This morning I was looking through the ads from yesterdays paper and saw something that Medium Boy would love. Something that I didn’t even know existed until I saw it. This discovery reinforced a feeling that I’ve been having the last few weeks. I suck at Medium Boy’s birthday.
Birthdays are one of those things that I really want my kids to love and enjoy. It’s their day, the day they look forward to all year, I want it to be special. Medium Boy was born on my birthday and his dad’s birthday is the day after. On top of that, the birthdays are usually over the Thanksgiving weekend. While it gives us a lot to celebrate, it also robs Medium Boy of his special day.
I struggle with gifts for him. This year he asked for the Lego Millennium Falcon. When I told him that we couldn’t afford that he said “But you got the AT-AT Walker for Big Boy for his birthday” and then in the sweetest way possible said “That’s okay if you can’t get it.” Which made me wish even more that I could buy it for him. I couldn’t and I didn’t. We also told Big Boy that we couldn’t afford the AT-AT Walker but through a great sale and some extra cash we hadn’t planned on, it turned out that we could make it work. We didn’t have a similar miracle this time and once again Medium Boy was the one left out.
When my husband and I went to buy him some presents we walked around the toy store for an hour with no ideas. We settled on a Yoda alarm clock which he loves but isn’t that exciting, and a remote control car. We didn’t have any remote control cars and figured it would be something new that he would really like. The other day a friend was trying to drive the car and Medium Boy said “It’s really hard to drive. I don’t like it I’m going to sell it at the yard sale.” Another strike. I think his favorite toy from his birthday is the plastic sword he got from the prize redemption center at the arcade/play center we went to.
In an attempt to make up for my failure I threw together a friend party on Saturday. It went well and they all had fun. After it was over Big Boy said “That was the shortest party ever. Why was it so short?” I could only come up with “Because that’s all I could do today.” And that’s the truth, that was all I could do. I had a lot more ideas but there just wasn’t time to get them ready before the party started. Sometimes it just really stinks when you feel like your best isn’t enough.
The worst thing about it is that Medium Boy hasn’t said anything. No complaints out of him at all. I feel like I’m just reinforcing the “middle child” syndrome. Like he just goes along with it because “that’s how life goes sometimes” as he likes to say.
I know that in the grand scheme of things it really isn’t a big deal. He will grow up healthy and happy and hopefully have good memories of his 5th birthday. And for me, I’ll remember these feelings next year and give that kid the best darn birthday I can manage.
3 thoughts on “Birthday”
gulp…so honest. who decided that legos need to be so dang expensive!!!!!
The middle child stuff is really hard. I strike out at my house all the time – although as they have gotten a bit older I found that the greatest thing I can do for them is to make them feel important throughout their birthday by the things I do not necessarity by what they get. You are doing a great job and they will always know that!
Thanks Emily. You have always told me that I’m doing a great job and it has really helped me throughout the years. I really appreciate it.
It’s a great reminder that it’s not all about the presents. I think the doing small things to make him feel important has gotten lost in the so many things to celebrate the last few years. That is what I feel the worst about, not the fact that I couldn’t get him a present. I decided that next year I’ll celebrate my birthday with Chris and Medium Boy can have his own day. That way I can focus on him more and do more of those things for him.