Birthday Boy

I haven’t posted in a week and a half, and my memory is terrible, so this post will contain random and likely out of order events and musings. Last week was birthday party week. Thus the non-postingness. Can we say BUSY? And he did wonderful with it all! He helped me make the icing and the cakes. He helped me stuff the pinata. And when the big day came, he loved (almost) every minute of it! He swam, he visited, he shared.

The biggest surprise of all (to me) came when it was time to sing the birthday song. It usually makes him angry when he suddenly becomes the center of attention unless it is his idea and his timing. And it seems that when everyone around him breaks into scripted verse or choreography, it super duper freaks him out. Big time. I mean, can you imagine how you would feel if you were in the mall and everyone suddenly stopped at the same time, looked at you, and began singing? I know it’s not quite the same, but to him it seems to have the same effect. But not this time! I said, “Javan, it’s time to sing the birthday song and blow out candles! Do you want everyone to sing loud or quiet?” “LOUD!” He said excitedly with a big smile on his face. The only thing that seemed to confuse him was whether or not he was supposed to sing to himself. Cute! He did wonderful with the song and the candles, and he looked so angelic when he folded his hands, closed his eyes, and made his birthday wish.

Then came the presents, which I seem to remember as a cause of stress for him last year. You open the presents as they are presented to you, you don’t play with them right away because you have more to open, everyone is looking at you again, you have to look at specific people and thank them, and other kids keep touching your new stuff. It wasn’t exactly a disaster last year, but it did cause some stress and anger in him. This year, the presents were fewer and they were laid out on a table that was by everyone else, but facing away from them. So he chose his gifts himself, opened them when he wanted to, and played with them for however long he wanted to without being pressured to open another one. It seemed to really help that he was able to open the gifts with his back to the crowd. And he reacted to the gifts and the givers when he was ready. To my surprise, this relief of pressure on him resulted in more smiles from him and a better ability to relay thankfulness to the gift-givers. He found and thanked each giver after opening a present, but it could be one second after he opened it or 5 minutes after he opened it and played with it. His choice. No anger, just smiles, thankfulness, and love. 110 degrees outside and STILL the best birthday party ever! Happy 5th birthday, my love.



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