I can’t say I would have guessed I’d still be earning slightly above minimum wage right now as I’m entering my 30s.
Things just didn’t pan out after college the way I had always hoped.
I elected to wait on graduate school for a while, thinking that I could become a research psychologist whenever I felt I was ready. I was working at the city’s largest newspaper at the time, and little did I know, the company was facing a huge buy-out and would start catastrophic employment cuts within weeks of taking control of the business. I kept my job until they laid me off six months later. And when that finally hit the fan, I rushed to find new work as a writer and editor, but found nothing. Soon I was back working at the very grocery store that was my first place of employment back when I was 15 years old. I had friends in prestigious jobs making upwards to $30 an hour while I was bagging groceries for just a little bit above minimum wage. When you’re this severely strapped for money, any large and unexpected expense is enough to cause a small panic attack. When it’s the central heating and cooling system, the reaction is amplified. Many people are one single malfunction away from not having access to indoor climate control. They’re one breakdown away from needing a system replacement that they lack the funds to afford. When my suddenly shut down on me a month ago, I played through every possible scenario in my head while I was waiting for the HVAC technician to arrive. Thankfully, my issue was as simple as resetting the electrical breaker for the heating and cooling system. He refused to charge me anything for his troubles since he was only here for five minutes. I am so thankful there was no problem after all.