Happy Easter! Well, or whatever you are celebrating this morning that may or may not be identified in that fashion. As a youngster, I loved Easter – the egg hunt, the hidden (and very fancy) basket of generally wonderful chocolates and confections, the decorated eggs (which were sometimes quite lavish and exotic at our house, as my Mother was willing to blow eggs, and decorate them as fictional characters, and such, and we would often enjoy coloring eggs the evening before hand – a celebration of its own). Many years as an adult, I continued to celebrate the splendor of spring with Easter baskets, Easter eggs, Easter chocolates. It didn’t matter one bit to me that the aspects of the Easter celebration commonly associated with Christian faiths was often so culturally prominent, leaving the heartfelt earthy practical symbols of spring and fertility to wonder if anyone remembered them; I remembered, and celebrated, and that was enough.

Many years into adulthood, sometime well past 40, I gave up celebrating Easter; the celebrations I love most are pretty calorie-rich, costly, and labor intensive, and I had gained a lot of weight over the years. It had become an insincere celebration, too, unshared, solitary, and unhealthy. I couldn’t afford the rich artisan-crafted exotic chocolates I wanted for fancy baskets I yearned for but had no room to store. The hand-crafted ceramic eggs I had made for myself years before remained wrapped up and put away for many years. My enthusiasm for life was muted by prescription drugs intended to dull only my symptoms, but in fact pretty much just shut me down in all but those moments when nothing could. Easter was lost to me, and the feeble stirrings of interest in some years, more than others, didn’t really bring it back.

Set aside but not forgotten.

Set aside and forgotten… for a time.

This morning I woke thinking about Easter. I woke thinking about spring, beginnings, verbs, ancient rites performed by superstitious primates, earnest rituals performed by true believers, and ceramic Easter eggs, carefully put away, that have no calories at all – only loveliness. I woke with a smile. There is no hurting here this morning, beyond the usual morning stiffness and aching of my arthritis. I feel a mild sensation of regret looking out over the park, beyond the tall grasses to the playground; I could have hidden Easter eggs for the children this year. So fun. I might have filled some with jelly beans, others with coins, some with comforting or thought-provoking aphorisms. I didn’t; Easter had been put away for so long I had forgotten it entirely, until this morning, even though sentences using the word had certainly fallen from my lips in recent weeks. How strange.

There is no moment of bitter disappointment or any particular sadness this morning. Actually, I feel rather hopeful, and eager to see Easter coming up on next year’s calendar. I find myself contemplating ‘being true’ to the woman in the mirror, all her facets, all her joys. I realize that ‘authenticity’ and ‘being true’ to oneself have a connection – noun and verb – and as is so often the case, the verbs involved really matter if that elusive noun is to be achieved, lived, and cherished.

A chilly bumble bee, tired and cold and waiting on the warmth of the day.

A chilly bumblebee, tired and cold and waiting for the sun.

Happy Easter. Today is a good day to be true to my vision of the best woman I can be. There are verbs involved, sure, and my results will vary. Every one of life’s Easter eggs is a moment of potential wonder and immense joy. Everyone of life’s moments is a potential Easter egg. 🙂