On Sunday, we had birthday party #2. (yes, I realize these posts are not chronological. it's not rocket science, try to keep up.)
I didn't want to host a party. I am tired. in my bones, in my heart, in my mind. I. AM. TIRED. but he begged me. and I'm such a sucker, I caved. So, taking the advice of pretty much everyone around me, I did not have it at home. "Pay someone else to host it, you can't handle that right now" and it was 100% right on. (and we paid someone alright, gonna be paying that off for awhile, $$cuh-ching$$ goes the sound of commercial kids party venues). So we (and, as every wife knows what I'm about to say, when I say "we", I mean, ME) put together a last minute birthday celebration at the trampoline park. The trampoline park here is this MASSIVE indoor trampoline/arcade/party room bonanza. It was actually quite hysterical: we walked in early, about 20 min before it officially opened. You should have seen the look on Hubbs' face! His mouth opened WIDE, jaw dropped, and his freakishly long arms went wide above his head in total awe---he yelled (I'm not exaggerating here people, he bellow YELLED), "WOOO!" and it echoed for like 5 minutes, giving all the underpaid teenagers that work there a heart attack. He just kept saying, "this is all for us?!?! This is insane! I'm more excited than Brave! I'm losing my mind!!"
Funny thing is, all Brave wanted was that cake moment. you know, the "all attention is on me b/c it''s my birthday" moment. He's NEVER cared about that before. In fact, most of the time both my kids hated that moment. Not this year. He only jumped for about 30 min then began asking, and asking again, then whining, and whining again.....about when he was going to have his "T-Rex ice cream party"??????
I only gave people a week's notice, I thought, we'll have 10 people here tops. dude, everyone came. It was so awesome. of course, it was total mayhem and I barely had a conversation with anyone lasting longer than 30 seconds, but it really was special to us. Just seeing these all these people, whom we love so dearly, go out of their way to support Bravery on his bday, to support us, makes me cry my eyes out just thinking about it. We left totally spent and were only there < 3hrs. We get so emotionally overwhelmed now, even though it's not displayed (trust me, no one wants to see this emotion in public, esp at a kids bday party. that's just nuts.) we need time to rest and recoup after.
except Brave, he wanted to bail the minute he saw all the presents. He even WALKED THE STAFF OUT TO THE CAR escorting his gift carriers. When we got home, Boss napped instantly. (seriously = instantly. he laid down, I dropped my purse off then followed him, and within that 15 seconds he was totally asleep.) while Bravery and I opened all his gifts. He took his time, and lined each one up by the front door, so as to admire his treasure booty. Then I = napped, and Daddy took the next shift. Brave was an animal, high on sugar and attention and toys, "no time for sleep?!?! are you kidding me??!?" rebuffing my suggestions he take a break.
It was a fantastic day. Brave felt loved and adored.
We're just living life as normal, having bday parties and sleepovers, living some days as though we never had a daughter. It's so confusing. yet, what else can we do? We have children and cousins we care about it, people we love, happiness we want to feel, it's the way we're all wired. This same time two years ago, we cancelled Bravery's party. All Brave wanted was a Lighting McQueen birthday, and the family had to give him one at the hotel, while Hubbs and I were in the ICU bawling our eyes out, preparing our precious Amelie for surgery, and warned our daughter "might not make it out of the O.R. alive." This same time 2016, Hubbs refused to leave the house and insisted we have the party at home. He sat on the outdoor couch the whole time, not going out of his way to make conversation. it wasn't rude, he was pleasant and cordial, but he wasn't authentic, warm or loving, like he used to be back in the day. and I was pissed at him for it. deeply.angry.at.him. Enter Brave's birthday 2017, Hubbs was social, kind, laughing, engaged, genuine. It made the day = gratefully special. (I just made that phrase up, whatever you know what I mean.) This year, we're celebrating at the trampoline park as if none of that happened. But it did happen. we did have a daughter. We DO have a daughter. She's in another realm somewhere. So we celebrate anyway, because that's what she wants. At the end of the night, we all laid in bed together, holding each other, a family of three now...I told Bravery, "Amelie is here with you, on your special day. She's eating a cupcake in Heaven and she is singing to you. You can't hear her with your ears, but you can hear her in your heart."