I’ve been working full time since I was 16 years old (that’s 31 years for those who are counting). I joined the Navy at 17 and served my country for 21 years, spending long periods overseas, away from home and missing birthdays, holidays and anniversaries.
I’ve worked two jobs more than once to make ends meet when it was necessary. Twice I had to take jobs that required me to commute 250 miles from home during the week and return home only on the weekends. I did it because it’s my responsibility to take care of myself and my family, not anyone else’s.
I completed an Associate’s degree with a 4.0 gpa and no debt by taking courses one and two at a time and paying for it as I went…while also working 50 to 60 hours a week.
The longest period of unemployment I’ve ever experienced was five weeks. During that time, I made it my job to find a job. I worked 8 to 10 hours a day doing nothing but searching for jobs, submitting resumes, going to job fairs, walking in for “informational interviews” etc. I did not apply for unemployment because I had my emergency savings to live on during that time.
I took the first reasonable job offer I got even though it wasn’t a job I wanted; it is MY responsibility to earn the money I need to live on, even if it’s not doing what I want to do. I used that job as a springboard to future employment and am now happily working in my chosen field at a good company at a good salary.
I’ve raised two children who are now adults and are both employed, self-sufficient, contributing members of society. I have four beautiful grandchildren which is really irrelevant to this rant, but I just like to boast.
I was not born with a silver spoon in my mouth. My life has not all been sunshine and roses and I face new challenges every day. I do not expect the government, the Banks, Wall Street or anyone else to deal with those challenges for me. That’s my job. I am the 53%.