Turning 20

Turning 20, in this day and age, I suppose… can be considered more or less a monumental sign. While the 19th birthday introduced many to an already known world of legally drinking, smoking and two years away from Vegas –20 is a more welcoming number. Maybe even the ‘Quarter-Life Crisis‘ if you will. Despite what might appear to be the beginning of a hectic school year, there are still a good number of things on the list to do.

Among other things, I could be hitting up a club (because apparently this is a popular pastime nowadays) and be suffocated by a mixture of Victoria Secret perfumes and Axe sprays while sweating up a storm next to a friend that is more-or-less well intentioned for “trying to show me a good time”. Maybe I will even receive that same perfume I caught a scent of at the club as a gift and realize that thanks to the big end-of-summer sale, every other person I walk by is wearing it too. None of the above seems to be quite appealing and regardless of what I end up spending my day doing, it is always assumed that there will be people present. After all, isn’t it the presence of other people in your life that make it that much more worthwhile? I suppose to make any birthday appear to be a monumental sign in one’s life, there must be the significant people around to legitimize it.

I learned that happiness is better shared –like passing around a plate of cookies. Despite the stress that fast diminishing cookies present in a group setting versus when alone, sometimes nothing is more overwhelming than pressure to be loud when greeting everyone during the occasion. The younger version of us will recall loud, screaming friends running around at birthday parties. As we age, some of us derive more value from the quiet introspection of our days. Although there is certainly nothing wrong with spending special days and celebrations with the people you love.

There will be no doubt that on my 20th birthday I will consider what the next few years will look like. Right now, I can picture sitting alone in front of a laptop screen while the rest of the world is fast asleep or more times where I will end up embracing the qualities of a hermit and decide to stay at home rather than move out of the house to meet people (Logic: Pajamas > People). I will look outside to the yard and question the idea of sitting outside upon damp furniture after endless days of rain in Vancouver.

Right now, I will personally admit to myself that it was rather illogical of me to have spent so much of my time in the past considering the stages of my life that has yet to happen. It is rather liberating to think without the social structure. As the evening is wearing on and my teenage years coming to an end, I might think about where I’ll be after graduating from a business school at the age of 21. I can only imagine that given the same circumstances, I would be in the exact same place with or without my degree. Besides the couple extra dollars –how would I be making use of that piece of fancy paper in a $100 dollar frame? When I consider the reactions of my peers also living in this ‘jobless generation’, I imagine many of them will consider the pursuit of yet another degree in graduate school to be a time stall (which to be fair, could be the case). Maybe one day I’ll tell them I’d also like to travel the world and wake up to a new country every 6 months where I can play a part in improving their local education system. Nothing is wrong with trying to figure out what a happy future may mean. The hours will still slip away like water in my palms but the skies will be clear like they are tonight.

A midst all the pondering of people that are no longer in my life, the favourite necklace that was lost on a walk and amazing work experiences, I want to think about today. In fact, I will. I will have thoughts about today and my future choices: Family, close friends, my major(s), job applications, getting over my chocolate addiction, cats and even the creaky furniture I have yet to attend to. After that, I might consider this entire process to be unoriginal. It isn’t like no one else has done this before their birthday prior to me. Of the 365 potentially beautiful days of my year, I, like the rest of you, have and will in the next 365 grow as a person and move to various stages of my life. And as much as I like to collect cat things, there is nothing more amazing than adding to your very own collection of what I call pint-sized epiphanies on a daily basis. For some, all the pint-sized epiphanies are fit together like puzzle pieces before they leave the familiar behind or before they go to sleep. For me, this is before my birthday.

Funny to think but this year I won’t be spending my 20th birthday alone. With all this talk about turning 20 and having chosen to designate my time to writing this, I’ve been able to spend it with all of you. I hope your pint-sized epiphanies will come together as mine have tonight.

Happy Tuesday, everyone.

— itsfruitcakeweather.

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In Light of Mother’s Day: The Greatest Love

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Note: This is a re-post as it was unintentionally deleted previously.

When I was a young child my only wish was to grow up. I would never have to be told what to do again. I’d be able to buy that stuffed toy bear I desperately wanted, play on the swings for an extra hour or even have 10 more cookies than my mother would allow…

In the journey of growing up, I tried my best in everything I thought to be meaningful in hopes of one day being successful and fulfilling my childhood dreams. School, volunteering, music, sports, studying… At this time, I believed by doing so I could prevent myself from growing old with regrets. During this time I neglected spending time interacting with my mother.

