“Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”-Mark Twain
When I was 20, I thought that reaching the age of 21 was kind of awesome. People say that 21 is a turning point when a boy becomes a man. So I reckoned that when I get to be at that age, all my inhibitions and demons would surely fall into oblivion. And I would become a man, in a sense that I can handle my ordeals with valor and deviate from my Peter Pan-ish outlook towards life. 21 was deemed to be the most exciting chapter of my life. And so I thought. Suffice to say, I expected a lot–maturity, relationship, health and all those that would somehow take histrionic changes when I turn 21. But it never happened. Well, some, I guess. I remained who I am. Still a lanky, loveless kid who refuses to grow up. Thus, another ordinary birthday came to pass. My expectations set to bottom.
It is probably the reason why birthdays are not that significant to me anymore. A birthday is just a passing of time, a flea in the ear that reminds me that I’m hitting old age, well, aside from the white hair of course. Not that I hated “commemorating” my birthday, but I just think that when one grows old, party poppers and birthday cakes are only meant for kids. But still, my mother would request me to buy ingredients for spaghetti to celebrate the day when I get home on a Saturday. Admittedly, the child in me still yearns for that whim. And being with my family and friends to celebrate my birthday is a trinket to cherish.
Fourteen days ago, I turned 30. Just like that day when I turned 21, I preoccupied my mind with wishful thinking. Not that I expected a lot to happen, but it’s more of the excitement on what life has to offer me now that I reach 30. Looking back to the past 29 years, I guess I have lived my life as significant as I could. My childhood remains a vivid memento which set the momentum to the life which I am about to live. That despite the demon I continue to struggle with everyday, there is always that hope of healing and acceptance. At times when I feel like a voiceless creature amidst the wilderness, I continue to carry on, because I know I matter. I know I am blessed.
A friend asked me, “What does it feel like now that you’re 30?” Surprisingly, I shuddered at the word 30. Weird, isn’t it? 30 sounds like, well, old. But thinking I have reached this age far too long, there is no reason for me not to surrender to 30. I answered: Awesome!