Yes, I am your typical spoiled child.

I have Jack Rogers in almost every color, accessories to match every outfit in my closet and quite the assortment of Lilly Pulitzer. First off, let me begin with this statement: Yes, I am blessed in more ways than some, and I am forever grateful for the opportunities that my family has given to me – HOWEVER, just because my family is willing to go the extra mile to ensure that my needs are met, they have also instilled in me a great work ethic, for which I am forever grateful.

Growing up for seven and a half years as an only child, one can only imagine the playroom in my house. Barbie Dolls, the latest American Girl Collection, and a small stash of “teacher” supplies filled my playroom at the young age of five years old. I loved everything, girly, and was quite spoiled – as you can imagine.

I thoroughly remember as a young child, having dinner with my grandparents every Friday night. They would pick me up after school, and I was able to play at their house until dinner time. As dinner time arrived, I was always able to choose my restaurant of choice, which happened to be Wendy’s. Following my favorite meal of all time, my grandparents and I would take me to Walmart and I was allowed to get a new toy, of some kind. It didn’t have to be extravagant, nor did it require a large price tag.

This Friday night tradition did not last forever. As I grew older, my Friday night trips and Walmart surprises became more meaningful – as if, I had received good grades at school. I began to be rewarded for my good actions. This idea carried on throughout the remainder of my elementary and middle school years until I was old enough to get a job.

My first real job, just so happened to be a Dance Instructor. For those of you who know me well, you know that this was a dream come true. I loved every aspect of my job and was ecstatic to know that I had worked hard and earned the money I was given when my paycheck arrived. This feeling of accomplishment was something that I loved. For once, my family didn’t give me the money to spend on a new pair of sandals or to go to the movies with my friends.

As the years have gone by, I have worked in various workplaces, as well as with some families that I hold near and dear to my heart. Not only has having a job made me appreciate the value of money, but it has also given me a sense of self-pride. By having a job, I have the ability to provide for myself, my wants and needs.

At the age of 19 years old, I work twenty hours per week, as well as attend college full-time. Along with these two main responsibilities – I am involved with three on-campus organizations. Additionally, on the weekends, I occasionally pick up babysitting opportunities as they arise. It is not always easy to complete my school work to the best of my ability, but I know that one day, I will be able to look back on my college years and be proud of the student I was.

Yes, I am spoiled – I can admit it. Yes, I can call my family members at the drop of a hat, if I ever need anything. But, in return, they also know that I work diligently throughout the week to ensure that my wants and needs are met.

No matter how much I complain about having to work throughout my college years, I am thankful that my parents and family members instilled in me, a work ethic – that is often unmatched. Having a job in college has given me, even more independence, than I had initially been looking toward, and for that, I am eternally grateful.