For Yibo’s birthday this year, I made the spontaneous decision to give him a surprise at his house as the clock struck 12. I even prowled the webs to find where I could get a praline cake, which Yibo has openly declared his love for since late last year.
Quite a few friends have said that he will have to step up his game for my birthday this year, or that now he needs to match up to me because of how much effort I put in for his birthday.
And it got me thinking, why are we keeping score?
While it’s really easy to get petty in a relationship and compare each other’s ‘efforts’ on special occasions, I think it creates a toxic relationship and causes unnecessary arguments – I know, because we’ve argued several times (hahahahaha).
Instead of obsessing over what you have or want to receive from your partner, focus on what you can give instead. It’s pretty much like giving your partner the treatment you would like to receive yourself, yes?
Focus on giving instead of receiving
We aren’t ever the romantic type, and we hardly make any grand gestures or plans for these special days/occasions. So, it felt extra exciting for me to be planning the surprise. It just felt good knowing I could do something nice for Yibo – I’m guessing acts of service is one of my love languages.
I didn’t decide to put in all this effort expecting that he’s gonna have to one-up me when my birthday comes around (…although he better be doing something).
Plus it was nothing fancy really. I wrote a Valentine’s Day and birthday card (combined), bought a praline cake from Awfully Chocolate, and drove down to Yibo’s house. I turned up in shorts and slippers, no make-up, and wearing my specs because I had to drive.
Giving is sometimes more rewarding than receiving.
I won’t deny the joy of being the receiver, but it also feels incredible knowing you can make someone’s day better with a simple gesture!
This is starting to sound really preachy – like something your yoga teacher would say while you’re in corpse pose – and so I’ll stop here.
Even though we had to celebrate in the dark playground, walk to the carpark for selfie lighting, and Yibo had his candle blown out by a gust of wind while he was making his wish, I’m really glad and thankful that I was able to pull this off and make this birthday a special one for us both.
To spending more birthdays together in the future xx