Growing Strong at 1: The Birthday Party is Coming

This is the Part Where You Think You’re Going to Be Different From Everyone Else But You End up Throwing a Party Anyway


“No fancy and expensive first birthday party that she won’t even remember,” I declared to my husband before the Bear was born, “let’s use the money instead for a trip to Japan, which she won’t remember either but will be a unique experience for a first birthday.”

We had it all planned out. We would not fall prey to the first birthday trap of going all out for a party the celebrator would not even remember. No pre-birthday studio pics. No stressful nights party planning and looking for a clown.


Now, in theory, it all sounded good. We would go against the norm, we would be rebels in our own way. We, a husband and wife team of introverts who prefer small groups of friends to big parties. But …

We realized soon enough that the Bear loves people. She draws her energy from interacting with big groupsShe loves parties. If you can imagine a pair of semi-introverts with the life of the party in tow, socializing the heck out of fastfood restaurants and parties, you’ll have an idea of how amazed we are at how easily she navigates social situations. When she eats, she has to be surrounded by a LOT of people, preferably clapping and cheering her on. We hear strangers react in amazement when she smiles and/or waves at them. Nowadays, she hardly stays at home – she hangs out with her cousins next door and only goes home to take a shower and nap.

She can’t stay cooped up at home for long – she will in no uncertain terms make her displeasure known and will throw a fit if you don’t take her someplace new. In fact, on our solo Sundays together, we have to bring her to densely populated places like fastfood restaurants and malls because she MUST see a lot of people, otherwise we will end up with a very grumpy and bored Bear.

So while her father and I are not really into big social gatherings, we ended up throwing a party for the one person who loves it the most.

Continue reading “Growing Strong at 1: The Birthday Party is Coming”