Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Eggs, lies and escapades

As Easter eggs reared their shiny, foiled heads a couple of months ago, I felt a sense of dread. ‘Here we go again,’ I thought. ‘Another one of those supersized, intercontinental stories about a larger-than-life character who delivers sweet joy to children.’

Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas and Easter: the planning, the food and the crazy family get togethers. I just don’t do the ‘magic’ part well. It’s probably because my son takes after me. I’ve been a sneaky present-peeker for longer than I care to remember and my son has developed that same inner suspicion. Over the last couple of years he has found many presents that were headed to Santa’s workshop. Instead, they became presents from the ‘family’.  Friends of mine have told me that I have to work a little harder at maintaining the magic of Christmas. So last Christmas, Santa must have been listening and put on his best show: amazing the children with genuinely surprising gifts under the tree.

I know Christmas is long gone, but the ‘magic’ continues at Easter. I have been gearing myself up to retell more stories about the legendary bunny who will find us, regardless of where we spend Easter. I’ve been planning logistics and where the location of our family dog will be, so he can’t treat himself to midnight chocolates in the yard. I’ve listened, as no doubt you have, to endless discussions about the types of eggs the Easter Bunny might bring and what he really looks like. Maybe it’s end-of-term, maybe its cynicism at it’s best, but aren’t we making life harder than it has to be? Well that was what I was starting to think a couple of weeks ago, when I was feeling tired from parenting overly exhausted kids.

But then a little magic happened, magic I wasn’t expecting. I picked up my daughter from kinder and my son from school on their last day of term one and their excitement was palpable. They both ran out of their rooms, arms cradling eggs with stories of the Easter Bunny who had been visiting them. My daughter told me how she tiptoed around the classroom hunting for eggs so she wouldn’t scare the bunny away. My son told me that he saw a part of the Easter Bunny’s purple waistcoat as he hopped around the corner. Their smiles were wide and their laughter was infectious.

And then it all made sense. This is why the Easter Bunny and Santa work hard every year to keep the magic alive: there is nothing more thrilling than watching the innocent joy of our children as they celebrate these festivities.

I hope you have a Happy Easter!