quarter-life crisis: fact or fiction?

Baseball is the most soothing sound I have ever heard.

Don’t believe me? Prefer rushing waterfalls and those rain stick things?

Have you ever listened to baseball? I mean, turn the television on and do something else while you listen to the crowds, the announcers, the sound of bat and ball. Baseball might be the most soothing sound I have ever heard. I listen to it on the radio now. And sports talk in general. All the time. Unless someone is in the car with me. It is so soothing. I don’t ever remember the statistics and I almost always make massive blunders when I try to talk sports with my friends or family (remember the “N-double-A-C-P incident, mom and dad? Oh geez.), but I still love to listen to the gruff announcer’s voice talking about new recruits, old famous players, batting averages, owner’s quarrels, and so on.

Listening to baseball is where it started. Listening to baseball is when my quarter-life crisis, if you believe in that kind of thing, began to evolve.

I used to listen to the sports talk radio show on the way to my internship at D Magazine in Dallas. I had just gotten the internship and was really excited about it, especially because I was having a job dry spell after returning home to live with my parents upon graduating from Baylor. Aren’t Baylor kids supposed to get first pick of jobs? Well, if not first pick then at least 4th or 5th. I wasn’t exactly feeling entitled, maybe more betrayed or misled. I worked really hard at school and now I was working really hard to get a job but they weren’t coming my way. I wanted people to be lining up to hire me. You know, like in the books and movies.

Anyways, I was on my way to my internship at D and for some odd reason felt obliged to turn the radio to ESPN. And I discovered listening to baseball. The semester at D was a whirlwind, and led to a fantastic first “real” job. I moved out of my parent’s house and into an apartment with my best friend and life continues to whirlwind by. Friends get engaged, get married. People get their dream jobs. It still feels strange that I, Katie, am in this “real world.”

Although I have been in this reality for over a year now it still feels like a dream. I look in the mirror and see this older, more mature and grown up looking person. My body is different than it was when I was 18, 19, 20… and it is strange. Then I think, “Katie, chill, you’re only 23… you’re not that old,” but then I look in the mirror again and remember that this is only the tip of the iceberg. It’s strange.

After much thought and panicking, this is what I decided was the definition of Quarter-Life Crisis:

Quarter-Life Crisis (n.) The fear of being simultaneously stationary and unstable.

Believe me, I am trying my very, very best to be anything but stationary, and stability is something that I value and strive for. In December, I decided to run a half-marathon, which didn’t work out by the way; From December to April I decided to tackle 5 part time jobs at the same time instead of focusing on one; I have recently started planning a grand trip to the UK where I will live and work for as many months as I can handle it; I’ve decided to try the half-marathon thing again. On and on the list goes. But I am still stationary. And I am still unstable. Not the kind of unstable where you wouldn’t buy the table because it was so wobbly–the kind of unstable where you are afraid the table is wobbly, even though it isn’t, and then ask the salesperson to check the measurements and find out you are wrong. That kind of instability. The girly, nonsense kind.

What do you think a Quarter-Life Crisis is? Is there such a thing or am I just being dramatic? One friend told me he bought a boat during his Quarter-Life Crisis. Maybe I will run this half-marathon. Maybe I will take this exciting trip to the UK. Or maybe I will stay less fit and in Dallas and head down a different path. If my premature, possibly fabricated crisis has taught me one thing it is this:

I will choose my path.

When I used to play the Nintendo 64 racing Mario game (or any other video game for that matter) with my brothers, I would never win first place. I would speed so fast down the road that instead of smoothly turning, curving, and weaving, I would bump into the walls, slip on every banana peel, and fall into every body of water or lava possible. If I would have slowed down a bit and chosen my route instead of letting the game control my path… well, I wouldn’t have won because, let’s face it, my brothers are simply way better at video games than me, but maybe I would have at least not gotten last place! I mean, even Princess Peach beat me every time. Embarrassing.

We need to take the same attitude in life. No bumping around, letting “the game” choose our paths. Yes, I believe that God will make a path for us where He wants us to go sometimes, but other times I think He wants us to consult Him, work hard, and choose for ourselves. Some people confuse the easiest or most convenient path with the right path or the path that God wants for them. I can tell you with a lot of authority that easy is NOT always synonymous with right. Nope.

Until I get really good at this whole “good driver” thing, I will continue to listen to and watch baseball. I’ve started listening to football too. I even watched the Cowboys preseason game last night. I don’t know why my outlet to my Quarter-Life Crisis is sports but I guess I should be thankful I didn’t start doing drugs or something ridiculously crazy like that.

Plus, more quality time with my brothers!

And so it goes,

Katie

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