For Jaymee, finally her birthday arrived! What more can an 18-year-old ask for, than having your 18th birthday on a Friday. Jaymee had been waiting with much anticipation and counting the days, and I had been dragging my feet with so much apprehension, I was in fact pretending that this was not really happening. Maybe if I ignore it and pretend it isn’t there then it won’t happen right…? WRONG! This is the real-world Lulu and you can’t stop this. As much as I have to be super-mom, stopping time is way beyond my super-hero skills.
Leading up to her birthday from Monday, I was drowning in work and completely captivated with my professional life and putting off discussing plans for her birthday. Just when I was living in wonderland and hiding from the big “becoming a lady” birthday thing, my gorgeous friend, Natasha, asked me what the plans are as she would be driving 50 minutes from her house to mine to spend Jaymee’s birthday with us.
How excited I suddenly felt, my friend would be driving so far out of her way, just to spend the evening with us. I discussed what Jaymee wanted to do and she wanted us to take her out. My friend asked if she didn’t mind the old ladies taking her out. “Of course not, we are cool old ladies”, I laughed. Jaymee really appreciates us taking her out and enjoys our company. Jaymee had one request, that her brother could join us. I enjoy taking both my foster children out, so I was excited that I would be taking both of them out.
On Thursday afternoon, Keegan (my son, 14) asked me to take him shopping for ingredients so that he could bake her a cake for her birthday. Off we went to the shop and got everything that he required for her special birthday cake and he got home and got straight into baking.
The children went off to school on Friday morning – they walk, it is close to home and the Whats App statuses started with lovely pics and memories from all of her friends wishing her happy birthday. My phone started ringing from around 7:30am and messages were pouring in on all platforms, wishing her well for her birthday. I felt incredibly proud. Everyone really loves all of my children and has accepted my foster children from day one.
While running around on site, I got a message from Jaymee asking if I could fetch her or send an uber because she would be unable to go out of the bottom school gate because she had so many balloons, from her friends. I finished on site around 10 minutes later and called her to tell her that I would be on my way shortly to fetch her and her balloons and the boys from school. When I got to the school, I saw her by the huge bunch of colourful balloons in her hands and I hoped that they would all fit into the car. The children squashed them into the boot and got into the car.
Jaymee decided she wanted KFC for birthday lunch so we stopped off at KFC on the way home. I have to say not my first choice, or even one of my first ten choices, but her birthday so her choice. We left KFC and discussed our plans and what time we would be going out.
Having to wait for Natasha to come after work, we were not exactly sure of how things would play out. Jaymee’s foster dad/step-brother came to wish her a happy birthday and we decided that we would go up to a nice vibey restaurant close to pass the time and wait for Natasha to come through. We called for uber and were off. Once Natasha arrived, she joined us and other friends who were there and then we decided on a total change of plans. We would be going to dance at a place nearby instead of heading to Fourways, which was a lot more convenient and made sense. We danced and danced, burning up the dance floor and did 15,000 steps according to my step tracker. The best thing about being at one of the local places is we ran into friends of hers and Trystan’s as well. Trystan made new friends and fun was had by all as we painted the town red.
We had a great time celebrating, dancing and meeting people. When the time came to go home, I had to be quite strict (particularly with my friend – the children are quite good at listening, her not so much!) and we went home. We walked to McDonalds at the other side of the parking for pad-kos (a quick take-away). The thing about McDonalds is it is right there and who doesn’t need food after a long night of dancing? I am pretty sure that that particular McDonalds makes most of its turn over after midnight on Friday and Saturday nights. I have actually asked the question if it is socially acceptable to ask your uber driver to go through the drive thru at McDonalds a few times and the general consensus is “Yes”. This time however, we walked over and called an uber afterwards.
As the uber driver stopped at the house, Natasha was scrambling to pick up all the chips off of the seat that had been dropped, I have to say that I am a bit skeptical that all the chips were actually ours. She apologised and made sure to pick up every last chip. We thanked him and got out and went in.
Saturday was Rugby at the high-school, so we braced ourselves for the cold to go to the school and support the Rugby team. Natasha and her daughter experienced the school rugby tunnel that we do for the first time. I love the tunnel, it is the best way to see the school spirit and experience the vibe of high-school rugby. We were completely exhausted after the rugby and as Natasha and her daughter left, we all went to have a nap.
My feet, legs and butt were hurting, and I was exhausted. Thinking a nap would be fantastic and I would be up in a few hours to go to an engagement was very hopeful. I decided my warm bed was the better option and I stayed home. Trystan and Jaymee were both exhausted as well and they both went into hibernation until Sunday noon. I offered Jaymee to go to the restaurant up the road for the last of her birthday celebrations, where we would meet my long-time friend, Tarin. We had a wonderful afternoon, laughing and Jaymee insisting on selfies and that was the end of her birthday weekend.
As her birthday weekend came to an end, I could breathe and the world was a pleasant place. Suddenly the weight was lifted and her being an adult didn’t feel daunting at all. I had managed to over dramatize the whole idea of her becoming an adult completely in my mind and freak out. Suddenly, I realised that she is responsible and already a beautiful young woman and how utterly ridiculous I had been. Letting her become the best woman she can be by making her own mistakes and tripping a few times on the way isn’t as scary as I thought it was. I will always be there to pick her up and I know that if she needs me that she will come to me.
Today, I am proud of my exuberant, beautiful and compassionate daughter and honoured to be her mom and be by her side as she becomes a young woman.