Party pooper
The Finnbug goes to his first birthday party and his mommies aren't invited... the absolute cheek of it.

On Friday morning, Finn went to a birthday party without me. I wasn't there because I wasn't invited. Neither was Roxi.

Every morning Thandi pushes Finn to the nearby park where the two of them chat to the other nannies and children, and feed bread to the birds, I'm told. Despite my anxiety about Finn being wheeled around out in the big wide world without my watchful eye, I am pleased that both Finn and Thandi have something that gets them out of the house each morning while Roxi and I are at work.

That was until last week. I returned home one afternoon to be informed that while out at the park, Thandi and Finn had been invited to Holly's first birthday party. A Cat in the Hat party in fact. Without me.

Frankly, I felt left out. I also wanted to go to a Cat in the Hat party. I tried to find consolation from my mother. 'Finn's been invited to a party... and I don't even know by whom!' I exclaimed. 'Ah cute!' she exclaimed right back. 'I'm sorry, darling, but that's so cute! A party all by himself without his mommies. What a big boy, he is!' The mere mention of the word Finn reduces my mother to granny gaganess.

My best friend, Cecilia, was more comforting. Being on baby number two she has been through many the emotional minefield along which I presently tread. And according to her, these parties are very common and I should a) not feel left out because they can even be quite boring, and b) not feel guilty because, let's face it, if I was staying home looking after Finn, instead of Thandi, we wouldn't have been invited in the first place.

I thought of forcing myself on the happy duo and going with them but Thandi seemed so excited by the upcoming social event that I felt I might ruin her fun. And also I'm on a deadline at work and don't want to get fired all because of a Cat in the Hat party for some kid I've never even clapped eyes on.

It's party time!
And so on Friday morning I put on my bravest face, made sure Finn had a wrapped gift and a sun hat, and told them to both have a great time. The whole morning I imagined Finn at the Cat in the Hat party, nestled in Thandi’s somewhat larger bosom than my own, beaming at his new friends, getting on with his life without me. By 11am I could take it no more. I phoned. 'Hi Thandi, how's it going?' I asked casually. Knowing my interest in detail Thandi was able to tell me that there were 22 nannies, eight mommies, four grannies and two daddies in the park. There were roughly four babies Finn's age, three of whom were with their nannies although one had a granny. There were also sandwiches, sweets, fizzy cooldrinks but no Kentucky Fried Chicken.

The real question, of course, was had Finn enjoyed his first party without me? Well not exactly. Finn and Thandi had arrived just in time for everyone to sing Happy Birthday. And when the 50 or so people burst into Hip Hip Hooray, Finn burst out crying. Thandi had been forced to remove yowling Finn from the fun and very shortly afterwards he fell asleep... for the rest of the occasion.

And so it seems that, like me, Finn also missed most of the party. Thandi was animated about her morning when I returned home and I am genuinely glad that she is part of a supportive community. And if I am very brave I can also admit that it is important that Thandi and Finn have fun experiences together because it is vital that they bond.

I believe that the saying, a happy mommy, happy baby applies just as much to happy nanny, happy baby when the happy mommy has to be elsewhere.

Has your baby been attending parties without you? What is the bond like between baby and nanny in your household? Share your thoughts in the comment box below.

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