The best birthday gift – Lessons in Life…

31 10 2010

How many of your birthdays can you remember?

To be honest I could only recount just four. Including last week’s which I could certainly say was the ‘bomb’, all because of the effort poured in by family and friends.

The first I could remember could be dated back when I was 8 years old. There were a lot of guests I was not familiar with. I could still remember there was this huge huge cake I thought was all for me. All of a sudden I saw my sister’s godparent slicing the cake. My mom even assisted her in wrapping the cake, being readied to take home. “Why is she taking my cake?!” I grunted. “…she’s not even my ninang”, Okay I was selfish, I admit it. What I did afterwards was kind of blurry but I was so sure I ate a massive part of the cake. Heck was it delicious. Nonetheless, I could still remember I was very happy way back then. My family’s complete and we were all so happy, could’ve wished the day never ended.
There was another celebration way back in high school, mind you, it was both pleasant and … er unpleasant… Three of my closes friends were also celebrating their birthdays in October, earlier than mine. The circle of friends I was in, liked Amazing Race, so it was not a surprise they had incorporated this during their b-days. I happen to sort it all out by myself which was very very very difficult. I love providing the clues, destination, over-all plans, etc. But boy oh boy was it never easy to pull it all together. And so the day came, it was rewarding to see all the friends and classmates I invited around 10 – along with some who gate-crashed. Probably there were more than 20 people in total. “Wow, “ I thought to myself, “how the heck am I supposed to feed all these people with my allotted budget for half this pips?”… Well, thank God for msg-loaded junkies! Oh gulay, was I surely embarrassed! Never thought of it and never had a contingency plan. From then on, I realized the value of Plan B’s.

Believe it or not, it was only last year’s celebration that I could remember after that terrifying event. Yeah, t’was traumatizing isn’t it? Anyway, I kind of created a blog entry for my ‘bday’ last year, but for some apparent reason, it never got published so, here it goes:

Celebrating 21 years of a rollercoaster ride called LIFE
Wow, neat title huh? But this isn’t a slogan for a company commemorating their 21st anniversary, it’s about one of the memorable days I had – my birthday.
My life has become quite routinary lately. (Wait, is that word even acceptable in the dictionary?!) Waking up at 2:30 AM. Drinking water to cool my system. Washing up without even eating breakfast. Taking a jeepney ride to work. Talking non-stop for 8 hours straight. Eating every food I put my hands on. Taking the shuttle back home. I never suspected anything special to happen this daw… until I arrived home…
After opening our door, I immediately went to our kitchen to freshen up, and of course since I’m famished, grab something to swallow down. Took a glass of water from the kitchen which was a few steps away from the “sala”, I turned my back and spat out the water I was drinking. I saw there in front of me: our plain old wall previously, now a signpost of how I’m being taken good care of.

Kuya Lawrence oblivious to me while taking a picture

I really never understand what I was feeling right at that moment maybe because it’s the first time someone did something so special for me on a day I thought was supposed to be ordinary. I’m not saying that others have not done anything special for me at all, what I’m saying is this is soooo totally unexpected, I was even at awe looking at our decorated living room. I caught myself smiling ridiculously and gazing on it for 15 minutes or so. I was alone so it was okay, but if ate and kuya where awake, I’d sure look silly!

Anyway, I finally decided to eat on our small plastic table and then something caught my eye. I noticed that our table had a crack on it, I took away the cloth hiding the crack only to find that the whole table had a big opening in the middle and was just glued together by glue stick! (Ate Yum told me she used it to decorate the ‘sala’, good thing she wasn’t hurt, and talk about resourcefulness!)

So after my “moment” I washed up after eating and hurried to bed since I need to get enough sleep. Around early in the evening while I was sleeping, someone turned the lights on and betcha by golly wow, ate Yum was holding three cupcakes with a candle! She was even singing the happy birthday song! And to top it all off, we ate a yummy and juicy roasted chicken for dinner. Wow, talk about a very fulfilling day!

I wrote down all the greetings and messagesi gathered via social networking sites, these came from family members and friends who remembered (or who had load of course!) :

