When I Turned 10, 20, 30

So, I am turning a big, fat, smelly THIRTY in a few hours’ time and surprisingly, it isn’t as nerve-wrecking as I thought it would be. The sun still rises from the east and sets in the west. I still have two eyeballs and a pair of ugly feet, so everything seems pretty okaaaayyy.

I celebrated the occasion with some friends and my family this weekend, and all the feasting, candles and cakes got me thinking about how I’ve come to be three decades old. I mean, thirty years seem like a pretty long time, eh? I was once a newborn with a head full of hair. I was once ten years old. And I was once twenty. How did I get from the size of a tiny tyke like my 3-month old daughter to the giant with ugly feet and bushy hair? Amaaaazing!

I thought it would be fun to take a walk down memory lane…to revisit the times when I was born and when I was 10, 20 and now 30.

{When I was a couple of months old} I remember nothing, but of course. I looked like I had a lot of hair. Wait…I still do.

{When I was 10} I was definitely bo-geh (toothless; refer to photo). That year, I remember visiting my dad who was on a work trip to Hong Kong and Shen Zhen. We toured Ocean Park, got stuck in the cable car, got trampled on in the MTR, and I received my first fashionable bag – a Hello Kitty purse from Sogo. When we were in Shen Zhen, we also ate the sweetest lychees I’ve ever had in my life. I also did pretty badly in the first quarter of Primary 4 – my grades shocked me enough and I took my schoolwork more seriously thereafter. I was prescribed my first pair of glasses at the health check in school. I recall skipping my way out of the school gate to meet my mum at the nearest void deck, and I happily announced that I was FINALLY short-sighted only to see my mum turning purple. She blamed it on me playing too much Digger (does this sound familiar to anyone?) on the floppy disk and watching too much TV. My parents got me ugly pink-rimmed plastic glasses and I tried not to wear them unless I couldn’t make out the words on the blackboard – oh, the irony. Twenty years later, I regret not taking care of my eyes back then. My mum was right, I did play too much Digger, didn’t I?

{When I was 20} My eyebrows were too thin, ewwwwww. That year, I was single, thinking about but not looking for love. I was working hard in the Science Club on an ad-hoc dinner and dance project. I wore baggy tees and ugly neon board shorts to the university for lectures. And yes, I wore slippers too. I was pretty much a loner and enjoyed having quiet lunches in the most secluded and eerie corners of the NUS Science Faculty. I didn’t like going out with friends and loved taking long bus rides back home…alone. I adored spending time with my family. I was the least interesting person you could ever meet. Woohoo.

{Today I am 30} This is me, with M, and the little lump in the bottom right corner is my baby girl, who was fast asleep in the sling when I celebrated my birthday on Sunday. I was a student for the most of my 20s and worked for 3 years in total (2 locally, and 1 in London). I met my best friend at 18, but didn’t know it until I was 23 and  decided that he is the love of my life. He asked me to marry him and I said yes. We moved to London and shared the most amazing adventures for 5 years. He taught me to cook and encouraged me to pursue my interests in baking, food styling and photography; that explains the existence of this blog. We exchanged our vows in my dream Glass Pavilion, in the presence of our closest family members and friends, and had a small banquet the next day. We travelled to at least 25 cities in our lives together and decided to finally set up a family last year. I spent the last of my 20s heavily pregnant. Our baby girl arrived 3 months ago. I became a better person because of my new little family.

So much has happened in the last 30 years, as my parents testify, but it feels like life has just begun. I have so much to work on, plenty to learn and ample love to give. Here’s to hopefully a couple more of these entries, for when I turn 40, 50, 60 and maybe, if I’m lucky, 70. I reckon I might still have two eyeballs and a pair of ugly feet then.


I would love to hear about your 10s, 20s and 30s! Comment or blog about this, will ya?


8 thoughts on “When I Turned 10, 20, 30

  1. W

    Hey, hi, Rachel, revisited your blog after a long hiatus. If I’m not wrong, we went to the same sec school tog, RV!

    I just turned 30 a few weeks ago and could really resonate with this post of yours. So here goes, 10, 20 & 30!

    When I was 10, I had my 1st ever birthday party at home. I rem walking to the nearby mamak shop to buy those retro push up ice cream. I had my friends over and had a black forest cake with a cherry on top. Coincidentally, I also did badly in Primary 4 and that pushed me to strive for better grades the next year. I started wearing glasses at that age too n had the same ugly plastic pink rimmed glasses. That was the rage back then!

    When I was 20, I had just ended a relationship and started a new one. I had also moved into the hostel and was very much enjoying my newfound freedom. I felt young, vibrant, free and lived life vivaciously. I had really short hair, was super tanned from the regular swims at the University Club and was brimming with life. That was before the devastating breakup a yr later. Which would see me moving out of hostel, slipping into isolation and spending my final year of university life in a rather melancholic existence.

    Now comes 30.
    It’s said often that 30 is the new 20s! I’ll hv to say that 30 is better than the 20s, at least for me. I feel with the coming of age, I hv newfound wisdom in certain aspects, more importantly, I feel a certain self assurance, a quiet confidence that has made me more comfortable in my own skin. I treasure my family alot more and try my best not to take them for granted. I’m married now and my husband is my companion and best friend. We have our own home and I finally am able to fully indulge in this budding interest of mine. I’ve whipped up certain recipes, acquired an increasing array of cookbooks and would consider myself a noobcook no longer. A week after my birthday, I finally mustered the courage to attempt baking a cake with frosting. I’ve pretty much limited myself to baking simple goods like muffins, banana cake etc. But finally dared to take the plunge. The cake did not turn out that well but I finally made a rather decent SMBC frosting. Purchased some bake even strips and the Ateco rotating cake stand from Amazon as I realised that the baking bug has caught me. And tough as it may be, I’m determined to strive on until I have mastered the technique and art of baking and frosting a cake.

    There you go! Sorry for this really lengthy comment!

    1. The Pleasure Monger Post author

      W: What a small world! Which class were you from in RV?

      Thank you for sharing your 10, 20, 30! I am relieved I wasn’t the only one with pink glasses lol. And I am super glad you came out of a relationship and then met the love of your life! I totally get that. And pursuing your baking interest? Kudos to you! I love baking and I know where you are coming from!

      1. W

        I was from 4G! Yeah, I’m gonna try out an old recipe of yours this wkend, the pandan Swiss roll, wish me luck!

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