It’s Jay’s 6th birthday today and as such, I felt the need to look at pictures from past birthdays
and lament the fact that my boys are growing up so quickly marvel at how much the boys have grown and remind myself of how we’ve marked each of Jays birthdays to date.
Just 5 years ago, he was this …
All roly poly yummyness with crazy hair. He spent his 1st birthday smearing his face with icing and playing more with the balloons than with any of the real gifts.
4 years ago, at age 2, he was all about Thomas the Tank Engine; thanks to his older brother. We didn’t do much but we made the most of the day. If my memory serves me right, Ace was more excited about the cake and most of the presents than Jay was. The only thing Jay cared about that day were the new Thomas & Friends bath toys that I had used as cake toppers.
In 2011, Jay spent his birthday in a very funky mood. We had planned a party for him at my Moms house. His cousins, Uncles, Aunts and Grandmas were there and there were decorations and a fancy cake. Jay wanted no part of any of it. The whole thing was pretty miserable until he opened his Jack-In-The-Box gift. Man oh man, he loved that Jack-In-The-Box. He and Ace played with it A LOT (!!!) and it made him burst out laughing every single time the monkey popped out.
Don’t let the Sponge Bob cake from the previous year fool you. Up to 2 years ago we were still very much into Thomas. But that’s right around when his love of animals started to emerge. For his 4th birthday we kept it fairly low-key and spent a couple of hours at an indoor petting zoo. Just us and my sister. Jay also got to spend a night/day with Nanas. Compared to his 3rd birthday, it was a much better way to spend a day. The tide in my thinking was starting to turn.
Last year we really toned it down. Instead of doing what I would have wanted or what we thought would match up with what we’ve done for Ace or what would make for good pictures, we focused on what would make Jay the most happy. That meant, no cake, no decorations, no nothing. Just a regular day at school and then happy time spent playing with his brother, a box of skittles and a pack of alphabet cards from the dollar store.
Now here we are. My baby is a full fledged 6 year old. Later today, I will join him in his class to celebrate his birthday with Doritos and balloons. That’s what he likes. At home in the evening, he will unwrap the yo-yo that he asked for. This brings me nothing but happiness. Gone are the feelings of longing for what he “should” be like at any given age. He’s an amazing kid right here and now today and he shows me the meaning of patience and tenacity and joy every single day.
I fall in love with him every single day.
My sweet love, my wish today and forever is for you to be happy and to be kind and to live in a world where people are kind to you. I want you to feel loved and to be proud of who you are. I don’t ever want you to doubt the gift that you are to this world and to our family and to me.