It’s been a while since I’ve done a payday segment! Today’s is about one of my very favorite people in the world, my cousin Trisha. She’s the beautiful young lady in the front row. The other girls in the photo are her sisters. From the left: Kalan, Mallory and Leia. They’re obviously enjoying the hell out of some yummy frozen drinks in New Orleans…

My mom’s oldest brother, Kel, is Trisha’s dad. Kel and his wife, Lisa, have four daughters who are all very close in age and who lived across town from my mom and I when I was growing up. They joke that I’m their fifth sister.

When we were kids, my mom, her brother and his wife all relied heavily on each other for guidance and support in being young parents. (And they’re all still best friends today.) So we five girls spent a ton of time together when we were little – most weekends, every family holiday and hundreds of very long car rides to Grandma’s house. We invented secret games, fought relentlessly, hit and kicked each other, laughed hysterically for hours, made each other cry, teased each other constantly and tattled on each other until our parents told us they only wanted to hear about it if one of us died.

Now that we’re all older (I’m still the oldest, Mallory), we are all great friends. I have wonderful memories of them as little kids. I remember when each of them was born, what their hair looked like when they were 13 and how they felt about high school. But I’ve also had the privilege of watching them grow into really cool people. I am regularly impressed and amazed by the women they’ve become, especially when I think about what funny, weird little kids they were.

Trisha is easily one of the people I enjoy being around most in my life. She’s brave, brilliant, hilarious, easily excited and a fantastic listener. She’s also really warm and caring and has a contagious grin. She has some really weird quirks too. I cannot write about Trisha without mentioning a classic anecdote in our family: When she was 2 years old, Trisha put an entire dead baby bird into her mouth.

She’s now in her mid-twenties and lives in Kansas with her husband, Ben, and their adorable puppy, Claire. Trish and Ben were married at the very end of 2007 in a beautiful Christmas wedding. Her three sisters and I were her bridesmaids and it was the first wedding of the grandchild generation of our family. It was a great time.

She answered my payday questions:

1. How do you earn a paycheck?
I work as an Admissions Representative recruiting students!

2. Do you enjoy what you do to earn a paycheck?
Yes…I love working with high school students and I love my university…so it is hard work but well worth it.

3. How did you get the job?
I’d heard about it as an undergrad and applied senior year.  It was sort of a dream job at the time.

4. Did you go to college and if so, what did you study?
Yes, Spanish with minors in Women’s Studies and Leadership Studies

5. If you could have any job in the whole entire world, assuming you’d instantly, miraculously possess the the training, opportunities, and expertise to excel at it, what would you do?
I would be a teacher…at the collegiate level.  I would teach courses on Leadership, service learning, community engagement, etc.

6. If you didn’t have to earn a living – money was no object, but you had to be productive for 8 hours a day, what would you do?

7. What are your hobbies and interests?
Running, reading (I love the Twilight series) and yoga.  Practicing Spanish is also a big one.

8. How do you spend your free time?
Running, reading, yoga and working with my Spanish partner! But to be honest, I work anywhere between 60 and 70 hours most weeks so free time is not always available.

9. What do/did your parents or guardians do to earn livings?
Teach…work in schools, teach yoga, teach about parenting, etc.  I guess teaching is in the blood.

10. What was the conversation or climate surrounding work and work ethic in your home when you were growing up?
Very positive, we shared a lot of stories as a family about work and I can always remember my parents having at least two jobs at a time.  They were always focused on the value of working hard and keeping a steady job.  My mom (more than my dad) really pushed us to do what we loved…my Dad was a little more practical about getting a steady job but both have always been incredibly supportive of me.

11. How does your family feel about how you earn a living today?
Proud…worried about how much I work.

12. Do you have siblings and if so, what do they do for a living? Do you have a personal reaction to what they do, like maybe you’re envious or inspired?
Two that have jobs, one in the school system the other in the corporate world.  They both love their work but I wouldn’t trade places with them. I think we are all three in the perfect settings for our personalities.  My heart is at the university and I wouldn’t trade that for the world!

13. Generally, what time do you go to sleep? What time do you wake up?
Up around 5 or 5:30…asleep between 10:30 and mid-night.  I keep a crazy schedule because I travel with my work so the hours I sleep vary.  Ideally I would get to bed by 10 and be up at 5.

14. Do you want to leave your current job for something different? If so, can you imagine yourself doing this? If so, will you do it?
I would really love to teach everyday.  That would be the one thing that draw me away!

15. What is more important to you in a job? a big paycheck or personal fulfillment.
If you knew what I make, you would know the answer.  Fulfillment is the number one thing.  I won’t even look at what a job offers when I apply, I care about what I will gain more as a person then the money.  I know that bothers my family a little…and seems crazy to some of them, but the experience is the real value in any job.  Not the paycheck.

16. Do you think your idea of personal success has changed since you were 10 years old? 18 years old?
No…I can honestly say I have always had a commitment to service.

17. When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Hmmm….can’t remember….a social activist?

Update: Just a few months after answering these questions for me, Trisha emailed me to tell me that she landed her dream job – she’s going to be a full time teacher!!!! This is such great news. At my request, she wrote a little follow-up about it here:

So, the dream job came true!  I am going to be starting a new position (still at Kansas State University) as of July 1.  I will be working as an Instructor/Program Coordinator for our School of Leadership Studies.  The School of Leadership Studies at K-State is the largest of it’s kind in the nation.  Their mission statement is, ““developing knowledgeable, ethical and caring leaders for a diverse and changing world.” They are AMAZING.  Leadership Studies was my minor at K-State, it is an incredible group of faculty and staff and students from all around the country and world.  Some people may wonder…how does a program like that happen in the middle of Kansas..because Kansas ROCKS!  I can not wait to get started, I will be working with about 800-900 incoming K-State freshman.  (Many of whom I am currently recruiting to attend K-State.)  We will be teaching lessons on inclusion, diversity, conflict resolution, living in a global society and more.  This is a job that truly, 100% aligns with my personal beliefs and values.  Not only do I spend my time teaching…but more than anything I truly believe I am going to learn…learn everyday and be challenged in my own beliefs and values.  I feel like I am going home and I am so excited.  To me this jobs reminded me that when you send out something into the universe,  (such as needing to make a life change personally, professionally, etc.) you will get your answer.  Sometimes not when you want it or even how you might expect it…but the universe always provides the lessons and opportunities we need…precisely when we need them.  I am so joyful to take this next big leap and discover just what the world has waiting for me.  (Oh, I still get to work with the International Service Teams and possibly even more community service focused programming!)

To check out where I will be…

Yay yay yay!

(Congrats, Trishie. So excited for you and proud of you.)


2 thoughts on “payday

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