When Bridget gets an invitation to a birthday party, my first response is no freaking way are we going. Of course I get that she is being invited by her friends, those who know her from school and want her to attend. Even with continued successes I still worry that she will not act appropriately or become overwhelmed or not participate. She proves me wrong every freaking time.
This weekend she was invited to a birthday party that was going to be held at a local gym. My first thought was Bridget does not do organized sports. At all. Heck she has trouble following a two-step direction, forget having to follow along when there are other kids around. I never want her to ruin a friend’s party so I hesitantly asked the mom if she would rather we not attend. Our feelings would not be hurt. Her response?
Kerri, all the kids are going to be out of control. She will fit right in!
We went to the party and…she had a blast. Did she do the obstacle course? Not really, but she had fun doing it her way. She adapted the the obstacles and handled them in a way that was fun for her, never caring that she couldn’t jump like her classmates. As her friends shot hoops on the basketball court, she cheered them on and tried to mimic them.
She was heard shouting, COME ON! To her friends and hysterically funny on the rope swing. She climbed the bars and reached the top of the climbing wall. All on her own.
The only trouble arose when it was time for cupcakes. My girl LOVES her cupcakes and did not quite understand why she was limited to one. She sat like a princess on a throne under balloons and watched her friend open his gifts. He proclaimed it was the “best birthday ever”. I’m so glad that despite my fear I went to the party and allowed Bridget to just be a kid at a party.
I know that I will once again be faced with panic at a party invitation. But I also know that Bridget will continue to prove me wrong. And that is one defiance that is more than rewarding.