Chuck E. Cheese’s. The most generic of the generic, thoughtless of the thoughtless and same old of the same old. This is where Owen wanted to have his 5th birthday party. He has been telling us for months and I kept hoping it was a passing thought. It was not.
So we planned it- just the way Owen wanted it; Kris, Owen, Sydney and I. With little time to spare he also realized that he wanted one of his friends that he has known for his entire life, and our very first homeschooling friend to join us, too.
Kris and I were dreading it all week- the noise, the chaos, the lack of “specialness” for our beautiful boy’s birthday. We wanted him to have our traditional family party so that he could celebrate with everyone who loves him…
His excitement grew as the day neared and though secretly I kept hoping (nearly praying!) that he would change his mind, we found ourselves cashing in bills for tokens and drinking lemony sugar. Ugh!
But then this happened.
And I got it.
In all likelihood Owen will never remember the specifics of his birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese’s. He will not recall that he and I played skee ball or that his dad took the day off of work. Dancing with his friend to the music overhead will be somewhere within him, but not something he recalls.
Somehow though, with every part of me, I know that the smile caught in this photo will stay with him forever. Only reserved for the most applicable moments, the joy represented by his upturned mouth, has shaped his very soul.
This has shaped me, too. It is another reminder that my role is to support and trust Owen and that he is a little person who has ideas and knows just what he wants.