Wednesday, April 1, 2009

reflections on an annoying holiday

The only Easter decorations I have ever owned, purchased last week.

As a kid, Easter was never one of my favorite holidays - the non-religious aspects of it. Why was a rabbit hiding multicolored chicken eggs from me? Why is he leaving baskets of candy filled with that horrid, stringy, stick-to-everything gaudy plastic grass? I DON'T UNDERSTAND. Not that the concept of some old guy from the North Pole sliding down the chimney and leaving presents made any more sense, but somehow Santa seemed more reasonable.

But the biggest reason I didn't like Easter much was the fact that you were forced to look for things. I have always HATED searching for things, mainly because I've been a scatterbrain since birth and lose things all the time. Every day is Easter for me, people. Where are my keys? Where is my phone? Where is my W-2 form? Where is my thermos - did I leave it in the car again? Why can't I find matching socks? Where's the tape measure? Where's the remote? Where's the charger for my iPod?

It drives me crazy - the hunting, the pushing things aside, the backtracking. Why is there a holiday that celebrates this? It would be like me laying out all my clothes for work, getting my coffee ready, packing a lunch, arranging my purse, and waking up the next morning to find that some giant, hairy animal had broken into my house and hidden it all. And that I was supposed to ENJOY searching for everything before I left for work. Does this sound like fun to you? I didn't think so.

Every year I'd dread helping my brothers find all the eggs, placing them in a big basket, and having my Dad count them. It was torture. And then the dreaded words "there's still two missing!" My brothers would hug themselves with delight and dash off again in pursuit of those two cleverly hidden eggs, and I would inwardly moan and twist with despair. My brain would scramble, I'd get frustrated and cranky, and I'd just wish for it all to be over.

The grand prize, of course, was the Easter basket. This was hidden somewhere you had to work extra hard to find it, like in a closet, under a bed, or in a cupboard. Always trying to be the perfect child and not wanting to hurt anyone's feelings, I pretended to be really excited, but let me tell you: when I found that basket, no one was happier. It wasn't the chocolate eggs or the Pez candy dispenser with a bunny head, or the bag of sickeningly sweet jellybeans. It was the joyous relief that the game was done, and I could stop looking for things.

Even now when I watch my nieces hunt excitedly for their Easter eggs, I wonder what gene I am missing. Sometimes I can't even watch their searching; it drives me bonkers when they can't find them right away. I try to distract myself by taking photos, but then I'm all "crap, what did I do with my lens cap? My memory card is full - where did I put the other one? My feet are cold. Why am I outside without shoes? Where are my shoes? Is this over yet? Is it time to eat ham?"

1 comment:

-M said...

Oh, Lis, you have me in tears!!! Soooo funny! Thank you for the story!