It was not until I grew old enough to be considered an adult in this society and met mothers my own age, did I finally understand the many sacrifices she’s made for me. In reality, when she stayed up all night to make sure I finished that Science project in ninth grade, she didn’t have the intentions of forcing anything upon me. And while I fell sick often as a child, she was more sick with worry than I ever was physically ill. All this time she supported me by providing me with more opportunities to pursue more interests, passions and dreams.

But what about her own interests, passions, and dreams?

When my mother was young, she was an avid baker, had a love for history and story-telling and was an exceptional student. I hear from my Uncle that if it weren’t for giving birth to me, my mother would never had left the well-deserved position in a firm she loved so much. At this time my mother would hush him and insist all this did not matter. After all, this was decades ago.

At this point in my life, the one thing I didn’t want to happen to my mother was for her to miss out on more of her own opportunities.

I decided to take the initiative to sign her up so she could instruct a baking class on the weekends. I told her I was certainly more than old enough to take care of myself and it was time for her to pursue her own interests, passions and dreams. To which she replied laughing, “I know I look young but how could you mistaken me to your age?”

From when I was first born, growing up, and even now… all my mother has done is spend all her time on supporting me in everything I did. This day, I hoped to help her revive the opportunities she lost by choosing to take care of me these last few decades.

Seeing her come home from the baking classes some weeks later, I noticed how exhausted she was. All this time I believed that she agreed to go to these classes because she wanted to relive her dreams from the past. Little did I know these efforts were actually for me.

“You shouldn’t be doing this if you’re going to be so exhausted!”

“But you were thoughtful enough to plan this all for me.”

“Because I thought this was your dream.”

“My dream is for you to live happy.”

Although my mother has said so before, it never hit home until recently. I never realized that her single greatest dream was for me to live well, for me to be happy for the rest of my life.

So, today I want to do a little more for myself. A little more to better myself.

Because now I know that living my life to its fullest is not only the best route I can take for myself, but also the path to fulfilling her dream.

I love you, Mom. Everyday should be Mother’s Day.

– itsfruitcakeweather.

7 Signs You’re Dating Facebook

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  1. You check it as soon as you get up in the morning. Pick up your phone, turn on your laptop –check Facebook. You’re afraid you missed out on some emotional 3AM status update from that person your hardly know but went to high school with. You’re also disappointed you didn’t get to like the new profile picture your crush posted right when they posted it because you were asleep. Terrible start to the day.
  2. You get more excited than you should when you receive notifications. Okay, so maybe you’ve been waiting on some event invite or more likes on the new food picture you posted to make your Facebook Friends jealous. That is hardly being attached to Facebook right? Its just that getting more recognition from Facebook somehow makes your day a little better.
  3. You want to tell Facebook where you’re going… actually you just want to tell Facebook EVERYTHING. You tell it when you’re going to the mall, what you’re eating, how you felt that day, the nightmare you had last night, when you change your job… the relationship is getting pretty serious.
  4. Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest… you’ve got it all but they can’t replace Facebook. You find yourself spending the same amount of time on Facebook regardless of how many other social media accounts you have. It can’t be helped that Facebook contains all your contacts! Twitter just isn’t the same you’d say to yourself. Actually, you just don’t even bother looking at the other things you have because you’re so happy just using Facebook alone.
  5. Everyone uses it too since its gone “mainstream”; the hipster in you doesn’t even care. When you started using it 6 years ago, you didn’t think it would become anything serious. Now you don’t even care if everyone else is using it despite being a self-proclaimed ‘hipster’. Well, love knows no bounds.
  6. You have a Facebook tab open at all times. This is the part where you feel the need to have access to Facebook at all times of the day. Sort of like going above and beyond checking up on your boyfriend/girlfriend and watching them sleep at this point.
  7. You try to add some app to your browser to limit the time you spend on Facebook but end up disabling the app to defeat the purpose. Its doing you no good by helping you procrastinate but you just miss it too much. You long to stare deeply into its vast timeline of updates, photos and texts… such a love-hate relationship.

At this point, the dating has gone from casual to unhealthy. I encourage you to seek help.

Try getting away from Facebook for a day (you’ll come back to realize you hardly missed out on anything)!

– itsfruitcakeweather.