Tag Archives: Quarter Century Crisis

Guide us, O Lord,
When we have lost our way.
When we are stumbling from one path to another
Because we took our eyes from your lights on the path.
When we are no longer certain of our direction
Because we are confused about the purpose of our journey.
 
Guide us, O Lord,
When faced with an abundance of options
We are paralysed with the fear of failure.
Having fallen in love with holding out for the best opportunity
We have forgotten to be thankful for the freedom of choice.
And in our efforts to do your will
We have forgotten that burning bushes are not an everyday occurrence.
 
Guide us, O Lord
When we boldly dare
To renew our search for your lights on the pathway.
When in following your word
To the pathway of holiness
We shall find the gateway of the narrow path
 
We ask you to remind us of our identity with You;
And to guide us in re-imaging our future
In strength, courage, hope and love.
 
This we ask in the name of our Captain,
Who is Jesus Christ.

Based on Disturb us, O Lord by Francis Drake. Part One: Comfort us, O Lord

Despite being told last weekend that I looked 17 I am, in fact, fast approaching my mid-twenties (#notsurehowtodealwiththis). Any of you fortunate enough to have met High Queen Rachel of Melodrama may remember the not-quite-Quarter-Century-Crisis (read this if you missed out). Well, now that I am more or less recovered I am sufficiently qualified to offer some diamonds of wisdom on how to survive a Quarter Century Crisis (real or imagined)...

It's simple really - Find a friend.

Seriously. Find a friend who gets it. Find a friend to help you plug the leak of your dreams, bail out the sinking boat of your Quarter Century Crisis, fix the oars of your hope and row to the shore of Life As A Grown Up. #cheesybuttrue

Find a friend who not only understands what you’re trying to figure out, but can help you get to wherever it is you want to go – even if you don’t know where that is most of the time.

Not a friend to patronisingly pat your hand, offer you a side tilt look of sympathy and then change the subject to something less..awkward. Not a friend with whom you can become unhealthily dependant – i.e. calling each other to discuss what to have for lunch/what socks to wear because you can no longer face any decision alone is not ok (if this is you, then you need to find another friend to get you some help, and soon).

To survive your Quarter Century Crisis you need to find a friend with whom you can be honest. Find a friend who will help you set goals and ask you why if you haven’t met them. Find a friend to help you keep your sense of humour. Find a friend who will lovingly (and that’s o so very important) tell you what you already knew but where too scared to admit. Find a friend who will bring round the Nutella/beer/comfort food of choice when what you thought was the right track turns out to be a costly dead end. Find a friend who will bring round the Nutella/beer/comfort food of choice when zip-a-dee-doo-dah there’s plenty of sunshine heading your way and a Bluebird singing on your shoulder.

Find a friend like this – and not only will you survive your Quarter Century Crisis, but you’ll have a BFF to boot! #winwin

And everyone knows sharing is caring, so if your friend hasn’t hit their own Quarter Century Crisis then maybe helping you out will induce their own (thereby helping them avoid the ridiculously trendy haircut/sky diving/expensive sports car/excessive plastic surgery of the Mid Life Crisis.) So don’t forget to be there for them too. Bring the Nutella/beer/comfort food of choice. Support them in their laments and champion their celebrations.

Find a friend, survive your Quarter Century Crisis. Simple.

Any way-more-sparkly-than-pearls diamonds of wisdom on Quarter Century Crises you care to share?

Who will you spend Christmas* with when you’re 65? Something I was asked recently and in line with the whole Quarter Century Crisis thing, this has proved to be quite a relevant question. But it got me thinking, not only who will I spend Christmas with when I’m 65 but who will I be when I’m 65? 
 
I’ve always hoped that at some point in my life I would become one of those super accomplished women. You know, the ones who can juggle work, family, friends and life while managing to effortlessly rustle up a gourmet meal for twenty at the drop of a hat whilst wearing a ballgown. It's not hard to see that I am so not her right now. But surely now is the time to start becoming that person?
 
To be honest I find it hard to envisage life beyond July (although plans for August are beginning to look Excellent As) and so thinking about the next 42 years is Far Out. But here are some considerations for Christmas 2055:
 

Will I have an open house policy of welcoming any family member (including the ones you'd rather not be related to) plus assorted guests into my home with open arms? Or will I only invite a privileged few (and definitely not those strange relations who rather lower the tone) to share the yuletide festivities of my home?

 
Will I have taken time to put up decorations (complete with this year’s theme of handmade arts and crafts ) or will a sullen looking artificial tree crammed into the corner of the kitchen suffice?
 
Will I have managed to effortlessly cook a five course feast (including four meat choices, two fish courses and at least five different desserts) without ending up on the kitchen floor crying for my mother?
 
