So if you know me, you know that on November 18th, I paid off the last of my debt.. the humped back, hairy aunt called the Sally Mae student loan. Which also means that if you know me you’ve looked for an exit door if you’ve seen me coming cause you know I’m gonna have to say like fifty eleven kajillion times that “I’m Debt Free!!!”
Today was finally the official debt free scream day at Financial Peace Plaza. I was so excited I might have maybe pushed the speed limit just a teensy little bit to get there. Think of Christmas morning with the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy handing out gifts. Big Day and an amazing experience. I highly recommend just hanging out in the lobby during the show if you need a little inspiration.
First, the staff were walking sparklers of awesomeness. There is a supersonic energy in the air when you are around people who are doing work they love. And these folks are doing what they love. Ms. Martha gave us our scream time (1:45) And then we had to wait. Patiently. The Nice Lady Handing Out The Cookies Whose Name I Never Caught was armed with chocolate chip cookies to increase the patience threshold. Not only were there cookies but peanut butter brownies – homemade peanut butter brownies made by the aforementioned Ms. Martha.
In fact I think that if Dave gave his book a new title: “Total Money Makeover…pay off your debt and you can have the best peanut butter brownie evah” everyone would want to be on the debt free band wagon. You did just read the part where I said the best peanut butter brownie evah? Really folks, where else can you go where they will let you scream like a lunatic in the lobby and give you free food…. and no one gets arrested. And they encourage this behaviour!
We got to hear a couple make their debt free scream and clap, cheer, hoot and holler with them.And then 1:45 finally came. We got to call in to the Dave Ramsey Radio show for Debt Free Friday. We got to share our story. I tried not to cry but got a little veklempft. We screamed our mightiest scream. We shook, we shimmied, we jumped up and down. Dave (yup, I totally feel like I can call him that) was gracious enough to let us take a picture with him. And he signed my very well read original Financial Peace book. Seriously, he came out at every break… and shook hands and smiled and let people take pictures. Can you imagine? His show is 3 hours long. That”s a bunch of commercial breaks. A bunch of smiling and photo snapping. I don’t think even the most determined to be cheerful bride could outlast Dave in the “Smile and Say Cheese” department.
Our Bubba Tater truck finally got his Debt Free bumper sticker. Maggie has informed me that now he can never ever ever be sold. Which is a shame because he only has about 10 working parts left. We called the parental units to share the love. We ate chinese food. We had to stop by our Publix to shout “We’re Debt Free” to our two favourite banker ladies. Once a month every month for a long long time I approach the counter with my list of envelope money and the post it that says exactly how to break it out so each envelope will get just what the budget says its supposed to get. They have stocked me with free bank envelopes as needed. They have watched Maggie grow taller and taller. They don’t even bother making the latest credit card extravaganza offer to me. Instead, they tell everyone: “She’s on the Dave Ramsey plan”. Which I think is another way of saying “muy loco” but that’s okay. We played our new board game, Act Your Wage!, which was given to all the screamers today (tons of fun by the way). We sipped tea with honey. There was a lot of screaming today. We screamed on our short walk back to the truck. We screamed out the truck window. We screamed at stop lights…. you get the drift.
And now, the Girl Wonder is tucked in bed. Sound asleep.the Dog is asleep. I’m curled on the couching typing away. I’ve read what I’ve written a couple times now and its not the best. It’s disjointed. There is so much I’m leaving out. I’m sure there are typos multiplying like rabbits. I just can’t think. The house is totally quiet but in my head we’re still jumping up and down and screaming. It’s echoing. I can feel the tears coming. Big fat crocodile ones. Relief. Joy. Gratitude. Tiredness. Overwhelmedness (I’m tired.. I can make up my own words). So I’m going to get the Kleenex box now. I’m gonna let the tears go, a liquid deep breath. I’m gonna say another prayer of thanks for this action filled adventure that is our life. I’m gonna go to bed. Tomorrow, it’s time to start paying it forward.