My Son’s Birthday Is Next Week: How Do We Celebrate in Isolation?
For an eight-year-old, having your birthday canceled can be pretty devastating.
Of course, there are so many more important things that are being affected by the coronavirus quarantine. People are out of work, businesses are shutting down and everyone is worried about their health. But if you're a kid, having your birthday canceled is pretty hard to comprehend.
Before we were made aware of the impact this would have on all of our daily lives my wife and I made plans for my son's party. He was very excited about getting together with his friends for an afternoon of pizza, laser tag, video games and cake. But as the news started to roll in and businesses started to close we had to prepare him for the worst.
Of course, the time came when we had to break the news. His birthday party was indefinitely postponed.
Obviously disappointed, my son has taken actually taken this much better than I expected. After coming to terms with knowing his birthday wouldn't be celebrated until a later date he hasn't complained once. It's humbling to see him more mature than those people whining about not being able to go to the bar on St. Patrick's Day.
Proud of our son's handling of the situation, it soon occurred to us that we really weren't prepared for his birthday in isolation at all. As parent's we just couldn't let the day go by without being somewhat special. Would there be balloons? A cake? Presents?
Luckily we thought about decorations last week and added balloons, candles and other birthday necessities to our shopping list. But then we remembered his present. With Amazon now placing a priority on necessary items, would we be able to have something for him to open on his big day?
After some quick scrambling, we were able to get a few things delivered and plan on making some promises and an I.O.U. for that big present we just weren't able to go to the store to buy. While not being able to bring in cupcakes to his class, go out for that special birthday dinner or having the party he's been looking forward to is a bummer, we'll be doing our best to make the day as special as we can with whatever restrictions we have to deal with.
At the end of the day, being with your family that loves you is really the most important thing, and that's a lesson that my son will be forced to learn on his birthday. Perhaps that may turn out to be the best gift we could ever give him.