Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Birthday, Lexy . . .

Today is my niece, Lexy's, ninth birthday. It is weird to think that she's nine. When I first met Lexy, she had just turned FOUR. It was almost three years in to "knowing" Lexy that she would really talk to me. Not that she's anti-social but more because she was young and I was always the weird man who flew in with Aunt Joy for a few days at a time, etc. It wasn't until the summer that Ava was born - when we spent the entire month of July and most of August crashing with Joy's parents and seeing Stephanie, DJ and Lexy daily that she and I really got to know each other.

We're going to Chuck E. Cheese again tonight to celebrate her birthday. I'm okay with that. It might well be the last time that we get to celebrate her birthday in a "childlike" way.

She didn't have a "kid's" birthday party this year. Last year I spent three hours running, jumping, bouncing and otherwise playing with about 15 eight year olds. This year I was allowed to sit (quietly) in the living room during dinner at a girls-only slumber party. What was once a little girl that wanted toys, DVDs and makeup for her birthday has turned in to a young woman that wants boots, clothes and, um, makeup for her birthday.

It is strangely "emotional" for me to think of her as becoming a young woman. It a) scares the hell out of me that Ava will someday be going through this same transition and b) my only niece is quickly growing in to a person that has very little time, effort or energy for her "boring" Uncle Sean.

Lexy's birthday also reminds me of how much life has happened and how much things have changed in the five years I've known Lexy. I weighed 500 pounds when I first met Lexy. I was just her aunt's "boyfriend." I was not a father (and was not 100% convinced I wanted to be) and I was not yet sure if Joy and I would share a life together (I already wanted to but I was not so sure about her at that point). How things have changed. No more flying in for Lexy's birthday - we just drive the ten minutes from our house to hers. I'm a dad. I'm married. I weight in the low 200 pounds. I'm a happier and much more focused/grounded man than I was at the time.

For now though - we're going to Chuck E. Cheese. We're going to have cake. We're going to sing and we're going to file away one more memory of a birthday with our "little" niece.

Happy Birthday, Lexy. We love you!

No comments: