I didn’t believe that anything like a so-called “Quarter Life Crisis” really existed. I thought it was just another label because there’s really nothing special happening between 21 and 40. That is–until I hit 26. Two things happened that made me realize I’m not “so young” anymore. I suddenly stopped fitting into pants bought in the junior’s section. Now, I’m still the same size, but everything “moved” lower, and a junior’s 0 is not the same size as a misses 0! Actually, that wasn’t a bad thing to realize, because it was getting about time to stop automatically going into that section anyway (and really, the time had come and gone). Then about halfway through the year, my voice dropped. All of those mezzo pieces requiring nice Bbs became much more comfortable to sing, of course though, complete with the obligatory new passagio points that wish to give me difficulty.
It might sound silly to think that these two absolutely ridiculous and pointless things were what made me realize I’m not the same person I was a few years ago. Maybe because it’s something so basic, that’s exactly why I realized I’ve changed, and I am changing.
I still don’t know that I would call it a “crisis,” but it’s a strange feeling to look at your life and realize that the decisions you’ve made are the one’s you’re really going to live with for a long time. Of course, it’s true that there is a lot you can do after 26, but it becomes significantly more challenging. There are many different paths my life could have taken, but this is the one I chose. I remember in high school looking at some of the houses in the real estate ads and thinking of my “dream house” once I made the “big lawyer’s salary.” Oh how nice it was to be so naïve! And yet, I know plenty of people the same age who have gone on to own houses and cars, something that because of choices I made, won’t be possible for many years.
But there’s still something nagging me about this concept of a “crisis.” Perhaps “Quarter Life Crossroads” is a better way to describe it; a point where you realize you can no longer base your life and your happiness off of what you wanted in the past. So maybe this time isn’t so bad; it’s possible an opportunity to examine what you really want out of life, and make every effort to achieve it.