1.) RACER – Bday mu kua kirky? he he.
2.) ROWYN – Kirkie. . . Belated. . . Lavyu so much. . . Mwah. . . Ingat. . .
3.) ISRAEL – Advance or belated happy bday u
4.) RACHEL – ei…bELated wapi bday..:)
5.) ROCHELLE – kirky! bl8d! u GodBLESS! u muah! U
6.) JIREH – Bez advance hapi birthday I love u so much.
7.) TRISTAN – Kirky! Happy birthday! Ano handa mo, mekeni? Hahah
8.) MILET – Happy birthday kirk!u
9.) DIANNE LILET – Happy birthday Kirk! 
10.) JOELYN – Happy Birthday kirky.,u waah,cgwo gulat k n alm q bday m nuh?hehe pburger k mmya ah?:) hope magng msya k ngyng bday m, erkei? LoveU kirk anthony balmonte..u
11.) KATKAT – .,upfie bdae tito, upfie bdae tito, upfie bdae upfie bdae, upfie bdae , upfie bdae tito.,u
12.) JASMINE – Kirky!!happy birthday!!naway pagpalain ka pa ng may kapal..mg-iingat k lagi.nagmamahal,jasmine o
13.) ANGELI MAE – ,. Hai kua belated APpy bday. . fr: narciza family
14.) MEL C – _hapi birthday po..u
15.) MAMALING – HAPPY BIRTHDAY SA U MAU U HAVE MORE BIRTHDAYS 2 COME. C MA2LING 2(from NETHERLANDS)
16.) KATRENG – Happy Birthday kirk! Don’t 4get 2 thank God 4 adding u another year of ur life! Mag-resign k n s col ctr job m! bday gft para s sarili m! hehe.
17.) ZSAM – ,kuya kirk, happy birthday po!,u
18.) YUM – happy bday kirk! Celebrate tyo bukas… kht 3 lng tyo…cge,try mu na magrest sa byahe, duty kpa later…

***

Not sure though why I always keep a copy of who remembered my birth anniversary. Maybe because it’s that feeling of being remembered even for a while. Here’s just the continuation of the people who sent their greetings via SMS for this year’s celebration.

Clarissa
– Kirkee! Happy birthday!i miss you! Love love! 
Mom
– I remember God’s love for me in people like you… so on wings of prayers, I whisper my thanks to Him and ask Him to bless you in countless ways. Hapi bday 2 a wndrfl son! love u ma.
Dad
– @HAPPY BIRTHDAY@ @TAKE CARE ALWAYS@
Jireh thru Sophie’s phone
– … belated happy birthday!more bdays 2 c0me..Godbless ubEst!(:
Milet
– Happy Birthday Kirk! 😀
Jerome R.
– Happy birthday kirk! Wish you more birthdays to come! Haha!
Angel slu
– Happy happy birthday friend! How are you? (with cute graphics)
Boss jhae
– Helo kirky! Happy birthday!sobrng miss na kita.. dami ko n kwqn2 uyet sau.. tas ikaw..mis ko n kwn2 m0h.. enjoy m0 Day na to ha.. sorry i cnt be der..
Wiggle
– *greet.ii
Upfiew 22nd cdae
Kokii
Nua
Kirk.anthony^^
*k. txt??
Kei
Nua
Keilocc.o8

I guess you’ve noticed it too. Yes there’s a huge reduction in the numbers of SMS I received. But when I opened my facebook account, figured all the load went there. 86 notifications! Woah! Record! Never had this much last year. Maybe since FB was not yet this big back then.

Can’t get over it…

Eighty-six people remembered me…

No…

Eighty-six people were reminded by facebook…

But still…

Wish I could list them all, it’ll just take up too much space. Okay now going back. This year’s October 21st was by far the most special. For the first time I gave myself a neat gift that took me almost a year to save for. Let’s just say that “Lappy” is not your common birthday gift.

"Lappy" - cause of sleepless nights and sore eyes

I got off early from work. Kuya Wow asked me not to go home since he wants me to spend the morning with him and his special someone, who’s also a dear friend of mine. But as much as I wanted to, my tummy’s just not cooperating. Y’knaw what I mean. Then, I took off in a jiffy. I was planning to spend the rest of the day at home. Play computer games or better yet, finish watching an American TV series. I was thinking about this as I walk towards the door of our apartment. Upon opening, here’s what I saw:

I knew it! There were plans already! Realizing that their plans have yet to be completed, I hurried to go to the wash room and readied myself to go to sleep. Unfortunately Joey woke up and Ate Yum just came home from the market. Surprised to see me early, they immediately sent me off to bed. What a way to force to sleep! And that’s what I did. Waking up several hours later, even though my senses are still kind of numb and all, I could still smell the waft of the fried chicken cooked from our kitchen. And to my delight, there was spaghetti, ice cream cake, and chicken lollipops lying on the table waiting to be devoured. Joey and ate Yum woke up as well as they need to head out to work as well. The day ended with the three of us going to work with full exploding bellies. This was also the perfect opportunity for them to tell me their whole plan, where I was supposed to be stalled by Kuya Wow and not to arrive as early as I did. “oops, sorry…”

I may not be with my immediate family but I was happy with the company of my Ate Yum and Joey. Two very important ladies in my life. I’m not saying this since they did set-up a birthday celebration I could not forget, but because we’ve been supporting each other through thick and thin. In addition to that, we’re the family we got away from our very own. This independent life I’m not yet fully accustomed yet with, has brought a lot of challenges and lessons into my life, pretty much like celebrating birthdays. Interesting and insightful. Surprising and rewarding at the same time. The future may be uncertain but what I’m sure about is that there’s a long list of people who are concerned about me and who I care about too.. And for this I could not ask for a better gift. Thank you all for making life more meaningful and significant for me… oh and thanks for playing such a big part. 😉

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