Goodbye Twenties and Hello Thirties

Tomorrow is my birthday and I’m actually feeling pretty anxious. Why you might ask? Well, in less than an hours I’ll be turning 30 which is the BIG one and that terrifies me. I won’t be in my twenties anymore which is hard to believe. Most of my friends are now already 30 and now it is my turn.

As well, birthdays can be such a struggle for me because of my mental illness. When I was a kid, I always looked forward to my birthdays but when I was diagnosed with depression in Year 8, everything pretty much changed. It was the same for any special occasions like Christmas, Easter, Chinese New Year and New Year’s Eve. I have already blogged about this a few years ago which I won’t repeat here but for those who haven’t read it, you can view it by clicking here -> Rollercoaster Birthdays

This time last year with my 29th birthday, I was in hospital again 10 years later after I spent my 19th birthday in hospital. Now this time, I’m back in hospital yet again. Yep, you heard it, I’m back in hospital for a relapse with my depression. I think grief has hit meet again especially when my best mate’s dog, Tiger passed away and also, my childhood church friend passed away more than a year ago.

Turning 30 is a big deal because I feel like I haven’t achieved what I wanted to achieve. Looking at other people who already have a career, finished their studies and getting married, I feel like I’m way behind. Having a difficult life since I was born, it makes it harder. I know, it’s not good to compare to other people, that’s what one of the nurses (who is like a mother figure) said when I was in hospital and my group leader told me that Abraham Lincoln (the 16th president of the United States) also went through struggles in his life but was able to overcome them. I had no idea about that but it makes me feel a lot better to know that I’m not alone.

Another thing that doesn’t make me feel alone is my two brothers (aka best mates). They are in a similar situation like me but we have been able to connect with each other and also support each other which isn’t easy to find. I’m very grateful to call them as my brothers. Speaking of being grateful, my second family (aka my support group) surprised me with an early celebration of my 30th which really cheered me up after going through grief and having a relapse.

How did they surprise me? Well, the kitchen staff in the hospital brought my birthday cake (who made it for me which I didn’t expect) out and I thought it was for somebody else in our group but then I realise it was actually for me. I was speechless and gobsmacked because I totally wasn’t expecting the surprise. Well, I knew they were planning something but I didn’t know they were gonna do an early celebration. My friends said the look of my face was priceless.

Davo and birthday cake

Helped my friend with the decoration and oh that cake was yummy!

The last time I had a birthday surprise was my whole family surprised me with my….I think it was my 21st when we went on a holiday because I just had that life-changing jaw surgery and the recovery was one of the difficult things I went through in my life. Anyway, then my nephew who was a young child ruined the surprised which was hilarious. You can’t blame him for that as he looked so innocent. That was one of the memories I remember for the rest of my life.

30th Card

My 30th Birthday card the group gave me

Okay, so with the surprise that my day support gave me, I helped my friend decorate the window behind us in the dining room and they gave me a big 30th badge. This then lead to getting other people’s attention in the dining room looking at my second family and I and it was embarassing to tell you the truth. Then when my day support group started singing Happy Birthday, some of the other people started singing as well and even cheering, clapping and smiling at me. I wanted to hide under the table but I have to admit, it really did made my day. Strangers who I didn’t even know, (okay, I knew some of them but anyway) it was unbelievable and I felt like there were genuine people.

30th Badge

Of course the big 30th badge I had to wear

Anyway, my day started on a low note but then when my birthday surprised came, my day went uphill and it kinda made me look forward to my 30th (except for being in hospital again). Then again, last year a lot of the patients and staff did remember my birthday which made me feel better. Even the hospital let me get special leave for my birthday dinner who I celebrated with my parents at Hog’s Breath and speaking of Hog’s Breath, they even gave me balloons for my birthday which I wasn’t expecting and I also had a free meal to celebrate my birthday.

Davo Serenading on Ukulele

Serenading on my ukulele (my dad bought for me a few months ago) to my day support group

Maybe tomorrow will be the same, I don’t know even tho I just got admitted a few days. I do know that the staff knows about my birthday and they granted me special leave again to celebrate with my parents and we’ll be going out for dinner at a Japanese restaurant. Another thing I’m looking forward to is my 30th party celebrating with family and friends. They all have been such amazing support and also understanding when I had to change my 29th party last year (because I was in hospital) to earlier this year.

I know I said at the beginning, birthdays can be a struggle but having support from family and friends especially since I’m in hospital, I feel lucky to still be alive. If it weren’t for them, I wouldn’t be here today. I’m starting to get emotional writing this post but thank you guys for your support during this tough time! I’m still trying to adjust being back here as I don’t know any of the patients. It seems like that with every admission I notice but there are familiar faces with the staff which makes it a lot easier.

Hopefully tomorrow won’t be a struggle like last year and even next year. Spending your birthday hospital is difficult but like I said, the support from family and friends makes it a lot easier.

Goodbye twenties, it has been one hell of a ride with so many ups and downs. Thirties, here we go! Positively 30!

Birthday Present

My 30th present my day support group gave to me

Be random but stay safe!

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