Never Take the First Opportunity

by Erica Spaeth about a year ago in advice

I would be in New York, probably hating life, if I didn't give myself a chance to stray.

Never Take the First Opportunity

In April, I graduated from the University of Pittsburgh. I had it all planned out: I was going to stay home for the summer and relax for a month before beginning my career in New York City. It has always been my dream. It was all I ever wanted. I had built a life there, and I wanted to be a journalist. I had interned at Harper's Bazaar and fell in love with that lifestyle. I wanted to write, I wanted to meet talented people, and I wanted to look out into the big city every day of my life.

As it turned out, getting a job in media is way harder than I thought. With the Internet making almost anything possible for anyone, getting a real (put-food-on-the-table level) job is incredibly difficult. It became clear that journalism was not going to pay the bills and was going to be a side job at best. I began looking for PR jobs, considering I love interacting with people and am relatively good at social media and damage control. Even with that on the table, I wasn't excited. I loved the idea of being in the city, but the sound of the life I was trying to build didn't make me passionate. Something wasn't right, and my parents knew that.

We always vacationed in Vail, CO. My parents got a place here recently and were trying to find someone to look after it when they're away (which is often). They offered me an opportunity I could not refuse. They said I could live in their property for a year, figure out what I wanted to do and start a home watching business myself. I also added dog sitting and babysitting to the list of services, because I love pets and kids and wanted extra cash.

I moved here a little over a month ago with my German Shepherd, Kodak, and am loving it. The community is tight, but incredibly supportive. I've been offered part-time jobs in town and I'm going to take one or two in addition to my business. Making friends here is easy, and everyone is outdoors all the time, which I love. Kodak and I are building a really nice life, and I'm not sure I'll ever leave.

If you don't feel passionate about your life path and another opportunity presents itself, take it! I never saw myself living in the mountains until I said "why not?" and took the risk. Not every day is as amazing as the next, but that's life. I'm glad I chose to go on this adventure. I've never felt more independent and confident in myself in my life, and NYC is waiting for me when I'm ready.

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Erica Spaeth

I am a recent graduate from the University of Pittsburgh where I studied Communications. I was the editor of The Tab Pitt as well as contributor to Babe.net and VOGUE Australia. Want to hear my thoughts? Send me topic requests!

See all posts by Erica Spaeth