On Thursday, my favorite Benjamin in the whole wide world turned five.
He’d been waiting impatiently for this day, counting down the months, the weeks, the days, the hours. I’m not sure what magical thing he thought would occur when he turned five, but whatever it was, it seemed very, very important to arrive at the day and revel in it.
The night before, he had told me how he’d like his day to go, and we followed as closely to his recommended schedule as we could:
6:00 a.m.: Begins the arduous chore of getting the rest of the family to vacate their beds. Family is reluctant.
6:30 a.m.: Enthusiastically opens presents with bleary-eyed family. Attempts to ride awesome new Transformer bike around tiny dining room. Amazingly, nothing ends up broken or damaged, other than Mama’s nerves.
6:45 a.m.: The Daddy struggles to free the Sentinel Prime transformer from his high-security packaging, valiantly battling tie-downs with dull kitchen shears. Benjamin declares that this is “the best birthday ever.”
7:00 a.m.: Ellie starts sobbing that she doesn’t have any princess presents for “her” birthday. Any and all attempts to explain that her birthday isn’t until December are met with pouty indignation and intermittent heaving sobs. Benjamin’s repeated reminders of the proprietary nature of the day do nothing to soothe her egocentric crisis.
8:00 a.m.: Breakfast at IHOP! Ellie spills coffee cream all over her and Mama. Ben eats his entire breakfast plus 30% of everyone else’s breakfast. The kids aren’t producing more than an average level of mayhem in the categories of volume or activity, so I ignore the foul looks from the elderly couple at a nearby table. Or maybe that’s just how their faces have frozen after years of sour moods? I make a mental note to perform hourly checks of my own facial expression status to avoid ending up this way.
10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.: Time at Grandma’s to avoid boring parental errands.
2:15 p.m.: The Daddy takes Benjamin to see the new Transformers movie.
Mama attempts to renew plates at DMV, but is turned away due to statewide computer failure. Simultaneously thrilled and disappointed.
4:30: Mama and Benjamin pick up the cake!
5:30: First (outside) ride on bike. Benjamin is gleeful. Unfortunately the glee causes the listening section of the brain to shut down completely, resulting in an unfortunate crash.
5:45: Back on the bike.
6:30: BLTs for dinner (Benjamin’s favorite), followed by the SUPERDUPERAMAZING TRANSFORMERS CAKE!
FYI, the blue and black frosting looked really cool, but tasted like battery acid mixed with rat poop. Not that I’ve ever tasted that combination, or even one of the components by itself, but you got the picture, right? HORRIBLE. But Benjamin loved it, and that’s the important thing.
The funniest things he said:
“So I’m five now. Why isn’t my voice lower?”
“When I blew out my candle, I wished for always having a loving family.”
“Oh, Benjamin, that’s so sweet! I love that wish. And you will always have that – we love you so much, and we always will.”
“AND THEN I wished for all the Transformers in the world!”
At least he knew which wish to tell me first. That’s a clear sign he’s developing the kind of emotional manipulation skills that he’ll need to survive in the world.
I couldn’t be more proud of my sweet, sweet five-year-old boy.