My 30th Birthday Surprise

All photos by Sheila and Jorem Catilo (and I’m sure you already knew that)
This birthday surprise party was truly a validation of GOD’s love for me—in the form of my husband, my friends and of course my Laurel and Filart family. Early this year, I was really looking forward to celebrating my 30th–I didn’t have a bongga party planned but I wanted it to be special this year. Then life happened, I had some health issues and we had to sort of align our financial priorities for the year. On top of that, I also had a very unsettling feeling about the people back in my mom’s province (victims of Typhoon Pablo who to this day are displaced and in need of help) so I prayed about it for days and even consulted Patrick about it. And after a ping-pong discussion, I decided to just abandon whatever plans we had so we could set aside a bit of money for Davao. Sa totoo lang, katiting lang naman ang naitabi ko and I don’t even know if it’ll even make a dent of change–but hey, it’s what I have and what I am able to give at this point so bahala ka na Lord!Hehehe!

A few days before my birthday, I was sort of half-regretting my decision to not celebrate my 30th. I was starting to feel sad just realizing that this was actually a big milestone in my life and I didn’t have anything creative or purposeful planned for the day. It didn’t have to be a big party–just anything for me to say “So this was what I did when I turned 30!”. Though God was kind enough to keep whispering to me that I made the right decision and it made my heart feel happier the more I thought about it. 

Midnight came and as I was brushing my teeth I was already psyching myself to be cool about having just a regular day. “It’s just a birthday, you’ll have lots of birthdays”, I thought to myself. “Celebrating birthdays are overrated anyway”, I said to the girl in the mirror. Then I stepped out of the bathroom and found a few things lying on the bed.  EEP! MY FAVORITE THINGS!!! A Dr Seuss book, a journal, and green tea kitkat—and a love letter!!!! A love letter that I’ve been begging Patrick for months to make! From my cool “I don’t want to fuss over my birthday” attitude I just started bawling and hugging Patrick so tightly!!!! It just made me so happy that he made the effort to get me all those sweet little gifts πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ That night I knew I was the luckiest girl in the world and the life I had now was the life I’ve always wanted—regular days are worth celebrating already and I didn’t need to have a birthday to remind me how blessed I actually am!

For my birthday we did the regular stuff, we went to the mall, I accompanied Patrick to the barber, had some Pepper Lunch for lunch in a peppery way, moved to another resto for some chocolate cake then went home so I could take a nap. YES. I took a nap on my birthday. It was the best siesta ever! Lolang-lola na ang peg ko!:) I set the alarm for dinner with my parents–which of course turned out to be a surprise party instead. 

It must be the hormones–or my old age (hahahaha, 1 day palang akong 30 feeling wise old owl na ako!) but I was completely overwhelmed with emotions upon seeing all the details of my surprise party. ALL MY UTIMATE FAVES were there: Jamaican Patties, Fish balls, Sorbetes, Dunkin Donuts munchkins, Polly’s chocolate cakes, Waffle Time, Potato Corner, and more junk food&food cart favorites!!! Isa lang ang naisip ko upon seeing that whole spread of food—WOW, these people actually KNOW ME. Would you believe my buddy, RG, brought the actual Potato Corner kiosk (na may kasamang babae pa ha!) because he knew I was gaga over their french fries! That’s what you call a true friend! Sheila made the props, Alessa baked me a cake, each guest actually made the effort to bring something I would actually LIKE! I could enumerate them all but it would take all day. Hahaha! The common trend really was friends KNEW ME. And that alone was such a grand epiphany for me! These people have seen everything and have chosen to welcome me into their lives wholeheartedly without any  judgments.  If you make the extra effort to keep your friendships genuine, no matter how crappy life is–it’ll be ten times less complicated if you surround yourself with authentic connections. Naks, deep tayo. Aba syempre, 30 na ako noh!

I looked around the room and saw all these familiar faces and I was reminded of God’s goodness in my life. These people have crazy work schedules, some even have children, yet they made the time for little ME. Sino ba ako?!?! Bakit ako mahalaga sa kanila?! What did I do to deserve this love and affection from these wonderful people? They actually sat down and thought of what would make me, their silly old friend, happy and put themselves out there to make it a tangible experience for me. 

So let me close this nobela with a big THANK YOU to my friends and family members who have filled my heart with so much love!!! MARAMING SALAMAT! To Patrick’s accomplices our moms, Sheila, RG, Marge, Team Gonz, Jonsy, Ces, Ale and all our other friends—THANK YOUUUU!!!!!! Indeed it was a Happy Birthday for me..all thanks to God’s orchestration!:) Where’s the LIKE button, I soooo want to LIKE this post already!!! HAHAHAHA!!! 

24 Responses to My 30th Birthday Surprise

  1. Patty, you’re not only important to your friends and family. You’re important to us who are strangers but somehow have become your virtual friends. It’s your simple but beautiful words, beautiful because they are real, honest and true. Moreover, it’s your joyful demeanor, your humility and positive outlook that you’ve elevated from mere optimism to a genuine faith in the Lord. A life well-lived that is pleasing to the Lord need not be religious, only real, and you live such an example.

