Growing up and dreaming of college was so exciting! I was always jealous of seeing people who were older than me posting about their amazing experiences in college and showing how fun it is. I was especially jealous of seeing and hearing about their spring breaks. I was always seeing people go to beaches in Florida, Hawaii, the Carolinas, or hiking mountains in Colorado. Even better were the ones who went on cruises to the Bahamas. I never knew exactly how I’d want to spend my spring break, but I knew I wanted to save some extra money so I could afford to go somewhere. I was especially excited this past summer right before college; I had nothing planned, but I figured I’d meet people and we would plan a spontaneous trip somewhere. Everyone needs a great spring break story, right?
However, only a month into college, I realized that wouldn’t be the case. Very shortly into my freshman year, I accepted an internship. It was an opportunity I couldn’t possibly pass down. I would become a branch manager in my state of a painting company and would learn all the basic ropes of becoming an entrepreneur. It was my dream internship, one I didn’t think would even exist. My major is business management; it doesn’t get more perfect than that.
I was extremely excited when I first got it. I knew I was willing to put everything I had into it, and I didn’t have any doubt about it. However, it was a bit soul-crushing when my college friends started asking me where I wanted to go for spring break, and I realized that you really can’t have it all.
I love my internship; I love knowing that I’m doing so much for myself, both for now and for my future, and I love how proud I’m already making my family, who also didn’t think I’d accomplish so much already. Being able to say I’m a manager is something I didn’t think I’d be able to say until after college, not to mention being a nineteen-year-old entrepreneur. However, my pride in what I’m doing isn’t enough to fully cover the disappointment when I see all of my other college friends’ posts in airplanes and on beautiful beaches, knowing that’s exactly what I thought I would be doing. But the fact of the matter is that’s adulting. I’m not saying people who go on spring break vacations aren’t adulting. They’re adulting in other ways; they budgeted how much their trip would cost, weighed out their options against the work/paycheck they would be missing, and they probably had to work extra hours and cut down on other miscellaneous purchases so they wouldn’t completely drain their accounts. Or maybe they did drain their accounts, but sometimes the memories you make with that money is completely worth it. Been there, done that, and I only slightly regret it. Either way, though, we all have responsibilities that we have to prioritize over fun, and that’s okay; your future self will thank you for it.
So while I cold call at houses, perform estimates on jobs, proceed to try to sell those jobs, and hire my painters, I’ll watch everyone’s snapchat stories. I’ll like everyone’s Instagram posts. I’ll comment on their pictures and tell them how smoking they are in their new bathing suit they bought to show off their beach body in the Bahamas. But this article is for all of us that have internships, or so many bills to pay that we can’t afford to take a week off work and spend all that extra money on a vacation. Remember that it’s okay that you can’t have a glamorous spring break, and it’s okay to be jealous of your friends who were able to go. Take advantage of your week off from school (and I’m sorry if you have professors like mine who thought giving you homework over break was reasonable!). Spend time with your friends at home who didn’t go anywhere either. Spend time with your family that you probably don’t see very often when you’re at school. Spend time with your pets and enjoy whatever you’d normally do in your free time, even if it’s just relaxing and watching movies. And finally, get what you need to get done, done! Don’t let your break be a sad waste of your time and let your friends brag to you about their amazing vacation! I’m sure that they’d love to hear about yours if the tables were turned.