Here I am, officially in the last year of my twenties and having a quarter life crisis! I’ve always wondered if you could reinvent yourself mid-twenties, so I figured why the hell not? First things first – going back blonde!
Some people say once you hit mid 50’s, after preparing to send the kids off to college, finally paying off the home you’ve had for years, wishfully dreaming about trading in the ol’ mini van for a sportier or more luxurious car…the mid-life crisis hits. This is when a person becomes bold and screaming for change; they go out and purchase a $3000 purse, some expensive pair of heels with a new hair do’ (complete with highlights), or an entire make-over from the frumpy mom jeans to the trendy leather pants. After living in the same routine for 20+ years, with the kiddos gone and money FINALLY starting to creep back into a savings account – people rely on change to feel alive again.
Is this to reinvent themselves or to simply find a piece of who they used to be, before the marriage, the kids, the house and the dreaded mini van? The answer is really unclear, but one thing is for sure, after a while people crave something different. How this change formulates, is defined by the person.
As for me and my quarter life crisis,
I need...no scratch that, I WANT a HUGE change. I haven’t quite grasped the concept of marriage, kids, the house, the 8-5 job…I’m actually in the process of trying to re-figure who I am, at the ripe age of 29.
The truth is, I was once married, with a gorgeous house, a luxurious car (Jeep to be exact – to which I still own), two kids – if you count pets and the typical 8-5 job. More like 7-6, but that is neither here nor there.
I think I wanted that life at one point, either that or peer pressure got the best of me. All my friends were getting married and having babies and with age quickly creeping up on me, I figured it was my turn. So I dove head first, without really considering what I had wanted.
I wasn’t really unhappy per-say, but there was a very large inescapable void in my life.
A void I couldnt shake.
So after years of teeter tottering on either living this semi-happy life or leaving and starting over…I made a mistake that cost me the later. I was with that person for 7 years, married for almost 2. It was a hard decision to part from the many years, memories, laughs & cries. But, in the end it was a decision that would forever change us and allow me the opportunity to spread my wings and become the woman I have always wanted to be.
The trouble was – how did I become her? After 7 years, I had become part of this two-some and didnt really know how the hell to be a one-some. After several months of crying, avoiding songs that reminded me of being married and losing my “friends” I slowly started to awaken.
I quit the ol’ 7-6 job, got my teaching certification (something I had wanted for many many years) and got accepted to teach English at a high school. First step to change.
I found a new living place, in a city I loved and learned how to live on my own. Second step to change.
After settling in – I needed to make new friends – so I did what any divorcee would do – joined a dating site (more so to make friends) but to put myself out there. I met so many amazing people (some of which I am still good friends to this day). Not every person was superb, but I must admit that even the most awkward dates, taught me to overcome rejection, stand up for myself and most importantly to try new things. For example:
So through all the heart ache of leaving behind the only life I had known most of my adult life, I ended up rewriting my own book. I have tried so many new things (not that during my marriage I was recluse) but I was finally living the life I had imagined. After awhile, I started meeting more and more people closer to my age, with similar scenarios. It’s kind of like the idea that when you buy a new car – you start to see it everywhere – well I started meeting people my age, that had been through all walks of life, but had reinvented themselves somehow. Third step to change.
Now, not all that glitters is gold. After a year of solid fun, I realized that I needed to get it together and figure out what I really wanted out of life. I quit teaching (for a few reasons, but mostly for more income) and went back to the typical 8-5. I regretted leaving for awhile, but realized that it led me to the adventure I am about to embark on. One great thing I gained from my life as a teacher was meeting Frank – a story I promise to tell later. However, he pushed me to follow my dreams (which is teaching English overseas). I had always wanted too, but being married and owning things make it far more difficult – or was that just an excuse? Fourth step to change.
Our first picture – March 2014.
So – today I can finally say my dream is coming true. Well, not officially today today, but October 2015 my wildest dreams will be coming true. The flexibility of my current job has allowed me to get my TEFL/TESOL certification, which allows me to teach overseas. After MONTHS of dragging my feet and going back and forth on this decision, I have decided to bite the bullet and teach in Thailand. I am leaving this life behind and reinventing myself. Fifth step to change.
Now, when I say reinvent – I dont mean change as a person. I will always be wild, care-free, interesting, witty and free-spirited, but this time I get to shed all titles bestowed upon me by my friends, family and acquaintances. In Thailand I can essentially be whomever I want. I am not a divorcee, or a sporty girl, or stuck in a job I’m not happy with, I am simply: free to invent myself however I choose. The best part is Frank is giving up his life here too and joining me. Eight years with a company he has known since out of college….small town boy, never really left the state. I have awakened something in him and he feels inspired to seek out this opportunity with me in hopes to redefine himself, too. Sixth step to change.
All in all this is my moment to shine and become the bright star I have felt my entire life. I chose to teach overseas because I want to make a difference, become culturally sound and honestly, learn to make it as an expat in a foreign country. This is the defining moment in my life. Giving up security for the unknown in hopes to find whatever it is the world is willing to offer me, offer us. I hope to inspire others out there, who feel stuck, undefined by a label that was given to you at a young age and to show you that change is essentially inevitable, but we can create the change, be the change, live the change.
Until next time 🙂