My little guy turned 11 months yesterday. When I tell strangers how old he is now, they ask, “What are you doing for his birthday?” This inevitably results in a blank stare from me. I don’t want to be rude to people, but it is a question that baffles and confuses me, so I don’t really respond. Recently, our family started asking when his party will be.
Um…party? We have to have a party?
If you search “First Birthday” on Pinterest, you will get a plethora of ideas for invitations, banners, cakes, etc. There is even a whole page of game ideas for a first birthday parties. I’m sorry? Games? My one year old likes to try to play with empty boxes, chase the cat, and chew on board books. He likes to eat sweet potato muffins, fruit, and whatever I offer him from my plate. He has no preferences for what I do, how I decorate, or what I serve for his birthday. He will be ONE.
My one year old is not going to remember his first birthday no matter how elaborate it is.
Maybe it is because I am a bit of a minimalist. Maybe it is because I am an older mom. Or, maybe it is because, as a working mom, I just don’t have the time or energy to think about a first birthday party. However, I do worry that in our Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest filled social media society, moms are striving to create the best looking, most photo worthy occasions for their kids. But, I have to be honest, these don’t seem to be about the kids, they seem to be about the parents and how they are perceived by the outside world, and that makes me sad.
If you want to throw your infant a birthday party, I applaud you for your creativity, effort, and time spent; however, I will be quietly taking my child to the park, throwing a blanket in the grass, and watching him explore the outdoors (or refusing to touch the grass). I might even have some family members over for a simple dinner (hamburgers and hot dogs anyone?). And, no, there won’t be a smash cake, but maybe he will have a sweet potato muffin with a candle in it!