Cha Cha on the Rocks with a Financial Twist

Jun 20, 2022 | Blog Beat, CCRx*

Thank you for asking! Yes, my budget is going well!*:)

I told you, I’m not a quitter anymore.

I know, you’re shocked.

Well, I’ll have you know, immediately after admitting to you that I have a problem, I went ahead and downloaded the You Need a Budget (YNAB) app and got to work. I linked my bank and credit card accounts. I set up guesstimated monthly spending for categories such as “groceries,” “auto maintenance,” “restaurants,” and “clothes/accessories.”

I am officially on Day “oh who’s counting?!” of enthusiastic accountability, recording every transaction into my budget tracker.

Like any addict will tell you, coming clean is the dirtiest you will ever feel, covered with the shaming residue of your past addiction.

In my case, this meant the shame of having mindlessly spent so much money. Mostly on things I probably didn’t need. Or returns that timed out, leaving me with something I not only didn’t need but also didn’t want.

The shame of being a self-proclaimed independent 37-year-old woman who is teetering dangerously on the edge of being financially dependent on a man.

The shame of knowing that that man, unlike myself, did not grow up with parents who (for lack of a better word) spoiled him with material possessions and a fancy, free education. He did not inherit the house he owns or the plumbing business he just sold. He worked hard and saved smart. A man who financially supports his eighty-year-old mother.

I cringe now, thinking how disappointed in myself I am for being irresponsible, lazy, and selfish. Shame on you, cha cha.

But, I can’t change the past.

Also, I think I read somewhere that continuously shaming yourself makes you look fat. So the shame stops now, Chach. There, I said it. Moving on…

Already, I’ve noticed subtle shifts in my spending habits. The once undeniable thrill of buying stuff has suddenly been tainted by an awareness of money lost. —Pre-emptive mourning of what that money could have been. Last-minute second guessing, Do I really want to spend money on this?

In the past, we’d order in at least twice a week. My excuses running from not liking to cook, to not liking what I cook, to ug, the kitchen is a mess.

Last week, the dinners I prepared at home tasted a little less bland, seasoned with a new perspective.

Originally from the east coast, Cha Cha lives in southern California with her fiance (he’s a plumber) and their bob-tailed cat, Copper Soup.

As a woman, Cha Cha spends her time writing, reading (though not as much as she wishes she did), watching Project Runway (way more than she wished she did—especially since the show ended in 2019), trying to exercise for at least 20 minutes a day (otherwise, she won’t leave the house because she works from home), learning how to manage her money, and talking to herself out loud.

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