Will I be serving only seasonal and organic produce or will I be microwaving whatever was on offer at Tesco? (avoiding anything that claims to be beef, obvs)
 
Having decided that pointless gift giving is a wasteful social norm, will I have braved the wrath of many by giving everyone a Kiva loan instead? 
 
Having banished all internet and game devices for the day will I manage to keep everyone entertained with a rousing sing-a-long around the piano (expertly played by myself of course)? Or will it quickly descend into chaos with small children mistaking the household pets for moving Piñatas and the teenagers taking bets on which pet will get caught first?
 
As Hostess Supreme will I mange to help feed the babies, soothe the toddlers’ tears and appease their older siblings’ ploys for more attention without neglecting the elderly relatives? Or having been pushed to the limit by cooking and having too many people in my space will I be grumpily hiding away in the garden hoping that no one can see me smoking and swigging wine from the bottle?
 
Will I make time to actually talk with my family and see how they are or just make awkward small talk about the weather – I mean it has been rather cold lately and they’re saying it might snow in the new year, which would be terrible because how could I possibly get to town to do some sales shopping because we’re hoping to get a new radio in the sales because blah blah blah.
Will I cheerily wave everyone goodbye at the end of the day already planning next year’s festivities? Or will I let them see themselves out in favour of opening up the good bottle of wine that I didn’t want to waste on them at dinner?
Well, I’ve got 42 years to figure it out. Piece of cake.
Who will you be when you're 64 65?
 
*well, actually they said thanksgiving because they were American. But fear not I have a Cultural Relevance Adaptability Licence so it’s ok to change it.

 

I'm too young for this. No really, I am. In this world of accelerated living I have hit my Quarter Century Crisi prematurely (by-the-by who wants to live to be 100 anyway?).

[I also think I'm too young to start writing off every ache and pain as ‘old age.’ But as I can’t be bothered to register with a doctor's surgery in East London and trekking back to Croydon to see a doctor is too much hassle, I'm adopting the ‘old age’ excuse. So I'll just have to deal with limping to school everyday.]

I have everything I need. I live in a great place, in the greatest city in the world.  The kitchen fridge is only ever empty when we’re too lazy to buy anything. I have a job that I enjoy. I have a great family and great friends. God is good. I am blessed beyond measure. I have everything I need. And for the most part I am happy.

So why am I sitting on my bedroom floor, listening Kanye, eating Nutella with a spoon and staring blankly at the wall pondering my life trajectory? Why is it that I'm browsing the self help section of Amazon, wondering if “Twenty Something, Twenty Everything” or “Conquering Your Quarter Life Crisis” is the key to sorting my life out?

I can’t concentrate. I'm not eating properly. And if I think about it too much I can't sleep. One of my best friends thinks I have a secret boyfriend. My mother thinks I have an eating disorder. I think I should just pack my bags and become a missionary. In the Bahamas. Preferably on a beach. With a cocktail in hand.  People who hang out on the beach in the Bahamas need Jesus too you know. And a one way ticket is only £600 (not that I've been looking).

I want to go where God leads but I think He wants me to decide. Only I don’t know what I want (talk about a First World Problem).

School. GCSE’s. A-Levels. University. Travelling. Job.

So far, so predictable, so mundane. Where is the radical life I was planning? I moved to East London to change the world but it pretty much looks the same.

Friends are getting married, working up the career ladder and having babies. Not quite my shade of nail varnish but a comparison none-the-less.

When it comes to work I am (as always) thinking about what to do next. Bahamas anyone?

As for getting married and having kids. Too young. Too dependent on independence and freedom. And too easily bored. A good friend recently told me “If he’s not worth it, then shake the dust from your feet, Child of God.” Amen to that. One of my grandmothers (who is in good health) keeps trying to guilt trip me into having kids by saying that she only wishes she’ll live long enough to see her great grandchildren – I’m the oldest grandchild on that side.  Have you seen what they do to you? And to your clothes? Too many people think I'm into fashion for me to let a child wreck my wardrobe thank you very much (I'm totally on the lookout for an excellent mid length skirt at the mo. Holla if you find a good one).

So here I am. Sitting on my bedroom floor. Listening to Kanye (maybe that’s the problem). Eating Nutella from the jar. Staring blankly at the wall. Yearning for Narnia, because let’s face it; where else would you want to be (besides the Bahamas - obvs)?
But at the end of the day, when all is said and done I rest in a peace not of this world. I rest in a God who is constant despite my inconsistencies. I rest in a God of provision, healing, mercy, grace, forgiveness and above all – love. 

Anyone got some wisdom to share on surviving your Quarter Century Crisis?

P.S. I’m fine. Really I am. I have a life planning session with a friend tomorrow evening.

P.P.S. You youngsters who don’t understand – don't be too smug, it will catch you soon enough. Aches, pains an' all. You have been warned.