Athena 6th Birthday

Nothing is more expensive and quicker than fleeting time. Lately, Athena keeps saying that she can’t wait to be an adult. So that she can go to work and help mommy and daddy. My heart ached and told her, “No baby, please do not wish that time move faster for you. Because I can’t keep up and am not willing to chase it. I want it to go as slowly as possible.”

If you think 6 years of car loan finance is a long time to settle, put it into a child’s growing age perspective. Then you know how fast it is. That’s what I always told Botak. Be it Athena, a car, and a housing loan, when it involves time, nothing takes forever.

I always heard and saw people around me keep saying how fast Athena grow. It was not long ago she was still a fat, round baby. And now she is 6 years old. My heart aches every time I read or hear that. Yes, it is fast. She grew so fast that I keep thinking about the number of hugs and kisses I gave her is not enough. Like other moms, I do keep staring at her baby pictures on my phone and feel sad when I see how big she is now in front of me.

She is a big girl now and started to ask if there will be a birthday party for her. Can she invite her friends over? She started to understand it after attending kindergarten and receiving a few birthday party invites. Before this, it was just the three of us, a little cake, birthday presents from Mommy and Daddy, and a fun trip for her birthday week.

I didn’t plan for a big birthday bash. Mike and I just moved to Kingman, Arizona and we know no one here or have any relatives. Athena barely has a close friend, and she is still working on it at her new school. I wish we were still in Sparks. It will be nice since I knew a few mommies from school and Athena has quite a lot of friends too.

But this year is her first celebration as a big girl with grandma and grampa as well as her aunt Kim and Uncle Bush. She did celebrate her first birthday with Grandma and Grampa but, she doesn’t have a recollection of that so, so it didn’t count.

Plus, I am a paper crafter, and my daily job is making personalized party decorations for a living. You should see Athena’s look in her eyes every time she saw the cake topper that I made for other kids. So, a birthday party is. I personalized her birthday invitations, party favors, and cake topper, and bake and decorate the cake. She asked for a Sonic and Rainbow Dash theme. The two main characters she is currently into.

It’s kind of frustrating when it comes to finding a venue for Athena’s birthday. Kingman is a small city so you can’t expect mini golf or zoo, or a theme park. I’ve been googling for months and decided just do it at the playground. Luckily that Kingman has a few decent recreational parks/playgrounds nearby so we decided to go with Centennial Park.

The fee is $25 for 4 hours of pavilion usage. We can bring our portable grill too. But need to do reservations by walk-in into the recreation center’s office. No problem.

Then I realized that her birthday is on the same weekend as the resurrection of Jesus Christ – Easter, which is the top 5 most celebrated holidays in the USA after Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Independence Day. No birthday can top that unless you are Beyonce or POTUS. LOL.

So we didn’t expect many will come and yes, only 3 responded. Ok lah dari tak ada langsung. On the party day, one of the kids was unable to attend due to a stomach bug. So down to two. So kiranya selagi kami duduk di USA, tak ada kawan non Christian dan Melayu berdekatan, begini lah rupa birthday Athena sampai bila bila. LOL. Unless we shift the birthday celebration to a week before or after Easter.

Pernah dengar juga ada orang kata, kesian budak budak yang birthday jatuh pada Hari Krismas. Siapa nak datang birthday party time hari Krismas. Mak Bapak pun spends more on Christmas presents. Even my birthday party items orders plunged by 85% in December. Tak ada sapa nak order cake topper ok. Everybody is busy with Christmas preparations. 

Nasib baik Athena tak sedih pun. What matter to her is she got her birthday party. Surrounded by the ones who truly love her. Plus, she is unable to move much with the cast on her leg. She was already not so happy about that.

It’s true that when there is a birthday party, mom is the most tired person arranging everything. From planning, and decorating to baking. That’s why my little business in paper crafting is named “partybymommy”. It’s representing the time and hard work all mommies put into making a birthday party, memorable. Mike handled drinks and BBQ stuff. But since only 2 adult guests came, so he’s not busy. 

Party tu tak lama pun. Kek pun potong potong dan bagi mak mak budak yang datang tu bawa balik as well plus the cupcakes. The rest macam family picnic lah. Kebetulan grampa Athena lama tak keluar rumah makan makan di bawah cahaya matahari angin sepoi sepoi gila.

Oh, Aku tak tahu lah whether it is a culture or individual, Athena’s friends asked if it was okay for them to get Athena to open their present in front of them. So ada lah sesi buka hadiah juga tapi tak banyak lah sebab dua bag sahaja kan. The other guest (mom) texted me to meet up after school on Tuesday to hand over the present they got for Athena. Aku pun bawa lah juga party favors bagi dia.

Anyway, aku berharap sangat Athena dapat merasa kemeriahan majlis sebagaimana kita orang Melayu bila meraikan kawan kawan dan makan makan. Aku berdoa satu hari nanti Athena dapat sambut birthday dekat Malaysia dan jumpa kawan kawan mak dia yang sangat ambil berat dan sayangkan dia. Kawan kawan  yang sentiasa ada dengan mak dia sejak Athena berusia 1 hari. Itu sahaja impian aku.

Takat ini sahaja nukilan memori hari lahir Athena yang ke 6. Actually aku sebak masa tulis pembukaan post kali ini



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