BLUF: The FI/RE community is amazing but we are often focused on the long game. I challenge you to take a look at your life and ask if you are getting everything you want out of it, because things can change quickly. Habits overtime become who you are, solidifying your character, and ultimately what you are remembered by.
As many have been tracking on Twitter and on my blog, I have been going though a rough time (actually all of 2017 has been a nightmare). I have kept my personal issues separate from my personal finance blog because I did not think it was relevant or a big deal. Everyone is fighting their own battles, I am no different.
However, this little battle has grown to a full scale war.
A year ago I was exceptionally healthy.
- Easily passed the Marine Corps’ Physical Fitness Test (3 mile run, pull-ups, sit-ups) and the Combat Fitness Test (.5 mile sprint in utilities, ammo can lifts, and a series of other speed strength exercises)
- Hiked with full gear (+100 lbs.); body armor, weapon(s), and pack for 10-15 miles, no problem
- Ran numerous adventure / mud runs
- Ran marathons
- Going through a second master program as well
Then overnight, everything changed.
I am very much still in the fight, actively trying to kill this disease.
So much chemotherapy (poison) has been pumped through my body that the likelihood for future “issues” has significantly increased. I am permanently deaf in my right ear. I am hypersensitive to any bump, rash, or ache on my body. Is it more cancer?
My life will never be the same after this. Deploying to combat is tough, but battling something within your own body takes it to another level. At least for me it is.
So Why Would The FI/RE, Personal Finance Community Care?
As a community, we are usually focused on the long game. That is part of makes us so effective / successful. We generally have a low discount rate; we would much rather invest ~$1,000 now and have it return continuous profit in the future vice go buy a new TV.
With that said, like it or not, we are all going to face a major life challenges.
There was a post on Reddit that really hit me a while ago (I was unable to find the specific post). It went something like;
“What is your biggest fear while planning for financial independence.”
One of the highest voted comments was: Cancer.
This was near the time I was diagnosed. It was hard to read, but it is true.
I have done “everything right” and here I am dealing with the big C.
The diagnoses absolutely forced me to look at my future different, but I would be lying it has significantly changed any of my short-term or long-term plans.
- I am living the exact life I want.
- We have been living a life of frugality, simplicity, and aggressive saving / investing for so long, it is who we are.
- My family is amazing, I see and talk with them often.
- I love my job and feel like I make a positive impact.
- I have done well to every person I met and live without a single regret.
- I am honored to have my life and am thankful for everything in it.
- Also, I realized I had more support from friends and family that I ever imagined.
I Challenge You
Put yourself in my position, would you change anything?
Ask these questions now and review them every so often. It makes dealing with challenges so much easier when they do happen.
“Your actions become your habits, your habits become your values, and your values become your destiny.” – Mahatma Gandhi
Habits overtime become who you are, solidifying your character, and ultimately what you are remembered by.
The FI/RE community is amazing
I have learned a lot from everyone here and the different backgrounds of everyone make this community even more unique. The support from people I have never met is amazing, thank you for everything, it means a lot.
Big picture wise, I am still alive and feeling good. I am going through some hard treatment right now and I hope to be on the back side of it soon; however, I am ready for anything that comes my way.
This disease is not taking me down like this.
I will not let anyone down, I know nothing else.