On Tuesday, Nathan will be a year old. “Toddler” sounds like such a foreign word, something so removed from our baby household. I’ve repeated it like a litany, and begun my pre-mourning, like I’ve done before when our newborn became a baby and our baby became a pot-bellied kid whose enormous head could not squeeze through a shirt. I didn’t really cry as much as Nathan did over the head through the shirt bit, even though I tried to tell him that it wasn’t my fault his head was so big, it’s his father’s. I bet there are people in his family with heads so big, they have trouble walking upright.
I’ve decided that won’t have an actual party until we’ve completely moved in. There is too much to do and only a fraction of our belongings have been boxed up. But I will bake a cake, sing a song, and take pictures.
I think that’s how most children’s birthday parties should go. My friend rented out the bottom floor of a very expensive Seattle restaurant for her daughter’s first birthday and the whole swank brunch had to be at least forty bucks a head. And though I certainly wasn’t complaining while filling up at the chocolate fountain, that party was great for the adults. There wasn’t a real place for the kids to play, other than under the tables and in the corner by the stack of gifts.
I would rather have a party in the park, where the kids can have an unfettered reign of the play structures, without a rented pony or fancy tablecloth in sight. There, Nathan can have a swing all to himself and never once ask to stop.