I admit it: I can’t wait until the Easter Bunny stops hopping by our house. It’s not that I don’t like holidays; I just can’t take the pressure of being the responsible adult. The trouble with children is that you can’t put much over on them, especially when they seem to be on the elementary school track for pre-pre-law.
One Easter Eve a few years ago, I lay in bed trying to fall asleep amid some low-level tension because something just wasn’t quite right. Suddenly I bolted up, frightening my husband out of a sound snore.
“I forgot to do the Easter baskets!”
I got up, turned on lights, rummaged through the guest room closet for baskets and candy, and set about making the sweetest little tokens of love from the Easter Bunny. I put them in the kids’ doorways and went back to bed, where the father of my children was sleeping just as peacefully as before my crisis.
In the morning the kids came to our room to show us their loot. My six-year-old daughter looked up at me with genuine curiosity. “I wonder why the Easter Bunny gave us the same baskets as last year?”
Note: The Easter Bunny is a touch stingy. She doesn’t really see the point in buying new baskets year after year, and this was the year she decided to test her theory that the kids wouldn’t really notice anyway.
“Mom?” my daughter asked, “Are you the Easter Bunny?”
Leave it to the little one.
I shook my head and offered up a little snort. “Do I look like I’ve been out all morning hopping around delivering Easter baskets?”
She eyed me, weighing whether or not to push it. She possessed a sparkly bag of sugar, after all. However, the little lawyer-in-training just couldn’t let it go. “It’s just that you said the Easter Bunny was a girl and the Easter Bunny knows what kind of books we like and—”
Maybe Mommy needed a basket full of Midol because I snapped. “I’m not the Easter Bunny. Okay?”
Everybody backed off the bunny. When they asked later why the Easter Bunny didn’t give them very much candy this year, I told them maybe she knew they’d be getting a lot of candy at the Easter egg hunt that afternoon.
“Not that I would know,” I added.
That was my fatal mistake. If this were a courtroom drama, there would be a close up on me as a bead of sweat made its way down my nose.
“Are you sure you’re not the Easter Bunny?” my son asked. His eyes narrowed.
“Because usually when people say ‘not that I would know,’ it means that they know.”
“And usually when a kid asks too many questions about a basket of goodies, it means they go to bed early and a monster comes in the night and eats all their candy.”
Lela Davidson is the author of Blacklisted from the PTA and Who Peed on My Yoga Mat?