I promised myself that I would not cry today. And as expected all that rubbish on promising myself seemed to go down the plug hole ever since the early hours of dawn. Even so, I told myself that my tears would be of happiness and the sheer emotion of my soft little heart (which would burst into tears at the slightest touch). However, the sneezing fit and runny nose at 2 am beat all the following excuses to it. At least my sinus encounter was enough to wake my sleeping grandma who also shared my birthday date. And so in the darkness of her air conditioned room, we silently hugged and wished each other our ‘Happy Birthday’s and fell back into a weary slumber. Perhaps my sneezing attack was for the better – it only reminded me of the pleasant normality of everyday life and how nothing much has changed at the age of sixteen.
The day before ( as in the eve of my birthday) was in fact, a perfect conclusion of the long holidays. Mainly because, it marked the end of everyone else’s holiday and the beginning of mine. Even though my birthday will only last one day, the joy of just being very important and very appreciated for 24 hours out of a total of 8460 hours per year (or in this year’s case : 8784 hours) is enthralling.
Speaking of which, I have to mention rather sentimentally is that this year’s birthday particularly has felt almost like a new year. The Sunday night before my birthday, I spontaneously felt the need to clean up and start a fresh. My mother noted that this was probably the doing of my sixteen year old self coming into play. I am guessing that is a good thing. Whatever that may change in me will hopefully be for the better as I know that birthdays are just reminders of growing up. Having said that, staying true to oneself along the way is probably the most important thing.
Perhaps the greatest gift anyone could give me is just by existing. Despite the fact that I do love presents of all sorts and that I am probably just saying this since it is my birthday and it is probably the right and expected thing to say, but recently I have come to realise that the good things we are taught to say when we’re young really do mean something after all. And now, after sixteen years of being alive, this is perhaps the sincerest thing I have yet to say.
This, of course leads me to the second thing that made me cry today. The fact that my beautiful little sister made the most perfect birthday card right under my nose. In fact, I helped her make it, with her excuse that it was for my grandma. She also typed out my father’s letter to me as she disapproved of his illegible handwriting. I am going to keep those messages forever. They were the real icing on the cake.
So far, this has been a wonderful birthday (possibly the best) and thank you to everyone I know that has made me so happy over the past 16 years.
Reading this post once again has made me realize how long it is. Well, for once, the thought has made me happy – for the idea of posting a small piece of my mind here on my birthday was completely intentional. This post is now timeless : a symbol of another milestone in my life. And in my head I picture myself at 61 reading this and wishing that the tables were turned. Then again, I think my 61st birthday should be something to celebrate too. I wonder how my writing would be then. I wonder how I would be then.
Knowing myself, I would probably cry or laugh at reading this (there is also the probability of doing both simultaneously). I rather like the idea that this is like a time capsule – though I cannot be sure that I won’t be peeking for the next 50 years. I’d like my future self to think I was a rather mature and responsible 16 year old and that my outlook on life and existence was quite admirable for someone my age. Unfortunately I can’t trust myself to even remember this web address, if computers still exist in the future… (not to mention at 61, no offense).
P.S: To my future self: It’s a leap year this year. My birthday supposed to fall on a Sunday, NOT on a Monday. And yes, I did go to school. I was a good girl. I thought myself a good load of useful things during the holidays like how to knit and how to paint water colour. I hope you still do those things because I enjoy doing them very much now. I’m going to consume a chocolate mousse cake and I am going to have my favorite mushroom cheese pasta for dessert. I hope I haven’t changed much in 50 years.