My lil one (and only one thus far) is turning one in a couple of months and I have been trying to decide if I have the time and energy to plan an elaborate and over the top celebration to commemorate a year of life. While contemplating back and forth about the size, time and funds that would be required, I told Andy, "I can't decide if I should do it.. on one hand, he won't remember anything and it makes more sense to dedicate any effort to his second year of life, on the other hand, who knows how far we'll be from family next year?" After listening to me vacillate for a few days, Andy finally posed the question, "Well, is the party for you or for him?" to which I, without hesitation, responded, "Duh, for me!"
No baby remembers their first birthday right? The only reminders are photos and videos. Yet those same photos and videos can trigger actual memories for a two or three year old (I attest to remembering the details of my second birthday whether or not you believe me). So why put forth the time and energy into that first birthday? What's the big deal? I wish I knew, because I am still trying to logically determine what I will do.. how I will do it.. and what that means in terms of money and time, two things we have very little of these days.
You see, try as I might to logically reason with myself.. it is a big deal. And though I don't plan to go over the top with details or themes, there is a part of me that wants to try. For one, my baby, my husband and I all made it. Maybe that's not a big deal for anyone else, but the number of times I've questioned if Jordan's still breathing, the worries I've had over SIDS, and the debate to not have bumpers but maybe have some blankets in the crib (against all SIDS prevention team advice) or the fear of permanently damaging his bum from diaper rashes galore all make his one year milestone monumental. I have kept him alive for a year. From here on out, it's probably all downhill. So why not savor the moment by throwing an egregiously expensive celebration for my little one?
When logic escapes us (okay.. me), family rescues us. We have two upcoming family trips - one with my mom's extended side of the family, and one with Andy's immediate family. The first trip is a month before Jordan turns one, but my dad, in a moment of exuberant joy recently, declared he would fund his first grandson's one year birthday party and "zhua zhou." The "zhua zhou" is an ancient Chinese tradition of putting a few symbolic items in front of Jordan for his choosing. His selected item is supposed to predict his future interests, career, and/or personality traits. It is all in good fun and we in no way believe it will establish his future path (he has the freedom to make his own choices), but it's one of those things my family does while celebrating a one year birthday. Nobody remembers what the child picked years later, but it's a fun activity nevertheless. The second trip is on Jordan's actual birthday where he will get to celebrate it a few days after his Aunt Tammy turns 30, in our country's capital! So either way... the family part of the equation is taken care of.
After all that fun has been had, I would like to throw a casual park celebration with all the other kids and friends we've made before we leave for residency (*gulp, Match Day is in a week!), so we may buy a cake, some bubbles, and head to the park for a third birthday party. As for the cuteness that could be had with the new Photoshop I just got for Christmas from my in-laws... that might be put on hold. Or not...