Thursday, January 22, 2009

Quarter life crisis.

Hello 2009,

So we both have been pretty bad about posting lately. Everyone makes those nagging New Year's resolutions, exercise more, eat better, stop smoking, cut back on drinking, and ironically mine was to post more. Clearly, that NYR hasn't been followed so well on my end but hell, January 22 is better late than never. 

I think part of my posting stagulation has been the fact that I've been thinking a lot lately about "quarter life crises'" and the best way to flush these thoughts out into a post. I've realized though that this self-examination should just give way to extemporaneous writing, and instead of plotting a witty rant about the intricacies of being a 20 something year old female in a metropolitan city, it's better to just type it out, so here I go.....

On the eve of a first date with a promising prospect, I can't help but think I'm a 23 year old female who lives in a fabulous city, with two of her best friends from college, working exactly where I want to be working, but finding myself completely lost as to what the next steps are going to be. Do we keep climbing the corporate ladder? Do we go off and teach English in some small hut in the jungles of Indonesia? Do we find a boyfriend? Do we even care to think about boyfriends?

For the first time, we are utterly free in the sense that we earn our own income and are completely capable of sustaining ourselves. There's no mom or dad to answer to, no school work to turn in, we just need to show up to work, do our best and call it a day. 

Realizing this, I started analyzing my friends and thinking about what people girls our age feel like they need to "answer to." Through my self-induced anthropological study, I've discovered the only restrictions I ever see my friends put on themselves is when they feel like they need to answer to the significant others in their lives.

See, here in this apartment, that's not so much a problem. We are all brilliantly single without a constraint in the world, but I wonder, as time passes, is that a good thing? 

It's wonderful to live and be completely free, but is it okay to wander through life without any sort of inhibitor or anyone standing by you to say, "Hey it's NOT okay for you to blackout and start dancing on the bar," or "Baby, you know how much I love you, but drinking a bottle of wine on a TUESDAY isn't the best idea." I think to myself, is it possible to keep cruising through life without any sort of lifeline dictating the socially appropriateness of your behavior, but yourself?

Because, let's be honest, your best girlfriends are your biggest advocates. I know my two, we'll call them S and M, are the first ones to support whatever absurd thought that pops into my head. On a Monday, when I've had a really stressful day at work, and I turn to them and say, "Hey, so I'm going to pick up three bottles of wine, do you guys have anything to do tonight?," S is grabbing the corkscrew and M is grabbing three wine glasses. 

The conundrum is, does this enabling help you figure it out more or does it just allow you to think that your behavior is okay?

Two of my old friends from high school just recently got engaged and I can't help but think that maybe this is something I should be striving for, but to be honest, I couldn't be farther from it. I think of an engagement ring, and although there were so many times that I have dreamt about the day it would actually happen, it makes me feel like I would be selling myself short at this juncture in my life.

Ultimately, as I peel through all these thoughts and try to figure out what I want my 2009 to be, I realize that if it wasn't for my S and M I wouldn't be nearly as happy as I am today. No boy, no male partner, no significant other will ever replace those girls who are in your corner, no matter what happens. Whether I'm walking down Halstead after leaving Kingston Mines and fall in the street or at home analyzing a first date, S and M will be there to pick me up and listen.

I've never been one for cliches, I've never liked pink, I don't like pantyhose, and I've certainly  never been one for "Gurls rule, Boys drool," but if I am going to be lost in a quarter life crisis, I wouldn't take any other way than having S and M by my side.

No one's getting out alive,


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