new year's day.
my favourite holiday (not a public holiday in a few states in malaysia, including the one i am working in, buuuuut let's not get into that)
my birthday! (ONE reason why it is my favourite holiday).
i am now 40 years old. yikes!
actually, wow. i am 40. i have reached a milestone. THE milestone.
when i was 10, i probably never even imagined how or what i was going to be at 40. my own parents hadnt even reach 40 at the time. so anyone at 40 was just old.
when i was 20 i probably did imagine myself at 40, wishing that by then, i would become a successful doctor, with my own huge house with its own swimming pool, a really cool car, married with 3 kids. maybe, i dont really remember.
when i was 30, i do remember having a good time, enjoying life, dating, but not seriously thinking about marriage, and still wishing that at least in 10 years time, i would become a specialist, maybe a kid, a loving cat or two at least, a house, a cool car.
then when i turned 35, i decided to celebrate my birthday for the last time. not too confident about becoming or getting all of the above anymore. i stopped wishing for anything. i felt that there was no way i could get all that by the time i become 40, which was just 5 years then down the line. it seemed quite impossible. so i treated a few of my closest girlfriends to a small makan2 at a nice place in KL and told them i was doing this because this was the last time i was actually celebrating my birthday. anything above 35 already appeared depressing.
and i told myself to stop counting. stop thinking about turning 40.
but here i am, 40. yup, just a number. you dont need to be counting, but inevitably, you still age. everyone does. you have to face it.
i am now married. i have a lovely husband. i have 2 stepkids, although i dont get to see them very often because they are not staying with us. no cats yet. i bought a small apartment in KL, there's a pool in the courtyard, but since i am working away from KL, i'm staying at a rented place instead for now. my car is a small one, but it's still cool enough. keyword: affordable.
and yet the one thing i find myself wishing for on my birthday this year was something i never thought i would be wishing for at the "young" age of 40.
for my mama to still be here.
so i could actually talk to her about aging.
so i could whine to her about the growing numbers of grey hairs on my head, and the wrinkles appearing on my face, and how (depressingly) difficult it is to lose weight at this age (blame the low metabolic rate).
so i could make nasi ayam with her for my birthday, because her nasi ayam was the best.
so i could share with her all the corny 4-series jokes and hear her laugh.
and teased her about how she was in labor with me for 2 years (1974-1975, get it? ha-ha)
and most importantly, so i could hug and kiss her, and thank her, for giving birth to me, and loving me the way she had all these years.
if only i could wish that.
but that is obviously impossible.
so all i can do now is send her a prayer everytime i think of her.
which is still very often.