I’m exactly in the middle of my 20s now, a natural transition that makes me as close to thirty as I am to twenty. The start of the new era feels more like a switch to me: I'm suddenly 25 with a mere click as the clock strikes the hour. If in the years prior I would let myself compete with the former ideas of me as a person on my birthday, this year is going to be different. Instead of obsessing over the fact that at 25 I should be like this and not like that, I’ll get over the unwritten benchmark and do what genuinely appeases me.

It took years to muster the courage and master the “you do you” mantra and realize that if it’s not enough, “you have you.” It obviously took time to understand that sometimes prioritizing yourself doesn’t always radiate selfishness. There is magic in turning 25 itself perhaps. Or maybe it’s the natural progression of growing older that follows.

2023 starts with a more healthy lifestyle: a mixture of dragonfruit and raspberry juice (sometimes with strawberry and tomato too) three times a week 

But growing older in this social media era also means doing so with your contacts through virtual catch-ups and inquisitive speculations. For most of the time, it has been a sanctuary, a safe space to take a break in, also an easy way to see my friends when I miss them. Lately though, bells and rings have started to make their way around people I actually know. I can't think of some friends without also remembering the song they chose to post the happy news with.

Please don't get me wrong. I’m perfectly happy with how things are right now, but I have reached a certain point in life where witnessing everybody around me getting either married or engaged starts to take the excitement out of it. I used to love dressing up and dining in pretty hotels, but one less wedding to attend causes more sighs of relief now that going on a date hasn’t been on my list for so long, never mind fancying some creative versions of how to tie the invisible knot. I’ve always considered myself more than capable to enjoy my own company most of the time, but this proves that I certainly am not, during weddings. And all of this brings me to this anti-climax conclusion: I’m 25 and all I consistently care about daily is what to order for lunch.

It’s also a part of the reason why this year, my sister and I decided to drop the whole tradition of pampering ourselves with something sweet. Instead of testing our luck with a random cake we found on Instagram, we took our mom out for an exquisite lunch as a combined celebration of both of us getting older and something akin to how a new year should be honored. And turning 25 means I’m choosing simple celebrations like this over something so grand.

Australian sirloin wagyu, my favorite, along with a glass of mocktail

The decision is also reflected in the way I choose to spend d-day: I dress no differently from what I usually wear to work; I order what I usually eat for lunch; and I couldn’t care any less about who remembers and who doesn’t. Everyone has their own affairs to think of, thus claiming birthday wishes as the highest parameter intensity of affection showed seems to be a bit unfair.

Ha, easy for me to say since it more or less represents the recent uneventful events in my life. These past weeks have been truly exhaustingmy energy gets easily drained due to work overload and, surprise, unenjoyable weekends. It goes without saying that turning 25 is the only thing I’ve been looking forward to, like a lost traveler hoping for an oasis in the desert. Nothing changes as I’m a year older though: the desert is still long, and I’m obviously still the same old, same old me. But today shimmers like no other, and I believe that every girl gets this certain glow the more they mature.

25... please be good to me, just like how I welcome you with hope and good words only.


Thanking everyone for the birthday wishes and gifts. They know who they are.