Today is exactly 32 years since I came out of my mother’s womb. I was born on Friday, 11 May 1984, at somewhere around 5 AM.

(If you subscribed to my letters, you’ll notice that I schedule my non-travel edition letters to come out on the 11th of every month at 5 AM Bandung time. That particular combination of numbers is magic to me.)

On this special day, I’d like to express my gratitude of the amazing life I’ve had.

I could not have predicted I would be where I am today, at this age.

My 6 year old self probably thought that I would grow up in Bandung and end up being an engineer like my parents. I ended up leaving home at 15, and spent the 17 years after that away from home.

In the States, at the exciting age of 18, I thought I’ve found the perfect field (Information Systems), and I was going to work at a multi-national company and live a happy life in the States till I’m old. Well I did love my major, ended up working for a huge huge multi-national firm. But I ended up leaving all that behind and moved thousands of miles back to Singapore to enroll myself in dance, just because I wanted to. It would make me happy and I was tired of being sad.

My 26 year old self thought that was it. I would graduate with a dance degree, be a dancer, and live in Singapore. Little did I know that couple years after that, I would switched to arts management, earned my Master’s degree, worked in it a little bit, and decided that I should start something on my own and moved back to the homeland.

I also thought I would get married at 28 and have children in my early 30s. Now looking back, I think I was waay too young and so not ready to get married at 28. But I’m getting closer to feeling ready to get married. Which is exciting and scary at the same time.

And that brought us to the present. Life is full of turns and flips and drops and climaxes and I end up not where I thought I would be. But my oh my, I’ve had an amazing life.

I’ve been blessed to have seen many parts of this world. Not as many as some people perhaps. But I looked at my travel instagram photos and realized how I’ve been to so many beautiful places in this world.

I have an amazing family who continuously supports me, despite my curly topsy turvy journey in life and despite their fears and doubts. And I can never thank them enough. I love my family so so much.

I have met so many amazing souls in this journey that have guided me in navigating my life.

I have loved and been loved so deeply by all of my romantic partners. I am so blessed to have always met men who are good, solid, sweet men, who never treated me badly. And I’m so blessed to have learned so much from each and every one of them.

And through all of that (especially through the heartbreaks), I have learned to love myself. I have also learned the meaning of unconditional love.

Love, in its highest form, is the most important thing in this world. Nothing else matters. I am forever grateful I have an abundance of it surrounding me in the forms of friends and family.

So on this special day, I want to say thank you. Thank you for being in my life. I’m thankful that we have crossed path at one point in our lives. Let’s raise our cup/ glass/ mug of our preferred beverage to a lifetime of connection.

And in the spirit of not knowing where our lives is going to take us, I’d like to share a quote from probably the best blog post I’ve ever read. It’s written by the beautiful Kate Northrup. (And I strongly encourage you to take your time to read the original post in the link above):

“You won’t do it at the right time.

You’ll be late.

You’ll be early.

You’ll get re-routed.

You’ll get delayed.

You’ll change your mind.

You’ll change your heart.

It’s not going to turn the way you thought it would.


And indeed, my life has turned out better that I thought it would be.

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.