For the past two months the buzz around my house has always been about 16th October. You might think what is so auspicious about that date. It is nothing but my daughter's 13th birthday. I don't think I ever realized the fact that I was entering my teenage when I turned thirteen. My thirteenth birthday was just like any other number. But to my daughter it is like a jewel in her crown. She was so excited about her birthday. She would always talk about the dress she would wear, how she would look, what gift she wanted etc. Every time the talk about her birthday would come up my son would be boiling with fumes inside because he had five more solid years to call himself a teen. To him it is attaining manhood--may be 25% manhood??? We told our daughter that she could have a party. We gave her many options like bowling, movie, rock-climbing, but all these were termed as "LAME". She wanted to do something different. I didn't understand what that "something different" meant. Then she told she wanted to have a combined party with her close friend who will be burning 13 in November. We agreed for it.
On the 15th October I was thinking that I should do something to make her happy on her birthday. Though not a mega party at least something she would remember for her life. I called two of her close friends for a sleep over. Both their moms were so nice to agree to send their daughters home for a sleepover. Sruthi told me that she had asked three of her bus friends to come over for dinner that evening. Me and my friend Chitra went and bought all the necessary things for making dinner. My husband told that we could order pizza. I wanted to make everything myself for my teenage princess. Me and Chitra made pizza, pasta, corn , beans and nachos salad, chalupaa, jamun and baked some brownies. We were on our heels for almost 4 hours. 5 of her friends were there, Gaurika,Madhulika,Monisha,Brandon,Saadhvika. Madhu's mom Rohini also had come to wish Sruthi. There was so much of noise and laughter echoing around the house. Rishi was feeling all left out. Ravi came home early and was giving company for Rishi. We couldn't figure out for what they were all laughing so much. Everyone was talking and everyone was laughing. This is what childhood innocence means. I could remember the days me and my friends would sit and laugh for anything and everything. We would laugh at a bald head-- unfortunately my dad was also bald. If someone fell we would laugh first then go to their rescue. Where has all that innocent laughter gone? I felt that the house was so full of energy and enthusiasm. Kids enjoyed the food I had cooked--thats what they told me. Rohini, Chitra and me had a good time talking. Gaurika,Monisha and Brandon left at around 10.45p.m. Later we planned to cut the cake at 12 sharp. We all sat to watch a movie.
At 11.45 p.m I got the brownie ready to be cut. Sadhvika was jumping around screaming that she would be the first one to wish Sruthi and give her a hug. Inside me I was thinking the same. The mom status prohibited me from shouting it aloud. All of us were ready for the big show. Rishi was watching a private movie inside the bedroom(he calls it like that because only he was watching the cartoon). Everybody's eyes were on the clock. The clock was ticking... 11.58.59 then 12. "Happy birthday Sruthiiiiii" screamed Sadhu first. Though I was ready for shouting I stood spellbound seeing her screaming. She gave Sruthi a big hug. I came to my senses in a jiffy and wished my little girl. Madhu and Sadhu welcomed her to the world of "Teendom". Sruthi felt like she had become eligible for so many things in her life all of a sudden.
Ravi took a break for a second and went inside the room. We were all wondering what he was about to do. To everybody's surprise he came out with something in his hand. He gave it to Sruthi. I couldn't see what it was. I could only hear Sruthi scream OMG,OMG,OMG non stop. I peeped and saw what was in her hand. It was the I Touch she had asked for. She gave Ravi a hug and jumped saying "thank you papa, thank you papa." Rishi got soo upset seeing the gift that he went inside the room and closed the door. He must have been thinking inside "Why the hell was I not born first to reach teendom?" Sruthi was in the height of her happiness. She cherished the gift by touching it softly. She kissed it. She held it close to her cheek. She wanted to use the very moment. Her friends felt happy for her. We convinced Rishi to come out of the room. Then we all had the brownie and the photo session with Rishi's long face got done. We sat to watch the movie again. Rishi in his height of sadness went to sleep.
After the movie was over Sruthi told "Man this birthday was an "EPIC". "Thank you mama". She didn't jump around and tell me that she was happy that I took so much effort to do all this. Her excitement for the gadget was more . May be she thought it is all the part of parental package. Anyways moms are always taken for granted. It is only later in our life we realise the importance of our moms. Even then we don't take a moment to thank them for what all they did for us. Many of her friends called her to wish at that midnight. I was thinking why she was calling it an epic. Was it because of the gift she got? Or because the pain I took to organize a small party ? It was solely because her two best friends were there to share her moments of joy together with her. How much ever we try to be friendly with our kids we cannot be their friends. Friends are friends, we as parents can only imitate or pretend to be friends but cannot replace a friend . Sruthi shares with me everything but still I feel there are few things that she will share only with her friends. I felt very happy for having given her the opportunity to enjoy the special moment with her friends. What else is important in a parent's life other than to see their children be happy. We have celebrated so many birthdays but till now this has become an epic just because of the fact her friends were there when she turned a new leaf in her life book of teenage. I wish the value for friendship remains the same ever in her life as now.