30 September, 2007

Jake's Birthday

Isn't he a beautiful boy? I know he isn't smiling in this picture, but he is looking at the camera. He was so relaxed during the whole party. He just took it all in. Relaxed is good. No panic attacks, no dropping to the ground in anger or frustration. He sat nicely next to his Papa, drank his milkshake(s) and I think, had a very nice time. I was able to make a Celebration Chocolate Cake and have it taste fine in spite of its not wanting to rise very well. We have amazing friends with hilarious kids. I think it went off well. Everyone got fed and most people were able to escape with their kids **just** before they melted down.

It has been a hard month for me. September is always very hard. We normally vacation at the end of August, so we are generally unprepared for the first days of school, and all of the anticipation of "the perfect trip to Hawaii" or wherever is now replaced with the more solid memory of how difficult it is to travel with our children. Then there are new shoes, and a new bus schedule (and a new driver), the weather is funky, some days cool, the next day 90 degrees, and I am always wearing sandals in the rain and knee-high boots in the heat.

September brings the feeling that I have once again left so many projects undone from the summer, that I have failed my kids because I didn't do more...museum hopping, pool play, picnicking, beach sand sifting or camping.

And then Jake's birthday is upon me, and I have no plans. No plans because my son doesn't remind me three times daily for a month that his birthday is coming, as so many other children his age will do. So his day sneaks up on me and then it is here, and I am smacked in the face with the fact that seven years have gone by. SEVEN years and this is where we are. And believe me, we are in a great, great place filled with new development and better eye contact, and wonderful things. But I apparently continue to think, somewhere in my mind, that Jake will be growing out of his --Autism, CP, ADHD, panic disorder-- any day now. So there I am on September 24th, a week before his birthday trying to shove all of my expectations back into the bag and tie it up again, more tightly than before, because it is so unfair to Jake, and to me.

So I tried very hard this year, though it was still last minute, to do something for Jake, and I did figure out that it is better to do something small and manageable, knowing that Jake might enjoy himself. Much better idea than spending a gazillion dollars on something where we may not have success. We got the little banquet room attached to his favorite burger and fry joint and invited some of the people we care so much about...some of the people who seem to care so much about us.

It was fantastic, and noisy, and filled with french fries and milkshakes. And I have now baked the cupcakes for Jake's party at school tomorrow. And tonight I will turn the calendar so that a fresh October page shines upon our wall.

Happy Birthday Tiny Man.
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