Doing right by Gavin for his 18th birthday isn’t as easy as it sounds

Gavin will turn eighteen in a few days. To be honest, that’s a pretty big deal for a number of reasons. The most obvious is that he’s physically made it to eighteen and I say that because of his fragile health. He’s had some close calls over the years and there were times we weren’t sure we would ever see this day.

Instinctively, we want to make a huge deal out of this day.

We want Gavin to have the best birthday of his life thus far. There are so many things that Gavin will never be able to celebrate. Things like high school graduation, getting his driver’s license, going to college and truly living on his own.

As much as we want to through a huge party for him because we want him to have it, it’s important that we take a minute, step back and figure out what Gavin wants.

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Gavin has never had extravagant tastes and likes to keep things simple. All he wants to do is get a Lego set, go out to dinner as a family, have a Star Wars birthday cake and get his very own piñata. That’s it.

All these things are absolutely doable. We are very likely to have a small party for him with immediate family. I think he’d like that because it’s those closest to him and he won’t be overwhelmed by too many well meaning people. This wouldn’t happen until February sometime because we’ll have tax return by then and we able to totally surprise him with something he’s been trying to save up for. I won’t say what it is because I don’t want it getting back to him. I will say that he will be absolutely surprised and he deserves it.

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As parents, especially in situations like this, it’s sometimes hard to find balance between what we want for him and what he wants for himself.

You only turn eighteen once and we want it to be special for him. At the second time, it needs to be about him and not about us or anyone else…