Thursday, November 7, 2013

The Birthday Party

Little Miss M will be eight years old next week. This is a big day for me. That day, eight years ago, is one I will never ever forget. It was six weeks before her due date; I was really sick, and the doctors said she had to be born immediately. The Husband was at work, three hours away and the rest is, as they say, history! But, really that's how Little Miss M does thing. She does them in her own way and on her very own timeline. If I could do this my way, I would hang streamers and balloons from the rafters. I would blast music and hire every single entertainment personality I could think of. I would pack the house to the rafters, because this is a big day; a huge day and a cause for extreme celebration. In reflection, I've done this. I've had parties with Elmo and so many guests that they were literally sitting on windowsills.

This was before I understood the needs and wants of Little Miss M. Those were the days when I would be so upset because Little Miss M would be curled up in her room, while an elaborate party was commencing in her honor. It took about five years before I realized that Little Miss M was actually able to tolerate smaller parties that she helped plan. It wasn't what I had pictured in my head, but honestly, it was just as good. Actually the new parties were even better, because Little Miss M was happy!

For her eighth birthday, Little Miss M expressed the desire for a party. She also asked to go to New York City, to visit a place she's seen in movies. I am so excited to take her to the city. We will meet The Husband at work, because Little Miss M wants to see where he works. It will be the two of us with Little Miss M. We will meet a dear family friend later in the day. Little Miss M loves Eloise. We will take her to the Plaza Hotel to have a "Rawther Fancy Tea Party". As a note, I must say that there are kind and understanding people in the world. I contacted the staff at the Plaza Hotel to talk about Little Miss M's special needs and her special diet. They were happy to work with me and are allowing us to bring her special diet food. They will be making it a special event without, hopefully, setting off any of her sensory triggers.

Little Miss M has trouble walking so we will take a cab when necessary. We intend to head to FAO Schwartz, and we hope the excitement of being there doesn't cause too much over-stimulation. We haven't given Little Miss M a definite schedule, as we are hoping we can encourage some flexibility throughout the day. We have called this her surprise day, and surprisingly she's very excited. She has yet to become fixated on every minute detail, which is an amazing accomplishment in and of itself.

We are also doing a very small family party in the comforts of our own home. It will only be the people that Little Miss M is most comfortable with. She will share the birthday celebration with my mom, for both their birthdays. She is truly looking forward to it. I've encouraged her to help me plan the party. We went to PartyCity where she picked out Strawberry Shortcake decorations. Her one request is that I figure out ice cream sandwiches that are sugar free -- I need to get on that!

I'm hoping the party is a good celebration and truly representative of the celebration that Little Miss M deserves. I've prepared myself that she may still end up in her bedroom, taking frequent breaks, but really that's perfectly okay. How do you make birthdays and other celebrations just right for your kids? Leave a comment below to let us know.

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Amanda loves planning parties, big and small, and tries to make the days as special as she feels her kids are.


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