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19 Things that have happened in my life in the past 17 years (It took me 17 years to pay off my student loans)

I feel like I could have come up with a better title.. but I am rusty. It's been like 6 months since I've made a post. I paid off my student loans last Friday. It didn't feel as good as people say. I never made a payment on my loan in the past 17 years. My dad paid for half of it and was making payments the first few years. I moved to Korea.. went into default. Came home and was ready to pay it off and Covid happened.

I owed a little over 29k. It was all just sitting there in savings. I was just waiting for the government to realize that they could either help me out by taking care of some of my student loans or they could help me out with food stamps. I saved 30k working in Korea as a preschool teacher for 3 years. I can't afford to live in the USA as that same teacher. That's a whole different kind of story.

I tried to keep it to 17 but it didn't work. too much happened.

    1. 2006

    I finally graduated from college. I didn't want to leave and so I double majored. Communications and Psychology. Both were super fascinating. I loved it. Psych teachers were real and taught me about how the mind works. Com teachers taught me how to communicate. I graduated in December. I walked. I celebrated. I didn't want to go to college but I didn't know James existed at the time and that there were any other alternatives.

    2. 2007

    I had an amazing job as an intern for an international moving company. I worked in the headquarters first as a diversity intern and then as a marketing intern. It was fun. YouTube was newish. They wanted to increase their hits on youtube. They put me in charge of a competition. I was full of adderall at the time and excessively creative. We came up with the idea.. 2nd best use for moving boxes. We increased the youtube traffic by something like 400%. I got bored. As I do.

    3. 2008

    I interviewed to be Director of Downtown Development Authority for a small town in Michigan. I came in 2nd place and got the job. I took it because who doesn't want to be a Director at 26. lol no one should be a director at 26. Even if you are just a show pony. I realized quickly how petty people were. I realized how the government works and I wanted no part of it. I lasted 10 months. I spent my 27th birthday on St.Patrick's Day at a 4 hour long city council meeting discussing the best way to repave an intersection. I stood up and gave my opinion. I was later reamed out for having an opinion. That was a wild year.

    I started the first of many challenges I created for myself: Watch the top 100 afi films via the 1997 list.

    4. 2009

    I broke my contract with the city. In a devastating way. I had to figure out something else to do. I created my 100 things about me list. I love that list. I need to update it. I keep trying. Maybe one day. I applied for many jobs. I think I ended up at Halloween City for a Halloween Season. I really don't remember.

    These next 6 years are a blur. I had an idea while working at Halloween City. There was an awesome 80's style shopping mall 5 miles down the road from the Halloween City. I thought it would be amazing to turn an 80's style shopping mall into an actual Halloween City. I googled who owned it now that it was abandoned. I saw that the only article about it was from a local paper. I emailed the author of the article. I told her my idea and asked if she knew anything about the mall. She told me who owned it. I was terrified to contact them and share my idea. The journalist asked me if I wanted to write a blog for the paper's website. I asked if I got paid for it. She said no. I said no. I should have said yes. But I was not in a great place at the time.

    5. 2011 maybe

    I worked at Best Buy. I worked at Best Buy when I was in college 4 years earlier. We were a number 1 store of the entire company. #1 out of something 1,000. It was Best Buy at it's peak. In 2011 I worked at a different Best Buy. This one.. not so great. They didn't put me on the sales floor. They put me as a cashier. I increased all of their metrics up there. I was irritated by the fact that we had to offer something like 4 different things at the register. It was ridiculous. I saw the Ted Talk with Barry Schwartz about the Paradox of Choice. I found his professor email. I emailed him and responded within 3 hours. I asked him how I could help people at the checkout lane at best buy. He said " Try and get Best Buy to consult with me and I can help answer that question". Great response.

    6. 2012 maybe

    I dated a younger guy this year that I found out a few months in still had hard drug problems. We went to the harry potter movie that had just come out. He went to the bathroom. I thought he was pooping. 5 minutes later an usher comes in and asks for my name. I come out. The police and ambulance are there. He had passed out in the bathroom. I drove his car to the hospital and I was determined to help him overcome his drug problems. Thank god he dumped me. Like seriously. You kind of reevaluate your life when a drug addict dumps you.

