Last night, I went out for dinner with boyfriend. I overheard a conversation the diners at the table behind us were having with their waiter. The male patron was asking how old “young adults” were these days, and the waiter replied that he thought new college grads to about age 28 fit. Then the diner asked whether the waiter thought there was any hope for us young folks. He said, “I sure hope there’s hope, otherwise I’m going to be waiting tables here forever!” The diner responded that there were worse jobs out there. The waiter agreed but added, “I sure didn’t get my college degree to be a waiter.”

THIS. I am feeling exactly the same way, except I think even more so, because I just got an advanced degree and am working retail. I know so many people in their 20s who all have degrees and end up working these random jobs and just don’t seem to really get into “real career” mode. My mom called me the other day to let me know that the daughter of one of her friends ended up working in retail and makes a ton of money now. She encouraged me that there was potential where I’m at.

Sure, money’s great, but I certainly didn’t earn two degrees to fold clothes for the rest of my life. I think that’s the struggle so many of us are having. Do we go for the money or for what we’re passionate about? Sometimes those two intersect, and that’s awesome, but more often than not it feels like a choice. Especially for those of us who are interested in creative fields and have to chart our own courses, it can be easy to push aside what we really want into the realm of hobby and do whatever to pay the bills.

I’m as guilty of this as anyone else, but I think it’s getting about time to grow up. I have a specific set of talents, interests and training, and I’m not going to let it slip away because it’s easier to pay rent doing something else. I think in order to really feel like a grown up, I’m going to have to get a real career started. Not one of convenience, but of passion. So in that mode, I’m writing more and never giving up on resumes. It doesn’t matter how much rejection there is; all it takes is one right thing to get started in a real life and get out of arrested development.

*The TV show is great, and I encourage everyone to watch it and lobby for that movie to finally get made.