  2. feel na feel ko ang post mo πŸ™‚ i have the same feeling when I’ve got 30, to reached 30 IS REALLY A GREAT BLESSING and I adore you thinking first what’s your priority than throwing a birthday bash…only few people ang ganon na mas iisipin ang iba than sa sarili nila. I don’t know you personally but through this site and sa mga post mo feeling ko kilalang kilala kita hehehe (feelingera lang). You have a good heart that’s why the Lord will always bless you (claimed it).
    This site of yours is one of the blessing I received from the day I started reading..honestly. I’m really thankful kay Lord to come across to this site, your post encouraged me a lot – to dream, to be the best that I can not for people for myself…basta madami pa. Thank you. Continue to be a blessing, and don’t be tired of writing coz in here hindi mo alam kung gaano ka nakakabless sa iba. Happy 30th! God bless

  3. happy birthday ate patty! wishing you all the happiness in life. May you continue to be a blessing to everyone! πŸ™‚ your birthday surprise party showed that people and the Big Man Up there really loved and bless you! kainggit your birthday party, celebrating 30th birthday in a child’s way! again happy birthday! God bless! πŸ™‚

    – N πŸ™‚

  4. This is how I want to spend my 30th birthday, surrounded by family and close friends πŸ™‚ And of course to make it even more pinoy, unlimited dirty ice cream!
    By the way, I’m not scared of turning 30 after seeing this. First off, you don’t look 30. Secondly, you make 30 look ideal instead of “ay ang tanda ko na”. Thank you for being a great role model to women, especially for the younger generations like me.

  5. So sweet, you are really blessed! This line, “If you make the extra effort to keep your friendships genuine, no matter how crappy life is–it’ll be ten times less complicated if you surround yourself with authentic connections.” struck a chord with me. I’m sure you’ve already hears this so many times before but I’d still like to tell you that you’re such a breath of fresh air. I’m glad to be sharing a birthmonth with you! πŸ˜€ Thanks for always inspiring us! πŸ™‚

  6. happy happy birthday Ms. Patty, you are truly an inspiration and deserves all the love in the world.God bless you more and more! Im excited to hit 30 too though I still have two years to go!

  7. Patty belated Happy Birthday! You truly deserve all the blessings and love in this world. I truly enjoy reading your posts. You never fail to inspire me to be positive. You are genuine, nice, wise, and smart. You’re parents raise you well. So kudos to them for that. I wish I could be just like you. I hope a lot of people could be like you. You truly are an inspiration and a great role model to women. Especially now a days were we have the Lindsay Lohan and Kardashians that young women are subjected to look at and admire. You truly are a breath of fresh air.
    Your sense of humor even in not so great events in your life is inspiring. Thank you for teaching your readers to find humor and the greatness in everything. Your an angel πŸ™‚

  8. Happy Birthday again Idol Patty ^^ You deserve all the blessings and happiness! Cheers to your 30th. Many many more bdays to come. ♥ ais

  9. You are so loved for you are such a blessing. May God continue to pour more and more blessings to you and your family! πŸ˜€ Thanks for being an inspiration.

  10. Happy 30th Ms. Patty! You deserve all the blessings that you’re getting from your family & friends right now. Continue to be a blessing to others too.

    Inspired by you,
    ruth πŸ™‚

  11. “If you make the extra effort to keep your friendships genuine, no matter how crappy life is–it’ll be ten times less complicated if you surround yourself with authentic connections.” that’s why no matter how busy i am, i’ll make sure to catch up with them…you really deserve to be happy after all those health issues you’ve been experiencing… “it is not the happy people who are thankful, it is the thankful people who are happy”

  12. Belated Happy Big 3-0, Patty! πŸ™‚ I’m not the type to follow blogs, & even more not the type to comment on blogs (I’m shy, hihi) , but somehow I found myself reading your blog posts increasingly, until it already became an everyday habit. And now I can’t believe here I am leaving a comment! I don’t know what took over me, but I just wanted to reach out to you. You have a light inside you that sparks inspiration & positivity in your readers. I just want to say Thank You for helping me become a more positive person & for inspiring me to follow & serve God in my own little way, day by day. May God bless the world with more people like you! πŸ™‚

  13. Ms. Patty,

    Bakit absent si Stella? I learned of her blog because of you. Her blogs are also feel good like yours. Anyway, Happy birthday!!!

  14. WOW!!! nateary-eye ako nagbasa neto kasi naman wala nang mas nakakatouch sa heart natin kundi knowing someone loves us how much more if a bunch of people do?!!! Diba? HAPPY 30th Patty!

    pahabol: You inspire me. πŸ™‚

    God Bless You and you Marriage and your family πŸ˜‰

  15. I have been lurking in the shadows for quite a long time now but now is a time to greet one of my inspirations a Happy and Wonderful 30th Birthday! πŸ™‚

    Indeed, God knows your heart for your kababayans so He did the encouragment for your bday thru your friends and loved ones πŸ™‚

  16. You bring sunshine to every single person in your life, and even manage to reach out to people you’ve never met. Needless to say, the happiness you bring has been brought back around to you. Have a blessed 30th year!