You Are Invited to
Valentine’s Day Themed,
6th Birthday Party
Saturday at 11 a.m.
Lunch and sweets will be served.
Crafts will be made.
Dress to dazzle. Sparkles, glitter, tutus and pink are encouraged.
You be you.
Have your people RSVP to C.J.’s people.
The invites are out for C.J.’s sixth birthday party. If one wasn’t hand-delivered to you, better luck next year.
C.J. has been planning his outfit for the last four weeks and four months ago he started planning the actual event. He vacillated between another bounce house warehouse party (super easy) and going to Disneyland (super expense). Then, he wanted to go and create at Build-A-Bear Workshop and dine at Ruby’s with two friends. Then he wanted five friends. Then he wanted eight friends. $75 bucks per bear times nine kids equals no way in hell.
Ultimately, he decided that he wanted a small party at our house with Valentine’s Day decorations. Doable. He wanted to do crafts with his best girl friends. Doable. He wanted everybody to wear pink tutus and dress up like “rock-star sassy fairy ballerina Harajuku girls.” What does that even mean?
We handmade invitations and agreed on an invite list.
Grace, a friend since birth – She wouldn’t miss it for the world and won’t think twice about seeing C.J. dressed in his fabulous finest. She’d actually be more caught off guard if she saw him looking totally and completely masculine.
Girl Friend #1 from school – She’s known C.J. for two years and knows that he likes girl stuff. She dresses to impress him every day at school. Her mom has informed me that if C.J. doesn’t compliment her outfit she deems it unsuccessful.
Girl Friend #2 from school – She asks C.J. to marry her on a weekly basis. He has reluctantly agreed. She writes him love letters crowded with hearts and drawings of the two of them holding hands – with him wearing pink. He has a hard time not touching her long blonde hair during story time. They’ve known each other only since September.
Girl Friend #3 from school – Another new friend who C.J. met when school started, she is a total character and makes me laugh every time I spend even a minute with her. I secretly want her to be C.J.’s best friend because she is so animated and entertaining that she keeps me amused nonstop. Maybe I should just be best friends with her. She has informed me that C.J. told her that he only likes girl stuff and she thinks that is great. At the same time, she told me that she thinks donuts are sweet.
Lina, the new neighborhood friend – Lina has known C.J. for several months and only knows C.J. around our house and in the neighborhood, where his gender creativeness is on full, proud display – like when he runs in his heels better than Sarah Jessica Parker on Sex and the City or rides his purple scooter wearing a purple skirt and a red wig. Lina’s family is from Lithuania and after meeting C.J. for the second time, they asked which pronouns he prefers. I almost cried tears of joy.
So, three of the five girls see C.J. mostly at school where he presents himself totally as a boy.
Should I inform their mothers that when the invite says “Dress to dazzle” it means that everybody will be dazzling in glitter, pink, a tutu and who knows what else? I decided that I should. I had to warn the partygoers and their parents that the birthday boy would be dressed like girl. I would want the warning if the tables were turned and it could eliminate some teasing and awkwardness. It only seemed fair.
But, I didn’t want to deliver the warning with the kids in earshot. It’s yet another way that sometimes I have to go ahead of C.J. and check the path, make sure it’s safe and comfortable, without him knowing that sometimes his being gender creative can make life a bit more of a process.
I told the mom of Girl Friend #1 from school. “Yeah, I figured,” she said.
I told the mom of Girl Friend #2 from school. She smiled and seemed fine with it. I got a text from her the next day letting me know that her daughter wouldn’t be able to attend due to a scheduling conflict.
I told the mom of Girl Friend #3 from school.
“Really?” she asked.
“Yes,” I said and smiled.
“Well, isn’t that fun?” she said.
“Good, I’m glad you don’t mind,” I said, pissed as the words exited my mouth like I was asking her permission.
“Well, if someone minds what your son wears, they have way too much time on their hands,” she said. She’s the oldest mom in the class (possibly a grandma turned mom) and I cherished her wisdom.
