Sunday was my boy’s 4th birthday. I had a harder time emotionally with this one than any other yet, I guess because four seems so much older than three. I feel like the first three birthdays came up and I “couldn’t believe” another year had passed… but at the same time, well, yes I could. We had four seasons and we had lots of milestones. He went from being a newborn to walking, or from walking to running around and saying short sentences, or from short sentences to full sentences and lots of sincere interests. It made sense.
It makes sense that we’ve come from three to four. He learned to ride his bike with no feet, started Awana, became obsessed with Toy Story, learned all his letters, got taller. Three to four makes perfect sense. But newborn to four? That seems crazy. It shocks me a little. How did that happen?
How did we get from that blurry night in the hospital—I remember picking him up out of the bassinet at 3am and somehow managing to nurse, and looking down at him and thinking I can’t believe he’s really here—to this place right here?! It went so fast. Too fast. And I hear it only gets faster, so that’s hard.
But still, it was such a great day. It was nothing special by a lot of people’s standards, but it was special and perfect for us.
Ryan and I sat up way too late Saturday night putting together weird paper puff things that slightly resembled Truffala trees, cutting out little paper decorations for the cake and a paper Lorax mask I found online, and tying a Spiderman balloon to his chair.
We woke up in the morning to a sweet little boy running into the room and saying, “It’s my birt-day! Thanks for decoratin’ for me!”
He saw the mask on the table so he climbed on something and got it, then came back into the room with it on his face. “I am the Lorax,” he giggled. “And I speak for the trees!”
The girls woke up a few minutes later and the day began. We had breakfast, read his new copy of The Lorax, got dressed and ready for the day, and hung around at home all morning. We ate lunch, headed to the library (his request), checked our books and then hurried to the movie theater.
We watched the newest Disneynature movie, Born in China (and saw a preview for next year’s… Dolphins!) and everything worked out even more smoothly than I’d expected. I imagined I’d probably miss a lot of the movie because I didn’t want to keep C in there if she was being loud… but she fell asleep in my arms right away and slept through the entire movie. B was so adorably impressed by the size of the “biiiiiig TV” but then promptly fell asleep sitting up in Ryan’s lap. A snuggled up to me and said, “I’m going to sit by you, Mommy, because I LOVE YOU!”
The movie started talking about motherhood and my heart just felt so insanely full. I had a baby snoring on my chest, my sweet birthday boy curled up to me, and a quick glance to my left showed my best friend in the whole world cuddling our other sleeping baby girl. It was one of those perfect moments where you know with absolute certainty that it just doesn’t get any better than this.
We went to a store after the movie and he used his birthday money to buy the Spiderman Duplos he’d been saving for, then spent the afternoon hanging out with the LEGOs or playing outside. We all told him our favorite thing about him, ate some pizza, ate birthday cake, and then finished the evening with presents, a special birthday prayer, and a Lorax movie night.
We didn’t have a party, the cake was kind of ugly, and the decorations were pathetic at best… but it was a perfect day any ways, filled with family time and love.