She’s four years old today

R.’s birthday is today, she is four years old.  I realize that she is still a young person, but it seems so old at the same time.   From this point on, she will have spent more than half of her life as a person with autism, and in the presence of various therapists and professionals that the average child does not encounter.

I feel differently about this birthday.  I think in a way, I dreaded all the other birthdays.   It was like each birthday was a formal reminder of all the unmet milestones.   I don’t know when it happened, but recently I started feeling differently.  I’m actually kind of excited that my baby is turning four.  Sure I wish she could tell me what she wants for her birthday or if she would like a party or particular activity.   I could fill pages with all my questions and concerns.  This year I want to celebrate that I have known and loved the wonderful person who is my daughter for four years.    Every day I learn something more about her and also myself.

We had a small party at home, I just invited another autism family.  We got her a few balloons and they had the most fun with them.   Her friends were so cute wearing the party hats.  R. wanted no part of wearing them, but she enjoyed everyone else wearing them.

She actually ate some of a cupcake.  I have never seen her touch anything with frosting before.  I wonder if she learned that at school.   Foolishly, I did not think she would have any interest in them, and I left them on the counter.  E. caught her,  and rescued them.