Thirty nine

Posted by ~Summer~ on April 26, 2022
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Entering the final year of my thirties feels a little surreal. It is a stark reminder that I am midway through my life already and that time flies regardless of how we try to slow it down.

When you are at this age, I think you tend to view birthdays a little differently. At least for me. No need for lavish gifts, no huge scale parties, no fanciful meals, no starting or ending the day with a bang. That doesn't mean birthdays are not special to me. In fact, we deserve to feel special and be a little happier on our hatch days because it only happens once a year and is an occasion for us to celebrate. After becoming a mum, I tend to care and plan more for my kids' birthdays than my own. Yup, you know what I mean.

But come every 7th of April, I do look forward to intimate celebrations with the family, simple handmade cards from the kids, a nice but not costly meal with the parents and catch up sessions with my closest friends.

I've been feeling more tired than usual and a little out of focus in the past months so I took the chance on my birthday to rethink, recharge and rejuvenate. I am not sure if midlife crisis hit early but it seems like I am trying to find more meaning and fulfillment in life. Ironically, in the process, I kind of lose myself. So yup, I am a work in progress and still trying to find my way, falling and picking myself up time after time. Aren't we all?

Nonetheless, I take pride in my decision to be a stay-at-home mum for the last 12 years and seeing the kids grow up is a validation of my efforts and fruit of my labour. Whenever I need guidance in life, I look at them and they are the beacon of light that helps me to find my direction once more. Thank you for all the love you poured into my heart on this special day.

The Long-Awaited Barbecue

Finally! Yup, it's been over two years since our last BBQ and I can't tell you how much I miss the food! Thanks to the chef hubby, we had a nice gathering with our parents (6+2+2=10 pax!) and my cravings were satisfied. Think BBQ chicken wings, sambal stingray, sotong, corn, sweet potatoes, beef, fish and roasted marshmallow. 

At our barbecue sessions, I am always the one in the pool with the kids while the hubby pengs the food. Yup, we have our roles to play but I think I got the easier one. Haha. Can't wait for the next BBQ already, so thankful that the rules are more relaxed now and we can gather in bigger groups once more. And yes, my family of six finally doesn't need to sit separately at two tables when we dine out. Phew!

A Surprise Cake

On the eve of my birthday, the hubby brought out a surprise chocolate cake, which was unusual because he has never been one who is big on birthdays and there were times when we didn't even get a cake. So yup, kudos for the effort! 

When you have many kids, the best part about birthdays is having them to sing the song, blow out the candles and cut the cake together. Yup, it always makes me feel extra loved being surrounded by them and four seems like the ideal number for me at the point in my life. 不多,不少,刚刚好!

Family Time

Even though the kids still made me frustrated on my actual day - thereby reminding me that parenting never takes a break - they were also very sweet as to suggest for us to dine at Tim Ho Wan because they know this Mama loves the dim sum there. Yummy! Dinner time is always a busy affair because of the baby and the common bickers amongst the rest but I feel glad that we've made it a point not to have electronic devices at the dinner table. Yup, no phones, no iPads, no TV (unless got special show or very nice movie, I might relent). It's a habit that I hope will follow through and that the kids can see the benefits of it in the form of a closely-knitted family.

So no matter how much I nag, chide and punish you all when you do something wrong, please know that I love all of you deep deep and nothing will ever change that, okay?

Asher requested for frozen yoghurt for dessert and I obliged because I wanted to enjoy a sweet treat too, haha. Yes, I have a sweet tooth! See how big these three are now? The eldest is almost catching up with my height already, oh wow. 时间都去哪儿了?

Once again, I am truly thankful for friends who remembered my day and sent your wishes over, be it in the form of flowers, cakes or wishes on social media. I don't deserve such kindness and our family appreciates every gesture very much. Thank you for filling our hearts and tummies too!

A Weekend Getaway

With a stroke of luck, we were offered a 3D2N staycation on my birthday weekend and the hotel even went the extra mile to decorate our room with helium balloons and personally delivered a birthday cake to our room. Oh wow, thank you ibis Style on Macpherson for all the sweet surprises.

It was my first time bringing four kids on a staycation and this being a work trip, it meant I was busy nearly all the time but I was still so deeply thankful for the chance to spend more quality time with them. Despite all you see on social media, please know that we also have our own struggles, bickers, fights, tantrums and battles to deal with behind the scene, yeah?

Love from the Heart

What never fails to touch me on my birthday is the love I get from the kids in the form of handmade cards. These mean the world to me and each of them is simply so precious. I wish I had a big locker to keep all these cards and I know one day when I am much older, looking back and reading every single line of what they wrote will bring tears to my eyes and warmth to my heart.

Thank you, my dears, for putting your heart into doing these year after year for Mama. They are worth more than any meal or present because each card that you make is priceless and one-of-a-kind. Keep them coming and I promise to keep writing to you too, okay

That marks the end of my birthday celebration this year and you know what? I think I'm all ready for the big 40 next year. With my loved ones around me and having reached a place in life where I am comfortable with doing the things I do each day and knowing that it is a blessing to be me, I know I am in a good place. And yes, life is truly beautiful.

Thank you for aging with me and sharing my stories with me throughout the years. Sending each of you love and best wishes too!


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