One of the things that really stinks about being a nontraditional parent is that money is always an issue. Generally the college years are poor years for everyone, but for a parent trying to support a child the expenses are more than twice as large. You need to get a bigger apartment, in a nicer neighborhood. You need to pay for a good daycare. You need to make sure your child has opportunities to do things they are interested in.
Anyway, as someone with no college degree (yet) who has to work around a complicated schedule, you can obviously see that it's tough to find a decent job. Especially in this job market. It used to be that I could usually find work at daycares, they were always looking for part-time people to fill in for awkward hours. But since I was part-time, I never worried about getting a lot of training and now it turns out that after working in child care for 3 years I'm actually not qualified for anything.
Last semester when I didn't go to school, I took a call center job. I called people who were in danger of foreclosure on their mortgages. It was hell. I was so relieved when I found a way to get back to school and could leave that job. I assumed I could find a part-time job that would help me out, and with financial aid and an amazing college fund (thanks parents!!) I would be able to make it, even though things would be tight.
Umm, except I couldn't find a part-time job. I looked. I applied for 2 or 3 jobs per week, and I wasn't picky. I'm really lucky, because my dad is an amazing guy. When I fell short, I knew I could call my father. He wants the best for Buddy too, so he helps us out when we need it. Still, I feel incredibly guilty every time I need to make that phone call.
So finally, I found a job. It's another call center job. I'm working at Eastbay, which is a sporting goods company. (It's a branch of Footlocker.) I get a job that's a little bit above entry level, which means that instead of taking orders for shoes I will be calling customers who are being accused of fraud. Awesome. Another miserable job where I call people who will yell at me for 8 hours a day.
This one pays almost a dollar less per hour than the last one. But I need the job. I just have to keep persevering until I finish college and can take care of my child without hating what I have to do for the money.