My Quarter Life Crisis
By BCriswell on April 05, 2011
I have long been skeptical about the quarter-life crisis. I guess I used to think that it was silly, in a way, that people would have a quarter-life crisis. But now that I have hit 25, well, I am doing an abrupt about-face on the issue and I am going to say that the quarter-life crisis is REAL.
Maybe there were some curveballs this year... yea, okay, there definitely were some undeniably big curveballs. And those things coupled with a heightened sense of self, a need for accomplishment in life, and all the other day to day shit that goes on has plunged me into catharsis. It's still weird, though, and I guess I call it a crisis because I can actually really feel it happening to me all at once. That and 25 is technically the quarter mark where the crisis is supposed to hit anyway...
I have all the classic symptoms of a life crisis. I just changed careers after five years in mental health, I became a writer; so big change there. I'm married now, and in some ways this first year of marriage is kicking my ass. It's "relationship" on a whole new level--great and all, but still, it's different. I just wrote a book, so there is a distinct feeling of ending one thing and moving on to another. Then there were the two deaths that happened; two people I knew under the age of 30 dying in a space less than a month apart. If I had been redefining anything at all before that happened, I certainly I am scrutinizing everything in the light shed by these losses. These deaths made me feel my mortality in a way that I have never felt... all at once I am more alive than ever, and altogether afraid of it.
Surprisingly, I don't feel stuck, though I can admit openly I am in the process of getting "unstuck." I am coming to grips with things I had not anticipated thinking about so soon in my life, and I am radically redefining the way I function as a human being. I feel strange in places I used to love... I find myself leaping at new adventures. I cut off all my long hair. I am interacting with the world around me differently.
Yes, the quarter-life crisis has hit me like 25 years of build-up that has become stale and is cracking... I am giving way to my adult self. Maybe that is what the whole thing is about, anyway: becoming an adult in the true sense of the word. Once you realize you are the people your parents were, well, I think it changes things. My friends have children. We have jobs and businesses... expenses to track and aspirations to meet. We are the only people we answer to at this age, and oh my god is that a scary thought.
There's only one question left to answer: just what will I do once I am over my quarter-life crisis? I guess the answer is simply, "anything I want!"