Keith Ashley's 2nd Birthday In Heaven

Saturday (August 17), was Keith Ashley's second birthday in heaven. He would have been 13.  I was not planning anything for his birthday because I was feeling so low. Besides, I have made the 28th of January (the day he left us) the official K Lighter Day. So all I wanted to do was go to church and light up a candle for him. But since I have amazing friends and an ever inspiring angel, my gloomy day  instantly  turned into a K Lighter Day.

After crying buckets the night before, I was woken up  at 7am by the sound of  Keith’s favourite song “Lighters”,  which has been my alarm sound for over a year now.  It wasn't that bad when I woke up because I received a message from my sister-in-law that Keith's friends were at home. Somehow, knowing that his friends kept the tradition of having lunch at home on Keith's birthday made me feel better. I managed to speak to them via wechat for a bit and then I went on to do my own tradition in remembering our beloved Keith on his birthday.

Our first stop was St. Paul's Cathedral. I think lighting up a candle and saying a little prayer for Keith is always the best way to start a K Lighter Day. Meowmeow, his favourite toy was with us of course. I always bring Meow with me on special occasions. 

On our way to meet up with a friend, something weird happened. While walking along the Southbank from St. Paul's, amidst the noise from tourists and the trail tracks was the comforting sound of a violin. I know this was not the first time that I heard someone playing the violin in London. But the fact that I just came from the church and heard it on Keith's birthday was a bit telling for me. And then, the lady played one of Keith's favourite songs- "Where is the Love?" by Black Eyed Peas. Although we were already late for our meeting, I was compelled to stay and listened to the music until it finished. 

It was as if Keith was trying to tell me something that day because after a few yards from where the lady violinist was, I heard a very familiar sound of a classical music. As soon as I realized that it was Keith's favourite classical piece - Canon by Pachelbel, I ran so fast that I almost tripped. I became very emotional and cried in public again. But I knew at that moment that my angel was with me.

Then it was time to meet up half of my friends for merienda because they couldn't make it to dinner. I was deeply touched that even baby E was wearing Kuya Keith's colours. I know Baby E wasn't feeling 100% that day because he just had his jab, but he still came to remember Kuya Keith on his birthday.

What I was not expecting was some sort of an exclusive mini-birthday party for Keith. I thought we were just having a normal dinner, but when we arrived at the restaurant, my friends' cameras were on me. I was like, "Why are there cameras? Paparazzi!". I didn't realize that that was a surprise dinner party. There were decorations and all of them were also wearing either white or blue. I was so overwhelmed, I didn't know what to say.

There was even a cake. How I wish Keith was there to blow the candle though. It's just a shame that he didn't get to meet my amazing friends.

And it didn't end there. More surprises. D brought out post-its so we could write our birthday wishes for Keith. Those messages were supposed to go with the sky lanterns, but unfortunately it was windy so we didn't get to fly them.

We managed to light up one though....

But it didn't fly towards the sky. Instead, it rolled on the road towards the cars parked on the side. I panicked and chased after the lantern. All I could say was, "Oh my god, oh my God!". I was so scared the cars may blow up. Everyone burst into laughter. They all watched me as I try to put off the fire from the lantern. I could imagine Keith laughing at us.

As much as it hurts knowing that I will never spend even one birthday with Keith ever again, I am somehow relieved knowing that I have family and friends I can share his memories with. I can't thank my friends enough for spending Keith's 2nd birthday in heaven with me and for making it a K Lighter Day. And for Keith who continues to inspire me and other people, thank you. You may no longer be with us in flesh, but you will forever be in our hearts. Thank you for bringing those people in my life. I know I always say that people will never know what I have gone through and still going through unless they also have lost a child, but these people know exactly  what to do to make me feel better. I will forever be grateful to have them in my life.

And to everyone who sent their birthday wishes for Keith, thank you. Your thoughtfulness is very much appreciated.

Hope you're all having a K Lighter Day!!

tintin x


  1. Happy 2nd birthday in Heaven Keith. Thank you for continually inspiring us.
    Tin, you are an amazing person with a beautiful heart. I know KEITH is a proud son because she has mommy TINTIN who loves him so much. hugs!


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