Next week on October 9, Devin will turn 1!!! 😀 I think all Mommies pretty much feel the same way about celebrating our babies’ milestones in life. We want pictures, tutus, themes, the biggest darn personalized character cake we can find, super heroes, the most quintessential party favor bags…a ferris wheel built in the backyard, a hot air balloon, and nothing short of a miniature Disneyland production to complete this wonderful occasion. The problem here is that we often want all of this excessive ‘extraness’ for tiny human beings who wear bibs as outfits, eat lint balls off of the floor, deem a paci as his most prized possession, and likes to play in the toilet! You see where I’m going here?
For my first child we did it up big for his first big day! Elmo was his BFF, I was a first-time Mom, and his birthday is smack dab in the middle of the Summer. We hooked up with some friends, got together a theme and guest list, found the decorations online, bought a gazillion Sesame Street themed cupcakes and a cake, purchased about $300 worth of food, another two or so of alcohol, got he and Daddy matching outfits, and took off work early to make sure this superstar shindig was executed smoothly. Then reality happened…DJ could care less about the food because he was still drinking Enfamil with rice cereal in it for meals, it was too hot for his outfit so he spent the duration of his party in a diaper, he took half of the decorations and ripped them to shreds because the sound of paper tearing entertained him more than his gifts, he was more terrified than excited of Cookie Monster’s face on his cake and wanted nothing to do with the whole thing. Last but not least, he was asleep 30 minutes into the party and retreated to bed for the remainder of his extravaganza! The adults partied until 4am, had a ball, ate all of the food, cleaned up the leftover mess, and DJ will never remember Any of it!
This time around will be different. Although we understand the premise of making memories, I have come to the conclusion at this point in motherhood that half of what we do for our children is a reflection of ourselves and the things that We want! DJ didn’t want all of that stuff above. I did. DJ doesn’t necessarily need the Polaroid shot of him poking his little finger into a cupcake. I do. Why?? Because he will always be my baby! Some parents tend to go overboard because they want to give their children something that they did not have or experience in childhood, and that’s fine too! I just wanted to be obnoxious and throw a big bash!
I think the most important thing that we have to remember about our children is that they need LOVE! Especially in the infant/toddler stages. Not stuff! I can see that Devin gets pure joy out of just sitting on Mommy and playing patty cake. He giggles at his Daddy when he puts his big arms around him and snuggles into his little face. His world lights up when he hears his big brother’s voice, and he shows all six of his little teeth whenever he sees his Granny. A party is not needed to achieve theses moments.
So this coming Friday won’t be spent on the effort of the event, but on the meaning of the day and appreciation for the child. I will probably find him a onesie that says something about turning 1. I will most definitely take pictures of him as he goes about his busy little day as an official 1 yr old, and his brother will absolutely want to bake him a cake so that He can eat it 🙂 …But most importantly, we will Love on him all day as a family. And that’s more priceless than any birthday party!