We Are the Hollow Bunnies…

On April 2, 2015, in Uncategorized, by Patricia

When my children were young, Easter — as a secular holiday — still had a kind of organizing principle, which was the exciting Sunday afternoon egg hunt. Even if you didn’t go to Church to celebrate the resurrection of the Lord, you could live vicariously through a small child’s excitement about locating hidden sweets.

It was kind of like Halloween, except that instead of the children walking around the neighbourhood demanding hits of sugar, they had to find them in the houseplants and behind the iPod charger, which is actually far more eventful and challenging than at secular Christmas, when all candies are poured into prominently-positioned socks.

So, there was something for them to do – find the eggs – and something for us parents to do, which is shop for and hide them in coaxingly obvious places. What else? Sweet pursuit and consumption is pretty much the deal if you aren’t celebrating God’s revelation through his only begotten son that there is a life eternal.

Certainly, here in North Eastern America, lapsed Christians can’t revert to the pagan, and celebrate spring. Firmly, no. We tend to have brittle, soot-black, cigarette butt-laden series of lumpen, receding snow banks on the streets, here in Canada at Easter time, which act less as a source of festive inspiration than as an existential echo of 21st century despair for humanity. Look at this landscape! What the fuck have we done?

Which feels different, somehow, than a fertility dance.

Still, I didn’t really notice this…absence of festive point until Clara and Geoffrey outgrew the Easter Sunday quest for hidden chocolates wrapped in foil.

“Do you want to do an egg hunt this year?” I asked my 15-year-old son, a bit desperately last week.

“Mom,” he protested laconically, refusing to gaze away from his PS3 FIFA World Cup 2014 soccer match lest some unknown pedophiliac online opponent score a goal, “you just complained that I didn’t go through a rite of passage into manhood when I turned fifteen. Now you’re hoping I’ll run around looking for chocolate?”

“Well,” I said, “what if we staged a dangerous, rite-of-passage egg hunt? I could hide the eggs in hazardous waste. On top of moving trains. Under your bed. There could be an egg at a mortifying venue, such as the ten-square feet that apparently exists as a demarcated and knowable space around your mother in public.”

“Mom. God.”

I gave up, and went back to the kitchen to clean the fridge while listening to a new talking book by Eric Larson about the sinking of the Lusitania. (Woodrow Wilson played a weird amount of golf at the outset of American involvement in WWI, just as an FYI from listening to this book.)

At some point, I thought, well we can make Easter feel significant by slaughtering a baby animal, like a lamb. But, no, we can’t even do that, because everyone except me has become a vegetarian in the family. There isn’t even a foodie angle. We are about to embark upon a five-hour drive to my mother’s house for an Easter weekend that consists of precisely nothing more eventful than a meal featuring tofu crumble, eaten during a freezing rain storm, with everyone feeling stifled and bitter.

If I can think of a reboot on this holiday for northerners who disavow spiritual life, I’ll be sure to let you know.

(And if you want to know how I’ve come to appreciate the metaphor of resurrection, as someone with new and deep respect for the transcendent in our lives, I’ll post about that thought on Easter.)


2 Responses to “We Are the Hollow Bunnies…”

  1. Ellen Hohm Thum says:

    I am somewhat confused by your writings Patricia. You mention God, the spiritual world and resurrection. But your mentioning of these do not sound specifically Christian. Forgive me for asking……if you are a Christian, however, I find myself needing to ask….are you a Christian? and if so why do you “beat around the bush”. I am in the middle of reading your book Opening Heaven’s Door. I am intrigued and agree with what are speaking…..however, how can this all be possible without the loving presence of a Heavenly Father. So much of what you speak eludes to the presence of angels. I have just graduated with a certification in spiritual direction and I openly talk about my faith, God and Jesus, his son who was sent to us and ultimately crucified for the redemption of our sins and the presence of the Holy Spirit.. My question…..why do you not openly and directly admit to your Christian beliefs. I keep looking for that in your book…..maybe I have missed it? If you are a Christian the Lord would NOT want you to “beat around the bush”. Above you mention the slaughtering of the Lamb…which indicates to me that are do believe in the Holy Trinity…I pray that you do and once again so appreciate the stories that you share in your book as evidence of a life beyond! Please let your readers know “the truth”…

  2. Patricia says:

    I do not HAVE specifically Christian beliefs. My cultural background is Christian, but I do not happen to believe that there is one, exclusive doctrinally defined route to spiritual awareness. That is not what I have learned from asking to and respectfully listening to those who have had transcendent experiences.

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