    7. 2013 maybe

    I went and saw a career counselor. He was this cute old guy in his 80s. He gave me a bunch of aptitude tests. I printed off a list of a couple thousand different career ideas. (still on adderall) I highlighted the ones I'd consider. I think I still have it somewhere. His advice was to be a permanent temp. Just hop from temp job to temp job. I got bored so easily I needed variety in my life. I still do. I would rather say that I've had 100 jobs in my life and have tried everything to say I've had 10.

    8. 2014

    I know this for a fact because I just googled it. My life changed this year. I was reading a post by Gala Darling. She was talking about James and this totally weird concept of Choose Yourself. I bought the book. I hated reading at this point in my life. I only bought it because he said he would give me the money back if I didn't finish it. I didn't finish it but I didn't want the money back. I felt so freaking validated. James was the first step of digging me out of my wtf life. I started making lists and listening to his podcast. I was a changin'. Isn't it funny how one rare encounter can help you remember every year after that point.

    9. 2014/2015

    Some crazy stuff happened this year. I am only going to talk about the best stuff. I had a complete mental breakdown. I was working as a data entry person. I was making $10 an hour. I was maxed out on adderall. Seeing my 5th therapist. I saw a lot of therapists in my youth. I was entering data for a company that handled mortgage companies homeowners insurance. I flipped out at work. Only 12% of my work was double checked for accuracy. For some reason I thought it was ridiculous and cried at work. I slept for 3 days straight. I had never done that and haven't done it since. I started seeing a functional doctor, went off of my meds, did a Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Experiment on my brain for depression at UofM. I started to get better. I didn't work the whole summer of I think 2014. I just went on walks and listened to The James Altucher Show. I got better.

    10. 2015/2016

    I realized my life had to be completely different. I did not want to be the same person I was. I wanted to be completely different. I saved up money to take a Tefl course to teach abroad. I worked my ass off this year. I worked at Halloween City for Halloween, Macy's for Christmas and was a server. I took my course in Chicago in March 2016.

    11. 2016

    July 1st 2016 I arrived in South Korea. I arrived with only my luggage and my phone that I could only access in the airport because I didn't have data. I met a bunch of amazing people my first year in Korea. I couldn't leave. I met a couple who were from the UK who just got engaged. I met a couple who just graduated college in Nova Scotia. I met my brave ass friend who told me to not act like a foreigner in the jimjilbang. (own the nakedness). I met the guy that made me realize to never date anyone that works in the military or for the military. I went to Japan.

    12. 2017

    I spent a lot of time with the guy from 2016. We went to Bali. I ate an Omaha steak there in rice fields. I nearly vomited from deep sea fishing on something that looked like a speed boat. I met even more wonderful people. I joined a fun community of people from all over the world. I met people from Africa and Europe. I started to get into tremendous shape. I walked EVERYWHERE. 20k steps daily. I skipped home at 10pm from school with 3rd graders. I found the food that I would want to be my last meal. It's at a random restaurant on the main street in Sanbon. The third floor. Bibimbap but not in a hot pot. I crave it every minor holiday in the usa now.

    13. 2018

    I went to Thailand. I did some more deep sea fishing but on a bigger boat. I saw the destruction from the Tsunami that hit there like 10 years earlier. I started my online course to be certified to teach Preschool-3rd grade in the usa. September of that year I got a call from my dad. He had ALS. It was one of the first times I ever saw my dad cry. I went to school crying the next day and learned how empathetic 4 year olds are. I came home in December but went back because I wanted my full pension for the year. I also had this life that I had created.

    14. 2019

    I moved back home. I didn't know how much longer my dad had. I had to spend more time with him. I got a student teaching job at a catholic school. I never thought I'd teach at a Catholic School. I slept through all of my Catechism classes growing up. I learned a lot about how to be a teacher in a Catholic School. The guy I shouldn't have dated ended it. Another thank god.

