Forever Young t-Shirt wearer at party
Family Life Personal

Some Kids Really Know How To Party

Celebrating a great friend – and her children

Sometimes the future arrives a little earlier than you expected.

And our sons and daughters are given a clear choice: embrace it, or don’t.

It really is something to be called upon to assume the mantle of maturity and family responsibility before you would normally be required to.

That’s what I was thinking the other day as I took in a scene loaded with everything you could want from a family gathering, and some things you would rather not have to consider.

But, hey, life is like that.

There was celebration – it was a birthday.

There were the vivid stories you would expect from all the shared histories present, there was glorious food prepared and brought by the many hands and there was the soft peal of easy laughter – it was a party!

One of those rare and splendid events where you could have joined any of the group tables dotted around the large drawing room and have savoured a completely different but equally wonderful hour or two.

Then there was the unspoken pathos – the party was in honour of someone very special in our lives who was has been through a really rough time with illness.

There was love, hope and optimism despite all wafting through the vast rooms of a spectacular house in one of Dublin’s more salubrious parts –  as the ultimate in life-affirming – nay life-enhancing – experiences unfolded in the face of some of the most serious crap that life can throw at you and those you cherish most.

And then there were the children – not just the usual kids running around and having fun – but young adult children still revelling in their gilded youth but showing their parents and the assembled family  friends they were comfortable with that mantle of obligation and responsibility –  and  having fun.

For these were the youthful purveyors of a practical love displayed in the doing.

With no loss of joy, energy or spirit. And dressed the while in chic evening dress and heels or cool T-shirt and trousers, as preferred.


The future? Yeah, we can handle it, they seemed to be saying. And how!

Two of these children in particular were the ones who took the reins and allowed us oldies to just relax, be silly, have fun, and just enjoy the party. Another one was present and content to sit back and enjoy it all with his family, while the fourth was off in Vietnam plotting the next leg of his own journey of discovery.

The two, our cherished friend’s youngest and oldest, devised and ran the wonderfully challenging and amusing treasure hunt around Dublin city centre that began the proceedings and mingled easily with their wandering elders, leading and directing without appearing to.

Like we grown-ups are more used to doing for them.

And the mantle of maturity and family responsibility looked good on them.

Extreme sickness and the efforts of a family to deal with it are personal stories, and the particular story of our friend’s illness is not mine to tell.

It would not just be indiscrete it would also imply a centrality to the drama that would be utterly misleading.

She is a dear, dear friend, but one I see all too rarely, especially while the real stuff was playing out. I was merely moved and delighted to have been invited along with my wife on this special day.

Rather I am thinking now of the next generation of a family and how they have been dealing with their mother’s illness.

Or rather offering some impressions based on impressions. And hugely influenced by my own family dramas. Especially relating to my own children.

I am pondering one of the great delights of the whole experience: observing filial love and affection join with competence, and their parents’ pride evident in every gesture and glance.

And it filled me with hope.

The grown-up cubs had gathered round their lioness – and the lion – when the former had fallen ill, and are helping with her continuing recovery: researching diets alongside the pragmatic lion, screening visitors, accompanying Mom on her walks and retreats … and the 101 things that need doing when a parent has been seriously ill.

The eldest is a father himself, married, a home-owner and all of that, and I could just see him there on the evening of the party, sitting in the background and claiming no status, but so obviously central to it all.

Carrying his mantle with an easy grace and well up to the challenge

All too soon my own children will be that age, I was thinking, and I could see them embracing their future.

Now I would like to be sound in wind and limb when the time comes to pass on that mantle of maturity and family responsibility.

But I allowed myself the fantasy of imagining our K and O donning their mantles.

They will certainly look good in evening dress and heels, or cool T-shirt and trousers, as they choose.

  • Thanks for reading. If you enjoyed it, try another one! Follow my blog and you won’t miss out again.
Lucy At Home UK parenting bloggerDIY DaddyMix It Up LinkyShank You Very Much



3 Little Buttons
Mix It Up Linky

About endardoo

A newspaper sub-editor for many years, I am now a blogger and freelance sub-editor. Husband of one and house daddy of two: a feisty and dramatic 17-year-old girl and a bright, resilient football nut of a boy aged 16. My website:

28 comments on “Some Kids Really Know How To Party

  1. Ha! I can remember trying to picture my tiny kidlets as grown ups, and all I could manage was grown up clothes with little boy faces. And now that I have four young men as sons, I can see that there was no way I could have predicted how wonderful and handsome they would all become. (Biased mum . . . I know.)


