I was about four when I had my first real birthday party, with kids and playing. I always had the best parties as a kid, because my mom would plan these incredible games, and all the guests got favors and my grandmother cooked and baked like she was inviting the Queen and not ten screaming children.
“What’s the best part of having a party?” my mom said when I was maybe six.
“The presents!” I answered.
“Really?” She said, “Let’s invite a bunch of grownups then, all the family. And they will each bring a present.”
“No!” I said, suddenly scared.
“So, it’s not the presents?”
I was so confused.
“It’s because it’s all your friends getting together and having fun, right?” My mother said.
It’s weird – the things that stick with you. This did. So much so, that I had the EXACT same conversation with my son. He also said the best part was presents, and was also confused when I told him to invite all adults. And I quoted my mother verbatim.
In light of this, I have to wonder what other things she might have told me throughout my childhood and adolescence that were true, and did I listen, and also, did I hear them? And! Will I repeat them to my kids?