I became acquainted with Lauren through my coworker Niki Pocock. When Niki and I talk social media, it seems like the conversation often comes around to Lauren, who blogs at Gen-Y PRogress. Lauren and I are at very different stages career-wise, but we have found in common a joy in writing and making connections. Make sure to connect with her. It will be a gift you give yourself!
“Every Problem Has a Gift for You in its Hands.”
By: Lauren Novo
I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. So in January, when my boyfriend and I flipped off the highway and landed upside down in a side ditch, I knew it wasn’t an “accident.” My car was demolished. But we walked out of the vehicle completely unscathed.
Why? I’m not sure. All I know is that it could have been so much worse.
Still, I had to juggle insurance calls, school and work the following week. I had to squeeze in time for car-shopping, and worried I wouldn’t find anything as reliable as the vehicle I had lost. I was stressed. Even a little resentful.
I tried to stay positive. I was beyond lucky to be alive. But still, I couldn’t help feeling annoyed that the accident was not my fault (a possum, YES a possum, hit the front tire, causing the car to spin out) and yet I had to deal with the problem.
I forced myself to sit down and really face my situation. I knew that as much as I hated the idea, I was going to have to finance my next car. I figured out what sort of payment plan I could realistically afford and went from there. And while I was at it, I looked at the other expenses I would be responsible for in May, when I graduate from Florida State University.
So where’s the “gift” in all this? The silver lining? Besides the obvious—my boyfriend and I are OK—I’m finally starting to see the bigger picture.
As a student, I’ve lived in a bubble. I think about life after graduation in terms of my career all the time, but not so much in terms of financial responsibility. I don’t like thinking about losing health insurance coverage the day I graduate. Nor do I want to worry about cell phone plans and actually having to pay for cable and water at apartment complexes.
But that’s life, and thanks to the car accident, I feel slightly more prepared for it. Now that I’ve acknowledged new and upcoming expenses, I know just how far any given salary will go. I know what I need to survive and I know what I need to feel comfortable.
I’m still as excited as ever about my future. But now, I’m happy to report I have a more realistic view of what that future will entail. And that knowledge and peace of mind are most certainly gifts.
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