As I contemplate my dislike of birthday parties in general, I am reminded that it is not my job to keep life from happening to my kids. Parties will flop, boyfriends will break up with you and bees will sting. I can accept all of the ugly stuff in my own life, but in my kids' lives? I want to protect them.
The real irony here is that in my own life, I wouldn't change anything about my own experiences. The most painful events I have lived through have been the ones that shaped me the most, and led me all the nearer to God. Miscarriage, broken friendships, alcoholism.... these things have made me who I am. All the things I would never want for my kids, are the very things that I can honestly say I am thankful to God for allowing to happen to me.
I still wish my daughter could have a dozen friends at her party, and that I could somehow protect her from all of life's hurts. But I know that God will use this day in her life to shape her into the woman He wants her to be.