Education is the key, men...and women.
I too am a professional. I also have a family to support but I started out once just like you. I remember working cutting grass and digging ditches as a maintenance grounds keeper making $2./hr to put myself through school many years ago.
Hey I just got my COLA raise too. 2.5%.
I get paid a salary by the month and I work 60 hrs a week, so it works out to $36./hr now. That'* about $27/hr US though. Our government takes half of it so don't get too jealous.