One year Birthday Party- Dream AND Disaster!

 

Picture this:

About 45 people standing/sitting/slouching/leaning around three rooms including the kitchen. The buzz of conversation is so loud and it echoes off my hardwood floors. Half the side is Italian and the other half/third is Egyptian with a sprinkle of French, Canadian and Other. The matriarchs and my father-in-law have ceased the oven and are avidly heating beautifully prepared dishes. There is Cannelloni alongside the Goulash and cake alongside the Baklava. The crowd is friendly and all the while, the object and reason for their gathering is skillfully crawling between their unsuspecting limbs. My baby might only be turning one but this fete reviled the Film Festival in both fun and decor. With a theme like Dr. Seuss, really, how can you go wrong?

There were decals on the walls and cool looking balloons floating around. There was delicious fare (as mentioned earlier) and a Keurig that boasted an array of flavoured coffees and teas. This was a time to be jovial, a time to sing, a time for me to record all with my camera so I can prove my superior capacity as an attentive and wonderful parent!

That party was supposed to be over at 4 pm (started at noon) so that my next party for friends and their children can start at 5 pm. However, the last person from party one left at 5 pm and the first couple from party two arrived promptly at 5 pm. Thank goodness, upon the insistence of my all-knowing and always-right mother, we had cleared the remains of the earlier feast and set the table for the next party with a host of new appetizers, re-heated home-made platters and succulent finger-foods. We were ready to receive our new batch of guests.

My baby had decided to abandon ship at 1:30 and didn’t wake again until 3:00 which helped because I needed to attend to the unending stream of questions, requests and concerns as I tried to serve out my sentence, ahem, I mean act as a gracious hostess!

At 5, I decided it was time to feed my daughter linner (lunch and dinner together) because she needed to eat apparently and I may have forgotten to feed her in the crazy frenzy. She was happy and content with the lull and quiet for 15 minutes until more friends arrived with their offspring. The sheer number of kids ranging from the age of 0 (less than a year old) to nine years of age had me wishing for the earlier party with the boisterous and loving Italian/Egyptian family members.

There were screeches, yelps, whining, crying, screaming, yelling, banging and some other unidentifiable, somewhat inhuman sounds coming out of the playroom. My friends are amazing and I love them and they were always watching out for their kids but boy, it was more than evident that I NEEDED to get carpets installed to block some of the reverberating sounds. Conversations were also loudly held but everyone seemed to be having a great time. There was enough food, change tables, diapers, Band-Aids, cupcakes and toys for everyone to enjoy. Gone were the days where I needed to only worry about set-up then I can have a glass of wine or a cocktail. I realized I needed to be constantly on my toes because of the number of crawling babies in the area. So literally, on my toes.

The last small group of friends left at 10:30 and my baby was still up because God forbids she misses ANY of the action! We said our goodbyes and once the house was empty, I gave her a bottle and I am not kidding when I tell you she was asleep as soon as she began sucking on the latex nipple. She was gone within seconds and I don’t mean lightly dozing, I mean- SNAP- gone! Deep asleep, snoring- gone. It was actually quite funny to watch.

It took the hubby and me two hours to clean the house and then it was time for bed at 12:30 am. It was an exhausting and exhilarating experience but would I ever do it again?

Absolutely. Not. Never. Ever.

That’s what Chuck ‘E’ Cheeses and grandparents are for.

Enough said.

Smartignani

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Stop the madness!

Stop the madness!

Stop the madness!

I blinked and before you know it my little baby is turning ONE! What?! Whoa!

And…and…and…I am back to work full-time while she gets dropped off by daddy to daycare- I know right. INSANE!

We also took off for 11 days to Europe and left here with family (see earlier blog for context). How was it you ask? AWFUL!

Ok. I really loved being with my hubby and I love Europe but the constant feeling of melancholy and sadness stemming from missing her was unbearable. Half way through the cruise I felt a sudden and strange urge to abandon ship and swim across the Mediterranean to the sandy, polluted shores of Lake Ontario just to see and hold my baby girl. It was INSANE how much I missed her. I missed her scent, her voice, her expressions, her movements, her eyes, her smile, her drool, her farts and even poopy diapers. I missed it all. I kept texting home to see if she learned to walk or talk or giggle or stand unassisted. I was like a mad woman and it must have seemed to my family as if I don’t trust them but in truth, I was just feeling God awful for leaving. So how was my trip? How about you answer that!

I got back and I imagined a reunion with Chariot of fire playing in the background, slow mo running towards each other (well she crawls, I run) and she is finally saying “mama” and meaning me (she calls everything mama some days). Reality: She was napping. I waited by her crib. She opened her eyes. Smiled and tried to go back to sleep. I carried her out of the crib and kissed her until she started screaming. My husband gave her hugs and kisses as well. We go downstairs and I could swear she crawled from me to him and back almost 50 times. Laughing each way. It was better than I imagined. Magical. Almost made me want to leave her again just to relive it- almost but not quite!

Back to the madness happening right now. She still only has two teeth. It’s almost like she just got lazy and decided two were enough. She speed crawls as if she’s in an Olympic event except my daughter likes to produce extremely unfeminine grunting noises as she moves. So attractive. She also says uh-oh like it’s nobody’s business. She drops something “Uh-oh”, she is about to drop something “uh-oh”, she loses a toy “uh-oh”, she looks at her daddy’s laptop and “uh-oh”. The other day she fell over as she was trying to stand and… you guessed it- “Uh-oh”. So cute! I love it.

I am missing out on her development because I went back to work and I hate it. My husband wakes up in the morning and feeds her breakfast then takes her to daycare. He wrote me an e-mail telling me that she learned to no uh-uh (no) through pursed lips when he tried to feed her an unfavourable cereal. That made me laugh and cry. I laughed because I could just see her trying to push daddy’s buttons and I cried because I wasn’t there taking 15 million photos and a video as well. I know that going back to work was a necessary decision and that most likely I will try for another child and go on mat leave again but this sucks.

High points: I enjoy waking up in the morning and wearing my grown-up clothes with real accessories and dangly earrings and everything! I even wear perfume and heels! Dude…how cool is that?

Low point: I really envy the daycare provider for Julia because she gets to do the full-time job I desperately vie for!

So the verdict: live another day ad enjoy the remaining hours of the day with my baby girl after I pick her up from daycare. Two points here: one, I LOVE the smile on her face when she sees me and two, she makes it so much fun to leave work because I really look forward to picking her up.

I love my co-workers and they have been so sweet and caring. They each sense my struggle to be back at work. They ask if I am ok and they ask me about Julia. It’s like I’m a recovering addict and they’re trying to support me in quitting the habit. I guess in a way I am addicted to her. I am just glad that she is content and well-cared for while I contribute to society!

Next blog– a one year old’s birthday party (dream or disaster) STAY TUNED!

By the way, Nice in France- GORGEOUS! I really hope we go there again one day to vacation and not just as a port of call!

Good night,

SMartignani

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