31 Mins Before Turning 31

.. or perhaps 30 Thoughts of a 30 Year Old Woman Before Turning 31. Is that Buzzfeed enough?

It’s 31 minutes before my birthday and I am still in front of my laptop going through the team’s (Third Team Media) projects, checking the progress for the day, polishing up customer needs and translating them into to-dos. I have ticked off 2 proposals (that sprouted to one more task) to send before going to bed yesterday and off to another item off my list as of writing. And hey, look! 5 more important items to do!

But priorities, priorities. I need to write something about turning 31 in 31 minutes (haha).

Thirty one. Traynta uno.

Dagnabbit, I’m already 31. The last day on the calendar. I’m officially old.

Days before this birthday, I had no idea what my plans would be. ZILCH. I was thinking, why should I bother. I’m already too old for parties, too busy for planning an elaborate one, too introvert to actually have friends to invite over, and too frugal to actually spend so much.

At the back of my mind, I thought – What the heck. How about NOT celebrating a birthday?

I felt it was the best course but I have the boys to please and my other self (the indio self) to appease so that was a foiled plan.

So to be honest, I DID celebrate my birthday. We celebrated daily since Friday (thank you team mates for the surprise). We celebrated last Saturday and Sunday. And celebrated yesterday, Monday. And will still celebrate the actual day today. That’s 5 days of mini-celebrations. A little too much tiny trip to the same destination – celebrating my getting OLD.

fleire birthday


By celebration, I meant the following:

  • eating half that cake above (thanks for the cake team mates!)
  • not eating homemade meals that remind you of the green grasses of the Great Grass Sea (ola GOT fans)
  • pampering myself to a good mani/pedi. (Darn look gat my pretty red nails. No wonder I’m so inspired to type something on my blog.)
  • extending bedtime by 1 more hour because I didn’t report to the office
  • treating myself to Okinawa milktea instead of the regular bubble milktea
  • buying 4 more telephone wire hair tie
  • letting my boys *secretly* make a homemade gift for me

Look, there’s that homemade gift!

It’s my birthday! ???? And my son made me a money ring! ???? Talk about emergency fund huh, Dabby?

A photo posted by Fleire Castro (@fleirecastro) on

Now that the greetings are done and over with, I’ll proceed with a different kind of celebrating – Celebrating Life. What better way to do so than to  start with a list – A list of things I learned so far in my 3 decades of life here on Gaia that I want to share to the younger ones (and anyone younger than me, I call them ‘kids’).
These thoughts are in no way a prescription for those who want to become an entrepreneur or a working mom like me because, trust me, you need more than just one list. These are things that I learned from both my personal and professional that I want to share because you might encounter the same challenges along the way.
1. Being mom at 22 isn’t so bad.
2. Being a wife at 22 isn’t so bad, either.
3. Looking back when you were 21 will depress you. So don’t.
4. Ditch the Yaya. We even forgot our last yaya’s name already.
5. Have several rounds of reset on your marriage. It will save you the drama.
6. Let go of Perfectionism. Strive for DONE instead.
7. It takes 3 weeks to build a habit. Start a good one.
8. It takes 3 months to build a project. Start any.
9. It takes 3 years to grow a business. Start up.
10. Time management can be your best kept survival tool.
11. Prune out people that don’t matter. There’s no need for pretense.
12. Comfortable shoes. Invest in it.
13. Not having plans on a long weekend is the new normal.
14. Sleep is the BEST thing you reward yourself with.
15. Being a part of the “millenials” is way too hipster.
16. Learn to fall in love with yourself again.
17. Don’t let go of your  childhood memories. It will fuel your mommyhood.
18. Life truly begins at 30. Or was it 40?
19. Being agnostic changed much of life’s priorities.
20. Invest in experiences. (No need to elaborate this one.)
21. Losing old friends is okay. As long you made better ones along the way.
22. Have budget. If you can’t budget anything, have a better income.
23. Having a good reputation is better than having a quick buck. Strive hard to give only quality work.
24. Offering to charity is different from offering your self. Learn the difference.
25. It’s okay to cry.
26. The true cause of your suffering is sin. Find out the root and pull it out. Then have peace.
27. Live your truth. Go dance even if you don’t know how to. Make your heart sing.
28. Save for retirement. Figure out how you are going to put together a retirement fund to save your children from the burden.
29. Take moonshots. But make smarter moves in the next few decades. You only got a few left.
30.  Don’t fret if you don’t make it the list of 30 Women CEOs Under 30. There’s still that 40 list somewhere.
And here’s the 31st because I just turned 31.
31. It’s okay to not have plans for your birthday. Just celebrate LIFE.
Happy birthday to me and to everyone beyond 30 celebrating their birthdays. 🙂
TLDR; I am happy to be alive. Happy birthday to me.
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