There’s a moment at most kids’ birthday parties, just after “Happy Birthday” has been sung, when the birthday kid takes a big breath and gets ready to blow out the candles on his or her cake. “Make a wish!” the parents say. “But don’t tell anyone what it is. If you tell, it won’t come true!”
I hate this moment.
We’re supposed to have big dreams and wild ambitions — for family, career, success, recognition — yet we’re taught from birthday number one that saying what we want out loud is a bad idea. It’s a jinx. It’s embarrassing.
No matter what your aspirations are, you’ll never reach them if you don’t try. But it’s hard to muster up the confidence to try without having your loved ones cheering you on, and they’re not even going to get the chance to support you if you never let them know what your dreams are.
That’s why I do the birthday cake thing a little differently with my kids. At candle time, I scream, “Make a wish! Say it out loud! Yell it at the top of your lungs!” And then we all cheer for one another’s biggest dreams and do what we can to make sure they come true. -Kristina Kuzmič’s