Some of you may have noticed that The Wander Bugs were on a bit of a hiatus for much of 2015. We wanted to fill you in on our lives over the past 10 months while we have been MIA.
Sometimes you can have the best plans and be on track and then something happens to completely destroy all of your good intentions and well thought out plans. This is exactly what happened to us in 2015. The past year was not kind to us personally. We had a lot of unplanned expenses and personal losses that really knocked us down.
The year started out very well with a wonderful trip to Mexico with friends and family. Work was going great for both of us. We were on track for our savings plan. We had maxed out Mr. Bug’s 401K and increased Mrs. Bug’s to 14%. However, around April things quickly went downhill. Mrs. Bug had major surgery which kept her bedridden for weeks and in pain for months. The pain was so severe that it was a struggle to drag herself to work. Weekends were spent trying to heal and recover.
About one month after that, our beloved pug, Lux, got sick. Really sick. We weren’t sure what was wrong at first. The doctors couldn’t figure it out. He was having trouble walking, which they attributed to his age at almost 12 years old. Then he wouldn’t eat. They said he had a cold. We took him from one vet to another. We took him to a chiropractor to help with his walking. About a month in, Lux was hospitalized for pancreatitis. Then he caught pneumonia and was hospitalized again. He got better. He got worse. He got better. He was eating. He had no strength. It was a long and crazy rollercoaster of up and down health and emotions. Lux ended up being hospitalized once at the emergency vet and twice at the internist specialist vet. They did all they could do. Finally, after 2.5 months of trying, he could no longer fight. The loss was devastating. Our furbabies are our children.
Between the major surgery and our dog’s health issues, we spent around $15,000. This was $15,000 that was not budgeted at all. We did not expect either of these things to occur. Thankfully, we had great health insurance or Mrs. Bug’s surgery would have been much more expensive. We were also thankful that we were in a financial situation where we were able to spend the money to care for our dog and give him every medical possibility to recover.
Mrs. Bug’s surgery was very successful and her health has had a drastic improvements since. And although we lost our beloved pug, we are so grateful we had the opportunity to spend 12 wonderful years with him and were able to make him as comfortable as possible in his remaining days.
With that being said, how does one recover from this big of a setback? $15,000 is not chump change! Where do we go from here? Do we curl up in a ball in the fetal position and stop living? Do we give up on our dreams? Do we say screw it to early retirement and financial independence?
2015 was a rough year for us personally, but we cannot simply toss away our hopes and dreams. Life goes on. And so will our goals. We took a pretty big beating in 2015, both financially and emotionally. But, we will not stop living our lives. Our plan is to pick ourselves up and keep trucking forward. We are now quite a bit behind on our goals with the loss of $15,000 that would have otherwise gone towards financial independence. That, combined with the poor performance of the market lately, has made us question if it is all worth it. But, we know it’s worth it and we know we don’t want to be slaves to “the man” until we are old and wrinkled. So, we will push through.
Our goals for 2016 are simple. Save more; spend less. We have a big trip coming up that was planned last year (before our lives started spinning out of control). Other than that trip, we have nothing else planned currently travel wise. We plan to keep an eye out and travel where the deals take us. We have already made new adjustments to our monthly bills that should help as well. We think we are on the right track, but who knows what 2016 has in store for us. We are going to stay positive and keep on trucking down the road of life. Here’s to 2016!