Last night I went to bed with an aggressive, total jerk of a migraine.
It was one of those days –hurried and destined to exhaust from the onset. Up too early, rushing, but still late, waiting in places I had no time to wait, more rushing, last minute planning, work deadlines, kid issues, first days at new things, and to top it all off it was Dude 2’s 11th birthday.
If you follow us on some of our other platforms you probably saw countless photos of him in green, grubbing up cake, surrounded by friends…
His nearly impromptu birthday surprise party lasted only one hour and was an epic success!
I’d planned it only the day before in an intense fit of mom guilt wherein I panicked and cried and sent DudeDad shouty capped text messages about how we are failing him as parents.
Dude 2, always the frugalist, told me weeks ago that he didn’t want a party. They’re expensive, he’d said. He’d rather have money, he’d said, so he could save up for the gaming system he’s been wanting for years. Plus, 11 isn’t even a big deal, and Thursday birthdays are lame. And really, the only thing he even kinda wanted to do was hang out with his bff and like have cake –vanilla, not chocolate, he hates chocolate.
So, like many overtired, overworked, pushed to the limits, mom of three who is eager to unload one more must do task from her plate, I was like HOLLA, and I kicked all forms of party planning to the curb vowing to get a nice chunk of change from my bank account to make it rain on him come birth day.
And then, his birthday week rolled around.
I realized that we had no gifts, no plans other than soccer practice, and not much time to bring anything to life and I felt like butt.
Because he deserved a birthday of some sort just like every single other human person on the planet.
I am creeping up on 40 and I still celebrate my birthday over the course of a week (lunch with the family, cake with my parents, a meet-up with friends) partly because it’s mine and I like to, but mostly because there are so many people in my life who love me and want to celebrate with me. Their desire to want to be with me fills me with so much joy and it lets me know that they love me.
He has that too –people who love him, people who want to be with him, people who can take a moment from their busy to sit down and celebrate him.
And I wanted him to know it.
I didn’t want to sweep it under the rug or push it off for weeks because having a midweek birthday right before spring break is inconvenient and my schedule is too tight to make time.
He’s not inconvenient and for him I should always have time.
Which led me to the freak-out-cry-a-thon that occurred at the beginning of the week and resulted in me (and a bunch of his friends) pulling off an after school surprise birthday party!
Secretly, I have always wanted one. When I was little, I dreamed yearly that this would be the year my parents got it together and I’d come home to a house stuffed with my friends and family waiting to jump out and yell SURPRISE!
Literally never happened.
But I wanted to make it happen for someone who was expecting to go sit on the sidelines of his brother’s soccer practice and then go to dinner and celebrate with a corny version of the Birthday Song sung by some restaurant workers who really just want to be not singing while surrounded by restaurant patrons downing green beer in honor of St. Patrick’s Day.
To pull off my vision, I sent copious amounts of crazy lady texts Tuesday night to parents of friends begging them to help me make the magic of a 430pm Thursday birthday surprise bash to come to life.
Fortunately, the people in our lives are wonderful and understanding of my nutty and they were willing and able to commit, on short notice, at a wonky time, with all kinds of instructions about where to park so he wouldn’t see, and when to come so he’d be at the neighbors’, and when to come back so we could still make it to soccer (it was his first night, he hates missing the first night).
And, we did it!
Dude 3: Mom! I'm so happy for him I wanna barf rainbows! And then he burst into tears of joy because he's so happy his brother loves his birthday. (I'm just happy he didn't barf.)
Posted by Dude Mom on Thursday, March 17, 2016
You can watch his whole birthday video to experience the magic, but it doesn’t truly show how magical it was.
I am so proud of that room full of young people for not spilling the beans. And he was so truly thankful (and maybe a teeny bit embarrassed) –I have never gotten so many hugs!
When we were driving home from the dinner that went almost exactly how I thought it would he said, “Mom, I never thought you’d do something like that for me. Thank you.”
And I cried. Silently as I drove while the three of them replayed the surprise moment over and over in the backseat of my car.
Because I want him to think I’d do something like that for him.
I want him to know that I’d do all of the things for him. And that, within reason, I am trying.
That no amount of busy schedules or work deadlines or money woes or any of that nonsense I make seem big is bigger than him. That he’s worth it, that he deserves it, and that I want to do stuff like that for him even though I’m an overtired, overworked, pushed to the limits, mom of three who is eager to unload one more must do task from her plate.
Because he’s not just another task I need to get done. None of my anything is more important than he is. Every birthday is a big deal, HE is a big deal, and he’s worth it, even at 430 on a Thursday.