In a perfect world, we would be celebrating Mira’s first birthday today, the 21st. But the little diva decided that she wasn’t going to comply with some arbitrary due date, and instead waited another six days to make her appearance.
And while her actual birthday is next Tuesday, we’re having her party this Saturday, because adult schedules don’t always match up with baby birthdays. This will be the first party where Cordy is not a focus or THE focus of the celebration.
We’ve been dealing with some jealousy again from Cordy. Cordy’s recent hugs look more like take downs. Mira is practicing standing and taking her first tentative steps, but any cheer to encourage her ends with Cordy doing something to get the focus on her. Like pretending to fall down and “hurt” herself. Or just tripping Mira and laughing wildly.
And while I understand that she wants attention too, that doesn’t mean I’m going to completely ignore my younger daughter. I think she expects us to be all oh, Cordy, you’re the only one we care about! This other kid? Eh, just kick her if she gets in the way. She’s a big bore to be around anyway – can’t even walk yet! Don’t worry, we’ll only cheer YOUR accomplishments!
It’s getting old.
So when planning this party, my mother suggested, “I’m going to bring a gift for Cordy. You might consider getting her some gifts, too.”
“But it’s not her birthday, mom. She’ll get lots of attention when it’s her birthday. Isn’t Mira allowed to have her own day?”
“Cordy needs to know that she’s special, too.”
I can see her position, sort of. I mean, Cordy got presents when Mira was born. Sort of a peace offering of here, this little screaming being is about to usurp your power and guarantee you’re not the center of attention 100% of the time from here on out, but here’s a cute little stuffed animal and t-shirt to make it all better, so go give your new sister a kiss. She’s had to deal with a lot of change since then, and seeing everyone spend a day lavishing attention and gifts on Mira could cause some hurt feelings, or a rebellion that I really don’t want to deal with.
But at the same time, I want Mira to have her own special time, too. I’ve heard the stories of younger siblings who felt like they never got enough attention because they always had another sibling to deal with. Cordy had nearly three years all by herself – two birthdays and three sets of Christmas, Hanukkah, and Easter to be the solo golden child. Mira will never have that. Shouldn’t her birthday be that one day where it’s all about her?
I was an only child, so I never had to deal with this issue. Well, I did, but not in the same way. My birthday and my mom’s birthday are a day apart on the calendar, so I never had a family birthday party that wasn’t a joint party. I never even had my own cake – it was always a shared cake.
So I need your help, oh friends in my little electronic box: do we give Cordy a present? Should we help ease her sibling jealousy and show her that even though the party is for Mira, she gets cake, presents, and attention too? Or do we tell her to suck it up and get over herself, because life’s not fair and occasionally you have to step into the shadow and let someone else have their moment?
What do I do? Should I find some way to recognize Cordy at Mira’s birthday party? Or do we put the focus on Mira alone?