It all started in 2004 when I was just about to graduate from high school. I had a huge dilemma on my hands. Follow some of my friends and classmates and go to the prestigious university I got into where I could follow my dream and go directly into a debt that I would never be able to pay off, or stay at home with my stepfather, work a full-time job while also working two part-time jobs, all while taking a full schedule of courses at a local university that had been a mere community college just three years prior. Like most mistakes made in the mid 2000s I based my decision entirely upon money and opted to stay home.
I didn’t want to be in debt for the rest of my life because of student loans and living expenses that I wouldn’t be able to afford once I moved out on my own. So I made the fiscally sound decision and sacrificed my future, a diploma from a prestigious school, friendship, relationships, some vacation time, my ability to get sick and take time off, and all around happiness because I was so scared of paying off four years worth of college for the rest of my life.
My grades may have suffered from the pure exhaustion I accumulated from all the work and school hours I was going through each week, but that’s okay; it was just my future of being hired at a respectable company or maybe going to a graduate school that was hindered by the process. At least my decision to sacrifice all of those things didn’t end in me having an exorbitant amount of student loans to pay off. So I went through the process for four and a half years (yes, I had to do an extra half year because I couldn’t afford to be a full-time student every semester even though I was living at home) and graduated with mediocre grades from a university that no one — to this day — has ever heard of.
And now here I am in a low level position in the entertainment industry that produces reality TV, which has nothing to do with my major since I wanted to be a writer. The biggest joke to come out of the whole situation is that I ended up going into debt because the only way to get a job in today’s society is to sacrifice six to eight months of your life being an intern at a company that works you to the bone for no money, unless you count the mileage reimbursements (which I don’t). But at least it’s not that insane amount of debt from student loans, it’s a more reasonable credit card debt from surviving those months as an intern that will hopefully be paid off in 15 years.