Monday, October 7, 2013

how to deal with a quarter-life crisis

It's a real thing. People may scoff at you and say "You're so young!" but truly, it is a real thing to have a quarter life crisis.

And I think I'm going through one. Like, right now. Because the other night I freaked out, grabbed my roommates construction scissors and chopped bangs thinking I'd look like Zooey Deschanel and start wearing Peter Pan collars and listening to vinyls. Instead I just look like a girl who tried to cut bangs and still needs to lose like 30 pounds before she's anywhere close to trying to be Zooey Deschanel.


People may roll their eyes and say, "How are you having a life crisis? You're soooooo young. You have the rest of your life to worry!! The twenties are there for you to mess up, travel, make mistakes, have FUN!!!"

Oh REALLY? Have you ever tried to have fun while this hoe-bag named Sallie Mae is glaring over your shoulder, watching every single penny while you are like GOSH Sallie Mae I just want to buy that pumpkin candle at Target and Sallie Mae is all like, "UH OH girl, put it back!" and then you put it back and glare at all your friends who have apartments that smell like autumn.

Riding the struggle bus, that's me. Woof double woof woof.

The thing is, it's so easy to throw pity parties for myself. Oh booohoooo. I'm 24. I'm single. I'm not wealthy. I live in Los Angeles and don't have to answer to anyone and have a car and an apartment and job and....waaaait....



Pause and breathe and think. 

Be thankful be thankful be thankful, I have to remind myself. I walk to the beach and I watch the sunset and it's cheesy and sometimes it's absolutely necessary. It's necessary to sit on the damp sand, feeling it fall over my hands and feet and between my toes and I feel the wind running through my hair. I hear the pitter-patter of the little seagulls' feet and I hear the voices of strangers around me and I think it is okay. It is okay. 

I grew up Catholic. I grew up Catholic and guilty and confused as to why I had to kneel every five seconds and why I had to be an altar server and why I had to pick a confirmation name because none of it made sense. But this morning I woke up and was just in my daily, boring routine of getting ready for work and the morning anxiety began to settle in...Panicking about money and life and what the heck! I'm 24 and still share a room and should I have moved somewhere else besides Los Angeles and WHAT AM I DOING?!?!?!?!

And for some bizarre reason, something we used to say in Catholic mass came into my mind and wouldn't leave. 

"Thanks be to God," the priest would say.

"It is right to give him thanks and praise," we would reply.

"Thanks be to God," the priest would say.

"It is right to give Him thanks and praise," we would reply.

I would say the words without any feeling, repeating them disconnected. But now, eleven years later, I feel them resonate deep within me. 

It is RIGHT to give Him thanks and praise.  

"But God, I'm not always happy. I'm stressed and sad sometimes," I say, pulling my knees up to my chin like a five year old, seconds away from a tantrum.

"I am with you," is His answer. 

I groan, rolling my eyes.

"You sound far away and that doesn't help me pay my bills and feel better," I snap, acting like a brat.

"I'm literally not going anywhere," God says. He doesn't pat my head condescendingly. He doesn't send me to time out. He takes me by surprise and pulls me into Him and wraps His arms around me and won't let me go.

"God!!" I yell, trying to get out of His arms. "You're embarrassing me! I want to be ALONE!"

"No," is His reply and He holds me and doesn't let me go. He holds me until my annoyance reveals itself as anger and that turns into shame and that turns into tears and then I am opening up, letting myself be held and I weep and weep until there feels like nothing is left and there's snot and hiccups. 

"I'm sorry," I say to God. "I'm sorry and I love you and thank you."

And I feel peace and lighter and better. I still feel afraid and nervous but I know I'm not alone. And I think that's  what I need to remember.

Especially the next time I try to cut my bangs because I certainly wouldn't try that in front of anyone and God was probably all like WHAT are you doin' my child!?!?! That's beside the point.

The point is -

Thank you is what I want my heart to say.

Because it is right to give Him thanks and praise. 


  1. God, this was good!

    I have been there, and am still there, and sometimes all I can do is talk to a God I mostly feel estranged from. Pray he has a plan for me. Pray that I'm not making the wrong decisions. Pray that I'll be okay.

    You captured all of this. Now go buy that pumpkin candle, you deserve to have your shared bedroom smell like autumn.