FatherSon Ventures

Building a Relationship through Adventure

Turning Seven

Written By: Scot Butwell - Feb• 16•15

bday estab 2It was a magical and beautiful day. D turned seven, and he was more than excited about all the trimmings that come with a birthday. Cake. Presents. Balloons. Card. Party. And friends.

We celebrated D’s birthday three times. We had  cake and ice cream eat home on his birthday. His grandma took D out to a restaurant the next night, and we had a party with his friends on Saturday at My Gym.

This was his first party with friends, and we held off on a  birthday party in previous years because he didn’t have a lot of friends to invite and he would get too excited at other kids’ parties.

His first party was amazing, but what I will remember most of his turning seven turning is when he ran out the front door with three balloon strings trailing behind him on his birthday.

It was 8 p.m., and it was hard to get mad at him. His was full of joy from his cake, presents, balloons, and even the card. His joy reminded me of a passage from Doctor Zhivago:

Lara walked along the tracks following a path worn by pilgrims and then turned into the fields. Here she stopped and, closing her eyes, took a deep breath of the flower-scented air.

birthday establishingI am always amazed by how much joy D can extract from mundane objects, like three birthday balloons. Just a thin rubber bag of inflated air can aend him running out the door with joy.

It was contagious. I ran with him on the sidewalk and through the park with his balloons trailing us, and his joy transfused into my tired body.

Then came his birthday party.

A few weeks before his birthday, D mentioned inviting a friend to his birthday party as we took a nighttime walk in the park down the street from our home (except no birthday party has been planned yet).

birthday b and dBut the seed had been planted in my heart, and it was like God whispered in my ear to have a party for my son: with friends. To celebrate his birthday with kids who he become friends.

Some quick back story: He got way too excited at a pre-school classmate’s birthday party. That made birthdays problematic–either going to one or having a party for him.

Plus, to be honest, D had a lot more acquaintances than real friends. But he just completed a ten-week therapy program during which he’d made several new friends.

They played together every day during the therapy sessiions. And they became friends.

So I knew this was the year to have D’s first birthday party with friends, and although we didn’t have much time to reserve a venue, send out invitations and get  rsvps returned, I was committed to D’s first birthday party

bday bubbles

I knew everything would work out because D deserved to be celebrated, and despite the invitations being sent out late (D actually hand delivered a few), everyone was able to come.

It was a small party. Seven kids. It was the perfect size for D. A larger party would have been sensory overload. And, besides playing games and running around, D enjoyed being treated as royalty for the day.

bday v and d

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