I'm turning 30 tomorrow, 2nd Oct 2010.
At first I feel that it will be just like any other past birthdays.. heck, for the rest of the world (except maybe my loved ones who are close to me) it is just another day in the calendar.
However, as the day drew near, especially in the past one week, I reflected on my life, and instead of feeling happy and contented, I became disturbed and yearning for all that I hoped to achieve and gain by the time I turn 30, but will never make it in time.
Hence, to put things in perspective, I am jotting down "Things I hope to do/get by 30 but I'm going to be late":
1. To climb up to Mount Kinabalu's Low's Peak (the highest peak founded by someone named Low, ironic eh?) -- okay.. I've been up to mid-mountain via a vehicle to snap pictures but that's it. Always told myself.. one of these days.. and before I know it, I'm already 30.
2. To at least start my PhD (doctorate degree).. okay, scrap the proposals for doctorate thesis, I am no where near starting my PhD, not with the change of career and direction in the past 3 years.. so nope.. maybe I should move the gauge to age 40.
3. To return to journalism/being a journalist - when I left full-time news desk journalism in 2005, I told myself I may return cos that is my first passion, writing and being a journalist. Now, I'm a lecturer.. but far from teaching journalism, I'm teaching marketing communication and Public Relations related stuff instead as I branched out to take Masters Corporate Communication in attempt to steer my career options (which is successful I guess). Talk about being off-tangent!
4. To return to Kuching, Sarawak, my hometown - when I left Sarawak in early 2004 to take up a job offer as a journalist in Kuala Lumpur (spurning a psychotic suitor in doing so.. but I was getting nearer to my future husband back then) -- I told everyone I will be back before they know it and take up my old job after I'm tired with the metropolitan city stress and all... 6 years on.. and coming to 30.. I think that is not going to happen anytime soon. My family has relocated to my current city.. so what's the point of going back to an empty family holiday home full time? Fate changes via our action.. so never say never.
5. To have my own child/children - By now, completed our 3rd year of marriage and entering our 4th year, you'd have guessed the many well-meaning questions.. "when are you gonna add on to your family, when are you gonna have a baby", or even the more direct one: "Why aren't you pregnant yet?" -- I have learned to smile and say, I wish.. and we're trying hard, the baby just won't come.. they are usually stumped by that. Our childless state is NOT by choice.. I guess the timing isn't right? Experienced a very emotional and painful episode on 09/09/2007 -- losing hope and losing a child is the worst and lowest point in my life so far, and yes, I'm still grieving but not giving up hope. Wish us luck and strength to get through this.
However, on a positive note I think I should add: "Things that I do have by 30, and glad I did", which should correspond with the above negative statements of regret:
1. I was a true 'go-getter' -- Seize the Day! - Even though I did not climb up to the Peak of Mount Kinabalu, the highest peak in South East Asia, I've climbed up significantly in my young adult life and have actually tried all the jobs I ever wanted to do (hence my facebook profile saying I've had too many ex-bosses to last me a lifetime).
Yeah.. by the time I came to my current job and they looked at my CV (resume), I was already jaded and have had enough. There isn't any regrets in particular in my career choice, from each place I joined (even for the shortest time), I found at least one good friend.
I think it's fate's way to link my affinity with my ex-colleagues, some of whom became my very close friends and confidantes. Love you all. I truly love my seize-the-day-spirit (which has toned down a bit now).. cos I was daring enough to make changes that most wouldn't. I feel that I've 'truly lived' my life before settling down for a quieter one. :-) No regrets.
2. I got my priorities right and I'm proud of it. Enough said. And of course, I am proud of my mature decision to invest my time and effort in my family and personal relationships instead of using that same time for something else.. PhD can always wait, but not people. Having lost my beloved grandpa in 2007 (Gosh, how I miss him!) I treasure my time with my family members even more than ever. You never know for sure what tomorrow will bring, we may be gone like a poof of the wind.. so cherish your loved ones today.
3. I loved my jobs and love my current job too - Yeah, journalism was my first love, I got published when I was 10, if I remember correctly, but sadly didn't keep that magazine.. but as I age, I find that my go-getter spirit brought me places I never imagined before and sometimes to situations I'd never dreamed myself being into, with positions and jobs I never anticipated.. I love every moment of it, sweet and bitter.. and I consciously choose to be in my current job, which I enjoy doing.. so I guess I'm blessed. :-)
4. I love Kuala Lumpur - Yes, Kuching will always be my hometown(city) and Sarawak will always be my homestate.. but now I consider Kuala Lumpur my home. This is where I 'grew up' again from a young adult to a mature adult, so to speak. Unless my husband and I have any drastic career changes that require us to move, I think this city will be my home for many more years to come... I can always go back to Kuching with the budget airlines and all, but things really have changed in life. I do make it a point to at least return once or twice each year cos I have two little reasons that are really important to me .. read point 5.
5. I have two goddaughters (born 2001 and 2003) and a new baby godson (born 2010). Life is fair if you know where to look. I may not have any birth children (my own flesh and blood), but I am called "Mami" by my girls, Rachel and Genevie since they could speak, and "Mama" by my new baby godson, Herman.
My girls are sisters born to my distant cousin/childhood friend while Herman is my nephew on my husband's side. Love them to bits. For now, my maternal instincts are sort of satisfied by me doting on my three godchildren. When one door closes to shut off the sunlight, somewhere, another window or door is open -- go towards the light and look at the positivity in things, no matter how difficult.
Hence, with this long blog post, here's a very Happy Birthday to me and I hope turning the big 3-0 isn't gonna make me more depressed or anything.. I wish myself strength and perseverence to make a difference in my life and in the lives of those I meet. Happy Birthday, Sue, have a great day. :-)