Welcome Hilary Grossman, author of Dangled Carat, and my friend and fellow Booktrope author to my blog. Hilary compares how she imagined she would feel turning twenty-five with the reality of her feelings on that day. (PS: Happy Birthday, Hilary!!)
It all started in September.
I wasn’t able to put my finger on what was happening at first. All I knew was that something simply wasn’t right. I was unhappy. I was scared. I was frustrated. And slowly but surely a feeling of dread began to wash over me. With every very passing day the feeling got stronger, encompassing every aspect of my life.
In early November I left work early. I wasn’t feeling well. I had chest pains. I couldn’t catch my breath. My mom picked me up at the train station and drove me to my doctor. He didn’t react the way that I thought he would. He gave me a quick exam. Rather than confirm that I was dying from a heart attack, he simply said I was having a panic attack.
He helped me calm down. My heart rate returned to normal and I was able to breath easily once more. But I had to admit to myself and my mother what was causing me anxiety. And by this time I already knew.
November 10th was right around the corner. My birthday. I was turning twenty-five and I was dreading the day. How can I be twenty-five and feel the way that I did?
Thanks to all the wonderful books and movies out there I had definite ideas of what twenty-five should feel like, and my life was nothing of the sort. Forget about not having a fairytale existence there was nothing about my life I was happy about!
I spent the last few years studying for and passing the CPA exam. Why I kept wondering? I hated my all consuming job. I was always on the road with no control of my schedule. I worked ridiculous hours. I was bored out of my mind half the time and the other time I was walking on eggshells because my boss was the modern day version of Dr. Jekell and Mr. Hyde. I never knew what to expect when I showed up for work. As a result, stomach would constantly be in knots. I used to wake up every morning and count down the number of days I had until I either retired or died. What happy mornings those were!
Of course I didn’t have a boyfriend at the time either. I was okay with that (or I told myself). What I wasn’t okay with was I had no social life. None, zero, zip! All I did was work. Most of the year I worked for the CPA firm 6 days a week. But I also continued to wait tables nights and weekends. And if there was a lull in that excitement, I added the occasional babysitting gig into the mix. #partytime
This was not what twenty-five was supposed to feel like. Was it?
I started to express my feelings to others. I learned there was a term for what I was going through – a quarter life crisis. Knowing I wasn’t alone, I started feeling slightly better. And after the dreaded birthday passed I decided to make some changes in my life.
I cut back on waitress shifts. I started to hang out with friends. I started to date. I allowed fun back into my life. And when I was presented with an opportunity to shift my career path I jumped at the chance. Slowly but surely I found happiness.
I am turning forty-one on November 10th. I wish I could go back and tell my twenty-four year old self that everything will be okay. That the sacrifices that were made then would allow for much successes and joy later. But I can’t. And even if I could, I know that I wouldn’t listen…
Book on Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Dangled-Carat-Hilary-Grossman-ebook/dp/B00M3AVGDA/ref=sr_1_1_twi_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1413976781&sr=8-1&keywords=dangled+carat