Mom of six Kristen Layne was heartbroken recently when her 9-year old son got a sad surprise after nobody showed up to his birthday party. Now, she is begging parents for one thing going forward.
As she detailed on her blog, Life on Peanut Layne, her son Mahlon was excited to have a birthday party because this was his first year in public school; he’d been home-schooled up until that point.
“This ninth birthday was supposed to be his year. His first real party with friends,” wrote Layne.
When party time rolled around, the goodie bags were ready, the decorations were up, and Mahlon’s bedroom was clean. He was thrilled about his “Diary Of A Wimpy Kid”-themed party, and he had even picked out a special outfit. But party time came and went, and as the moments ticked by, Layne snapping pictures of her son eagerly awaiting his guests, she realized something terrible: No one was coming.
Mahlon began to grow more and more upset, and his parents comforted him–though Layne had to sneak away to cry quietly in the bathroom. The devastated mother felt terrible. She’d been worried when she hadn’t received any RSVPs for the party, but because they were new in town, she didn’t know any of the parents personally yet or have phone numbers to check in with them.
Now, she wants parents to heed an important message: Always, ALWAYS have your child RSVP to another kid’s party.
“I know you’re busy, tired, stressed, have a million and one other things to do. I’m right there with you, but please the next time you’re tempted to ignore the handwritten invitation from a classmate, please remember that there could be a child sitting at an empty party table, crying into his napkin, feeling unloved and rejected,” wrote Layne, in a blog post that’s received an outpouring of support from other parents. “Had we known that no one was coming, we would’ve changed the date or time, or we would’ve planned something extra special for him… We would’ve done anything to avoid the pain and devastation he experienced.”
Layne did note that the rest of Mahlon’s family members did gather for pizza and to take him bowling, so he still got to celebrate. They’ve also received hundreds of birthday cards and positive messages since she posted about the incident.
“Mahlon’s main concern was making sure that his friends still got their treat bags,” added the mom.
Sounds like her message of always being kind has already spread to her sweet son.