Thursday, December 27, 2018

On Turning Twenty Three

I turned Twenty Three last week! And I now just updated my bio to age: 23.

Here's my effort to recount my day:

Woke up at 5AM to prepare to go to work. I wanted to go for an early out, so I made sure I'd come in by 7AM. I came out of my room and saw my parents awake already, as usual. I think they wake up at 4AM by default, just because. They greeted me a Happy Birthday! My dad played a birthday song on the speakers and my mom gave me a kiss and a hug. They asked if I'm going to open some presents under our little Christmas tree, and I obliged. My mom prayed for me first. My dad then gave me a hug too. :") I then proceeded to opening some gifts and I certainly felt a childlike joy all over again. Except this time it's 5AM in the morning and I knew I had some adulting to do for the day.

Once in the office, everyone asks me why I bothered to come in. Just because! I wanted to spend the day as normally as possible. People greeted me from time to time, my colleague told me to put more makeup on because it's my day. I laughed. I worked as usual. 

Then came 4PM. I went out of our office building, aware of the oncoming Christmas rush. I walked as fast as I could to get to the bus terminal. Once seated, I brought out my earphones to listen to The Beatles - Birthday and IU - 23 alternately. I wanted it to sink in that I was a year older and to reflect on the past year, and the year to come.

After an hour or so, I got down at the mall and looked for a cake. I met up with my parents then we went to have dinner together. It was a simple dinner in a restaurant of my choice; we took photos and videos and I blew my candles. I started and ended the day with my favorite people. I realized I wanted more moments with them like this, because we're truly not the type to eat out, but I hope this is a start.

I got home to messages from my sister all the way from the UK, asking if I've opened her gifts. She's always loved planning in advance; she already brought all her gifts to our house when she came to visit early in February for our Taiwan trip. Seeing her twice this year was already one of the greatest gifts I received this year. 

I wanted to stay up later than usual, but I had work the next day. I read through friends' well wishes online and I felt grateful to have such wonderful people in my life. I told my mom about how with every birthday, I always wished the day would be longer. I've always loved birthdays. I'm not one to not celebrate them. Not necessarily with a party, but by celebrating it on my own little ways. It's been this way ever since. My mom then told me: "don't you remember what I told you before? from December 20 - 31, it's your bithday!" I laughed. Because she's right, even if I'm already in my twenties! ; - ) 

The next few days were just as pleasant. I received a few more gifts from lovely friends, well wishes, and I ate my favorite food. My parents would jokingly tell me Happy Birthday! Even when it was already December 23. Haha! That's the thing about having your birthday so close to Christmas; the days seem so fast.

People ask me how it's like to be 23. Honestly, there's no difference whether I be 20, 21, 22, or 23. It feels the same. Maybe a bit wiser? Hopefully.

I'm going to be saying a few cliche things, but truly, age is just a number. I think we limit ourselves so much with our own and others' expectations, that we forget to live life fully. There's that expectation to be Someone or to have Somethings at a certain age, but I think there's more satisfaction when we work towards it at our own pace, whatever it may be that we aspire to dream of. 

There's also that nudging feeling that I mention time and time again: time flies. I remember lamenting over how long January 2018 was, yet now we're at December 2018 with only a few days before we welcome 2019. I try to look back and think of what I've achieved, though admittedly it may not be a lot as many would like to imagine, I think it's what I've learned that I've gained more of. I'm basically trying to collect life skills. 

I've written it all down in my journal though, and I have some days to spare to think and reflect about them. The remaining days of the year feels hard to grasp; I woke up today not knowing what day it was! But surely I intend to make the most out of them. 

Here's to spending next year as a 23 year old, while everyone else born in 1995 is turning 24! :")


  1. Oh, happy belated birthday!! I had no idea we were the same age. Sounds like you had a great day, too - I'm also not someone who tends to celebrate my birthday, but I still enjoy it all the same :)

    1. Thank you, Mani! :) Oh you're 1995 as well? awesome! Hope you're enjoying the holidays <3


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