A Gathering

Sunday, April 15, 2018


Birthdays are an indication that time is passing. With endless time, nothing is special - days are limited to make each one precious (I believe this is an adapted version of a quote from Mitch Albom's Time Keeper). And for me, turning a year older serves as a reminder for me to actively make the rest of my life count. 

As mentioned in my previous post, I've always struggled with the significance of birthdays - does it truly warrant such attention and what exactly are we celebrating? Every year on my birthday, I have always been extremely blessed to have friends and family that make me feel extra loved. However, turning twenty one is supposedly momentous and I wanted to do something myself to celebrate the relationships and life I'm so grateful to have. I thought pretty long and hard about how I wanted to commemorate it. 

For the longest time, I was all set to have a charity bake sale - the idea of being able to spread some sweets around for a good cause in the name of turning twenty one seemed perfect. However, I scraped the idea as I didn't feel up to it, especially considering how my birthday falls in the middle of the school term. Eventually, I decided on a small get-together with a couple of friends - to have dinner and catch up. I couldn't accommodate every single one of my social circles, but please know that I truly appreciate every person that has been a part of my life (do refer to my previous post hahaha) and I would have loved to host a lot more people. 

But to those who were present, thank you so much for taking time off your Friday to be with me, for acceding to my request to donate to Garfield (a stray office cat I developed a bond with during my time working at Pets Magazine) instead of bringing a gift, and just really, for being a huge part of my life. Here are some pictures from the cozy night. 

I was not allowed to bake my own birthday cake... so I decided to leave my mark by accidentally leaving my thumbprint on the bottom right hand corner of the one I ordered... oops. 

My favourite juju; thank you for sticking by. I will never regret kicking you in the pool twelve years ago. 

Chris; of nonsense chats and stuffing ourselves silly since secondary one, but more importantly, of heartfelt conversations.

Ragini; for going through thick and thin with me since secondary school, and for being someone I can always turn to for comfortable conversations and advice.

Priya; of intense craziness since secondary three and for being someone I can speak my heart out to. 

Mel; for inspiring me with your confidence and humour, and for never ever failing to make me laugh.

Tanny; of low maintenance but always-steady friendship, you are a true gem.

Time for a laughter intermission :') 

Habitat; thanks for tolerating my Skype no-shows and poor cleaning abilities, but most of all for genuine conversations and laughter that will last a lifetime. 

Ben; for being the guy version of myself (this is definitely a compliment, by the way) and for maturing from your irritating secondary four self. 

Ailica; of quiet confidence and strength but also outward thick-skinness  - you amuse me all the time.

Gaby; for inspiring me with your creativity and ability to take risks against conventional rules. 

Chris & Mel; of genuine love, care and concern - you two inspire me to no end. 

Kaiwen & Huiting; of rare but familiar comfort, laughter and fun among the noise and pressure in the school environment.

Jasmine; for re-entering my life, this time with newfound meaning, presence and love. 

Crossing the chasm; of instant get-alongs and a pretty terrible working experience (sorry!) but thankfully of true friendships. 

Van; of brown bears and fake-annoyance, but more importantly good conversations and genuine support. 

Joel; of personality tests and twice-a-year meet-ups, I'll never forget how you were able to guess my personality type within just one hour of getting to know me. 

Kelvin; for covering my weaknesses, a good working relationship and honest talks about the future.

Bev; for going through one of my most crazy life experiences with me and being a real friend through it all. 
Sherrine; for being a comfortable friend that I got the opportunity to know through Bev - thank you for being so welcoming.

And thank you

Jx; for showing me what it means to love, for teaching me how to love, and for being the one I love. 

So incredibly blessed.  

And here's to those who couldn't make it down because they were miles away from Singapore. Sarah, Shermaine, Phionna, Wang You, Swan, Tiffany, Rae-nyse, just to name a couple - I definitely felt your presence and I hope to see all of you soon. 

Of course, although my family was not present for the gathering as they wanted to give me space with my friends, here's a special shout out to them for being my greatest pillars of quiet support, being for me every step of the way. From my dad always placing complete (and sometimes overboard) faith in me, my mom's outward acts of service and nags out of genuine care and concern for me, and my brother's ability to inspire me just by being his wise, logical, but funny self. I am nothing without them, I really am. I love you, fam bam. 

Here's to another 21 years and a whole load more. Gee, what a pensive expression. 

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