Every year as a little girl, we would get new Easter dresses. I would start imagining my look long before the shopping trip. I would start daydreaming because I knew I would get something super nice…..I mean, Grandma was funding the occasion, so…. I was excited to get spoiled (never mind that I later figured out it was probably because she wanted to control the narrative of how we presented ourselves as a family and to make sure we didn’t embarrass her at her snotty church). My parents were poor (I never knew how poor til I got older), so I knew I could push a few limits with Grandma and Grandpa’s checkbook 😎
Even though it was on a grandparent’s dime, I still usually had to go with my third or fourth choices. It never failed that first and second choices were always too expensive. I wanted it all. The gloves, the hat, tights, pleats….alll the things. I can still vividly remember the year I got my first choice. It was a light pink peplum jacket top and a pleated gray skirt. Ohhhhhhhhhh I felt fancy in that! I wish you could have seen it! I guess now that I type it out loud, it seems as if I have always had expensive taste (although I have no idea where I would’ve gotten that exposure because we were so poor).
This year’s dress was a direct reflection of every Easter dress search from year’s past. I wanted something unique and new…..and hat’s exactly what I found. It was perfect. Then Easter got “canceled”. And I went into “dress depression” :p
It isn’t just the dress though. My family has always celebrated Easter in a big way. Starting with church, then the big lunch and of course, the Easter egg hunting…..it was all done big. My mom makes sure her and her husband coordinate perfectly and it’s the cutest thing. I visit my Niece’s church and hear my favorite church singer (Love your voice, Abbie!). It really is the sweetest time of year! This quarantine situation has me feeling things so much more intensely and missing my traditional Easter is no different. I can hear the sounds, smell the grass and am clinging to memories of some of the sweetest hymns you would hear. I’m gonna miss all that so much.
BUT, when I really picked things apart today (more than normal), I also realized that more than the above, I think I loved Easter and the new dress tradition because it brought the “new” in so many underlying areas of life. It’s not just a cheesy trend. There is something in the atmosphere that Easter brings (other than the obvious factor of Jesus starting the “new life” trend long before my shopping trips to JC Penney)…….it signals a new season and a chance to start the next phase of the year more freshly than the previous.
We Spring clean. We bring out fresh linens and brighter decor. We get new clothes that say “breath of fresh air”. And some of us sit in complete awe that someone sat with people who betrayed them, faced the ultimate torture and STILL chose to die for us. Some of us need that reminder in the way that only Easter brings. No matter what you believe, we all need “new” at some point. And although quarantine life is not the “new” I had imagined when I bought the perfect Easter dress, it has caused a slow down and given me more new than I would’ve ever gotten from a yard of brightly colored eggs or sneaking deviled eggs out of the kitchen before lunch was ready. I will (and have the past few days) pay attention to the Easter story probably differently than I ever have before.
Just because Easter is different, it certainly doesn’t mean I can’t wear the dress. So, I did. I sported my Easter lunch outfit too. I also delivered Easter baskets to some friends. I made my own deviled eggs and I spent time on my porch listening to my short Easter playlist and just being still (not something I’m great at). And for the first time since this quarantine business started, I feel like I’m accepting the pause and I’m gonna come out on the other side of this a new person (cheesy, but I mean it….I already see it and outside of the uncomfortable struggle, I don’t think I’m gonna hate her).
I hope you’re wearing your new Easter clothes too and sharing them with the internet. I think we could all use some “fresh looks” in our internet scrolls. I hope you know that you were to die for (and that someone did). And I hope that if you’re still reading at this point, that I’m cheering for the new in you too!