I woke up yesterday, on my 42nd birthday, with my stomach in knots. I even puked for good measure. The night before, I'd had a painful Numbers Crunching Session with Gins to see if I could possibly manage the monthly cost of a horse.
She was gentle but the numbers, not so much. Gradually, it started to dawn on me that Copper would not be mine. I cried a bit and searched my budget for fat.
"You already live pretty minimally," she said. "Already, you've got yourself living on $100 per month for groceries - that's insane."
"I like Ramen," I said. "And maybe my vegetarianism will kick in. That might help."
Such was the desperation of this session. (Gins also noted that my paltry $5 a month for toiletries "mocked" her own spendy habits in this category.)
Everyone says, "Go for it!" I love the passion behind this - who doesn't love a girl-and-her-horse story? Especially one with a happy ending? Trouble is, I'd be the only paying for it and financially, I won't be ready until 2009 - my original plan. As Gins said, "This is the not the end of a dream, it is only a delay."
Last stop: I talked it over with Beanie and we decided that I absolutely should not buy this horse. "I don't want to see something that otherwise brings you joy, become a burden," she said.
I felt a mixture of sadness and relief. The burden of a decision was over but it was not the one I wanted. "There will be plenty of other horses in your life," Beanie said.
"Do you promise?"
"I promise. Tons more."
I really wanted this to happen but I'm sorta proud that I tried so hard and worked it out as thoroughly as I could. This might be one they call an 'adult decision' and I am fairly unfamiliar with them.
Sigh. I guess this is what 42 feels like.