Birthdays

25 January 2021

Gold letterings say “Happy Birthday” in mandarin on my 57th Birthday yesterday. (24 Jan 2021). Ollie is not impressed.

Yesterday and today, I felt all the love and birthday wishes from near and far. There were texts, fb messages and even a voice mail from the desert.

This time last year I celebrated my birthday with caution. We were facing a world wide health threat and closer to home in Singapore, a family was grieving over the loss of their son in the military.

Birthday in my 20s with my first batch of students. We were staying in a bungalow in a remote part of Changi so I don’t know how the cake got there.

Sagging body parts and pigmentation spots or not, aging allows us to reflect on our thoughts and actions, to give thanks for mercies shown and to atone for offenses made.

Surprise Birthday in my 30s. A lovely child brought a cake to school and kept it in the refrigerator of the school canteen operator till we could eat it during recess.

Through their words and deeds, students, friends and family have indulged in my many whims and flaws, and point me the way to generosity & forgiveness.

So here’s wishing them back all the good that they’ve been to me, while I shall try not to disappoint, but do my very best to grow into a gracious old lady.

Hard boiled eggs dyed red given by my 77 year old mother to celebrate my 57th birthday this time.

May All meet Wisdom and Compassion in all stages of Life, so that every encounter may become a doorway to Grace.

40th Birthday celebration with Peaches, symbol of longevity and aspirations for divinity.

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