here is the thing.

i support protests and protestors. i even support protests that i don’t agree with – we were given the right of free assembly and let’s use it. and i support (and agree with, even though i wish they could decide on a goal) what they’re doing at occupy wall street and the message associated with it. i am the 99% as well. i believe corporate greed is terrible and that capitalism hasn’t gotten us far. i’m pretty liberal, i really am.

i discovered the “we are the 99%” tumblr. you should go have a look around, it’s interesting. it’s truly astonishing how many of us are in similar positions. however, here are some other facts. here, really, is my story.

i spent the first nine years of my life with my great grandparents, who were getting by on social security and help from other family. i learned to value a 25 cent skein of embroidery thread as a treat. i am grateful for this firm hold on the value of things. when i moved in with my mom, she worked a variety of sometimes shitty jobs to support us, but she always did. she and my stepfather worked long and hard, renovated a house all on their own, and have now built several successful businesses. neither of them comes from any money. they helped me pay for my first semester of college, which is the only semester i took out any loans – the rest i paid for with my university payment plan, with over $1K due monthly. i went to a school that cost $40K a year and over 3/4 of it was covered every year by scholarships because i worked my ass off in high school. i worked all through college at stressful, passionless jobs to continue going to school. i graduated a semester early with a double major. i secured employment before graduating, by working for months at sending out 10+ resumes a day. i could have gone to a “better” school, and i would have come out $160K in debt. i made a different choice. when i was unemployed earlier this year, between a temp job and my new job (which i love and adore and am so excited about), i was unemployed for a week. i live in a pretty nice apartment in a mediocre section of brooklyn. i easily support myself on a nonprofit associate salary, and though i’m not basking in luxuries, i can afford a few.

i have had strokes of luck, i do not deny this. but i have also made choices and lived within my means. i cannot afford children right now, so i take precautions not to have them. i treated finding a new job like a full time job in itself. i know the world is rough; i believe in universal, state sponsored healthcare and education. i believe in advocating and fighting for these things. but christ, we have to adjust to the world we have in front of us too.

 

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