I work in FL....low pay and high everything else! I started nursing when I was a single parent of a 2YO and 4YO and survived nicely on the salary. That excludes a whopping $25/month child support that was never paid, and I never remarried. I had no babysitters and had to use childcare/after-school care for years. I managed to buy my dream home (not a McMansion by any means but it does have 4 bedrooms, 3 baths, and pool), put kids through college, pay my loans, pay orthodontists, etc, invest some monies so I'll have comfortable retirement, paid $325 electric bill 10 months/yr, kids' first cars, and all other necessities. We always went some place special for our 2-wk vacation and to beach every weekend. I also budget extremely well. I've never felt financially pressured. Nursing has been an excellent career choice for me. Good luck to you in your future. It's exciting!