Becoming Twenty Six

I was 26 on the last 16th. The day was just nice, the night before was OK, the day after was like the days before. Extraordinary seemed only occurred in afterlife, not in this life I guess.

Except I was underestimating this year’s New Age. That I used to meander in the same hollow birthday experience every single year, I did not know that there was anyone had a thought about me in their heads.

It was just a few minutes after midnight on the 16th. Lifehouse’s melodious Storm ringing on the phone, on the caller ID was You. Picked up the call and all of a sudden the only thing I heard from afar was your voice, serenading the birthday anthem to my ears, wishing me luck and prosperous years ahead. I thought I had woke you up, but you said ‘Don’t worry. You did not wake me up. I set the alarm at 12.08 just to wish you your birthday, so that I can be special for you again’. The voice was drowsy and sexy, and I couldn’t love you for what you have done.

Of course plans were made, and we were no God to make sure everything was on the track. I thought we could meet, and watch movies and lick some ice creams, and had slices of cheese cakes, and sit under the moon watching the stars glimmering by the seaside. I was hoping so, you know, to feel happy again, after the bumpy ride I had for the past few weeks, riding the cars, maneuvering between potholes and pool of water so that I could not fall into hydroplane, so to speak.

But you called me, in the middle of the night, telling me I’m Sorry I Had To Work Late Again. But I Promised That I Will See You Tonight And Make Sure That Tonight Would Be The Happiest Birthday In Your Life. But you lied, you came back late, and felt worn out, and said We Meet Tomorrow.

It did not work out the way it should be. But you wanted to redeem yourself. I said OK, Why Not?

I am still the person I am. With the warm breeze of South China Sea, and coconut trees side by side, with two little kids at the little restaurant I take my dinner every night, with heartbreaking songs I listen to every time I drive my car, with fruity strawberry scent that lingers in my room, with bottles of shampoos and facial cleansers that cleanses my face on every bath, with unknown friends that say Hi to my stupid jokes, with persevered working colleagues, with pebbles on the sands, with a little canvas chair that accompanies my day trip to Cherating. With everything. It never ends to up to the point that I don’t know myself anymore. I am what I am. The designed ZA that loves you by default.

26 has become the age that I should take my life a little slower, and a little cheerier than when I was 25, 24 or when I was 16. Life is too short to make stupid moves, and to succumb to own horrid judgments. Loving you is never stupid, I don’t really know. Loving you is never a mistake, I don’t really know. Loving you is never making my life miserable, how should I know.

I have cried a tad too many times. I cried because I thought you would come back to me. I cried because I did not want the losses to be visible. I cried because I hate to feel alone when you have supplied me the Not-Feeling-Alone feeling all this while.

But when you decided to serenade with that song, and sincerely wished me that I had a good luck ahead, and telling me in the middle of the night that I would have prosperous years, I couldn’t help but to feel empty. I was happy. But it was empty. It was like having to listen to something amusing, and pleasing but in a way, it was reaction-less nonetheless.

We are going to meet up tonight. I just think that tonight is going to be just bland, and horrible, and tasteless. I don’t really care about the ice creams, or cakes or sweet smiles that you are going to pour. I don’t know what to feel.

I am empty.

Unlike Shayna in her email. I wish Graham the very best. Though he’s not here anymore. Our birthday should be celebrated with planting a tree! He’d done it. And now, it is my turn.

Hi Zubaidah

Hope you had a great birthday, and liked the card.

Graham’s tree was planted yesterday at 2pm. We went to the burial site and watched as Graham’s tree was planted. When Susi & Karl were young whenever we took them out on a trip to the beach or to the zoo, or the park, it always rained. When we left home the day was fine: as we got closer the black clouds gathered. At exactly 2pm the heavens opened and the rain came down very, very heavily. Karl said “This a typical Chadwick day out.” The rain continued throughout the planting and until the tears were over; then the sun came out.

I hope you had a better day.


Life is short, make friends, hinder enemies, go see nice places, and never stop looking for someone that loves you.

And of course, I wish I could be 26 all over again.


Farah Hanani said…
Happy Belated Birthday Sis!

Me myself always wish to celebrate my birthday by myself. I've done it twice. Feels great when we excluded ourself from the rest of the world.

But that is non comparable with wishes from the person who love us.

Sometimes we just want to know whether people care bout us, n then.. we act like we dont care at all.

pakmat said…
salam za..I would rate God's greatest gift as Time..a gift beyond life itself..for without Time, nothing is possible..imagine it birthdays..:)no him..
..and I think you are a lil bit harsh on yourself..and go plant that coconut tree..
..happy birthday..I wished you iman...cheers..
phoeniznix said…
couldn't agree more :) and i think i'm going to do that...planting a tree on my birthday every year.

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