“Ain’t that the truth?” I replied.
This Saturday, C.J. – who looks “all boy” at school — will open the door to his guests wearing a pink tutu from H&M and, from Target, pink metallic leggings, pink glitter legwarmers, purple bejeweled ballet flats and – the crowning glory – a black and white houndstooth, sequined sweater from Gwen Stefani’s Harajuku Mini collection for kids.
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Tell CJ to rock it out Monster High proud 🙂
What an awesome set of parents you are and what am amazingly vibrant part of the world CJ is. I hope the big day is full of smiles, lots of color and of course glitter 🙂
Happy Birthday CJ ! 🙂 🙂
This blog is always a big bunch of wonderful. I was touched by the new neighbours question about which pronouns C.J. prefers. My son recently educated me about the respect asking this question really denotes. C.J.s world is becoming populated by many fabulous people…happy birthday!
2 of the 3 moms in this story make my heart swell with happiness! I hope these girls will be great friends of CJ’s – that they’ll be there for him for life 🙂
“rock-star sassy fairy ballerina Harajuku girls” – aww, this reminds me of when I was little and I wanted to be a famous-author-nurse-ballerina-princess…
Hope they all have a great time!
Happy Birthday, CJ! Have a great pink, sparkly, sassy day with your wonderful outfit and great friends.
Am I wrong for hating girlfriend #2’s mom just a little? Maybe her 6 year old has such a complicated schedule that she can’t fit in a birthday party but it sounds more likely that her narrow mindedness will get in the way of a friendship that means a lot to her daughter. I hope she stumbles across this blog some day. Maybe she’ll understand what an awesome kid CJ is and stop being such a tight ass. Happy Birthday CJ! The party sounds like it’s going to be amazing!!
I feel sorry for girlfriend #2 who is going to miss out on a party that I would have loved to attend at 6 (or frankly at 50).
Me too, I would have rocked that party at 48 myself :-). I feel even sorrier for girlfriend #2 because she’s got a mom that will try to control the connections she makes with people based on shallowness. She sounds so attached to CJ and she will just resent her mom for trying to control her friendships. That’s going to backfire on her one of these days.
Happy birthday, C.J.! I know that you will have a super fabulous party! It makes me so happy to think of you being your authentic, wonderful self and having a blast with your friends! Tell your mom she rocks!
Gosh this brings back memories 🙂 I remember on my son’s 5th birthday he had his whole class over for the party, and I wasn’t nearly so proactive as CJ’s mom, so when one poor boy gave my son a Nerf baseball and bat, C. turned to him with the worst go-to-hell look I ever saw exit his face. The little boy went into sad apologies: “I told my mom you liked Barbies, but she wouldn’t believe me.” I’d Never EVER seen that side of my son, and I could sort of understand him feeling betrayed, but I have to say, that moment compelled me to teach him to say “Thank you” whether or not he liked the gift. I don’t think he hates me for it 🙂 Thank you, CJ’s mom, for another amazing post.
Happy Birthday CJ!! Hope you have a fabulous birthday 😀
Happy birthday sweetheart!!
May the Mother Goddess bless you and your amazing parents!
hope you had the best day
Hope you take lots of pictures and share. I love your writing. Happy birthday to C.J.
He will look so fabulous! Happy Birthday!
Happy Birthday C.J. Hope you have an awesome day!!!!
Happy Birthday CJ!! What an awesome party theme!
Happy birthday, C.J.! I kind of wish *I* could come to the party! 😉 But I’m sure you will have enough ‘fabulous’ on hand already!! 🙂 All the best!
Another wonderful post. I love the sound of this party…it’s going to be a great time! Happy pink, rockin’, sparkly, twinkly, swirly and whatever-else-you-want-it-to-be birthday, C.J.! And, many, many more.
And, kudos to you, the fabulous friends who’ll be attending and to the “too-much-time-on-their-hands” mom!
