Twenty Seven

My birthday was last week on January 21. Prior to that date I was dreading each day that got closer to my birthday. I felt unhappier this year turning 27 compared to the past 2 years. When I turned 25 and 26 I was sad, but my friends made it bearable. I tried my best to be as optimistic as I could, but it just got to a point where I felt like I was forcing it too much. Like last year, the night before my birthday I made a birthday to do list. I make this list so I can occupy myself without having to remind myself that I lack any company. My to do list this year consisted of:

  • Go to temple and pray
  • Enjoy a good meal throughout the day
  • Pick up free gift from Sephora
  • Have a drink
  • Have some cake
  • Buy flowers
  • Go on a photo adventure
  • Go to Treasure Island Flea Market
  • Order sushi
  • Read a new book at a cafe or outside
  • Build new terrariums
  • Get Starbucks free birthday reward
  • Have a wonderful day & be happy

I pretty much accomplished everything on my list. I completed each activity from Wednesday and into the weekend. I had work on my birthday so I could only do so much. I had left work early on my birthday since my usual daily meeting got cancelled so I figured I might as well head home than to sit in crazy traffic if I lingered around the office any longer. First thing I did as soon as I got home was to go to temple. I felt a sense of relief and calmness when I was there. There was no one else, but me. I was in this peaceful place letting go of my thoughts and sending my prayers to my family and friends. Before I had left, I decided to do the fortune sticks just for the hell of it. I had sent my parents a photo of the lot number I got and it was a good one, which was a relief.

When I got home from temple, I relaxed and tried to get some rest but only ended up Facetiming with my close friend. It was refreshing catching up with her. As soon as I hung up, my landlord knocked on my door and handed me a small box. I asked what it was and she’s told me it was my gift. I was really taken back, but grateful by her generosity. I felt so bombarded by her as she forced me to have dinner in the kitchen, popped open a bottle of champagne, and surprised me with a cake. I really wanted to cry because I was overwhelmed by their kindness. I haven’t had a birthday cake in so long. She picked out my favorite candle color which is yellow and turned off the lights only with only that one candle lighting up the room. I was surrounded by my landlord (husband and wife) as well as my roomie and their guests. They sang happy birthday to me and I just didn’t know how to react. I think my mind was still trying to get a grip that any of this was actually happening. I made my wish, blew out the candle and cut the cake. We sat around the kitchen, chatted and had a few good laughs.

I opened my gift from my landlord which was these small bottles of Burberry perfume. Luckily I’m in need of a new perfume, but I opted to keep one in the bunch that I liked and mailed my mom the rest since I wanted to share my gift with her. One of my roomies came into the kitchen with this big box of egg roll cookies. I asked her what she was doing with such a big box of it. She handed to it me and said it’s my birthday gift haha. I laughed so hard. She had said she didn’t know what to get me but knew that I don’t like chocolate. It was very sweet of her. We aren’t close at all, but we are cordial. It was a kind gesture on her end. Plus they’re my favorite cookies growing up. That night I went to bed really happy. I was really relieved that I didn’t have to have a drink or cake by myself again and that I was able to share that with the people in my household.

My friends from home were good to me as always from afar. I got an early birthday card and photo cube from my cousin and friend. They sent me a really funny birthday card that definitely suited me. I had received this two days before my birthday. I came home from an exhausting day of work to a box with my name on it. I was wondering what it was. As soon as I opened it I teared up. I started crying because I miss how silly us three were together and the good times I’ve had with them. At that moment I had wished I could’ve given them a big hug. I texted them saying thank you and these jerks asked if I cried after opening the gift haha.

The next day I had received a book from another close friend. Man she got me good because I was searching online for the book like a crazy person after our discussion about it. I had forgotten about the title of the book, but she remembered and knew it was a book I’ve wanted to read. I was really excited since reading a new book was on my birthday to do list. Once again I teared up and texted thank you to my friend. My friends has officially caught onto how truly of a softy I can be when it comes to sentimental things. That’s when you truly know how I really am.

