Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Eye of the Storm

Today is April 28th. You know what today is? The Day Between the Birthdays.

Brett, my brother, and I had just a day apart from our birthdays. Well, 2 years and 363 days. I'm October 11th, and he's October 13th, and man oh man, there hath no sin committed by my mother greater than forcing Brenda to share a party with Brett. Well, at least until I grew up and saw the convenience of it. When he and I were little, it made even more sense; it's not like we went to school yet, so all of our friends were from church, and therefore, friends with both of us. Yet I hated it all the same. I specially remember one birthday in particular. It was a rare birthday in which my parents bought a store-made cake (Mom usually made our cakes) and it was split right down the middle, decorated in two themes, one for him... one for me.

He played peewee football, so his side had little football players all over it with goal posts and everything. Made sense... he was a little football player.

My side was done in Halloween, with witches. Made sense, right... since I was a little... wait a minute!! *indignant pause inserted here*

I don't remember many shared birthdays after that, and please do not get me wrong here, in fact, if I'd been Mom, I'd forced shared birthdays forever.

I can say that because I find myself in the same situation, but instead of just three years apart, my two are SIX YEARS apart. And well... (sighs) Okay, I admit it: it's my fault their birthdays are only separated by one day.

Little Miss Carly Victoria was born five days late, induced on April 29th, 1994. YAY! Pizza anyone? (Inside story). Then, six years later, I was in the most horrific pregnancy ever, and having 5 pregnancies, I can say that. So the doctor gave me two dates in which to induce Baby #3: April 27th, or May 5th.

Well... in hindsight, being the Beast that hindsight IS, I should have held out for May 5th, but the pain got the best of me, so on April 27th, 2000, Sydney Elizabeth burst forth into the world.

So April 28th is the Day Between.

I've tried pretty hard since Syd was born not to "share" the birthdays. Unfortunately, Syd came home from the hospital on Carly's 6th birthday, and of course, people in their sweetness and ignorance told Carly she got a new baby sister for her birthday. Well Carly didn't ASK for a new baby sister -- she just wanted a Barney video or Barbie or cash to hide in her room (another inside story). So after that, I did my best to keep the birthdays as individual as the girls themselves.

Then this year came.

My goal is to always give the weekend before the birthdays to Sydney, and the weekend afterward to Carly. For traveling family (like Mom and Dad, plus friends, like Margaret and company) this doesn't always mean you get the visit ON the birthday because it's a bit to travel two weekends in a row. But this year is unique. The weekend after the birthdays, on Friday, Carly and Sydney and me and a few girl scouts all head to Girl Scout Camp at Texlake in Austin to camp in treehouses, so there's no way to party the weekend after.

So we partied the weekend before. Combined.

We had about 25 people here. Shandie came up from Texas State (a 2 hours drive), Mom and Dad and Margaret and Charlie and Cari all came down from Ft Worth (a 2.5 hours drive). Neighbors came over for the cookout (about a 20 second drive in Cameron), and Sydney had NO. IDEA. AT. ALL.

I'd told her last year that from now on, all birthdays were family only. No more friends invited who never show up and never RSVP (so irksome). So she thought there was NOTHING. In fact, her father told me the following:

Sydney to her dad: Can we buy me some party favors?
Brian: Why?
Sydney: Because Mom said no more parties, but if I can buy some favors, at least it'll FEEL like my birthday.

Guilt much, Sydney? Geeze, child.
Thankfully, Brian knew of the plans already made and did not give in to the favors.

Instead, Sydney walked into the backyard to hear everyone say SURPRISE and get showered with gifts and love. It was also for Carly, but she knew about it, and didn't seem to mind sharing it with Sydney.

At least this one time...
So Happy Decade Old for Sydney Elizabeth and Happy Sweet Sixteen to Carly Victoria. I love you both more than you will ever realize until you're blessed with your own beautiful daughters. (In 30 years or so, of course.)

As for Brenda, Happy April 28th -- my day of nothingness.

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