Right now I’m up late thinking about money. Its payday and I’m trying to figure how to make ends meet. Money problems are very common, everyone has them. Everyone wants just enough to get by, just enough to put gas in the car, or just enough put food in the fridge. The normal middle class American spends more than half of their income on the cost of living. The normal college graduate spends almost the same amount in student loan debit plus the cost of living. It’s no wonder many of us are fleeing back into the basements of our parents or settling in with three or four roommates to survive.
The classic family of 2013, means that our mothers and fathers have longer commitment and different relationship with their children. While we have grown into young adults seeking jobs, individuality, love, and eventually families of our own we are still tethered to the nest. Unable to break free and prove ourselves as independent adults, living through a depression, rescission, tough times, or whatever you want to call it as a modern adult I find that the hardest part about all of this is understanding what really is expected of you to accomplish.
The perfect idealism of the American dream has changed, the idea of the free world has changed, the opinions and politics have changed and soon enough you have to wonder what you’re settling for? I mentioned that sometimes I feel like my life is on pause, can’t afford to have children, can’t afford to get married, can’t afford to buy a house and I can’t afford life on my own. I love my boyfriend, with all my heart, he has been beyond good to me and beyond the man that his father raised him to be.
Here are some hard truths. He didn’t go to college, he didn’t graduate top 10% of his class or aspire to have any kind of career. He hates his job and he’s been working there for 6 years with the on and off again employment at a second place when we need the money. I did the total opposite, the whole American dream, I mean I went to college, did the top 10% and career goals and while I might make that small difference more. I still come up short.
I pay 6 different student loans, which are spread out into 14 different accounts. I have recently consolidated and now have 3 payments a month only (thank god,) but my point is before my paycheck even registers, I’ve lost half of my income on student debt, which leaves me $350.00 for my cost of living. When I say cost of living, I mean food, phone, heat, electric, rent, car payment, gas for the car, laundry money and health plan with a retirement fund to build. So I let me ask this again, what am I expected to accomplish from that.
The American dream is no long about going after something that you want. The American dream has become this concept of surviving. It about settling and doing things yourself, I want to publish and sell a novel so I am doing it on my own. I’m an indie author. This blog is about that journey, about this time in my life where everything about 25 feels right. Despite all my wrinkles of late night stress about paying the car and buying food for the fridge I am happy.
I love my small apartment, I love spending time with my family and I adore the man who is right now peacefully asleep in the other room. I love everything about 25. Money comes and goes as fast as water can turn into air. Simply put my accounts hit negatives all the time and I’m constantly sacrificing something for the other but I don’t think that I have settled for anything. I just feel like the American dream isn’t what it was when I came out of the gate running towards it.
So who is to blame for this? Society? History? The government? Myself? I think I’ll blame this on the fact that it’s 1:52 am. I’ll blame it on the fact that I’ll pay my car instead of do groceries and I’ll put gas in my car to get to work instead of put money in our finding a bigger place fund. It means that like the past 6 months I’ll be in the negative by hundreds before noon on pay day. At least I like my job, and I like the people in my life. Surely there are worst problems in the world, and I am complaining about nothing at all.