My little hometown didn't have wealthy people in it. Most of us were blue-collar families who lived in modest homes, who attended modest schools, and who lived paycheck to paycheck. When I was a kid, if you needed any major work on the car or if there was a major household need we really felt it. There was no nest egg, no one to get financial help from. There was surviving.
As kids we all knew this. It was just normal. I never felt particularly poor or anything, though we were, despite Dad's very long hours at work and his resourcefulness for our needs. Us kids really didn't know we were impoverished, though. We seemed to have what we needed...some how.
But if there was an accident or an emergency need in our family we all felt the financial crisis and we all knew about it. That was normal, being aware of the financial limits. And in fact, if we go back further in the family, just one more generation: compared to them we thought we were living like princes in the 1970s.
I mention this because this month Jer and I had two major expenses, rather out of the blue. I am having three procedures with a periodontist to the tune of nearly ten K and we had some necessary work done on the vehicle when a huge part of it fell off while my daughter was driving it.
We handled it with almost no worries. I couldn't help but think about what a crisis this could have been when I was a kid.
How did we do it?
Because of college, My Friend.
Take every advantage to educate yourself. Every dollar you spend to educate yourself is an investment that will pay off dozens of times in your future.
When I think of all of the financial stress my dad, my parents, suffered, especially with how hard Dad worked, it makes me sad that he didn't have the opportunity to go to school. Dad was quite a smart man; I wonder where a college education would have taken him... All four of us, my siblings and I, went to college. Three of us have master's degrees and one of us is considering a doctorate soon. Because of Dad. He always acted like college was a given and his expectations all paid off. We love to learn...
In these day, it is essential to get an advanced degree.
When Dad was alive he gave me tons of money for my kids, to ensure their education. Between the three of us (Jer and I and Dad) my kids, too, know that going to college is a natural next step.