Happy Birthday C.J.!! The party sounds fabulous! Once again you impress me so much as to how you handle each situation….you did the right thing by talking to each mom. I am curious as to why #2 cannot make it…but it will be her loss….thanks for continually opening up our minds and making us realize what a difficult road it is to just be who you are….always love your blog! I hope in the future no one has to worry about just being.
Sounds wonderful! I’ll be thinking of you folks on Saturday. 🙂 Kudos for CJ for knowing about Harajuku!
Happy birthday CJ!
I’ll be rocking some sparkles while packing up my condo in your honor!
I’m an older gay man who likes “boy” clothes, but if I was lucky enough to be real life friends with C.J. and his family AND I was lucky enough to be invited to the party, I would TOTALLY dress like a rock star sassy fairy ballerina to support C.J. most of all, but also because that has to be the BEST.BIRTHDAY.PARTY.THEME.EVER.
Wishing C.J. the most wonderful, fun, fabulous birthday!
Kudos, again & again, to C.J.’s Mom and Dad for trying to do your absolute best for your children and for sharing your life with us. You set a very good example for all of us.
4 months is nothing! I planned my 40th birthday party for a year! I’m so glad CJ has a place to be himself. This school year has mostly made me sad to read about. I hope CJ knows that many people support him and wish him HAPPY BIRTHDAY!
Happy birthday CJ!! I really want to send him a present!! Is that too presumptuous? (I am a handbag designer, just sayin’)
Happy Birthday, CJ! Your party sounds awesome! Isn’t it great to have such a cool mom (and dad, brother, uncle, grandparents, etc)?
You go CJ! Have a super fabulous glittery pink tutu Birthday!
I hope to God this doesn’t sound condescending or anything other than heartfelt and full of admiration: you are a stunning mom and the way you love C.J. makes the world a better place for all children. And grownups for that matter.
happy birthday cj 🙂
Happy Happy Birthday, C.J.! Sounds like an awesome party, have fun!!
I’m filled with envy and delight in equal measure, envy because I never had a birthday party as a kid, and delight because CJ does.
To go back 65 years, and to be in CJ’s shoes beautiful shoes…
I hope – no, I’m SURE – that CJ’s day will be an outrageous success; here’s to many more!!
Happy, Happy Birthday, CJ!
Not that it matters, but the girl whose mother declined will find out eventually. Fabulousness is always the best revenge.
Happy Birthday C.J.!
Happy birthday C.J.! I hope it’s the best birthday ever. His outfit sounds completely fabulous!
Happy birthday, CJ! Sounds like a better party than I ever had! 😀
Im not gonna lie….I’m a little jealous my daughter isn’t invited. She’s 7, obsessed with Monster High, and is the epitome if a “rock-star sassy fairy ballerina Harajuku girl.” …,sigh…. Have the best birthday ever CJ!!!
I know you hear (read) this all the time, but I truly love your blog, I adore your family, and I am so happy you are continuing to write. I appreciate your perspective and experiences, and get a little excited every time there’s an e-mail about a new blog post. I feel like I know CJ (just a little bit) through your heartfelt writing, and want to wish him a very happy 6th birthday! (Having just thrown a 4th birthday party, I feel for you!). I hope CJ’s party is all that … with pink sparkles on top!!! And I think the “have your people RSVP to CJ’s people” is adorable – I may have to steal that for my son’s next party!
I hope the party is beyond fabulous!
Happy Birthday to CJ! I hope you all enjoy what will be sure to be the party of the year! 🙂
🙂 Happy birthday preparations C.J.! what a pity I am no longer six and I just double checked… no invitations, either… … but I will blow a few rainbow coloured bubbles for you! Love!
Happy birthday, C.J.!
This is an adventure.
Happy birthday C.J! I bet it will be rockin! My oldest daughter turns 6 in March & she would have had a blast at your birthday. Except, this year she’s planned an Oregon Ducks Football party. Yeah, not sure where that came from. It was pink & purple princesses last year.
