We Are the Magic-Makers

 

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Back where I’m from in Ohio, it doesn’t matter what you’re doing any other Sunday in the year, but come Christmas and Easter, you put on your fanciest clothes, get the family together, and head to church. I remember sitting on a hard wooden pew while wearing a frilly white dress and an Easter bonnet with a tight elastic strap that wedged its way deeper and deeper into my chin during the course of the sermon (because apparently where I’m from is somewhere in the 1950s?). At any rate, this recent Easter morning, I did what I needed to do: gathered together my religiously nonchalant husband and Sweet Baby and we trouped off to church wearing clothing reminiscent of the delicate pastels of painted Easter eggs.

“This is Sweet Baby’s first Easter,” I’ve told some people, “so I want to make it really special.”

But that is not altogether true, I’ve since come to realise, as Sweet Baby was born on Easter Sunday last year via an unexpected C-section. When I found out I needed the C-section, I primed up my iPod for the necessary long hours of the surgery. I listened to maybe a song and a half when the music was interrupted by the sound of a baby crying.

“What’s that baby doing in the delivery room?” was the first thought that drifted through the clouds of my mind. I was pretty sure no baby had come into the room with the team of doctors and nurses. Then, crawling towards the logical conclusion . . . “Hey! That’s my baby! Give me my baby!” The moral of which is: 1. C-sections are quite brief and 2. the pain killers administered to a woman having a C-section, along with the natural hormone release, creates a cocktail of confusion. In short, neither myself nor Sweet Baby were in any condition for traditional Easter celebrations last year. This year, we made up for it.

After Sweet Baby woke up this Easter morning, he (eventually) crawled over to the corner kitchen cupboard, just like he does at some point every day. But on Easter, when he swung open the cupboard door, he encountered something a bit more interesting than the usual clattering array of pots and pans.

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Too young for eggs or candy, Sweet Baby was gifted with a little, white chicken-wire basket filled with jewel-coloured rubber balls, a felt chick, a bottle of bubbles, and a simplified version of The Velveteen Rabbit.

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This version of The Velveteen Rabbit has illustrations that remind me of someone.

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I won’t say who . . .

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We went to the Easter service in the morning (and then snapped a few photos outside the church).

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It still feels strange celebrating holidays where we are the parents. I have the heart of Peter Pan, the Lost Boys Girls, and Tinkerbell all wrapped up in my one. I’ve spent my life being able to imagine just about anything, yet I’d never imagined what it would be like to be so fully adult that I’m responsible for raising another person. But in many ways, things like holidays are even better than when I was a kid. This time around, I get to be the magic-maker.

And when you’re as new to the world as Sweet Baby, so much you encounter is magical. Iridescent bubbles float in front of you, holding rainbows within themselves. They drift through the air, who knows why, a strange enchantment.

And then they’re gone.

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