On Saturday since it was getting really warm in the Bay Area of the weekend, it was a perfect day to go to Treasure Island Flea Market, which is my monthly activity to do. I was excited to bring my new book with me as well as to purchase new succulents for my room. I’ve become someone with somewhat of a green thumb. I find it relaxing to build terrariums. Anyways, as soon as I got to the flea market I headed straight to where the usual vendor I buy the succulents from was located. Her selections gets better and better every time I purchase from her. I’ll post up pics of my terrariums in another post. Considering on adding more stuff to it after it’s now been depotted and arranged. I got kinda cranky while I was there since there was obviously a lot of people. I bought my succulents, got myself lunch from the food truck and found a perfect spot under a tree with a great view of the SF skyline. It was relaxing laying there in the sun and enjoying my lunch and book. I felt at ease with everything again. It’s something I need to do more often again. When I had gotten home I received two more birthday cards. One from another close friend and one from my parents. My parents never send me one and wanted to because they didn’t want me to feel lonely. It was really comforting to hear my mom say that to me.

The weekend before my birthday a fellow Xangan who’s also a San Jose resident and a close friend of mines was really sweet to treat me out to lunch. It was nice to catch up and have that girl time that both her and I need, well probably she needs it more than me haha. But it’s always refreshing to just take a break from life and talk about anything with a close friend. An old coworker of mines had also treated me out to dinner as well. She had asked what I was in the mood for and I said sushi, but then again I can eat sushi probably 3-4 times a week. She made several suggestions and I had approved that we go eat Ethiopian food instead. I’ve never tried it, always heard good things and here was my opportunity to go. The restaurant was split up into two sections; one with regular dining chairs and tables and the other section was more traditional sitting on stools and this small table was the dining table. Of course we opted for the traditional seating area just to really make the best of the experience since it was my first time. The food was amazing! There was beef, chicken and pork in our dish. The restaurant also served this really good Ethiopian honey wine, which is a really sweet white wine. Overall, it was just nice to have those two meals with girl friends. I know I don’t see or speak to them often, but it was just really nice to just hang out like that. Having good meal and engaging in great conversations. I think that temporarily made me feel sane again.

Despite how lonely I felt, it was nice that to be a bit caught off guard with the company I didn’t expect to have on my birthday. Deep down that was something I wanted to include in my birthday to do list: to spend my birthday with some company and to not be alone. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. The amount of silence and loneliness that I deal with on a daily basis with just eat away are your mind and your soul. It kills every bit of you and I hate it. For me turning 27 was a big deal. It was another reminder that I’m almost 30, still single, and renting. Granted that I have a great well-paying job and accomplished a lot in my career before 30, that isn’t as fulfilling as I’d like it to be. I want to buy property, settle down, get married and have a family. My close friend had said to me that I shouldn’t be too bummed out about turning 27 whereas she’s turning 30. That comment made me a bit mad and jealous. I kinda snapped at her and said well at least you’ve bought a house and you’re getting married. I wouldn’t mind turning 30 or any age if I had those things in my life. For now I’m really trying my hardest to find my happy and that doesn’t mean a significant other. As mentioned several times I’ve been very unhappy and don’t get me wrong I’m not ungrateful. I feel as if I’ve lost a big piece of myself since moving to Cali and having 2 birthdays gone by. It might not mean anything to anyone, but it’s made a huge impact on me. As for the future birthdays all I’ve always ever wanted is just a birthday card and a Carvel ice cream cake which is my favorite. Nothing fancy.

I’ve said enough. Good night.

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11 comments
  1. aww.
    happy belated birthday.
    it’s sweet your landlord and her husband and your roomie surprised you by singing you happy birthday. what a blessing. =)

  2. you and I have the same birthday! but i turned 30 lol…i know what you mean about not having a family/getting married. it really sucks…anyways, Happy birthday! 🙂

    • Connie said:

      Aw happy belated birthday! Hope it was a good one 🙂

  3. happyobligations said:

    Happy birthday! The pictures look great and you seem very loved. I didn’t get any gifts from friends on my birthday and most of them didn’t even know because I don’t post it on Facebook or publicly announce it.

    • Connie said:

      Thanks! Yeah I usually don’t get any gifts. All I really want is just a card or a cake. When’s your birthday? Perhaps I can send a card your way when the time comes 🙂

      • happyobligations said:

        Aww that’s nice of you! It’s August 11, a long time from now.

      • Connie said:

        Marked in my calendar! Email me your info if you don’t mind: cwchen21@gmail.com I generally send friends cards randomly besides birthdays and holidays 🙂

      • happyobligations said:

        Aww thanks! Hand written cards are so nice. I like to make them too but then my perfectionist side wants to make it fancy and I end up spending several hours on it, which is why I hardly ever do it lol.

    • Connie said:

      Thank you and I appreciate the other comments you left on my other posts. The book you mentioned was on my reading list actually. Anyways, happy lunar new year to you and your family! 🙂

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