When I was 38, I took money from my son’s savings account in order to keep the lights on.
I hadn’t paid my electricity bill in a few months because I didn’t have the money to cover all my bills, and I knew they couldn’t shut off my electricity during the cold winter months.
But as we were heading into spring, the electric company called again. I had avoided answering the phone calls as long as I could. This time I answered. The lady on the other end of the line told me that I needed to pay up or they would disconnect my power. That meant no lights, no internet, and no heat.
I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t have the money, but I didn’t want to lose my electricity.
She asked me if I could charge it. My credit cards were maxed.
She asked me if my family could help. I was too embarrassed and ashamed to ask my family for help. After all, it was my problem, not theirs.
Suddenly, an unexpected idea popped into my head. There actually was one account that had enough money in it to pay the bill in full and keep the lights on. The only problem was, it wasn’t my account. It was my 12-year-old son’s.
The bill collector lady on the phone didn’t seem to care that it was my son’s account or that I was crying. She was just doing her job trying to collect the money and make the next call.
With a large lump in my throat and tears streaming down my cheeks, I reluctantly paid the bill.
Yes, it’s true. I took money from my son’s savings account to keep the lights on. What kind of mother does that? I wondered, berating myself. I felt humiliated and was at the lowest of lows.
But that moment—of embarrassment, shame, and humiliation—was one that propelled me forward to make changes.
And I made many of them:
- I got a part-time job for steady income, but with the flexibility to run my business and be there for my son.
- I prioritized which bills I would pay first. I chose to:
- keep my lights on
- make my house payment
- pay my car payment and expenses
- eat food
Everything else would take a backseat, and my credit score no longer mattered.
- I started selling things to bring in more money.
- Most importantly, I immersed my mind in the likes of Dr. Wayne Dyer’s Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life and anything of Abraham-Hicks I could get my hands on. I listened to CDs over and over for countless hours in order to change my thoughts and to give myself hope that something better would once again be possible.
I was so far in debt and so far behind on my bills that I was served court paperwork from the Sheriff. The credit card company rightfully wanted its money and was suing me for what I owed. I ended up filing bankruptcy.
Eighteen months later, I was making a 6-figure income, more money than I had ever made before.
After paying my son back, taking him on our first-ever mother-son trip, and building up an emergency fund, I realized I had a new problem. I didn’t know how to manage my money well and was afraid because of my recent financial screw-up. So I started embarking on a journey to learn how to handle money.
I immersed myself in learning better ways to handle money both logically and emotionally. What I learned was so empowering to me that I became a Certified Financial Coach and a Certified EFT Practitioner. Now I help people avoid having to go through what I went through.
I know the pain, stress, and heartache that comes with financial challenges. But I also know how to turn things around, and I can help guide you forward. If you aren’t where you’d like to be financially and are ready to invest in yourself, let’s connect. Together we’ll come up with a plan to get you on a path to where you want to be.
I share this story and many more in my book On the Other Side.