    15. 2020

    Covid hit in March. It was 2 weeks at first. I was working as the attendance/secretary at the school I student taught at. We had just come out of the worst flu season ever. We thought there was no way this covid could be worse than what just happened. We knew we would be back in 2 weeks. I lived it up. I watched all of the netflix shows the first 2 weeks. I totally enjoyed those checks. I went on hiking dates and really started to ask guys my famous question I asked on all dates. "If you could have a dinner party with any 5 men and 5 women alive or dead who would they be? 1 rule: I must be able to find them on wikipedia" I learned so much about guys. You can tell so much about a person when you ask that question. You learn their political beliefs, their hobbies, motivations and music tastes. I spent the next several months developing an app on paper. I wanted to create an app that helped people create their list. I still do.

    16. 2020/2021

    The principal at the Catholic School gave my name to a principal at another Catholic School. I got my first teaching job. I passed my state tests and I got my own apartment. I felt successful. I also leased my first car that year. I fell in love with being a preschool teacher. When it's good.. it's soo good. You are around these magical little people who have this minds that are so open and creative. I was inspired everyday. I made some new friends. Some amazing new friends. I started taking psychic and mediumship classes that helped me change the way I perceive the world.

    I started another fun challenge. I started watching biographical documentaries from a-z. I am still at w in 2023 but I will finish it soon. I learned soo many cool things. I wanted to start a podcast and discuss it with other people. I haven't yet.

    17. 2021

    I moved in with one of my amazing new friends. Inflation started happening. I had another life changing experience. I heard a podcast where a woman did soul animal readings. I was big into opening my mind at this point and dove right in. I saved up my money and I got a reading. I am a Sooty Shearwater Bird. I am. I totally am. She told me that I don't like to sit still for too long. I need to be on the go. This bird travels on average 45km a year. It made me feel like my need to try new things wasn't bad at all. It was really ok. The ADD label I was given all of my life was really me just being free and trying new things. She said that I come into peoples lives when they need to see something from a different perspective. When they need to get unstuck. I unstick people. I have now noticed this gift in myself. I love this about myself. I really started loving myself. My dad was getting sicker. I decided to buy everyone in my family a soul animal reading. My dad was a Limousine Bull. My mom is a bobcat. I was raised by a bull and a bobcat.

    18. 2022

    It's hard taking care of a dying parent. It sucks. The roles are completely reversed and for me it was terribly uncomfortable. I tried to spend as much time as I could with my dad. Covid was still around and I worked with preschoolers. We watched all sorts of random tv. He showed me old tv shows and I showed him my favorite movies. There was a lot of crying this year.

    But my mom sister and I also planned a girls trip to scandinavia. We backpacked. It was fun. It was awesome to experience traveling like that with my mom and sister. We ate weird things and saw interesting things.

    I also started working at Public school this year. When it's bad in preschool... it's bad. They are tiny little angry people who throw things. You have to run after them. They scream. They scream on the top of their lungs. They bite. They pull you down to the ground and just every emotion they have ever felt gets poured into you. Its exhausting.

    I also met my boyfriend. The one I didn't see coming. The one I really needed. The one that might just change everything for me.

    19. 2023

    My dad died January 18th. I was walking my kids outside for recess. My sister called and I texted her I'd call her back. She told me it was about dad and I had to call. I ran down to the schools office and I told them I had to go my dad might only have hours. I raced to the hospital. He had died 10 minutes earlier. No one ever really tells you about the anger that comes from death. I was so angry. Then the guilt for all of the anger that you have. I spent the next day with my sister and the next 2 nights with my boyfriend I had only been dating for 3 months. I needed the separation from everything. I gave a great speech at the funeral home. It was wonderful and unique and all things Katie.

    I started changing my thoughts on my life. Ever since I came home I was determined to get back out into the world and teach abroad. Live abroad. Bounce abroad for the rest of my life. I needed to move countries every 2 years to be alive I thought.

    My boyfriends soul animal is a nile crocodile. He has no plans on bouncing abroad. He is my stability. When I think about wanting to be abroad. I want him with me. We will travel abroad I am sure of it. I just got to find a way to make money that isn't teaching.

    Luckily.. I just paid off my student loans. It was on a Friday around 1:00pm. My students were asleep. It was 2 weeks before I would have to start paying interest again. My savings is much smaller now. I feel like things are changing again for me. I can't wait to see what the next 17 years brings.

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