It's a mental disorder that affects the current crop of twentysomethings, where the expectations of parents, family, school, religion, and society all merge into one headachy lump at the base of our necks and causes us to either comply quietly to the requests, rebel against our better judgment, or simply go to a call center. It's called the quarter-life crisis.
I always thought I managed to escape the dreaded QLC because I knew I had always wanted to write. Unfortunately, like some things, it struck me post-college: when I got into my first job and quickly realized that an 8-hour workday coupled with office politics and drone work is just NOT for me.
During the six-month interim that I was forcibly chained to a desk and brainlessly editing page after page of text, I realized that maybe I didn't want to be just writing my entire life. I wanted to learn a lot of things that didn't necessarily have anything to do with writing. And I also realized that I wasn't fit for a desk job, or anything related to sitting in front of a computer my entire life. I needed to move, to think, to be with people. Like with men, I realized (slowly but surely) that I can do better than the mediocrity that I had managed to imbibe during my last employment.
(Not to say that they were all bad, of course not: I loved my officemates, for starters, and I loved the people there. It was really just the work that was killing my brain. And since I needed my brain to work and to earn money, I had to take care of it.)
So in a strange sort of paradox, it was precisely because I chose not to continue with my work and explore the world in search of another line of work that I'm finally coming to realize who I am and what I can do as a writer and as a person. And my parents, thankfully, have come around and erased the disapproving look on their faces and have finally come to terms with the fact that I was not happy with my job, and that I needed something that can make me happy, at least professionally. And I think that I'm doing the right thing - it is only by jumping from a cliff that we learn how to use our wings. At least, it feels like I'm doing the right thing. I've never felt so happy-giddy in quite a long time.
So here is where the story begins again. I hope that it becomes better as we go along.
Andre Mischa Cleofe
Cathy delos Santos