Keaton will be turning a big-boy-three in just a few dodos; and this past weekend, we celebrated his milestone.
Lately, he’s been heavily invested in dinosaurs, so for this year’s birthday, I transformed his obsession into a rawr-some party to remember, with plenty of dino pals as invitees.
He knew he was going to be the centre of attention going into his birthday weekend; after all, he’d just received a big boy haircut — bye bye bowl cut — and he’d been hearing us talk about all the excitement surrounding his cake and balloons, and his family’s visit.
On this full day of celebration, my heart ached less. I felt grateful seeing my little chou grow so big. With his new haircut, he looked unrecognizable — he looked like a big kid! How handsome he is. And more importantly, how principled and honourable he’s grown to be, with so much love in his heart. His thirst for adventure is limitless. We’re so proud of him.
This is a little boy with so much depth. He was indeed over the moon with the dinosaur-themed birthday and birthday cake, and with all the cool gifts he’d received. But most of all, he deeply appreciated the simplicity and power of love and connection. The greatest gift to him, at the depths of it all, was really his family’s visit.
He’d been missing his aunts, uncle, and cousins greatly, even Snow, his doggie BFF, who’s a comical match to his hyperactivity. Watching the two- and four-legged troublemakers chase each other around was hilarious, for they kept each other entertained.
I could tell how safe and at peace he felt with everyone, and how healing it was to be surrounded by his family: he was able to play calmly with his toys and exist amongst everyone without a fuss, which isn’t characteristic of him on a regular day at home.
Keaton may be hyperactive and need constant stimulation and novelty, which includes expelling his energy regularly, but more than that, there was something much deeper that we always knew: he craved social interaction and friends. Many variables made it so that he doesn’t have many playmates — we feel a lot of guilt — but we try the best we could, with what we have, to give him such opportunities.
It was heartbreaking for him to learn that everyone was leaving when it felt like they’d just arrived. He sat on the stairs and for the first time, with his new haircut, he looked like an older boy, rather than a toddler, who was sad. It was both a beautiful and a sad sight to behold.
We reassured him that his aunts, uncle, and cousins would meet him again. Days, weeks, and months feel like an eternity to a kid. But the next reunion will be ever so sweet. Hopefully soon.