AILEEN KARL | No Money, Mo’ Problems



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[blockquote source=”Cypress Hill”]

So you wanna be a rock superstar?
And live large, a big house, 5 cars, you’re in charge.[/blockquote]

Let’s Rewind

First off, I just wanted to say thank you for the support from my last blog post. (Check it out here!) It was a cathartic experience being able to express all the anxiety that had been building for the last two years. Two years you ask? Yep. This isn’t something I’ve openly shared with others, but I was actually supposed to graduate last spring. However, instead of receiving an email confirming my eligibility, I got this:

Screen Shot 2015-05-22 at 2.40.21 PM
Nothing better than expecting to graduate and receiving this.

I still remember exactly how I felt when I read the email: I got really hot all over and my hands started shaking. (In fact, the feeling was reminiscent of how I felt when I found out that I had a $120 library fine-but that’s a story for another time.) And although I have had invaluable opportunities this past year for which I am very grateful, it’s also been emotionally taxing. But I think that’s to be expected when you realize that you’ve royally screwed up.

Anyway, this week I’ve been taking it easy. I’ve put the job search on pause and have decided to just chill. Have a “staycation” if you will. I’m not really sure of the origins of the word, but I really hate it. To me, it’s really just a fancy way of saying you can’t afford to go on a vacation-which I can’t. That brings me to the theme of this week’s post: money or my lack thereof.

If I Were A Rich Girl

Money Talks
Sad, but true.

Before I go any further, I suppose I should explain my financial situation. Over the last couple of years, I’ve been able to save some money from my part-time jobs and I’m fortunate to be in the small minority of students that will be graduating debt-free this spring. But by no means does this imply that I actually have any money. In fact, the opposite is true. I’m financially dependent on my parents and pray every day that my bank won’t find out that I’m graduating so that I lose the benefits of my student account. This is both very embarrassing and depressing to admit.

I think like most graduating students; I had these dreams of grandeur. I’d get a job; get my own place, live autonomously. The reality is that I can’t afford to do that. Not unless I wanted to live with ten roommates in Timbuktu. This terrifies me. I do NOT want to be the girl stuck living in her parent’s house at the age of thirty.

Money Can’t Buy Happiness

I get the statement that Biggie was trying to make in his song Mo’ Money Mo’ Problems, but honestly the feeling of struggling financially is suffocating. Or at least that’s how I’ve been feeling lately. I think I’ve annoyed all of my friends for last six months about how I’m desperate to go on a beach vacation-to just get away from everything and relax. But it just doesn’t seem to be in the cards for me right now.

This is where I want to be right now.
This is where I want to be right now.

I can’t deny that I’m envious of all the students who have gone on grad trips to nice places. If I’m ever feeling particularly masochistic, I’ll scroll through my Facebook feed. Apparently a lot of my ex-high school classmates have decided to celebrate graduation by touring Europe. I know logically that if I ever want to move out of my parents’ house, I should save my money. However, that doesn’t stop me from wanting to go really badly!

Cue the staycation.

Before, the closest I go to the outdoors was this picture in my room.
This picture in my room is supposed to keep me zen-it hasn’t been working!

Money Doesn’t Grow On Trees?

To combat this feeling of restlessness, I’ve found myself spending a lot of time outdoors. Now this is particularly strange for me. If there were such a thing as indoorsy, that’s how I would define myself. Yet I have found something particularly soothing about taking a walk while listening to my favourite songs and hanging out in parks. (I just realized how creepy that sounded…) Anyway, until I can afford to go somewhere, this will have to do. Who knows, maybe I’ll become such an expert on agriculture that I’ll be able to engineer a tree that money actually grows on. Wouldn’t that be something?

One of the gorgeous views from a park near my house.

For all those who can relate, just stay on your grind. Fingers crossed we’ll get where we want to be eventually, whether that’s laying on a beach, traveling the world or wherever. Until then, I’ll keep saving and hitting up the dollar menu at McDonalds!

The plant in the middle with the green leaves is a ‘Money Tree’ which is supposed to bring money and fortune to its owners according to Chinese folklore. We’ll see if it works!