Happy Birthday C.J.!!!!!
Happy Birthday CJ from the ButchDyke from NYC.
I hope if I am invited next year, he does not mind if I do not wear a dress, but I get to wear a tuxedo with a necktie instead of a bow tie and a vest with a gold pocket watch on a chain with a fob.
Not gonna lie… I’m a little jealous not to get an invite. Hope it’s a fabulous time for all involved. #2 is gonna miss a great party!!
I’m jealous I never thought of that theme myself! No doubt it will be the best party ever! Happy Birthday C.J.!! ❤
Happy birthday, C.J.!!
I’m sure it’ll be super awesome.
“rock-star sassy fairy ballerina Harajuku girls”
I think I might steal your theme for my 20+6 birthday~~
I wish I could invite all your friends, too. They sound amazing~~
What of course strikes me is something that many people miss who have the benefits of privilege with regards to being cis-gendered and/or not-queer-identified. (Yes, there are other kinds of privilege…for example, I have male privilege).
You didn’t expressly say you think the one parent found a scheduling conflict because of there being a gender conformity conflict.
However, what people don’t know is folks who live in these ambiguous spaces always wonder. We cannot help but to wonder. Was it …CJ’s Tutu that lead to this. And, we can even get on ourselves for WONDERING it. (even though we cannot help it) and our peeps who don’t have to consider these issues are always “quick” to “fix” it by saying …oh, it’s probably not that at all…
…or some of the more ham handed might say “You’re too sensitive.”
The fact is not only do we not know why she canceled. We cannot know if she tells us that she would be telling the truth. Heteronormative people don’t have those concerns.
Exactly, and well-said. This will be true for the rest of C.J.’s non-genderconforming time. My son is a pink boy (very much boy, very much pink) and we often wonder, when others are invited to playdates and he is not, if it’s because of his being proud of his pink-accented boots, or because he proposed marriage to a boy in class. Of course he is also invited to plenty, and at least one mom has said she loves the way he celebrates his own and others’ individuality. But it’s uncomfortable to say the least. I feel for you.
This is happening to my son too! Always left out of the ‘all girl’ parties & activities. Trust me, there’s nothing at an all girl party that he’s not going to enjoy!
Rock on CJ….you are one lucky 6 year old!!!!
I’ll bet CJ would love to dress as Queen Esther for Purim!
Happy Birthday CJ!! I hope he enjoys his day. My son loves his dresses from h&m too. And I love that they have very colourful clothes for boys there. My son was devastated earlier this month when he wasnt invited to his school friend’s 6th birthday party. All the girls in his class were invited. He only plays with the girls in his class. Even his teacher said that she was heartbroken for him. At least the mom told me it was a girls only party so I could help him deal with it. I dont know what his girlfriends’ parents think of him. They are pleasant enough to me but ‘scheduling conflicts’ make me skeptical. To compensate for the invitation slight, my son has spent the rest of the month planning me a very pink over-the-top party for my birthday this weekend. I will think of CJ on Saturday!
You are another amazing mom…!
Happy Birthday, C.J. Have the most faaaaaaaabulous, exciting and fun day. Blessings!
Happy Birthday C.J.! I bet your party will be super totally cool, amazing and fun!
Happy 6th CJ! You’ve got a great mom!
This birthday party sounds fabulous!
Happy Sixth, youngster !~! I hope your PARTY rocks the entire neighborhood and that all of you have a grand glorious time.
Happy Birthday sweet boy!!! I covet his outfit,
I wish I could rock it like that! Hope it’s an
amazing day!!! Kudos for nixing Build-A-Bear!
I bet everyone’ll have a grand ol’ time! Give CJ a birthday hug from an internet stranger who has read this entire blog and thinks he’s absolutely amazing and can’t wait to see how else he becomes great in life. 🙂
I love it!! I love CJ! What a great birthday party!!
Happy Birthday, C.J.! I hope you have a fantastic rock-star sassy fairy ballerina Harajuku day 😀