Birthday Parties: Stream of Consciousness # 1
by Sharon Tjaden-Glass
One thing that I miss about the time before Child # 2 was having a bit of time to write out real-time reflections on parenthood. With one child, I was able to do quite a bit of that because naps existed and there was just one child to take care of.
With two kids, it’s pretty impossible to do much blogging as I once did. At least the kind of blogging that I prefer. The kind where I revise, revise, and revise until it’s just right.
But it’s a new year and it’s time to get realistic about how I use my time. I love to write. I love to share my writing with others. I work. And I also take on far too many creative projects, which I am not willing to give up because they all bring me joy.
So my goal is to change my methods and standards for writing this year.
For this year, I’m going to blog in a more stream-of-consciousness style. Not because I don’t like to revise and make everything just-so.
It’s more out of necessity.
So excuse the typos and love me for my Flaws (of which, I’m sure there are many).
So Henry will forever celebrate his birthday on Groundhog Day. Which I think is payment for putting me through 11 additional days of pregnancy past his due date, which, at the time, made me feel like I was living my own personal Groundhog Day again and again.
Three years later, I mostly remember his birthday as being a test of sheer willpower to confront pain and refuse to give up.
And there was lots of screaming.
And too much blood.
Isn’t it disturbing/befuddling/miraculous that time helps us summarize the most momentous of days in such few words?
In any case, we celebrated Henry’s birthday yesterday, and we came out on the other side of it unscathed and only somewhat frazzled.
One of the dads that came asked me while I was getting ready to serve cake and eleven kids were chomping at the bit for sugar how I could “be so calm.”
That was pretty much the best compliment I’d gotten from a stranger in a while. If “calm” is what I’m projecting, seriously, I deserve a medal.
I said, “It’s because I’m not expressing everything in my head.”
Which is so true.
I think that’s what the second/third/nth child does to you–they elevate your threshold of what your expectations are for what you deal with during the day.
What do you do if you go from zero kids to twins? Or triplets?
Yeah, those parents deserve more than medals.
In any case…
Kudos to my husband for cooking the food for the party: a gluten-free, dairy-free pasta bake and broccoli. Sounds gross. It’s really not. But this is what you have to do when your kids have allergies.
And hey, did you know that basically every birthday party has pretty much the same menu that neither of my kids can eat?
Pizza, cake, and ice cream.
It makes for a lot of texting back and forth with parents who are hosting birthday parties.
The good news is that just about every parent I’ve communicated with is more than happy to secure an alternative.
For whatever reason, we’ve been to about five birthday parties in the last four weeks. ‘Tis the season? I thought kids had birthdays throughout the year, not just in the winter. But okay.
I guess this has been about birthday parties.
See you next time.