Olivia's first birthday is Monday. And as I have already told you I am unwilling to spend much on toys, I had, as of Saturday, not purchased a present one.
I am funny about the first year milestone. I comprehend it is a big one, momentous, substantial. I am aware that you only have one one, that children must be made to feel special, and that I should take precious photographical documentation. And I know that one year ago she was lifted out of my midsection while I, having spent the last nine months vomiting every ten minutes, dreamed that in just a few hours I would be hungry enough to eat a meal that I would only know once. So it dawns on me that my reluctance to throw a party that, as in the case of one of Eric's friends and first time parents, the child comes riding in on an enormous stuffed elephant on wheels, is based on some selfishness. Because that first year (and the first one only), the real person that party is for is me. Now lest you descend upon me with hateful comments about my narcissism, or send out those pesky CPS minions, let me promise you that birthdays number two and on get full attention.
Olivia has grown, surely, and achieved so much. And as I have written about before (ad nauseum you're thinking), I am happy to give her the world and feel no competition that now the world I'm prepared to hand her is in fact, already her oyster and she will have no need to wrestle it from me. But the celebration of this year, these twelve months, belongs more to Eric, Jake and me than it does to O. Jake has been an amazing big brother, much more so than I anticipated. And Eric has been a true co-parent and trooper, while making me want to kill him only every third or fourth day. And I...well, I have just been sick. Either sick when she was in me, or dramatically sleep deprived while she took eight months to pull a full nighter, or having migraines, or appendicitis, or....well, you get the picture. Much like looking forward to eating again after Olivia's birth, I am anticipating a day very soon where I can have a day go by without a medical bill in the mail.
Today, unfortunately, I suddenly got inspired. But it was too late to order this, or this, or even this (hey, I would let her borrow them). We have a cake for her tomorrow, and a couple of small presents purchased by Eric, and lots of hugs and kisses for her to writhe away from. But on her actual birthday, Monday, Eric is out of town on business. And I might just get a sitter and take Jake out. I think it might be novel to celebrate his one year of Excellent Big Brother-ness. And it would serve a dual purpose. It also gives Olivia some decent fodder for the inevitable stories about my parenting she'll be reciting to her therapist.