T’s first birthday was interesting. S could actually take the day off back then, back in the dark ages of simply 1 eon-ic year ago when he also came home for lunch. Every. Single! Day. We took T to an indoor playground and paid for that later by having a sick baby for the rest of the holiday season and into the New Year. That evening, we presented T with a pint-sized birthday cake he scream-cried about because of the lit candle. Then S and I argued because S didn’t want him to eat cake and have the then unspoiled-by-sugar or french fries tot experience a first sugar high when we all so desperately needed sleep. Me? I wanted a photo and argued that since caveman days babies have eaten a first birthday cake with everyone surviving the damn sugar business. S slammed a door for the first time since I knew him as we experienced our first fight since T’s birth. And I was like, yeah you do that, buddy, you go ahead and SLAM THAT DOOR WHILE I BREASTFEED OUR CHILD AND GET UP 25,000 TIMES DURING THE NIGHT AND—S reappeared and we made up and agreed not to give the kid any cake since he was terrified of it anyway. I think we were relieved to go to bed, even though it was another night of broken sleep.
This year, T couldn’t wait to get his fingers—literally—into his birthday cake. He would have rolled in it if we’d let him, slept with it, slept on it. It was a beautiful thing to witness and a scary thing and what you’ve seen in movies and on YouTube and discovered featured on mommy blogs incessantly and suddenly it was our turn to live it. And not only did we live every single moment so passionately we almost forgot to take pictures, but—we enjoyed the whole experience. Not a door slammed in the house. Not a concerned word was uttered about the wrongness of putting a kid on a sugar high. We didn’t fuss and quibble and relate horror stories about hives or chocolate-seizures and we didn’t mention the possibility of a sleepless night. We. Just. Lived.
We’ve come a long way, baby.