OVER the weekend our eldest Kayla turned 18. When she was starting college, we asked her how she wanted her debut celebration to be, and she would always shrug us off and tell us she did not want a “traditional” “formal” debut.

Back then she said she’d rather travel with us, or just ask for something grand as a gift.

However, come December last year, as we sat with her for Papa’s birthday lunch when we visited her in Katipunan, she suddenly came up with a “simple” plan for a “simple” gathering.

She wanted a rooftop, NY-style, cosmopolitan party with a few friends, some coming with her from Manila for the weekend.

“Ok,” my mind calmly said, trying not to get a panic attack, “we got this”.

It caused me some anxiety because we were also set to have little Mikos baptized on January 15, 2 weeks before his Manang turns eighteen. (So you see, I’m between worlds – with an eighteen-year-old and a four-month-old!) But all’s well that ends well, it was quite a toxic January but we managed to pull it off.

Our gratitude extends to family and friends who helped make it happen, and to the very efficient and reliable Ms. Rem of Soidemer Catering and Events, and Mr. Edwin of Soundbox Mix.

It was great meeting her college friends, and seeing also her elementary and high school friends come together for her special day.

Kayla’s rooftop party was held on the evening of the 28th, but her birthday is on the next day, and we were a bit sad that she had to leave with her college friends on her birthday itself because she couldn’t miss class the next day.

When she left I saw a letter on top of my laptop, addressed to me and her Papa, thanking us for her party and her college friends’ fun Baguio weekend, and assuring us she will forever be our baby even if she is now an “adult”. In her own words: “I’m an adult now…it’s weird…haha”.

Don’t get your hopes up, baby. LOL. Even mom is not yet an adult, and oftentimes she still find herself messing up so many things like a teenager might.

She still catches herself feeling so anxious, frustrated, indecisive and troubled like a young one would. She feels so proud when she accomplishes something or resolve some really awful problems and feel so “adult” whenever she does, but oftentimes she also feels inadequate and so uncertain of many things.

As you grow older don’t be too hard on yourself, and know that you can only do so much.

Do not lose your childlike bliss, and take time to find something amazing everyday as though you see it for the first time, and then appreciate its worth with awe.

That is one way to deal with many of life’s challenges. Happy birthday again, and good luck! Know that we love you so much.