  2. It sounds like a lovely celebration. I have the weird situation of seeing my babies all grown up but also having young children after starting all over again. It’s like having a blueprint already mapped out…but with the added advantage of being able to see the little errors and hopefully correct them. No matter what, it’s very rare that our children grow up to disappoint unless we have been awful parents, I’m sure O and K will turn out just fine…don’t blink, it’ll happen too soon.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It really was, Anne. Amazing to see kids you have none since they were little ‘uns all grown up and confident, and charming. A job well done by their mom and dad. Fingers crossed in this corner!!!


  3. What a wonderful moment it must be, to see that all of the hard work of parenting has led to this moment. Kids picking up the mantle of adulthood and using it responsibly. I am not a parent, but I can’t imagine any greater feeling in the world!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. A great party can leave you feeling elated for days. Glad to read that you attended a great one! Our kids DO grow up, don’t they? I could never imagine how much fun it would be to hang out with my now-adult children. They are so much fun! Who would have thought that would happen when they were teenagers, dealing with puberty, hormones, drama and everything else that comes with growing up. But, here we are! Thank goodness.


  5. Karen Dennis

    Sounds like a great celebration, #dreamteam@_karendennis

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I love thinking of my kids as adults, and all of us at a party — then I get a bit of a chill as I hope the time to get there takes a bit more time. It all just flies by and I have some enjoying to do. Glad you experienced such a party! #globalblogging xoxo


  7. Karen Dennis

    Popping back from another linky #blogginggoodtime@_karendennis


  8. Always nice to look at the next generation and feel hope instead of worry. We’ve had a lot of ups and downs with our 19 year old but every once in a while I can sit back and say, “hey, I guess we did alright after all.” Its a good feeling #thatfridaylinky


  9. It does make me wonder whether friends of my family have looked at my Sister and me in this way. So many came to our weddings that have known us since we were babies, which is truly wonderful. As for looking after parents when they are sick, I guess this just comes naturally – at least it did for me. To the point that I took 3 months of work and 9 months of reduced hours to help my Mum when she needed me. It wasn’t a question that needed to be asked twice. You just do it. Thanks so much for joining in with #TriumphantTales – make sure you come back next week for our special announcement!


  10. Such interesting observations, Enda. I enjoyed that slice of Dublin life and could easily picture myself at that party in any of the roles. Wishing your friend and her family well. #blogcrush


  11. Hosting and running parties. A sure sign that you’re maturing! As ever, a superb observation and wonderfully written Enda.

    Liked by 1 person

    • No … I neither hosted nor ran this one, John. Just a guest delighted to be there. Birthday lady’s kids did most of the organising. Terrific kids. Thanks for reading and commenting John


  12. I love the sound of a party where the adults can relax, happy, knowing that the older kids have got things under control. No dramas, just everyone getting on and enjoying family time together. Bliss! It sounds like you had a fab time. Thanks for joining us for the #dreamteam.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Daydreamer mum

    Mine aren’t quite old enough to be embarking on their own families just yet but there is absolute joy and pride in watching them interact with family members of all ages , being polite and respectful and funny ! Certainly one up on when they were younger and family gathering were spent frantically chasing around after them , making sure they weren’t wiping their grubby hands on folk!! #blogcrush

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah it’s great when you can relax and not have to chase around and generally wait for calamities!! I think all us adults present enjoyed seeing the birthday girl’s kids all grown up and responsible and still having a ball! Thanks Kelly

      Liked by 1 person

  14. mackenzieglanville

    whilst mine are not that old yet, I have to say my 14 year old is wonderful when we have people popping in, she will offer to make us all coffee or tea and usually bakes something yummy if she knows they’re coming, it is such a help and enables me to relax with friends. #ABloggingGoodTime

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Sometimes I can’t wait for my kids to be older, sitting around the fire with them. enjoying a drink whilst chatting about life. At other times, it freaks the hell out of me, I was an “adventurous” teenager, I say that tongue in cheek, and I am sure as hell not ready to live through what my mother did 🙂 So pleased you all enjoyed a wonderful family time together! #itsok

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Family memories are so important. I live so far from my family that my children most likely won’t grow up surrounded by them as I did, and it breaks my heart. #itsok

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Ah that’s such a shame! Hope you do get to visit them, at least! thanks for commenting!😀


  18. My cousin’s children are now in their early teens so take responsibility for the younger ones at family gatherings. I can’t imagine my own 3 at tht age! Thanks for linking up with #globalblogging

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: