The best part about being on the road to early retirement is feeling a greater sense of financial freedom with each step. Each retirement contribution, each investment deposit, and each debt repayment is a tiny notch of freedom. Each step in the right financial direction allows us the opportunity to have more freedom with the money we earn. We had the opportunity to help a loved one last week because we have been actively making smart financial decisions. We were able to give a small gift that could’ve saved a life. A loved ones life.
That loved one I’m talking about is my mother. My mother is 71 years old and lives alone on a fixed income like so many other people her age. A few weeks ago I noticed she had a small, discolored bump on her face. When I mentioned it, she brushed it off and said it’s just an age spot and that she’ll ask her doctor about it when she goes for her check-up in a month. After pressing her a bit, I told her I thought it looked bad enough to be something…bad. I encouraged her to make an appointment with a specialist before her check-up.
My mother didn’t want to make an appointment with a specialist because she couldn’t afford a specialist. She also hates to ask for help and was just planning on talking to her general practitioner about it next month. She had her check-up budgeted into next month’s money. She didn’t have extra cash for an appointment this month, too.
Because Mr. MMM and I have been making good financial choices, we were able to ease my mother’s mind by telling her we would cover any co-pay costs and medications she might need. Thankfully this put her mind at ease and she made the appointment. Within a week she had a procedure, including a biopsy. The diagnosis was squamous cell carcinoma. Squamous cell carcinoma is a highly treatable/curable cancer, if detected early. We are so very thankful we were able to get this diagnosis a whole month earlier than expected. This only happened because of our financial position.
Peace Of Mind
This was probably the biggest FIRE motivator we have experienced. Options. It felt so good to be in a position of power in this personal situation. It’s likely that my mother would have been fine waiting another month. I’m glad we’re in a position where we didn’t need to wait to find out. This is what makes the sacrifices worth it!