The Birthday Party.

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Last year’s birthday party was a sort of bonanza. A friend of mine even called it a ‘gala’. There was catering, there was a huge birthday cake, there was a photographer, we were dressed to the nines, I even sent out invitations and invited about 30 of our closest friends and family all with NT kids. It was great fun! The kids had a blast. I had arranged our garden to look like a playground with a trampoline, a slide, balls all around, little kiddie chairs and tables. I even ordered Goody’s for the little kids and gave out birthday favors. I had club music playing so that the adults had fun too and it wasn’t completely a kiddie party. I thought of everyone and every thing. I may’ve went a bit overboard. But all was worth it because my little boy had fun, and it showed! He was smiling and laughing and playing the whole entire time. I’ve always known that Panayioti is a party person. He enjoys birthday parties, especially his. He loves being sung to and all the attention that he receives. He just does.
This year I decided to go more low-key. I thought it would be more fair to have P’s 5th birthday party at his school surrounded by the people and kids he sees and communicates with the most. I ordered pizzas and made the cake myself. But I was nervous, mostly for Panayioti. Would he have fun, as much fun as he had last year? Sure, there was some crying involved, by other kids. Some kiddos don’t like seeing lit candles on cakes, and don’t really like hearing the birthday song being sung, some don’t like eating pizza, and others don’t eat anything at all. They were watched closely and taken care of by their teachers, they were prompted to do tasks and kept from taking sips from the cup of others, they were helped into their seats and gently kept still. But I think they had fun. One little guy actually approached me in the end completely on his own and hugged and kissed me. I still think of that moment and know that my presence there touched him and maybe the rest of the kids as well in a positive way. It’s a good idea to get ASD kids out of their comfort zones every now and then. At least, I think it is. These kids are super heroes, they really are.

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