When I was younger, I dreamed of making my own money, I imagined the freedom and excitement it would bring. As I’ve grown older, I realize that making more money can often mean owing more money.
When I started college, I lived in the dorms. I didn’t pay rent, but I had a part-time job on campus. It did not pay very well, but it was just “extra” money to me. I didn’t pay any bills, so I was able to spend this money on whatever I liked.
Once I moved into a house with my sister and our friend, I had to start paying rent and utilities. At this time I had a part-time job at Target. I made a little be more than previously, but most of my money made its way to those financial obligations. I had over-drafted my account once or twice, not adjusting well to being unable to spend the money that I was earning however I wanted. This was when I got my first credit card.
By the time I got my second on-campus job, I was also working at Target. I was able to save up some money at this time since I had two incomes. However, being a full-time student, I decided that two part-time jobs was too stressful and gave up the red and khaki (Target). I went back to the stressful life of pay check to pay check living.
Now, I have a full-time, entry-level position. I make more money than I ever have before, but I also have more bills. I am paying off the credit cards I accumulated while working part-time; I now live with my fiancé, with a higher rent; we have a puppy, which is expensive; and we had to buy furniture for our place together. All the while, I am trying to save up for our up-coming wedding and honeymoon.
I’m very thankful to be in my current (mostly) financially stable position at such a young age, but I am also feeling my financial burdens. 13 year-old me is kinda bummed. As the Notorious B.I.G. so aptly put it: Mo’ money, mo’ problems!