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The art of celebrating.  Worth thinking about.  Why do we celebrate some milestones and not others?  What is significant about noting special occasions?  If we can intentionally work out why we celebrate events, we will intentionally build little rituals and rites into our family life that all add up to security for our children.  My belief is that security comes for our little ones, in familiarity and repetition.

Not that surprises are bad.  It’s just that a secure child can accept a surprise, but a stressed youngster is more likely to just be more stressed.  Another shift in their landscape – another adjustment to make, when their resources already feel stretched.

Recently we celebrated  our eldest’s 21st.  Mostly we needed him to know he matters; that despite our ups and downs, we are pleased to be a part of his life, and that we like who he is becoming as a man.

The elements of celebrating this event included some gathering.  A gathering of friends, acknowledging people who have walked this journey with us and those who will walk with him into the future.  A gathering of old photos, as we remembered times shared on the way.  A gathering of memories as people told stories and shared their joy and respect in speeches.  A gathering of his favourite foods and drinks to share…

I don’t know how you celebrate.  In most cultures there is food and drink, music and usually a gathering of some sort.  For our family with half of us as shift workers and therefore no guarantee of time off or habitual traditions at Christmas, Easter, birthdays etc, not even weekend routines, we really wanted this milestone to pass with recognition.  We wanted to honour a young man who is really rather lovely and to enjoy celebrating with him.  So, intentionally, we did.  I hope you get to intentionally note the times and seasons that matter in your families.


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