Birthday Boy

Topic : Daily Glimpses

My son turned one this week.

The party was on Saturday.

Friends came with their kids, most getting rock candy at the door and then finding toys to entertain themselves with.

My mother fussed in the kitchen, wanting to pre-cut the tater tot casserole she had made, to make it even more kid-friendly than it already was.
I told her, “Stop worrying with it and relax.”
She loves to have her hands busy, an avid knitter for this very reason.

My son needed a break during the party.
He had begun to want to be held and yet fling himself to be put down,  only to cry and reach to be picked up again.
We went to the front room where no one was and he played with the curtains and stared out the window.


He is a master at self-play, likely from being with me in the mornings while I do my yoga and meditation.

I love how he already knows he needs to take a pause.
I know this about him too, sensing when he is becoming overwhelmed.
I honor that, his knowing and mine combined.

The photographer I had hired took pictures of him as we chatted.
This is a splurge I do, having someone there to capture so I can be more present.

It came time to do the singing of “Happy Birthday”, he did not want to sit in the highchair, overwhelmed by the number of people and not being in my arms.

Holding back tears as played with his ear and hair.
He looked around the room, not smiling, bemused by all the gleeful faces and phones held aloft to record the moment.
Looking back often to make sure my husband and I were still close by.

His cupcake interested him but not enough for a smile.

He explored it meticulously, two fingers flicking the icing
Silent and frowning
He stared out at the crowd, clutching the candle.

When it was clear he wasn’t going to eat,
I picked him up and he burrowed his face in my shoulder, his pudgy hands getting icing all over the front of my shirt.

The older kids wanted to play outside, it was freezing, 35 or so degrees.

My daughter insisted on shorts.
I know my daughter. If shorts are what she wants, the fight isn’t worth the energy.

She played outside the rest of the party with not one word of complaint, her bare legs pumping her higher and higher on the swing.

I walked my son over to the sliding glass door to look at the older kids and he
wanted to go outside, flinging his body nearly out of my arms to bang on the sliding glass door.

We bundled him up and he sat in the baby swing, clutching a large rubber ball
He used as a pillow and zoned out, almost to sleep.
Socked feet barely touching the grass as he swung low, back and forth, back and forth.

My mom came outside, mimosa in hand and began to poopy scoop the yard so the kids wouldn’t step on the “bombs”.
The kids wanted her to play tag with them.
“The poop lady is coming,” they yelled, when my mom moved near them.

When all the guests left, my mom and in-laws settled in front of the t.v.,
my son and I went back to nurse.
He settled down on my chest and the sadness came.

The party planning finished, the event done, then the reality sets in that a year has come and gone.

He has made me a better mama.
Even at his age he has qualities I aspire to have.
Calmness, ease, and a knowing of himself.

He is content to be wherever he is, exploring and not needing to be constantly entertained.
As an adult I find myself looking for distractions often, my energy racing and agitated.
His energy is grounded and unfussy.

He gives great hugs, remaining in my arms and leaning onto whomever he wants to snuggle up to, his legs wrapped around my side, rooted in. When he’s shared his affection, he comes back close to me, snuggling his face into my shoulder, a grin on his face.

And now that the party is over,
We lie there together.
His weight grounding me down, my heart sad and soft, all at the same time.   


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