I came from a lower middle class family. Unlike other families where both parents are working, it was just my dad who had a job. My mom took care of our home, of us. It was in my early years that I fully grasped the meaning of living within your means, through the examples and practices of my parents.
Then, my mom had a budget to follow and I believed she was able to manage her spending most of the time. Maybe it’s because she knew she couldn’t overspend because it would make her children hungry and her husband disappointed. During those times when she did overspend, she was smart enough to cover for it by borrowing money from friends. A not so smart practice, but at least, she was able to feed us and we didn’t go hungry for our dad to notice.
Today, whenever I look at our past, I can’t help but smile. Our experience as a lower middle class family taught us a lot about managing our finances well. About foregoing luxuries and prioritizing necessities. About living within our means. If not for these practices, we wouldn’t be where we are today. We may be enjoying a better quality of life than before and we may be the ones taking care of our parents’ needs today, but we never forget how living within our means has saved us from getting hungry and kept our family values intact. 🙂