Every little girl has a dream of having a special day where she could dress up and have her loved ones surrounding her as they sing Happy Birthday.
In American culture, a girl has a big celebration when she turns 16, and sometimes even has a debutante ball by the age of 18. In Hispanic culture, a quincinera is held in celebration upon a girl’s reaching of the age 15. Here in the Philippines, the same big deal takes place when a teenage girl turns 18.
Since I was young, I had dreamed of having a grand party for my 18th birthday. I grew up watching telenovelas, so I saw how things went. Formal attire, night event, 18 roses, escorts – I had it imagined up to the very last detail. I’ve been praying to have a grand debut for as long as I can remember. I never stopped praying. But as I grew, the focus of my prayers changed.
As my 18th year on Earth approached, plans of having my debut have been altered more than once. From having a grand traditional debut, to a simple party, to a night out with family, to feeding kids in an orphan, to nothing. But by God’s grace, He had given me the best party I could ever imagine.
Two months before my birthday, we were still unsure if I will be able to have the celebration. Our budget wouldn’t be enough. So I kept on praying until one of my aunts agreed to sponsor my birthday. A few months back, she sent a package we Filipinos call “balik-bayan box” (balik bayan roughly translates to someone returning to home country). The box is a huge box filled with non-perishable goods – clothes, canned food, cereal boxes, shoes, toys, etc. While we were rummaging through the items she sent us, I saw a dress in original packaging. Brand new, I guess. And it fitted me perfectly. So I joked my Mom and told her that it meant that I would be celebrating my 18th after all.
We weren’t still sure of the venue, though I love the place. So we planned to scout other places. But during my quiet time, God told me to stop worrying and He’ll make everything perfect.
So He made a way for us to have photo and video coverage, photobooth, and the place I fell in love with at first sight – Stacy’s.
My party was simple filled with friends and family. Although not everyone who were invited were able to come, I still enjoyed my day. Wait, not my day, God’s day. My party was a thanksgiving for His faithfulness in my life. The party itself is an evidence of it!
They say that less than a month of preparation for a debut is not enough. In human standards, yes. But with God, nothing is impossible.
It may not be the grad debut the kid me thought of, but it is the debut that God knew that suited me well. To Him goes all glory and thanks!