Monday, October 11, 2010

Dependability

My goal for this post is to not mention that writing challenge that happens every November that takes over two and a half months of my life. So, moving on....

Yesterday my percolator finally provided a solution to one of my broken short stories. Yay! Now I have to revise the beginning and end again. Let's hope its the last time.

And now for a short rant that has nothing to do with writing because everything that does seems to lead back to that one thing that I'm endeavouring not to talk about today.

I spent the majority of my weekend throwing birthday parties for my eight year old daughter. I had a lot of actual work to do, but I stayed up late both nights to do it, not getting much happy weekend down time so I could perform my all important mom duties during the day. We had a family party, to which my own sister was forty-five minutes late because she lost track of time / switched her plans (even though I'd specifically picked that date and time because it fit in her schedule).

My daughter also wanted a friend party. I'm pretty jaded when it comes to friend parties, having been bitten with a failed party for my son years ago. He has the misfortune to have been born during spring break, when everyone is out of town or has plans. She has a fairly safe birth date, so I agreed to do the whole party shebang as long as we kept it at five guests. I didn't want to go broke.

We sent out invites. We got four official RSVPs and one girl who said she would be there. We got a pinata. We bought party favors. We got balloons. I made cupcakes. We decorated the yard (because it was a gorgeous fall day and if I didn't have to have a bunch of screaming girls in my house, I was all for it). My daughter set up games and I bought prizes. Everything was ready on time. Hooray!

One girl showed up. One. And her mom almost forgot but happened to check her calendar a few hours beforehand and managed to make it.

Thank goodness for that, but still. If you say you are going to be somewhere. Be there. Especially when kids are depending on you. It's darn hard to play party games with just two kids.

Needless to say, she was very disappointed in her friends and I wasn't very happy with their mothers. Instead of having fun with her friends, she learned that she can't depend on them. There's plenty of time in life to become jaded, she didn't need to start at eight.

An hour into the "party", seeing how bummed my daughter was even though she was trying to have a good time, I called a friend of mine to borrow a filler kid -hoping to at least allow the girls to play the games my daughter had proudly devised. I told my friend that her daughter didn't need to bring a gift. I already felt silly enough asking her to join a party in progress and gifts weren't the important part of the party. We just needed someone to come play, eat cupcakes, win prizes and break open a pinata. If I had had a few more friends with daughters of similar ages that wouldn't have been afforted by my asking her to join a party she hadn't actually been invited to, I would have called them. But I didn't.

Her daughter and mine aren't great friends. They don't know each other very well. They're not in the same class or even same grade. But she arrived with a big bag of presents (yes, even after I'd told her not to). The girls all had a great time. When the party was over and the other girl went home, she stayed an extra hour to just play.

I only hope that my daughter doesn't remember her birthday party as the day people didn't show up but the day she met a new friend. Dependable friends are priceless.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, Jean, that is so sad.

    I feel bad for you of course, after all that hard work, but at the end of the day it's part of a parent's job description for nobody to ever realise how hard we work our butts off.

    It's your daughter I feel really sorry for. What a tough life lesson. I hope she has made a new and lasting friend at the end of all that.

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