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Happy Birthday, Hairmica!

Submitted by on Friday, 3 July 2009 One Comment

july_fourthMuch to my surprise, Big Guy was a Fourth of July-type person from the start.

His first celebration came at a local college when he was just shy of his first birthday but already walking. Walking all over the place that evening, in fact. Of the 10,000 people there that night, he met 9,999 of them.

Silly new parents that we were, we expected him to be asleep early. Instead, he was awake and howling. When the bombs started bursting in air, though, he was all smiles – just the opposite reaction of what we’d expected.

Boots did sleep through his first Fourth, but he was less than two weeks old. His second Fourth, he had his first ice cream cone. He didn’t get that  you could eat the cone and kept bringing it for refills.

It wasn’t until this year, though, that Big Guy began to grasp the holiday. For him, it’s been “Hairmica’s birthday” his entire life. I always had to bake cupcakes and we always had to sing – all the trimmings of a proper birthday party.

He’s so much more sophisticated now. An educated rising first-grader, he’s learned all about the pilgrims.

He’s watched protesters in Iran and understands that sometimes people are forced to protest or fight to get the government to listen.

He’s aware that Hairmica has rules that (sort of) make the government listen to people.

He knows who George Washington is but he thinks he’s his great-granddad. “He has to be Baba’s father. George Washington is the father of the whole country.”

And he’s sort of pieced the story together about how long ago the pilgrims started getting mad at the king because they wanted to have their say and they had to fight the king to get it.

He certainly understands being mad at authority and fighting for what he wants – he understands that all too well, much to my regret at times.

So this year when we celebrate, the day won’t be just about cupcakes, ice cream and fireworks.

It also will be about remembering the battles fought to create this country and about the smart people who set up the rules for ruling it. Rules that have bent, stretched and morphed but nonetheless survived for 233 years.

Happy Birthday, Hairmica!

Copyright 2009 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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One Comment »

  • Parenting Pink said:

    Happy Birthday, Hairmica to you too! LOL. What a cute story! My daughters actually love the “boom” noises brought on by the full air assault we call the 4th of July :-) Hope you have a great one with your family!