by Bella Rum
We had no plans for Easter until yesterday. The Grand Trio can’t visit because my son is in the midst of the culmination of a long-in-the-making project. Doesn’t that sound important? Hopefully they will come next weekend, and there will be baskets and birthday cake and grand celebration. My oldest granddaughter turns eight. I can hardly believe it. All of my grands were born close to major holidays. The other two were born just before Christmas and just after.
I’ve felt a little pang the past few days. We’ve spent our Easters, Father’s Days, Dad’s birthdays and Thanksgivings at my brother’s house for years. He loves holidays and family celebrations, and he loves to cook for all of us. No rotating hosts for our family. Suits me!
But we didn’t talk this week. He didn’t approach the subject and neither did I, but I did try to call him a couple of days ago. I didn’t reach him, and I didn’t pursue it after that. I knew what was happening. Things don’t feel just right yet. Dad was a huge presence.
At Thanksgiving he was obviously feeling depressed. He followed me outside when we left and told me that our family was changing. He felt Dad’s absence keenly.
So, no Easter celebration. It seemed we would just make a call on the day and say happy Easter to each other.
Then, at the eleventh hour, my sister-in-law called. She said she had asked him a couple of weeks ago what they were going to do about Easter and he said, “Nothing.” She said the closer it got the more stressed she got. It didn’t “feel right.” So while things weren’t feeling right for my brother and me, they weren’t feeling just right for her either. Then I guess they talked it out. She is good for him.
So Easter is on.
On holidays, we look at our losses through a magnifying glass, but there’s only one way to go and that’s forward. We make traditions and we keep them for years. Then things change. Kids grow up and move to another city, loved ones die and we are left to celebrate even when it doesn’t feel like a time to celebrate. But it is. I don’t know what it will be like this afternoon when we gather round that table. I know it will not be the same, but my experience is that we usually feel better after we go through the motions of our rituals, after we soldier through bad times together. Bad times become good times again. Change is… um… always changing. Maybe that’s why we keep traditions through even the most trying times. Our spirits have to know that some things don’t change, well, until they do.
I hope all of you who celebrate Easter have a wonderful day. And I hope all of you who do not celebrate have a wonderful day, too.