|One photo of Rowan per month, taken on his 'month birthday'.|
It was Rowan’s first birthday yesterday, my little man(atee) is now officially a toddler in all sense of the word! Not that I’m in a hurry to see him grow up so fast, but seeing his understanding of the world around him and his need to communicate increasing is quite fun (video of Rowan newborn squawks at 26 days old... so cute!). In the last couple of weeks he has added a second word to his repertoire (go; pronounced gohhhhhhhhh, the singsong inflection is totally my fault as I’ve said to him “let’s go!” in an enthusiastic way for the last few months at least. Still, it’s very cute – I’ll try to get it on video soon. ;)
Rowan is teething at the moment (which I’ve been expecting because he hasn’t gotten any new teeth since he was eight months old; there’s a white line to the right of his bottom front tooth – so far he always seems to cut the first of any tooth pair on the right. Don’t know if that’s a Rowan thing or similar in all children?). He had a disturbed day and night’s sleep leading up to his birthday, and consequently looks a bit tired and grumpy in quite a few of his pictures. Still, I’m glad that we didn’t plan a bigger celebration in the end because given the situation he would have found it completely overwhelming.
My parents and brother came over to our place for afternoon tea (Mum and Dad are amicable, and Dad’s wife and her son Billy – who also has Autism – are in China visiting family at the moment so they weren’t there. Chris only wanted to come if Rowan wasn’t going to cry and Billy wasn’t going to be there, could confirm one of these and not the other though...! Something that was really cool was Chris actually letting Rowan sit on his lap for the first time ever. Seriously, my brother has never ever touched Rowan before, he’s been too frightened. So this was a HUGE step and we were all thrilled – except Chris, he tolerated the situation but was quick to resume sitting solo again shortly afterwards!
Something I wasn’t anticipating was how excited I was for Rowan’s birthday. Not just the fact that he has been earthside for a year (and believe me, I had been recounting the events leading up to his birth over the past few days; very nostalgic already!), but getting excited for him and watching the special people in our lives making a fuss over their first grandchild. I was filled with a warm glow, and it certainly beat celebrating my own birthdays.
I wasn’t know where I stood on the whole ‘cake smash’ thing that I’m seeing pop up more and more recently – personally I think it’s a big waste of cake and a little excessive, but I understand that many people see a baby covered in cake as a rite of passage into birthday-dom somehow. While we didn’t give Rowan a cake to play with, he got to have his very own (small) piece of the cake we’d made – combining three of his favourite things: cake, strawberries and chocolate! He made a mess, but nothing near what I was expecting (probably due to making a regular icing rather than a buttercream icing). It was more than enough for him, and afterwards he tried licking his plate too. :P