paying dearly

A particularly odious part of continuing education is the cost. Now, some people are simply infintely wiser than others, or they had parents* who educated them on the horrific black hole that is “credit” and did not allow them to borrow money for college, and those people escape the hell that is the student loan. Or loans, if you live the hell that is my life.

I used to lay (lie? yeah, I’ve been in school, studying WRITING for 9 years…gah) awake at night, heart racing and forehead sweating. How will I, in god’s good name, ever repay what I have so foolishly borrowed? Why didn’t somebody tackle me and wrest the shovel from my hands to save me from digging my own sad, early grave?

Now I have come to peace with the debt. Well, sort of. It still plagues me, though I lose less sleep. Mostly because I found that if I DIE, the debt will be forgiven. But that peace is interrupted as, on a near-nightly basis, some (zitty, I’m sure) teen-ager at a noisy call center in San Diego or Clearwater or where ever calls me to ask me would I like to consolidate.

It sure sounds nice. They promise me lower rates, even lower rates if I pay on time, and the ease of one bill and one lender and one balance (that, when they tell me what it is, scares me all over again).

Brian is certain that they are all vultures, out to screw us for all we’ve got. It makes a little sense to me, though. I mean, it’s like they’re buying any large loan (mortgage, car loan) and giving us a smaller interest rate, but still making out like bandits because even a SMALL interest rate on an assload of money will get them a stellar return.

Twice now I’ve been talked into allowing different companies FedEx me their application, which looks frightening because I have to 1) see the balance in black and white and 2) sign a waiver that says my loans must come out of deferrment before they can consolidate them. I stall, and then they call me back again and again to see if I have questions and did I send the paperwork back yet and why haven’t you sent the application back yet!!??

A consolidation application sits on my desk right now. I’m terrified of sending it, but terrified that if I don’t do something, the unsubsidized portions will grow like furious demons, choking me as I attempt to purchase another house or as Hannah starts college.

All I want in life is to make enough to pay off my loans (and maybe hire a housekeeper). Then I’ll be able to sleep at night (in a clean house).

*Actually, this is probably unfair. My original college plans, to attend the US Coast Guard Academy, were paid in full, half by my mom, and half by my dad. A whopping 2K. Which, when I un-enrolled, they refunded and I bought a car with so I could commute to a local school.


3 thoughts on “paying dearly

  1. In my panicked-I-can’t-pay-back-loans moments, I fantisize about moving (a.k.a. “fleeing”) to, say, Denmark.

  2. You do recall that I have a 20+ year history in financial services, right?

    Let’s have lunch SOON and talk about this. Nothing about mere money should ever be terrifying.


  3. Aww, come on now Mad… There’s always the Army’s Loan Repayment Program. I personally recommend it. But, then, there’s always that pesky Iraq thing…

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