Last year on my birthday, I thought about how this Leann Rimes song will soon apply to me (well, at least, the first stanza) —
The rest of the song, however, isn’t very representative about how I truly feel about turning 31.
I suppose there are expectations — something like a managerial position, settling down with a spouse and raising a kid or two, paying for a house and/or a car. If life was measured only by those things then I say I’ve already failed. Thankfully, it isn’t.
I’m also thankful that my parents weren’t the types to pressure us siblings in terms of life status, so we’re okay, as far as life is concerned. We’re provided for. Our needs are answered, and heck, more often than not, our wants are fulfilled (those who have seen my collection of makeup, stationery, books, and fangirl paraphernalia will agree!) I tend not to ask for things on my birthday or Christmas because I have so much crap already XD !
On the evening of the 22nd, after a two-hour Zumba and BodyJam workout, I went to a nearby Starbucks to get some iced coffee and a slice of cake, tuck in with a book, and waited for Debbie so we can go home together. Chatting with the baristas, I told them it was my birthday. One of them was puzzled, “You’re spending it alone? Aren’t you going to celebrate with your family?”
I suppose that even on your birthday, you’re expected to fulfill some kind of ritual that everyone must adhere to. If you’re the indoor type, you spend it with your family. If you’re the outgoing type, you party at bars and get drunk.
That barista probably forgot the idea that I can do whatever the hell I want on my birthday, and his idea doesn’t really fit with mine. My idea of a birthday this year was peace. I wanted peace and tranquility, and I would’ve fought tooth and nail if anyone dared to deprive me of that.
So I got up at 13:00 without an alarm, prayed, did two batches of laundry, washed dishes, cleaned the floor, cleaned my room, cooked, watched a few episodes of The Golden Girls, worked out, played some otoge (finished all of the season one routes of My Forged Wedding), and went to sleep. The past few months have been stormy and whirlwind-y, and I felt the need to just anchor myself back down. I am satisfied with a clean house, good food (Tita Anchit’s puttanesca :9), and a thing or two to keep my body and my mind occupied.
Other than that, the peace and quiet also grounded my heart. I absorbed the sweet greetings I got at the end of the October 21 shift, and the loving greetings that came in through email, SMS, Plurk, and Facebook, planning to sit down and thank everyone when I get back to work. I can’t ask for more when I have all these people sending me their love and well-wishes. Truly, I can buy whatever I want with my money, but these are things that no amount of cash can buy and I am truly, and deeply grateful.
Here’s to a good year and more!