So I focused on skills and went into contracting as soon as I could. Now the reason I don't work for startups is that they keep trying to pay me with a mystery box of stock options and I'm not buying it.
Another bonus about contracting, apart from the money and flexibility, is that you get left out of company politics.
So tl;dr... Life doesn't owe you anything. And I recommend contracting as a career / lifestyle choice.
And if you work 80 hours a week, you get paid 2x as much.
This isn't a dig at freelancing / contracting. I did it for a while and it was great. But you have to be realistic. Also, billing 80h per week would be near impossible unless you had someone else managing your business for you.