this point. It's as if I've been running this financial marathon these past two months, making do with what we have without touching my investments. Unexpected expenses like our car's battery dying and the resurrection of a headache which I honestly thought had long been dealt with, felt like punches to the gut. Let me reiterate again for the nth time how important it is to have a healthy stash in your emergency funds and believe you me that building up my emergency funds is the second thing I'll be doing, next to paying off my credit card bills, once my cash inflow becomes regular.
Speaking of credit cards, I've been carrying a balance in three cards and to minimize the financial charges, my strategy has been to use the card with the lowest balance while trying to pay off the other two. It's not the best of strategies to be honest, but doing that has limited my interest charges to less than Php2,000 for the past three months for all of my credit cards, so pwede na rin kahit papaano. But those balances will be decimated this month when I get my commuted leaves. I can't wait to be credit card debt free once again!
So there. Konting tiis na lang. The worst case scenario is I get my first paycheck at the end of the month but with my commuted leaves coming in next week, we'll still have a healthy buffer around us. And if my commuted leaves are delayed once again, then it's time for another salary advance and more suck-it-up juice. Argh.
This actually feels like deja-vu because I remember waiting just as anxiously for my first paycheck the first time I entered government service via the Court of Appeals. But this time around, my credit card debts are merely a third or a fourth of what I amassed then, I have a positive net worth, access to an interest free salary advance and didn't have to take out a loan from family members. Yup, things are definitely better this time. But for my third career jump, which may happen in the next few years, I don't want to go through this whole rigmarole again, so building up a sizable war chest is the number one priority.
It's also the same when I retire, I've seen enough of my relatives getting into debt while waiting for their retirement checks to come in and I don't want to suffer the same fate, hence the need to have lots of cash at hand when that time comes, and at all times to be frank.
And on a totally unrelated note, go Manny go!!