a day in your life

To Paul: this is how you spent the day you turned 7 years old.

OMG, it is FINALLY here. Your birthday. The greatest day ever anticipated. You’re up at 5:30, not wanting to miss a moment.

Dad runs to HEB to provide you the breakfast of your dreams (bacon is involved). You sit in my lap and┬áthink out loud about the amazing day in store while Annie processes┬áher “someone else’s birthday” ennui. At 8:30, Granddad and Susu come over for a first round of present opening. It’s a giant sword from them and a remote-controlled car from Gobka and Gamma. Very on point. Annie has also channeled her angst into crafting and wrapped you a beautiful gift of candy and art.

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You barely have time to sword fight before it’s time for the main event, your trampoline party! This one deserves a few pictures:

Annie vs Paul
Annie vs Paul
Paul (determined) and BF Jaden (in flight)
Paul (determined) and BF Jaden (in flight)
the head table prepares for pie
the head table prepares for pie (left to right: Jaden, Wyatt, you, Shae, Lino and Pio)

It’s fun to watch you lead a pack of 8 little boys on a rampage. In your generosity, you have allowed invitations also for Annie’s BF Alex, dear family friends Eleanor and Riley, and two girls from school (Vera and Maya), so everyone has someone to play with. Aunt Camei is there; even your first-grade teacher comes.

At 1, just slightly past our time limit, we head home. We have waited to open the gifts from your friends—so now the bonanza begins. You tear into all of them, netting more cars, books, a laser tag set, a Bop It (surprise hit), more weaponry, and a bunch of other stuff.

And then it’s over. There’s nothing left to look forward to, maybe not ever, for the whole rest of your life. OH, the highs are high and the lows are low. “Sometimes,” you reflect, “the stuff that I wanted, when I get it, it’s not that cool.” Truth, my son. The lesson you want to draw is that you need to think harder about what it is you ask for, and maybe get some different stuff. I try to lay some Buddhist wisdom on you about desire and suffering, but you are not having it.

Your spirits lift a bit playing with Dad. At 4:30, you note you are actually really 7 now. We consult your birth certificate to confirm (yes, 4:31). Granddad and Susu join us for another slice of Susu’s lemon pie. They work on assembling Granddad’s new bike while you, Dad, and Annie turn the bike box into a pretty sweet convertible.

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Bedtime comes fast and is a blur. We are all so tired. Let’s assume we read a book, and fall asleep gratefully.

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