I felt bad when she left, but we both understood.
When your on-paper budget shows you have an unallocated surplus of around $120/mo, I can’t justify paying for your eyeglasses as I’m accustomed to doing for so many dirt poor 80somethings I see each week. She’s frugal, that’s for sure. Doesn’t fritter away portions of her small income on gambling, drinking, smoking, cable channels or other luxuries. Even does her own hair and nails. I showed her how on her small social security income, she can save around a hundred bucks a month if she adopts the budget plan from our meeting today.
She walked in thinking she’d walk out with a deal to pay for a new pair of glasses. But she got much more. She left with insight and pride knowing she actually doesn’t need help but can easily buy her own glasses within the next month. Today that light bulb made all the difference in the world to Shirley, and she was more pleased to know she can be self-sufficient instead of dependent.
“Shirley, I really wanted to pay for those glasses for you,” I said as we walked down the hall from my office. She stopped me with her pointer finger. “Don’t, it’s okay. Since my husband passed, nobody has ever taken the time to show me how to budget or save in so many areas I never knew I could. I may be walking out without the glasses but you made me feel like a million bucks knowing I’ll be able to pay for them myself because of what you showed me. And where I come from, that’s how I was raised, and how I raised my own children.
We meet again one month from today to place her order online.