It was 74 degrees as I snapped the above picture via mobile phone. Is it really Good Friday? Children were happily playing with the fountains as I walked amongst the bustle of people enjoying the sun; shopping bags in hand. My shadow was nearby as I scanned the throngs of pre-teens, teenagers and moms pushing strollers with toddlers-in-tow. You could feel the pre-Easter frenzy as shoppers darted in and out of stores.
Earlier in the day I drove the boys to school with my pink bunny ears. As I passed cars on the road the occupants inside would grin at me through their windshields. The ears distracted from the ratty, torn up work-out shirt I was wearing and the lack of make-up upon my face. My middle son delayed me as he got out of my vehicle and loudly commented on my “cute ears” as the kids along the fence looked on. I am grateful that my children put up with my idiosyncrasies. When I wear spirited attire (aka bunny ears, santa hats, etc.) they grin in good fun; accepting their mom’s craziness. I know this will soon end and will be embarrassing for them but for now; I’ll take it.
I walked from store-to-store in our local outdoor mall searching for matching long sleeved shirts for Easter. I am amazed my older sons have not balked at matching. My shadow lurked behind me; self-conscious of the groups of peers surrounding him. His junior high had a minimum day and we decided to head to our local bookstore to find a classic novel for his English class. I left him alone to look around as I paid for the novel, (he chose Jules Verne’s Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea) so he called my cell from within the bookstore to locate me. I had just discovered my girlfriend, and her son, as a girl called out to Nate and disappeared amongst the aisles.
As we parted ways and headed to the candy store, again, I found myself surrounded by my son’s peers. I felt a bit self-conscious so I stepped to a corner and snapped a picture of the scene unfolding; a bit fuzzy with the movement of 30 plus kids in a tiny shop. I left my son to fill a candy tube and attempted to be a fly on the wall and observe the social scene of tweeners. As a parent I hope he will learn to traverse the awkward stage of socializing. After the girls had called to my son in the bookstore; he HID in aisles near me. I had wanted to drag him out, extrovert that I am, to find the pair of girls to say hi. As a mom of boys I have no understanding of my son’s shyness and socially awkward nature. It baffles me that he cannot even say hello to a dear friend who has known him since kindergarten. These three sisters have spent the night in my homes, both locally and in San Diego. My son has the eldest sister in his 5th period class and he cannot even turn around to say hi. This is his father’s legacy; the introvert.
Later we attended our church’s re-enactment of The Passion of Christ; an almost 2 hour production. Last year was the first time our church produced this play so it was interesting that, this year, the youngest had so many comments and questions. We were joined by Dave’s mom, sister, husband and nephew and were moved to tears. The play has not changed, significantly, from last year (obviously the history remains the same) but the boys’ understanding of the events that define Christianity were remarkable. Wow!
Later we dragged Dave out for a group picture and he is now working the second session. The boys pointed out people in the play that we knew: Charlie’s catechism teacher, a fellow parent from our elementary school, a local coach. Church gives our family a sense of community. Altar serving gave my older sons a deeper understanding of the rituals of our faith and is probably one of the main reasons my non-Catholic husband regularly attends mass with us. He is no saint. He rolls his eyes, makes gestures when talk of money collection becomes pronounced and likes to mention some of the deeper issues the church has such as: the molestation issues, etc. He was sorely disappointed that I did not TeVo the Pope’s dedication ceremony. And he believes the Ancient Aliens pre-date Jesus. My boys get earfuls of conversation in our household; their dad sparking lots of theological discussion. Never a dull moment.
My yearbook craziness has abated, somewhat, my pages compiled and ready to send to print to proof during Easter break. On our early morning walk, today, a baby bunny was in our path and Snuggles decided to nip at it. The scared bunny was super cute as it hippity-hopped away. And the crocus are sprouting from my pot; a sure sign of the arrival of spring. Their bright yellow flowers bring a touch of sunlight to our patio and make me yearn to start our garden. Alas, our Friday is good! Thanks God, it’s Good Friday!
A girlfriend shared a phrase, today, that, “If you really want to do something, you’ll find a way. If you don’t, you’ll find an excuse.” I immediately thought of my faith. It is very easy to be busy with life. I hope I’ve got my priorities straight.