As my oldest daughter Natasha is having a Birthday this week and is turning ten, yes double digits, how did that happen! I have been thinking lately about the significance of celebrating a Birthday; sure it may be just another day on the calendar but should’t be cherished, after all the individual milestone will only every happen once in your life, in my daughter’s case she will only turn ten once.
When Natasha was born that first year went by very quickly, and before we knew it, we were planning her first Birthday, as this was our first child we had absolutely no idea how to throw a Birthday party for a one-year-old, but one thing I did know is that I wanted to make my daughter’s Birthday special and memorable…well maybe she wouldn’t remember the first one, but it would still be memorable for us as her parents.
So in addition to her party I wanted to do something with her on her Birthday, so I decided to take the day off of work and spend the entire day with my daughter, although as young as she was I don’t know if she understood that the day was all about her, but she was quite content to spend the day with her dad. It was very important to me early on to make sure my daughter knew that this was her special day.
What is interesting is that it turned into a tradition, and every year for the past ten, I have taken a day off of work and spent it with my daughter on her Birthday, we plan out what she wants to do ahead of time and we just spend the day together, sometimes its the toy store that gets her vote, sometimes the movie theatre and last year we decided on bowling, regardless what we do, its fun spending time together and my daughter is so thrilled that the day is all about her, it’s now something that she anticipates each year leading up to her Birthday.
As we had another child and eventually a third I have been sharing this tradition with them as well, so each year, each of the girls gets a day with dad on their Birthday to do what they wish, but more importantly to feel special for one day and to celebrate their day the way they want. So far the youngest has had five straight years of going to Chuck-E-Cheese, but that’s okay, that is exactly what she has wanted to do.
I find as adults we don’t always take the time to acknowledge our own Birthdays, when maybe we should instead of trying the forget the fact that we are getting older; sure it’s fun to go all out for milestone Birthdays like 30 or 40 but the in-between Birthdays are just as important and deserve to be celebrated too, even if it is just with a cupcake with a candle in it.
As for my oldest daughter, she has been planning her day with me for a few weeks now, so it should be fun to see what she has in store for us, as she gets older she may not want to spend her whole day with her old man, so I will cherish the Birthdays I get to spend with her while I can, and let her know that her Birthday is a special time and it should be celebrated.