June 02, 2016
I'm Twenty-Seven + Live At Home.
I'm twenty-seven years old and I live with my parents. I used to live in NYC as a production assistant, but had to move back in with my parents. I recently decided to go back to school and become a teacher for kids with special needs, and I graduated a week ago, but I'm at a stage in my life where I just don't know what to do with my future. Help.
Oh dear. Twenty-seven. Just saying the words out loud sends a chill down my spine. Twenty-seven is the start of your Saturn Return — a crazy cosmic clusterfuck quarter-life crisis that basically means you're moving into your new astrological home. Basically, Saturn takes between twenty-seven and thirty-three years to orbit around the sun before returning to the place it was in the solar system on the day you were born. So, for six years, you have to hang out in this crazy spiritual purgatory. It's brutal. I speak from experience here: turning thirty for me was like escaping from a wildfire. I was burned, exhausted, freaked out as fuck. My late twenties were a greasy blur of catfights and snooze buttons and panic and Klonopin, basically just a bad a VH1 Behind The Music special, but the only people watching it were my parents. I was so lost and aimless that I got the word home tattooed on my wrist (it has since been lasered off, fyi). I once offered to take my sisters cat to the vet on a beautiful Saturday afternoon in summer. Literally, I had nothing else to do.
My first piece of advice. Don’t give up. It’s tempting to indulge all your existential angst and be like: ‘fine I’m going to just live with my parents and sleep in old bedsheets with my childhood cat and have bushy un-groomed pubes and watch all my friends follow their dreams while I blankly nibble my hangnails'. Um, no. I used to think being lazy and unfulfilled was tragic and cool but now I think nothing of the sort: my greatest wish right now is to live for sixty more years at least and have seven more careers and journey around the world fifty times while navigating the highs and lows of life with dignity and grace and good hair! My idols used to be the Sylvia Plath's of the world (I don't think I have to tell you how their stories ended), but lately I can’t stop romanticizing longevity and perseverance, like Holocaust survivor and Social Justice worker Hedy Epstein, who was handcuffed and taken to jail for protesting the police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson at the age of 90. Or Harriet Thompson, who started running at the age of seventy-six and ran the San Diego twenty-six mile marathon at the age of ninety-two? I mean — how cool is that?
Go back to work. Start collecting a paycheck. Even if you hate the work that’s available to you, suck up your pride and take a job. Any job. Wait tables, bartend, be an Uber driver, assist an artist, you get the idea. There is lot of power and self-esteem to be found in being a good old worker among workers, just shutting up and showing up and getting your ego out of the way. Before you know it, you’ll be in some sort of groove, and whether you love it or hate it, it’s a groove nonetheless. Also, move out of your parents house as soon as possible. Living with your parents in your late twenties is basically like just begging depression to come and get you, like hello, I'm here with wide open arms, just waiting to feel like a loser. And I’m a huge fan of all the self-help spiritual stuff; the shamans, the shrinks, the meds, the meditation, the vision boards, the prayers....whatever gets you through the dark night. The world is a lot bigger than your current psychic torpor, trust that the clearing’s up ahead.