QLC, anyone?

September 4, 2011

Quarter-life crisis or (a premature) Saturn Return – whatever you call it – I have been experiencing this since I was 21. As I get into my mid 20’s, it’s becoming more difficult to handle.

And this song pretty much sums up everything I’m going through right now:

Twenty-five years I’m alive here still
Trying to get up that great big hill of hope
For a destination

I realized quickly when I knew I should
That the world was made up of this brotherhood of man
For whatever that means

And so I cry sometimes
When I’m lying in bed Just to get it all out
What’s in my head
And I, I am feeling a little peculiar.

And so I wake in the morning
And I step outside
And I take a deep breath and I get real high
And I scream from the top of my lungs
What’s going on?

Right after college, I immediately looked for a nice paying job. I was thrilled at the thought of being able to pay for and buy anything I want. The first company to tender a job offer was Convergys. The pay was okay, and my mom told me not to reject the first company that said yes to me. So I accepted the offer. I worked as a billing agent for Yahoo!

I was 21 then and was too idealistic.  Aside from not agreeing with some policies which I thought rip off customers, I just did not like working there at all. Everyday was hell. After six months, I left.

Before resigning from Convergys, a senior operations manager tried to convince me to stick it out for at least a year and see what happens. After all, it was just my first job.  She said if I would leave already, then resigning becomes a habit.

She was right. It did.

I worked in a number of companies/organizations after that. After working in the private sector, I joined a media NGO. After six months, I left. Became a bum for two months before transferring to a government agency. On Christmas eve, I was notified that my contract won’t be renewed for the next year because of some bullshit politics in the office. Became a bum again. After more than a month, I got accepted for a post in a separate government agency. I stayed for like a week before, once again, calling it quits. And so I became a bum again for a couple of months before landing a job in the government agency I first worked in, but this time, in a different division. After almost two years of stay – yes, my longest stay so far – I joined the private sector once again. I’m now currently working as a project staff in a telecom.

Hanep no? Private – NGO – Government – Private. I also had freelance gigs while having a day job or being a bum. Grabe, ano pa bang type ng work ang pwede? Baka di ko pa nasusubukan lol. Eh halos lahat naikutan ko na eh.

Kidding aside, all those shifting, transferring, and being a bum took away all the confidence left in my tank. What was happening to me? I was once this kid who thought she’ll do great out there but I became a journeyman, like a Willie Miller who already played in more than five teams in his career. Like PNoy’s lovelife, my self-esteem just went coke zero.

Being at the bottom seemed to be alien to me when I was still studying. Sure I flunk some exams along the way and I didn’t even graduate with honors. But I was always an achiever.  I was the perfectionist who always managed to produce great results. I got used to getting praises from my friends – that I’m smart and skilled.

But now? I easily get discouraged. Konting mistake lang, dinadamdam ko na. Well, I was always like that to begin with but it didn’t disappoint me that much before unlike right now. I really don’t know what happened. I’m not as sharp as before and there are times when I think that I lost it.

Many people will be envious with what I do now. I get to travel to a lot of places, meet many people, etc. I am thankful for it, really. But I can’t help not to feel insecure – regarding my present accomplishments and long-term plans. About the near future. Because at 25, I’m still a contractual staff with no benefits and someone who’s frustrated with relationships – or the lack of it. And all those insecurities reach even greater heights when I visit the Facebook profiles of my friends and old classmates, who at a young age, have already accomplished something great. And may lovelife sila. Punyeta.

I want to be my old self again – the achiever who is excellent in the things she does, and the carefree child who knows how to be happy.  Yun nga lang, it’s hard. It’s a daily struggle. It’s hard to move forward when you are at your worst.

But as they say, this too shall pass. I guess I just have to comfort with that saying and try to hang on.

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