At 30, I can’t very well claim to be having a quarter life crisis, unless I plan on living to 120 years old (a cool thought, but that sounds…just…exhausting).
I do, however, vividly remember my own quarter life crisis, mostly because it didn’t end too long ago. Also, (surprise surprise) it pretty much mirrored the crisis of Sean, one of the main characters in Quarter Life Crisis: A Novel.
What I remember most about it wasn’t the physical circumstances of the situation (though the image of me staring aimlessly at a computer screen covered in job prospects with my resume opened on another screen while I sat in my underwear in my old bedroom at my parents’ house drinking vodka not-so-discretely disguised in a Sprite bottle does sort of strike a chord).
It’s really the mental repercussions that come with being thrust into a world that claims to be doing everything for the kids, but never really defined its feelings for people who are still children at heart.
The indecision. Insecurity. Inability to make a move in any direction for fear that I would be setting myself up for a life filled with regrets.
What resulted was me coming to a standstill–for years actually–until about ten months ago when I just started…doing things. It’s like I woke up one morning, realized I was turning 30 soon, and that any decision I made would be better than doing nothing.
So I did whatever I felt like doing (hence quitting teaching at Miami Dade College to become a bartender…there’s a method to my madness, even if I’m making up the method as I go). And I’m still doing whatever I feel like doing. And so far it’s worked out for me, the ultimate representation of that Working-Out manifesting itself in the four year project that is Quarter Life Crisis, which will officially be released in less than three weeks (August 5th homies).
The point is, I know a lot of people who are in a state of flux right now. Various things get thrown at us on a daily basis, shit that piles up over the years and turns into a mental landfill that you can’t do anything but stare at, marveling at its immensity while trying wholeheartedly not to have a panic attack at just the thought of trying to sift through all this crap.
I’ve found that the only way to deal with it is burn the whole fucking thing down, leaving only the raw core of your personality, your wants and needs. The you that is really you.
You know yourself better than anybody else can, and often our initial choices in life are the right ones. For us.
In other words, don’t stagnate. Nobody feels the pressure of their looming lives ahead of them like somebody in their mid-twenties, when the future can seem both wide open and restricted to a certain set of possibilities. The trick is to just do something. Anything.
In a sense, life choices aren’t that much different than the writing process. Revising something you wrote in a moment of inspiration is hard, because it’s the most blatant way of admitting to yourself that you can and will make mistakes. It’s also really hard to know if you’re rewriting your words in the way you originally meant them to be written, conveying the abstract thoughts in your head in the best, most concrete way possible.
The beauty, though, is that you can keep trying until you get it right.
Which is something you definitely can’t do if you never wrote anything in the first place.
Hope your summer’s been good, and that the rest of your year will be awesome.
If you’re in the Miami area on Friday, August 1st, look me up. I’ll be having a release party for Quarter Life Crisis in the conference room of the Palmetto Golf Course on SW 152nd street and US-1 at 7:30pm.
Otherwise, pick up a copy of Quarter Life Crisis on Tuesday, August 5th.
Help me make this thing a success, and in turn I promise to keep trying to entertain you for the rest of my life (keyword: trying).
That’s the purpose I chose for myself, and I have no regrets. And neither should you.
Peace, love, and cheese pizza (yeah…it’s lunch time).