Counting the Months to DMP Graduation!

A Straight Talk on Debt

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Counting the Months to DMP Graduation!

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I've celebrated many milestones of my debt management plan, including each anniversary year, and being halfway done

Recognizing those accomplishments is one source of motivation that helps keep me and my wife moving forward. 

In March, we reached the point of having one year left of our plan.  Reaching that mark put a smile on my face, but I really had my eyes set on this month, because after this month we will only have ten payments left.  What's special about ten?

Having ten payments left is significant, because I can count them with my fingers. 

I'm a visual person, and being able to hold up my hands and physically display how many payments remain until our mountain of $109,000 of credit is gone is an indescribable feeling. 

Getting out from under the weight of credit card debt has been the hardest thing I have ever done.  Having only ten months left, the countdown is officially on.  With each passing month I can think about the life events that happen and know that next year, it will be just a little bit easier to plan and pay for them.

We've been doing things on the small scale for almost four years now, and while I'm never going back to my old out of control spending ways, it will be nice to be able to splurge just a little bit on those special events and know that we're still living within our means.

June:   I can't wait to be able to spoil and pamper the most important woman in my life for our anniversary.

July:  More of making Vonnie feel like the appreciated wife, mother, and friend that she is for her birthday.

August:  Dare I hope that in 2014 we may be able to take a family summer vacation?

September:  How awesome will it be to get the kids ready for school, without having to worry about whether we'll be able to afford everything they need? 

October:  A month without any event is rare and is to be enjoyed!

November:  I would love to be able to host Thanksgiving dinner without having to plan for and save for weeks or months ahead of time.

December:  Christmas is hands down the most stressful time of year for a family on a tight budget.  We will NOT go overboard on gifts, but without the financial stress that comes with being in debt, I have a feeling that Christmas 2014 will be much more enjoyable.

January:  Just once I'd like to not use the excuse that it was just Christmas for skimping on my son's birthday celebration.

February:  I love being creative for Valentine's Day, but I look forward to being able to give my wife an actual gift.

March:  I'll need some extra money to stockpile the tissues needed for the waterworks that will accompany making our last payment.  I'm going to bawl like a newborn, guaranteed.

All that's left is eight fingers and two thumbs.  How much longer do you have left?

Related Links:

And In 3...2...1

Halfway Home!

Reflection on a year in the Debt Management Plan


Travis Pizel, debt management plan customer with leading provider of debt relief, CareOne Services, Inc. Travis Pizel

Travis is a contributing writer for the My Journey out of Debt and A Straight Talk on Debt blogs. He is also a very active member of the CareOne community forums. Travis is currently enrolled in a CareOne Debt Management Plan (DMP). Travis candidly shares his personal journey to pay off his debt and the tips he's learned along the way. As a father and husband he provides a unique perspective on balancing debt, finances, and family in Minnesota. You can also read more from Travis on the Enemy of Debt blog, where he is a featured blogger. Compensated Blogger for CareOne Debt Relief Services.

To connect with Travis on Google+ click

You can follow Travis on Twitter @DebtChronicles


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  • That is so awesome!  Yea for you! WOW - that was a LOT of debt. If you can do that, we can overcome our 15,000. We still have 3 years and a few months to go but when I was feeling overwhelmed and depressed about money last week I did something interesting. I took out a calculator and added up all our starting balances. Then I added up all our current balances and subtracted that total from the original. Then we talked about the fact that we were a few thousand dollars less in debt and if we had not joined we would have used every penny of that money up. We would be just as broke but more in debt(More so because of interest). It helped. Your list is lovely. October is for a Halloween party ;) I am excited for you!

  • You're right, Kimmer5000 - October IS for a Halloween party.  Well my wife would agree....I'm not big into that sort of thing.  Although I have worn some interesting costumes over the years - but again that is all my wife's doing.   I'm glad to hear you were able to re-motivate yourself by taking a step back and realizing that you've started to make a dent in your debt.  Realizing that if you hadn't enrolled you would have likely spent every penny of what you have now eliminated.  We've eliminated close to $90K of debt.  I can't even imagine what we would have blown $90,000 on over the last 4 years, but I'm sure we would have done it!  Keep going Kimberly, you CAN do it !

  • 4 years behind you and 10 months to go sounds wonderful!  Your vision is coming within reach.  We have one year down and . . . I don't know how many more to go - 4 or 5?.  Our starting total, including our mortgage, was a whopping $257,000.  The end of this month marks the end of our first year, and we will be down by a total of around $50,000.  Encouraging, but it leaves a whole lot left still.  It's clear from your post that you've sacrificed a lot, and it makes me think that we can toughen up and do better.  Have fun counting down!

  • HOW AWESOME IS THIS!!  CONGRATULATIONS ON BEING A SHORT TIMER.,  I retired from the Department of Corrections and when the inmates got to within one year of completing their sentences, they called themsellves short timers.  It was like a badge of honor among the thieves


    But, truely, I'm really happy for you and your family.  You have worked very hard to get to this point and I'm sure Vonnie is excited too.  That light at the end of the tunnel is growing bigger and bigger.

    Disclaimer:  I have been enrolled in the CareOne Debt Management Program since November 2010.  I am a compensated blogger for the CareOne brand of debt relief services; however, I do not receive compensation for my participation in the forums and groups.  I invite you to read my blogs by clicking on the Blogs tab and the categories "A Straight Talk on Debt" and "My Journey out of Debt",

  • I can't wait for the day you and Vonnie get to celebrate your debt freedom!!  It's coming up!!  :-)

  • My Wife and I have been in the Program since 2010 and we are finally going to be finishing at the end of January 2014, we are looking forward to finally being able to use our money to enjoy time with our kids than paying off past mistakes.

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