Life, Death & Easter Baskets

5 Apr

I made an Easter basket for the first time today. I wandered the aisles in the store and let my daughter choose between a bunny and a duck. I never did Easter baskets growing up, or egg hunts. It wasn’t the “Christian” thing. While I was throwing together an awkward last-minute basket for my baby, my husband spent the day mourning with friends, and celebrating the life of a young woman who died in a tragic accident. I only met her a couple of times, but the legacy of her life echos far and loud, and I can’t help but feel the void she left behind.

“She never ran away from what she was afraid of. She always ran towards it.”

A friend who knew her well,  spoke those words. I felt them deep down in my gut, the place where my passion for life lives, something I’ve been feeling void of lately.

I place the stuffed duck in the pink wicker basket. He looks goofy there. I wonder what I’ll tell my daughter about Easter.

“Jesus died for your sins, because he loved you. Then He came back to life. Let’s celebrate with candy.”

Lately, I don’t have words. The simple things feel so complex. But I know they are not. Writing feels like a chore and a waste of time. I don’t know how to balance taking care of my daughter and making room to create. I don’t know how to do a lot of things.  I love my baby so much it makes my heart throb. I used to love writing almost like that. I don’t know how to love both. I want to live with passion like I used to.

I don’t want to be afraid to dream.

I don’t want to be afraid to risk.

I don’t want to run away from what I am afraid of.

I am desperately afraid of forgetting what matters and simply existing.

I am afraid of my heart growing cold.

“Jesus died for our sins.”

That line I know. I’ve repeated it since I was 3 or 4 years old. I said the prayer.

I believe, I do.

I know it means so much, but how do I convey it in a way that really matters when someone so loved dies too soon?

How does Easter really change broken hearts?

I took my daughter to some fountains today. The water bubbled up out of the holes in the pavement. She shrieked with laughter as the stream of water got taller and taller, spraying her sweet, round face. I smiled.

She’s never experienced this before. Everything is so new.

And I think about how Easter was the start of God making everything new. How the human race was dying in their numbness and lack of compassion and passion, in their fear and hate, and suddenly now everyone can become like babies again.

Innocent.

Brand new.

Experiencing life like it is the first time.

Full of joy.

Because Love won. Passion kicked apathy’s ass. God made death absolute.

There is newness again.

Even in brokenness, there is beauty.

Even in the worst tragedies, there is redemption.

I know now what I am going to tell my daughter about Easter.

photo

Life began that day.

God died so he could live again, in us.

Now you don’t have to be afraid.

Now you don’t have to be alone.

Now you can feel everything,

Even the most tragic of heartbreaks. 

Now you can start living.

Because LIFE lives inside of you.

And I know I’ve got to do more than tell it. I’ve got to live it.

I’ve got to stop making excuses and overcomplicating things and waiting for someone else to fix my life or be my muse or bring my passion back. I have so much life and love all around me. I have today, and it’s an exquisite gift.

Now I can run towards what I fear.

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4 Responses to “Life, Death & Easter Baskets”

  1. Aunt JoKay April 5, 2015 at 12:30 pm #

    This was my first reading this Resurrection Sunday – and I was blessed. Thank you.
    Aunt JoKay

  2. amanda April 14, 2015 at 3:52 pm #

    DO IT

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