My kids are too bright for their own good.
On the one hand, it makes me proud to be the mom of what I consider to be budding geniuses. (It’s ok, I’m aware that every parent believes that their child is a genius, and this, I believe, is not only the natural order of things, but also a good thing.) I love it when my 7 year old points out that “they” forgot to dot the half note in measure 8 of his Solfege exercise book, and that my 5 year old will sit down and read Nate The Great books on her own.
On the other hand, when they gang up on me before I’ve had my coffee & tell me all the reasons why the Easter Bunny isn’t real, it makes me sad. Sad, proud & disappointed. All at the same time. It would be futile to dispute the fact that bunnies aren’t as large as a person; and insulting to assert that bunnies can, in fact, write notes; so I agreed with them on both counts. I feebly offered up that bunnies are actually thieves of fruits and vegetables. (In our house, the Easter Bunny steals grapes & berries & carrots – “bunny food” – and hides them in the plastic eggs I leave out on the counter under the pretense that they are to be filled in the morning & taken to my parents’ house for the annual egg hunt on their lawn.) I tried – deftly, I might add – to change the subject, and to direct their attention elsewhere. This worked for a short while before The Noodle declared: “I think it’s really a person who sneaks into our house.”
Me: “Ya think? Huh…”
Yum Yums: “Gagaga dadada ooooooo”
(When he chimed in with all his 10 month old wisdom, I really felt cornered.)
Muffin: “The Easter Bunny at school was really just a person in face paint.”
Noodle: “And bunnies don’t have hands & can’t hide eggs”
Yum Yums: “that that that that”
Muffin: “And all the other Easter Bunnies are just strangers in costumes.”
Me (under my breath): “Creepy.”
Noodle: “What, mom?”
Me: “nothing. you guys are right.”
Noodle: “And bunnies don’t even like eggs.”
Silence. Both kids run into the office & shut the door. I pour a cup of coffee & contemplate my next move. Then I hear giggling.
“What are you guys doing in there?”
Noodle & Muffin: “Don’t come in! Ok?”
Me: “Um, why?”
Noodle & Muffin: “It’s a surprise!”
I hear paper rustling & markers squeaking. The feathers are flying, so to speak.
A few minutes later, I am ordered to go into another room & not peek.
Last year, this is the sign the Easter Bunny left:
This is what I found when I was allowed back into the front room:
So, the way I see it, the kids are using reason to work out fact from fiction, and draw their own conclusions. They are growing up, this is certainly true – but the magic is far from gone. (And I had a good time finding the toys they hid for me on their “practice egg hunt.”)
***Note: Upon further discussion, it seems they have not yet connected all the dots. The Easter Bunny is a person, probably a “she”, who must be very wealthy to be able to afford to buy the stuff for the Easter baskets. It seems I have at least one more Easter with the Noodle (at least) believing in some iteration of the “Bunny”. How he isn’t disturbed that a person is entering our house at night while we are sleeping, is really something considering the fact that he’s scared to upstairs by himself in broad daylight. Maybe it’s because there’s presents involved….