We are soon celebrating my only child's first birthday party. Among the Chinese community where we are, the first birthdays are usually held the grandest. It is not a children's party, but rather a party for adults. Since I married into a family of Christian Chinese, the first birthday is that of fellowship and thanksgiving. The children's party usually comes the following year.
I think there is wisdom to this as well. Holding a children's party, complete with games, pinata, pabitin, and other stuff would make other children very happy except for one--the birthday celebrator. The celebrator is justa year old and although he or she might be able to jump up and down already or clap at the scenes, it is merely exposure of the senses to the visual and auditory treats that the child is receiving. But the cognitive part would fail to grasp what the excitement is all about. And yeah, they get the excitement, but mentally, they still cannot process it.
So for our daughter's first birthday, we will be having a dinner banquet in the honor of our daughter. We have invited couples and families. They can bring their children, but we would not have treats for them, except perhaps giving them the balloons that are part of the decorations for the party. It will just be a simple dinner celebrating the one year that we have spent with our first child, and for now, our only.
My husband and I are thinking that the children's party, complete with costumes and favors, will come maybe at 4 years old, when my child can already play with other kids. We can have different themes and hire a mascot to do the entertaining. But for now, we will just have a quiet dinner.
For us this is the most practical way to celebrate our daughter's birthday.