hello everyone, i’m sixteen now. *cue gasps
to celebrate my sixteenth birthday, here is a messy list of six things (let’s be honest, if i wrote sixteen things this post would be super long, and no one would have the patience to tolerate my rambling and stick until the end) i’m glad i did, and thankful for, before turning sixteen.
I READ DIVERSELY
i’ve started reading more diversely recently. being asian myself, i love seeing asian representation in young adult literature. also, diverse books reflect ongoing problems in the real world, which i think every person has the responsibility to know about as a global citizen. in my sixteenth year, i’d like to read even more diverse books, especially those which feature asian characters. some books i wish to read include summer bird blue by akemi dawn bowman, the abyss surrounds us by emily skrutskie, the epic crush of genie lo by f.c. yee and not your sidekick by c.b. lee.
I STEPPED OUT OF MY COMFORT ZONE
this year, i stepped out of my comfort zone. i used to be scared of trying new things, but this year i gathered up my courage to do things that i thought i couldn’t do, or would never do, and i’m so glad i did!
you never change your life until you step out of your comfort zone; change begins at the end of your comfort zone.roy t. bennett
some things i tried this year:
- boba milk! i’m not a fan of other sweet drinks so i thought i’d dislike this, but it quickly became one of my favorite drinks.
- i moved my blog to wordpress. it took a lot of courage because it’s a platform i’d never used before, and i was not sure how things worked, but everything turned out okay in the end.
- i hate interviews, but nonetheless, i still signed up for things. interviews make me so, so anxious, because they’re not like real conversations. the interviewers ask you short questions, and they expect you to provide loooooong answers with detailed elaboration, which i suck at. in fact, the day before yesterday, i had a 30-minute long interview with three interviewers, which freaked me the heck out, but i’m still glad i did it, because i really wanted the position.
I DID VOLUNTEER WORK
last november, my friends and i participated in self-initiated volunteer work, and it was so tiring yet satisfying. 😀 we had to write emails to charities to schedule volunteering sessions, which was something totally new and kind of scary for us, as the volunteer work we took part in in the past was all arranged for us by our school. our tasks were to help prepare vegetables, pack lunchboxes and deliver bread to drop-off centres where workers would deliver them to the poor and the elderly. we ended up learning a lot about poverty in our city, as well as the preciousness of food. it was a fun and rewarding experience, and i wish to participate in similar activities in the future.
a kind gesture can reach a wound that only compassion can heal.steve maraboli
I HAD A FUN TIME WITH MY FRIENDS
this year, my closest friends and i became senior secondary school students, and were allocated to different classes. unlike the last three years, we didn’t see each other at school that often. because of this, i started to realize how much i need them in my life, and that i should cherish the time we have this year, so i decided to make the most out of every moment we spend together.
according to my tripadvisor travel tracker, i’ve been to 55 cities, and traveled 8% of the world. in my fifteenth year, i visited australia, thailand, china, new zealand, the maldives and japan. traveling is one of my favorite things to do, and i’m so grateful to my parents for giving me the chance to travel frequently this year. i saw beautiful places, met kind people and had many unforgettable experiences. it was truly amazing.
I MADE MYSELF A PRIORITY
self-care is an ongoing process, and i’m still trying my best to achieve this. in my fifteenth year, i made myself a priority. i said goodbye to things harmful to my mental health, left the people who made me feel that i wasn’t enough, and when making decisions, instead of thinking about other people first, i thought about myself – do you really want to do this? in my sixteenth year, i wish to continue this beautiful journey of self-love.
what are some things you’re thankful for? is there anything you’re afraid of but did anyway? let me know in the comments!
3 thoughts on “sweet sixteen ☽ thoughts, musings and ruminations”
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOUUUUUUU!!!
I haven’t commented on your blog for a good while BUT WOW DO I LOVE THE REDESIGN!! It’s. BEAUTIFUL. My eyeballs are in awe. My stomach is hungry. All is fantastic.
Your photography skills never cease to amaze me truly how are so you talented?! The pastels, the colours…ok I should shut up now because too much gushing is maybe a tiny bit weird.
Ahhhh yey for representation!!! These past years have really been great for spotlighting more diverse books and finally, FINALLY we get some amazing narratives, other than the usual, way too boring and overdone, white girl falls in love with two white bois. And POC authors are such badass sweethearts online, about time they got to talk about themselves and their cultures!
i’d love to see more TRANSLATED fiction maybe….not only Asian Americans but also contemporaries written by Asian authors about life in Asia…..i know in adult book there is a fair bit of that of course but I haven’t seen many books like that in YA? I JUST WANT BOOKS NOT SET IN AMERICA FOR ONCE THANKS.
Anyhow. Happy Birthday once again!!! Rock the 16th year of your life by possibly slaying monsters! Haven’t had much luck with apocalypses myself but hey. maybe you’ll get yours!! tell me all about it!
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omg ioana, thanks for the long and lovely comment! i’m overwhelmed by the all the compliments and love you’re sending me ❤
i paid so much effort on the header image and i'm so glad you like it 😀 the same goes for my photographs – especially those i took on my travels abroad – i spent so much time editing them (my mom actually yelled at me because the editing process took so long and she wasn't pleased with how much time i was spending on my phone). (also the gushing is much appreciated and i would do the same for your work – i love your bookstagram photography and your blog posts never fail to cheer me up 😂)
i wholeheartedly agree with what you said about poc authors being total badasses online – i love angie thomas and what she advocates on twitter, and i'm so glad that her literature, and that of other poc and queer authors, are getting the recognition they deserve 🙂
and yes, yes, yes for translated fiction! i always see romanian books on your blog which seem like something i would love, but don't see an available english translation of, and that just makes me so annoyed and yeah, books set in non-us cities are so rare, and i really hope we'll see more of them in the near future. (somewhere only we know by maurene goo is set in my hometown, and i really liked it, but i wished the main characters were hong kongers living their usual lives instead of korean americans having a wild adventure abroad.)
thank you for the birthday wishes, and for believing in me (i will try my best to slay all the monsters i encounter!) let’s totally conquer the sixteenth year of our lives together ❤