Last week, I was in a job interview, and I got asked a question that, to be quite honest, both offended me and made me second guess some of my life choices:
Why did you go to such a prestigious - and expensive - college and then just sell wedding dresses and be a nanny? If you take this job you won't be making much money at all. You'll never be rich.
I went to Biola University for college, and graduated in 2010. (Biola is a private Christian college in Southern California, if you didn't know.) For 7 months after college I continued my job selling wedding dresses, then I was a nanny for a year and a half, then I moved back to SLO and worked at a wealth management firm, and now I live in the mountains and work for a very small non-profit organization.
I said that I went to Biola because my brothers went there and my dad got his doctorate there, and I wanted to go to a Christian school, and Biola seemed like the right place. It was familiar, but far enough away from home that I felt like I was on my own. What I didn't say was that when I was 17 and deciding where to go to college, I didn't know what I was doing. I didn't apply anywhere else, and if I hadn't gotten in to Biola I probably would have gone to community college for a few years.
When I was 17 I thought I'd figure my life out while I was in school. I didn't have a plan going in to it. Do any of us? What 17 year old knows exactly what he wants to do? If you're one of the few who actually did know that you wanted to be a doctor, or a teacher, or join the Peace Corps, or whatever, then I'll admit that I'm pretty jealous of you.
While I was in college I didn't think about a career. I figured I'd figure it out afterward. Then, a few months before graduation I realized I didn't know what I was going to do with my life. It was then that I started to realize I don't want a typical career. I don't want to work 40, 50, or 60 hours a week outside of my home. It started becoming clear to me that what I wanted was to - one day - be a wife and a mom.
That's why, after school, I didn't try to get my foot in the door at some big company raking in tens of thousands of dollars. I'm not motivated by money, or prestige, or a title like CEO or anything. I want stability, happiness, and a family. There was a time when I didn't think I'd ever have any of that, but that's a story for another time.
What I wanted to tell the man who asked me that question is this: I went to college because it was expected of me, and I didn't know what I'd do otherwise. And I didn't move to the mountains to get rich. I moved to the mountains to be with Keith, and if I can make some extra money to put in the bank and put toward travel plans and our wedding, then that's fine with me. But just because you don't understand that doesn't mean I should feel bad about it.