I think I’m having a quarter life crisis.
It all began when I realised 21 would officially be my last significant birthday till I turn 30. T-H-I-R-T-Y.
Then my dad gave me the papers to my car. I read over the papers, confused. Why did he give me these? He deals with all this car stuff…. Then I read my name on the papers. Oh shit. The menacing statement that had been dangled over my head for the past three years replayed in my mind, “I’m only paying for everything up until you finish university.”
3 years ago that seemed such a distant threat, but now that I am finishing uni in June I can already see the bills – phone bill: $100, car insurance: $1000, health insurance: JUST TAKE MY SOUL.
Oh and did I mention I’m moving houses too? You could say I’ve had some sleepless nights recently.
When I thought about turning 21 as a kid I thought I’d definitely have my shit together. Ignorantly I thought I’d be working at some glamorous magazine, or travelling the world doing press for my bestselling book. So to still be at university and interning for free around working for actual money at my retail job, makes me feel like I’ve already failed.
So not only do I have my dad’s dialogue playing on repeat in my head, I have my own which tends to go a bit like this:
What am I doing with my life?
Should I have a proper job by now?
Why aren’t I rich and successful yet?
Maybe I’m not ambitious enough?
No, no that can’t be it.
Okay, maybe that’s it.
Maybe I should look at the jobs available?
Omg there’s nothing. I’ll just die now.
It’s a weird age, 21. All of a sudden you’re in the real world. People expect things of you. They want you to actually do stuff – adult stuff, like cook and wash your own clothes. People I know are even getting engaged and having babies and successful careers. And I’m like WTF I caught a train to work for the first time the other day and it was the proudest moment of my life thus far. True story.
It’s weird because you want to be treated like an adult, to be respected and taken seriously. But you also would still like pocket money, your clothes washed and ironed once a week, and dinner on the table by 7pm. It’s also weird because I’ve found that 50% of me is content being the girl who does yoga, drinks green tea, reads books, and goes to bed early; while the other 50% of me wants to wear my sexiest outfit and do shots in a strip club while dancing to dirty music until I black out #YOLO.
It’s a catch 21.
overachievers talented people like Mark Zuckerberg around – who created his $80 billion dollar company (that little thing called Facebook) by the time he was 21- it’s easy to feel inadequate. Or Lauren Dekker who sailed around the world solo when she was just 14. And here I am thinking it’s an achievement to learn how to catch public transport.
When all these comparisons and expectations flood my thoughts, I often think back to being 18. Ah, the good old days. Where metabolisms were fast, responsibilities were low and alcohol-intake high. No one expects anything from an 18-year-old. Well, apart from being irresponsible. Yes, it was only 3 years ago that I was 18, but the days where I could stay out past 12am without thinking about work the next day seems like another life time.
So there you have it. My quarter life crisis – if I live till 84, that is.
But hey, you’re only as young as you feel, right?