Twenty Seven

I turned 27 last Sunday. I’ve been trying to think of what to write about it (because like Valentine’s Day, I can’t not have a post about my birthday), but other than my dog’s passing, I can’t think of any. It’s not that my birthday was quiet or not spectacular — it was, actually. I guess it’s more of, I don’t really know how to start without writing a too long post that I’m pretty sure only I would read.

So let’s ask questions instead (because I’m trying to get out of not wanting to ask questions). I will try not to make this post too long. There will be photos!

Image from we heart it
Image from we heart it

How was your birthday week?

It started with drama. Interesting, right? But it was also a very good learning experience (with tears, natch) that taught me my first lesson in turning 27: be mature. Maturity is a conscious decision;  even if everything inside of me is screaming that I want my way and my way alone, I have to step back and give way. Like what I told someone that night — I have the most terrible sense of entitlement during my favorite month. Most terrible, I tell you, but turning another year older means that I have to start acting my age and compromise. Or if a compromise cannot be reached…then I just have to deal with it. Properly. And apologize if I need to.

But after that drama, everything else was quite…nice. Okay, nice is an understatement. It was all surprising and fun, filled with dinner meet-ups, surprises, books, pie and cake. Oh, and flowers. It was a very nice awesome splendid birthday week. :)

Did you receive any surprises?

Yes! I received quite a lot, actually. Surprise cakes, surprise greetings, surprise gifts, surprise visitsit was awesome. My surprise-loving heart is full. Here are photos!

From Monique

To everyone who made an effort last week — you know who you are — Thank you from the bottom of my heart! ♥

But wait there’s more! I also planned a surprise for someone (because March birthdays rock!), which further proved that I really enjoy working on presents and surprises for my favorite people:

And this isn’t really connected to my birthday, but I kind of love it that the Catholic Church got a new Pope during my birthday week. Hello, Pope Francis!

Any favorite presents?

All of them? :) What I love the most were the little notes and the thoughtfulness I saw in the presents I received. :) Thank you so much! ((Shout-outs again: My SFC household, Beejay, Toni and Noel, Monique, DC, Happy, JL and Aaron, Mela and my brother and sister-in-law, Alexa, Maria, Celina and my TFG friends. Thank you! :D))

I am editing this entry on Sunday (3 days after I posted this entry, exactly a week since I turned 27), to post my current favorite present. My bookish family surprised me with a CD of recorded messages and songs in a pretty little package:

Also known as, "Tina's Birthday Connivance". :)
Also known as, “Tina’s Birthday Connivance”. :)

Of course, Rylie doesn’t have a CD drive, so I got a copy thanks to a USB. I stayed up until 5:30am today, listening to all the tracks (without skip and without multitasking, as instructed). I laughed, I cried and I wondered what did I do to deserve all these wonderful people in my life. Hands down – one of my favorite presents this year. :) Thank you, so, so much!

What did you do on your birthday?

I had a sort-of low-key chill trip to Tagaytay with some friends to welcome my birthday. It was full of fun and a little too much laughter and food and coffee and stories. Just the way I liked it (but I was still dog-tired after the entire trip. Signs of aging, I tell you). Thank you so much to everyone who came, who tried to go, and for everyone who made this trip possible. ((Shout outs – JL, Aaron, Patrick, DC, Mae, Happy, Grace, Toni, Noel!)) :)

On my actual birthday (Sunday), I spent the day at home. I wanted to go out, but I was really too tired. Also, my beloved Batman passed away, so I wasn’t really in the best mood to socialize. :(

I realized that ever since I turned 25, I had been spending less and less on my birthday celebrations (my 25th birthday is a record breaking night! :P). I know it’s too early to plan my 28th, but I am seriously considering an out of the country trip. Alone. ((Maybe it’s time to traipse to NYC? :D))

But yeah, it’s too early to plan that.

What are you most thankful for in your 26th year?

So much love. I know this seems so cliche, but in my 26th year, I realize that I am surrounded by really awesome people who I love and who love me back. You know, people I have history with. I think 26 is the year I’ve learned so many things about myself and my relationships with other people the most, and the year that I think I am most aware of these things. It’s not always crystal clear and it’s far from perfect — I’m far from perfect — but my 26th year has brought so many interesting moments that I don’t think I will ever forget these things I learned.

Image from we heart it
Image from we heart it

Let’s just say that in my 26th year, I am most thankful for knowing that I am loved. :)

How is being 27 so far?

I think this deserves a longer post later on, but here’s the thing that’s running through my mind yesterday: I want to be grounded this year. By grounded, I mean, I feel like it’s time to really put my roots somewhere. I think I may have gotten over some kind of restlessness I had in the past years — the feeling of going out, of being everywhere, of doing everything while I’m young and all that. Because even if age is just a number, we have to face this: we’re not really getting any younger.

Have you ever felt that? Like maybe, it’s time to…settle down?

I don’t know. I guess I feel like maybe it’s time to stop planning things year by year, and seek short term excitement and go for the long term. My friend told me earlier that it’s me saying goodbye to my “carefree” spirit and you know, finding…steadiness.

Like I said, I think I’m going to post about this more later on. Let me marinate on this a bit more.

Oh, but to really answer that question: 27 has been pretty wonderful so far. :)

What is your birthday wish?

You know I didn’t make any wishes when I blew the candles off from my 4 cakes? ((Or actually, three cakes, because one of the cakes wasn’t really lit up when I got it)) But now…hm, my birthday wish? I wish for joy.

One of the birthday greetings I received last weekend had this: “You know what, I always associate you with sunshine and happiness.” That felt nice to know, especially since I feel like I’m such a grumpus sometimes. I kind of want to live up to that. I want people to remember sunshine and happiness when they think of me, but also, I want something…deeper. There is a difference between being happy and being joyful, after all.

I wrote a bunch of stuff about this earlier, but I realize it might be more appropriate for another post (sort of a follow up to this one). My birthday wish for my 27th year is to choose to be joyful, so much that I may burst with joy. Because there is bravery in being joyful and there is joy in being loved. :)


So it turns out…this post is still a bit too long. My birthday’s come and gone, but my favorite month is far from over, so — let the celebrations continue! In fact, I have a few more dinner dates with friends coming up in the next few days. I love you, March!

One last thing. To everyone who made my 26th year special and to everyone who remembered my 27th birthday, this sunflower-loving, solar-powered star girl wants to say:

Thank you. ♥

Hello, twenty seven. :)

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