You did it, parents! You made it through the first year of your child’s life! You are surviving on less sleep than you ever thought imaginable, except in college of course. So why does the first birthday bring up so many emotions? How can it not? You have spent the last year of your life putting your child first, his/her needs, worrying about how much they are pooping/sleeping/eating, googling things like sleep regression and rashes. But guess what, it was all worth it, mostly… We could all use more sleep and time to shower. But, alas, it’s time to plan the party!
Whether you go all out or stay low key, here a few things to remember when preparing for the first birthday celebration.
- Feeling overly emotional is completely normal during this time. A lot has changed in the past year, and life is totally different. I was an emotional mess, and I kept trying to push it back down, which wasn’t helpful. Finally, I just allowed myself to get emotional about all that we have accomplished over the last year. Toddler-hood here we come!
- This first birthday party is something that your little one will not remember so try not to stress out over details and perfection. I chose a time that worked well with nap schedules and made sure it was easy set up and clean up. Think paper plates and food delivery services!
- Celebrate all month long! You deserve it! Plan a night out with your mama friends for a few drinks. Cheers, ladies! I was able to go meet two of my favorite mom friends for wine and French fries for 2 AHHHHHmazing hours after I put my son to bed one night the week of his birthday.
- Take time to thank all of the close family and friends who have been there throughout the past year. It truly takes a village, and no one can do it alone. Having a support system is key to your own sanity. Write a little thank you from son/daughter to those who have made life a little easier. They will feel appreciated, and everyone can use a kind note now and then. I ordered magnets with a few photos from my son’s first year to mail along with his notes for a few special family/friends.
- Be flexible! Things do not always go as planned with children. My son actually fell asleep in my lap after we blew out the candles! Instead of being irritated that he was missing part of his own party, I held him tight and hummed our good night song while I ate delicious cake in his honor.