Greeting Barbarian! Long days and pleasant nights!
Well, here we are again – a year older and a year wiser, stronger, and with more poise than ever. But glitz and glamour aside, my life is not of privileged but rather a story of survival. I came from a working-class background who happened to put my faith in old fashioned values.
In recent years, there are a lot of things have happened that for better or worse, defined who I am today. There are countless challenges that I have dealt with and will deal with in the future. Yesterday is a review of my triumphs in those challenges, that I didn’t stay down in case I die tomorrow. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve been knocked down, but I always manage to get up. It could take a lot more than fire and brimstone to take me down, and if it does – I go down fighting.
To celebrate the great years of my survival, I wish to share the things that led to yesterday’s festivity. Some mundane, but always special – at least for me; simple things that warmed my heart on a rainy June. It is often the little things that bring meaning to life. It is the little things that fill up the cracks of the soul. So, believe me when I say that it is the ordinary that makes life extraordinary.
Days before yesterday, I asked Pancake to whip up something special for the dogs. I’m a dog person myself so I decided this year to make it special for them too. It gave my heart a great sense of joy to see them enjoy a little something, and I’m glad to start the day like that.
Then there’s the flood of greetings that made me feel even warmer, especially from my daughter. My sister greeted me with a present in hand, a red pique cotton polo shirt and a navy t-shirt from Uniqlo. Which is the first time that I’ve ever gotten anything from my younger siblings, it got me teary-eyed. After this, I went straight to my mom and thanked her – Same thing with my dad, I sent him a very short message and thanked him.
After that, I dropped my kid to school, went back home and wrote. Soon, my closest friends and family greeted me on social media.
In the afternoon, it’s time to pick up my kid and my nephew from school. Immediately, some of the parents from my daughter’s class greeted me. I’m very peculiar with this one dad, who seems to be a solo dad too. I would love to make friends with him or a drinking buddy in the future.
The kids and I spent a few minutes on the playground, I sat back and watched them ran and mingle with other kids. Did a few small talks myself with the other parents; seeing my daughter come out of shyness is such a sight to see.
On our way back home, my daughter presented her gift. As I expected, it was a hand drawn card – but what made it special is the fact I’m surprised how far my kid can get to be creative. It was a literal gift box, hand drawn on a piece of folded paper. When you unfold it the box “opens”, and drawn confetti comes out. A great design idea coming from a 6-yr old (sometimes I wonder how this great kid can belong to me?).
We went home, I finished what I’m writing, sent it for proofreading, and I fixed the kids and myself. I took the kids, my mom, my sister, and sister in law for dinner. We had pizza, pasta, some ribs, nachos, and had a great time. On the other table, I ran into an old friend whose father is also celebrating the same thing. We shook hands and engaged in small talk and went on with our separate business. I enjoyed this dinner and will cherish this moment for the rest of my life.
We went home after, shared a few drinks with my sister, and had a video call with my brother. I fixed up my daughter to bed and had a few minutes to talk to Pancake over the phone. I was so exhausted that I fell asleep with Pancake over.
It was a great day and I couldn’t ask for anything more!
I had a fantastic 32nd, filled with its very own ups and downs in which I reigned triumphantly.
May 33 be with more grace and prosperity.
Here’s to survival and for more birthdays to come! To 33, Cheers!