For those of us who have reason to not celebrate our birthday and don’t want a fuss on this day, we might not shout from the rooftops about turning a year older. We might even go to great lengths to avoid drawing attention to our birthday in a time where many think you should be entitled to some special treat.
Our birthday comes around once a year. Our birthday, that one day usually reminding us of another year gone by. Not all of us are keen on celebrating this so-called ‘special day‘.
I’m one of these people. Never have been keen on celebrating my birthday, which is coming up next week. Every year I try to keep this day as quiet as possible, going about the day as per normal and sort of forgetting that it’s my birthday.
Once a year, our birthday comes round. Once a year, we get the chance to celebrate this occasion maybe by doing something wild, or something low-key.
Next week, it’s my birthday. I’ve never done much for my birthdays and this year will be no different. Part of me simply doesn’t like a big fuss. A big part of me is simply introverted and really does not like being the centre of attention.
Birthdays are a time to have a good time and maybe some sweet treats.
When we celebrate our birthdays, we treat ourselves to me-time. A time where we do something we want to do and really just have a good time. There are so many ways to have fun on your birthday and make each one a one to remember:
When you’re the birthday person and people sing Happy Birthday to you, it can be an awkward affair.
You might feel uncomfortable to be the centre of attention when the birthday song is sung to you. You might be horrified when people surprise you with a birthday party and burst out in song.
No matter what language the song is sung in, you might struggle to compose yourself during the tune: do you stare at the cake with candles, then stare at the singing people, and then stare at the cake again?
When my birthday rolls around each year, I insist on having an ordinary day and my friends baulk at this. To them, birthdays should be a time when you have a good party. Or a time when you stick by fanfare-esque birthday traditions.
Both of these are quite alien to me. Have I lost touch with my Asian roots when it comes to birthday traditions and the spirit of celebration altogether?
It’s officially the last few days of 2013. On the 31st, lots of Melbournians will pack locations with crystal clear views of the city’s skyline, count down to midnight and view bombastic, colourful fireworks displays, welcoming 2014.
There’ll be similar celebrations around the world. New Zealanders will be the first to usher in the New Year and feast their eyes on vivid explosions of fires in the skies. Those in Malaysia will get to see fireworks erupt around the Petronas Twin Towers.
Fireworks in the sky in Melbourne. It’s hard to take our eyes off fireworks, something that we don’t see too often. Photo: Mabel Kwong
There’ll be fireworks in Hong Kong too. And in Dubai. London. New York. Los Angeles. We all love fireworks, don’t we? It doesn’t matter if we’re Chinese, Indian, American, Spanish or any other race. When there are fireworks above us, we’ll face skywards. Why?