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We had two birthday parties to attend this weekend. They were full of tough obstacles for our shy 5 year old.

Party #1: Ashley and Brooke's Water Fun Party. They had a great water slide in the front yard, sprinklers, and baby pools. The Boy was nervous about all the gleeful girls. He only knew Ashley and she was in full birthday party swing by the time we got there. After hovering around us for almost an hour, he started getting more brave. He would run through the sprinkler as long as Bitty and he were the only ones near it. They played in the baby pool alone together. Finally, he started getting comfortable around the other kids. He climbed up the water slide and patiently told the boys and girls at the bottom to watch out. (He didn't want to slide into them. How polite!) He slid down and practically didn't come up for air...though he did come up for pizza and cake.

Party #2: Navaeh's party at Skate Odyssey. This party was full of the same problems as the first one. He was fine putting on the skates. He didn't mind falling. He is really a brave boy in some ways. He was fine rolling around on the carpet. He just didn't want to get onto the rink. I assumed it was because he was nervous about going fast or falling. Upon further conversation, I found out that he just didn't want to be out there with so many people. After missing out on the skate races and the "prize for all racers", I talked my son into going around with me. He really was fine. In fact, after the initial two or four laps, he wouldn't even hold my hand anymore.

If anyone out there has any suggestions to aid social anxiety at his age, please feel free to comment.

In stark contrast, Bitty would have gone on the water slide from minute one, except he really wants to be attached to the Boys hip. Bitty also wanted his own skates and then was furious when I skated without carrying him around with me. (Skating with a 2 year old on your hip is much harder than it sounds.)


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