Net Worth Week 73 – Harvey Edition

Gentle Readers,
I submitted the small bio and head-shot that my panel required, but mainly this week I focused on Harvey.
My girlfriend moved to Houston earlier this year and now it is underwater. Thankfully, she is safe and able to help from a distance. Every emergency needs people who are good at logistics and connecting folks to the right resources. My job right now is to be supportive without interrupting her.
The organization I am supporting during this event is Portlight Inclusive Disaster Strategies. People with disabilities are often the worst impacted by natural disasters. Portlight has a respected track record in responding to disasters. You probably saw some videos of people being saved out of their wheelchairs and into boats. Once those people are back to dry ground, they will again need their mobility aids. Chairs and other “durable medical equipment”  are vital to life for some people with disabilities, but not available at the Red Cross. For example, people with tracheostomies need sterile gauze and other equipment or their risk of infection and blockage in their air passageway dramatically rises.
Portlight also assists after the disaster. Following Sandy, they helped rebuild ramps into homes and helped refit homes with other accessibility equipment. The need will exist for a long time, and Portlight will be there. Being a person with a disability is never cheap. It is even more expensive when you are trying to access things vital for your particular survival after a community-wide disaster.
I’m still waiting for my invisalign and that next $2000 payment. I don’t know what the delay is. It is making me hold on to cash without paying down the CC, because I intend to do a balance transfer to keep myself liquid for life and my business. The great press my business received has mainly resulted in folks wanting to volunteer for my business and not any new clients so far. This may be an expensive year.

This week’s net worth numbers

8/25/2017 9/1/2017
 Joy 1108 1109
 Travel 1  1
 Down Payment 19 19
 Retirement 21 21
 Health 46 46
 Moving 285 286
 EF 11 11
Business 5 5
Life 2961  3431
 IRA  13341  13495
 Brokerage 814  825
 Rewards Card 2 -3283 -3531
 CC (largest) 0  0
 CC (longest) 0  0
 Rewards Card -388  0
SL 1 -105531 -105647
SL 2 -46501 -46557
 Earnest -3598 -3606
 Net Worth -140689 -140092
 Percentage Change -.63% .42%

How are you supporting after Harvey?

How I Got Here

Gentle Reader,

Every indebted person is unique in how they arrived to their indebtedness. The majority of my debt is educational, and contributed to my becoming a Professional. The debt is not just from my degrees though. I have used some of this debt to position my life and business in a way that I hope will sustain me in the near future.

My professional industry is rapidly changing.  Unfortunately, my entrance to my profession coincided with its crash. I have been working in gigs rather than a full career job since 2012. The gigs pay more than childhood me ever thought she would earn. The gigs pay more than the career I had always assumed I would have. The gigs pulled me away from considering the nonprofit work that would not pay me enough to live in this city.  For this, I am actually grateful. Having enough has taught me that work should not underpay me just because the work was important and necessary to the world. Work that cannot pay a living wage for its location while being location-dependent is unfair to workers and inappropriate. You should not have to take a vow of poverty to do good work.

In 2014, with the emotional and, at times, substantive, support of Mabel and TBO, I incorporated my own business in a niche within my professional field. I was able to do this by taking half of my liquid savings. All of my savings, outside of my investments in my brain and relationships, were liquid at this point because I was in a scary market and afraid of gigs drying up.

I used my investment in my LLC, and began slowly building it up while working gigs full time. I supported my life with the gig money, and also credit cards. I had some CC debt when this began, due to making a poor decision in a previous relationship. However, starting my business took so much from me and I did not feel able to get a bank loan. I never tried though. The CC debt and revolving gig work created a bad cycle.

My LLC is a bare-bones business that is able to support itself for the next few months without an infusion of cash from my personal accounts. I’m hopeful that my LLC will pay me for the first time this calendar year.

So my story is like many others’ before. Poor decisions in a relationship. Then fear keeping my savings liquid. Finally making decisions designed to take control of my life and financial well-being. This took longer than I am proud of, but I am still young enough to make my life resemble what I desire.

Wish me luck.

How’d you get where you are?