This weekend we made our yearly visit to the Easter Bunny.
Last year while we were waiting in line at our local grocery store to see the furry fellow, a much older, sophisticated child behind us stated, “I know that is just someone dressed up in a costume.” My then 6 year old daughter, Iris, looked up at me with inquisitive, huge eyes while the Mom of the whistle-blower shushed her child and mouthed, “Sorry” to me.
After the visit, the questions began pouring in from Iris as to whether what the other child said had any truth to it. I hemmed and hawed over this particular matter. I really want my kids to believe in all things wonderful, whimsical and magic. However, I thought this circumstance needed a different approach.
I told Iris, “Well, it is true. That really was someone dressed up in a costume. However, there is indeed an Easter Bunny. But unlike Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny is uncivilized. He lacks in social graces and proper manners. He is an animal after all. If they were to have the “real” Easter Bunny at the grocery store he would be hopping all over the place, peeing and pooping on the floor. He would also be making a mess of the carrot display and eating all of the carrots.” Iris found this a perfectly acceptable explanation.
I had actually forgot about this conversation until my 5 year old son, Bency, said, “I know the Easter Bunny is just someone dressed up in a costume” as we were about to leave yesterday to go visit him. I stood there looking at him and finally said, “And why do you think that?” Iris quickly piped in admitting she had told him and reminded me of our conversation from last year. So, I went through the explanation again for Bency and made both kids promise they wouldn’t tell other kids about their revelation.
So, off we went for our visit with the Easter Bunny. We’ve been going to our local grocery store for the past couple of years. Not only do they have the “costumed fellow” but they have different stations set up throughout the store handing out various treats of candy, bags of carrots, Homemade Rice Krispie bars, Doritos, string cheese, chocolate milk, and a cookie decorating station. The kids love it and I can do a little grocery shopping along the way.
My 2 year old son, Cesar, was particularly enamored with the Easter Bunny this year and didn’t want to leave his side after the photo op. We had to coax him away with the promise of cookies.
As we were traveling through the store, I told my husband to wait a minute as I needed to make a quick dash for a bag of onions. After I retrieved my onions I came back to my waiting family, I noticed Cesar was no longer among them. I asked where Cesar was and my husband looked puzzled and said he thought Cesar had gone with me. He didn’t.
We began searching frantically for our 2 year old and screaming his name. After looking in all nearby areas and having no luck, we branched out our search. My husband went back to the Easter Bunny and lo and behold there was Cesar. He had managed to find his way back and was standing next to the gray rabbit, looking up adoringly. I have a feeling; Cesar is now in quite a few other families’ Easter Bunny photos.
I may have two children now that know that there was a person underneath the layers of fur but I still have one little boy that could only see the magic of the Easter Bunny.