June 14, 2019

I tried to go full-time. It didn’t work at first but I knew I wanted that lifestyle...

"My parents both came here from Guatemala a couple of years before I was born. My dad got a job delivering pizzas and my mom worked in a factory. They both made minimum wage. There were times when we could only afford cereal and ramen noodles. As kids of immigrants, my sisters and I were expected to make the most out of every opportunity. Get straight As and then go to college. But when it came time to apply, I had no idea what I was doing and my parents couldn’t help me. Luckily, I’d been really into tech since I was a kid — by 16, I would go to the library, download college tech textbooks and just cycle through all the exercises. So, I ended up getting a full-time job right out of high school as a web developer for a manufacturing company. I think a lot of Americans leave home at 18 and they don’t even think about having to support their families. But with immigrant kids it’s expected that you’re going to come back and help with the bills. Latinas make 53 cents for every dollar made by a white man, and we’re expected to support previous generations on that money. I started freelancing and creating my own products to make extra cash on the side. Then I tried to go full-time. It didn’t work but I knew I wanted that lifestyle. I wanted more control of my time and money. So a couple of years later, I tried again and now here I am, supporting myself and growing my own business. I feel so lucky. It feels like a miracle."⠀

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    Great story! Going back to working again after trying to get your turn your side gigs into full-time work must have been hard to do! How did you manage the transitions?