My boy is going to be 1 next month.
One year old.
I have mixed feeling about this for so many reasons. He isn't going to be my baby-baby anymore, he will kind of officially be a toddler. It's gone too fast, but yet, yay! at the same time. We've all survived the first year, all three of us.
The obvious sadness is that this was meant to be his first birthday as a twin. He came as a set. And now we are celebrating both his survival, while needing to commemorate his sister at the same time.
It's bought up so many feelings for me, and I have found myself having Molly Nights* frequently again. Maybe as I know it's coming. The big first birthday.
We thought of having a low-key thing to celebrate our Sebby while also remembering Molly. I can't explain how hard and weird this is for me.
If I were to just make an invitation saying "come to Sebastian's 1st birthday", I would feel like I am deliberately leaving out or forgetting his sister. I would also feel, again, that I was deliberately trying to not acknowledge her, and so it goes against every instinct within me to leave her out.
I'll feel guilty if I don't remember/mention her, and I'll feel guilty if I do. I just can't win this one.
(It's a good thing I'm starting therapy finally, isn't it?)
I also don't want this to overshadow his first birthday, something that we want to celebrate with joy. So there is such a fine line, and I want to try and balance it, but whatever I write or say doesn't seem to do either twin justice. I feel so alone no one else I even remotely know has this problem - and I am not sure what truly the right thing to do is. Well, actually, I do know what the right thing to do is, but I have to choose my words and my thoughts so carefully.
We already decided months ago that the two dates we will remember Molly is Christmas and their birthday. At Christmas we put up her stocking with gifts for other children, and at birthdays we release balloons for Molly.
I'm also aware that this day is going to filled with laughter and tears. And will be for the rest of his life.
So. I made Sebastian's party invitations today. And this is what I went for in the end after multiple edits and thinking long and hard about how to include her:
We are just inviting a handful of folks we have met over the last year, all of them with a baby of their own. Our new 'parental' friends. As they know what it is like to reach the first year milestone!
It sounds all very grown up. And it is. For now. For the years to come, no doubt, all sorts of fun things will start to happen - like themes and too many e-numbers, and games and bouncing off the ceiling and blowing out candles.
But for now, the most important thing for me here is balance. I wanted two little birdies on the invitation, and I'll be getting some cupcakes made with their names on them.
What do you think?
*Nights where I end up reading through my old blog posts when I was pregnant with them both; or remembering in detail their birth; wandering what she would be like and look like now; crying until I can't breathe and I feel totally empty and raw inside; or crying with the Brit and feeling white hot anger at the world and WHY is it that only people who have lost a twin really understand the complexity of our situation and in equal measure, the pain?