Finally, a Real Birthday Party for My Daughter

It seems like such a silly thing: a birthday party for a child. I've thrown them before and I'll throw them again.

My daughter's, though, it's special. What kills me about it is that I've never been able to properly throw her a party.

Let me back up a bit.


My daughter turns 3 in a couple of weeks, which, in and of itself, isn't a huge thing. I mean, I like 3-year-olds better than 2-year-olds, but it's not like I've been counting down the moments or anything. She's a great kid at any age.

What's special, though, is that this year is the first year I'm throwing her a proper birthday party and I'm really excited. It sounds kinda dumb, because I'm all too aware that she probably won't remember it, but she was born very sick and the doctors doubted that she'd even survive. Her actual day of birth was spent in the NICU, where we learned that she had been born with a rare, usually fatal birth defect called an encephalocele. As a nurse, I was understandably concerned that she might not make it out of the hospital alive.

Unfortunately, those days and weeks in the hospital have given me a pretty bad case of PTSD. That means that her birthday has always been a personal trigger for some pretty horrible flashbacks and anxiety. That just sucks for both of us.

As I'm getting ready to throw the kid a party, the joke's on me. I realize that while I budgeted properly for Christmas, I didn't budget for her birthday. Now, I know parties can be done on the cheap, and I'll do it, but I'd love to buy the kid a pony (I promised her one before her brain surgery) and shout from the rooftops that she, my daughter, is ALIVE. I want the world to take notice of her, see. 

So next year, I'm going to save up so that I can throw a party fit for a princess.

Because she's here, dammit, and she should be celebrated.

Any tips for throwing an awesome Candy Land themed kid's party on the cheap?

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