19 and Unemployed
A Look Into the Life of a Young Journalist's Summer Gone Wrong... For Now
Allow me to introduce myself.
My name is Katie, and I'm a 19-year-old student who just moved to Chicago full time after a year at a college in the city. At the end of my third and final quarter of my freshman year, I had everything together for the most part; good grades, minimum wage-job, and an all-too-fun social life that consisted being hungover at least two days a week. I thought everything would be perfect when I decided to sublease an apartment from a fellow sorority sister for the summer, until everything went to shit, for lack of a better word.
I spent my whole year thinking about a summer in the city being a "real adult" except for the fact that my parents pay a whopping $200 of my rent. Working at a restaurant all summer, sporting my best fits to impress customers and low-key hot coworker four years my senior, and spending my free time partying with my friends like what I've been doing for the past nine months sounded like a dream. I ended up spending four weeks at home in Kentucky (the civilized part). One week was at home to see my family, then a week at Disney World (where I learned the most magical place on Earth can be the most fattening thanks to those devilish jumbo pretzles) and then a week at Summerfest in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, followed by another week at home to celebrate the Fourth of July and one of my best friends coming back home from England for two weeks. As my time at home was coming to a close, I started packing all of my things, and I thought it would be a smart idea to call my manager and let her know I was coming back the following day ready to work. To my surprise, I was told that since I was gone for "too long," even though my time gone was approved, a new hostess was hired and therefore I was out of a job.
Since I've never had this kind of conversation before, I didn't know how else to act besides saying, "Okay," to the other end of the phone, hanging up, yelling, "FUCK," and then crying. I called my parents and explained the situation, and they said I would find a job in no time. The next day, I left home with just my two suitcases and the slim bit of dignity that I had left. The moment I touched down at Midway Airport, I was a woman on a mission to have a job and become independent.
First Step to finding a job: Where do I want to work? A bar that will hire an underage girl? Another restaurant? Seeking Arrangements dates? I am desprate for cashflow, and a lot of it. I hate to admit, I did check my Seeking Arrangement account that I made as a joke to see if there were any, and I mean ANY, eligible men; As much as I keep telling myself that there are, all I have to do is imagine the movie Taken and close out the computer window.
Step Two: Desperately searching the internet for a job that sounds slightly enjoyable. So far, I have applied for a restaurant, spa receptionist, sales associate at a retail store, and a sales associate at a chocolate store. My brain feels like it has a billion different personalities because I have to act like I actually like all of these places and use my writing skills to the absolute max to make sure I land an interview.
Step Three: Feeling sorry for myself. So far, my parents have sent me $40 to "hold myself over" for grocieries. Although I appreciate their help tremendously, I feel embarassed that I can't support myself and not have them worry about me in that sense. The last thing I did, which I'm not proud of, is invite a boy over at almost 1 AM just to watch TV. This is how I, a teenager with no supervision, deals with issues. We were just hanging out, talking, joking around, having fun until he realized he had work early the next morning and left my apartment at 3 in the morning, of course slamming the door behind him so I'm sure my roommates were happy.
Through all of these problems and low-key embarrassments I'm feeling, I'm also proud of myself, in an odd way. I'm learning how to become an extremely smart shopper when it comes to groceries. Like I can make $22 go a long ass way, as well as the fact that the lack of snacks I can afford is helping me stay effortlessly in shape. In addition to no snacking, I have much more time to exercise. For example, yesterday I was able to run and walk a total of 4.5 miles, which makes me feel good about my mental and physical health, and since I don't have money for a pricey Uber, I am forced to walk everywhere. The last thing that has come out of my unemployment-ness is my ability to sleep and feel refreshed all day with no slowing down.
This is just an introduction to my life. Soon you all will be able to see me in a different light, one that includes late nights, fuck ups, and hopefully a job so I will no longer live day-to-day for food. Stay tuned.