I thought I need to blog about my quarter life crisis. I hope my story can help others to cope this kind of stuff better than me. Because my first really life crisis hit me really hard at the age of 25. I couldn’t solve my work and money related problems and because of that I developed the worst anxiety disorder in my life. I had agoraphobia, hypochondria, generalized anxiety and panic attacks for four years, and I have still a something left from it. Why? Because I decided to choose a different path and not to get a proper job.
At the age of sixteen I would like to be a psychologist. When I reached 24 I had my BA and MA degree in psychology. But at the end of my studies I realized that’s not my path anymore. Some of my family members thought I lost my mind. I studied so hard to get in the best university in Hungary and after years of hard work I felt nauseated about the idea to work as a psychologist. I started to completely lost my faith in psychology. My own anxiety disorder just got worse after years of therapy and my family’s problems just stayed the same.
So at the age of 25 I started to apply for jobs, but I had no idea what I want to do with my life. I felt cold sweats rushing through me when I thought about big companies and eight hours of work. The only thing I knew that I wanted to write, publish, share stories. And my boyfriend got a job in Poland , a proper eight-hour one, so we moved to Cracow. I didn’t speak Polish, so I hadn’t got any opportunities at all. So I started to work my ass off for free. I applied jobs in every kind of online magazines (a shitty news portal; a movies and series magazine, a publisher’s page, a horror magazine etc.) and I even made my own paranormal site which is still running. And I started to submit short stories, finished novels and looked for publishers. So I filled almost every minute of every day to change my carrier. I wanted to be an online journalist, a blogger, an author, a freelance and later on an editor, a lector and a translator.
And of course I had no money. My boyfriend (later husband) and my parents helped me out. My boyfriend payed our rent and food when I earned about 100 dollars a month from translating shitty news articles from English to Hungarian. And I felt ashamed. I was being judged by a tons of people. Some people told that I am lazy and I am a dependent.
And I still wrote articles and novels, I translated a lot and worked every day. Meanwhile I developed the worst agoraphobia in my life. I felt the crippling death fear every hour of every day. I felt the burning shame when I needed to talk about my job. People waited when I would give up the crazy dream to publish a book. I knew I need a side job next to writing but I wanted something connected to it. I was in live with literature and fiction.
And in 2016 everything changed. I applied for an editorial course I became an intern in one of the biggest fiction publishing house in Hungary. When I finished I got my first assignment as an editor. We moved to the UK, got married and my first book was published.
But it was three years of pure struggle. I felt ashamed because I chose my dream. My husband and believed in me, helped my every day, but my awful panic disorder almost destroyed our relationship. He had to tell me every day he doesn’t care about the money, we are doing okay. Still I am really grateful for it.
Now I am author, an editor, a blogger, and a wannabe literary translator. And I still need to work hard for it every day. I still earn shitty money but I had a lot of experience in the Hungarian literary market. I some people’s eyes now I live a dream life. I travel a lot, I have two published books, I do what I love. But I still live in a rental apartment which I still can’t afford on my own. I gave up a lot for my dreams and of course it was worth it. But I almost went insane because of the shame and I sacrificed my mental health for it. That’s the only thing I would change if I could go back. Please trust in your dreams and your path, that’s the most important message I can give you. Do not listen to anybody. Just live the life you’ve imagined yourself.