4.19.2017

The day Jayne asked if I was the Easter bunny.


So we make it a point not to lie to our kids. We weren't always this way, for example, when Jayne and Vinny were little we used to tell them McDonalds was closed so they wouldn't whine about going there. Or that they might get sucked down the tub drain if they didn't get out when we needed them to, lol, you get the idea. But there came a point in time where we realized we couldn't exactly teach our kids the importance of telling the truth always, no matter what (which we've been taught and firmly believe in) if we were fibbing here and there just to get them to do things we wanted. It felt right to tell the truth, even if it made things harder.

With one exception, and that's holidays. Santa, Easter bunny, the Tooth Fairy... we play along with the myth because it's tradition and encourages the magic of the imagination, and I'm okay with that. I always figured that once they caught on, and genuinely questioned the facts, then we'd tell them. No big deal.

So last night, Jayne was looking at Easter pictures on my phone and turned to me and asked, "Mom, is the Easter bunny real? Or are you the Easter bunny?" 

I was totally caught off guard. "What do you think?" I asked. "I don't know" she said, "Are you? Did you set all the stuff out?" She seemed suspicious enough that I figured I'd tell her the truth. "Yes Jayne, the Easter bunny isn't real. We like to pretend to make it fun, but don't tell the others, okay?"

Her look of suspicion instantly changed to complete horror. Then, her eyes welled up and she started bawling. BAWLING!!!

"I always believed in the Easter bunny! I can't believe he's not real. I always thought he was real!" 

I said, "Jayne, its okay! The tradition is still real. You can help me keep the tradition real. It will still be so fun!" 

"No, it won't. It won't be fun because I'll always know it's you! It won't be a special tradition for me anymore" .... huge crocodile tears running down her cheeks.

She was silent for a moment, then, "Mom, are you Santa too?"

Oh no. I didn't have it in me. "No Jayne, I am not Santa."
(Technically not a lie, I'm her mom, not Santa;)

She seemed satisfied, and very much relieved, but then began sobbing again about the Easter bunny. Inconsolable, the girl could barely catch a breath!

I was so heartbroken for her. I could tell she wanted to believe. She wasn't ready and in an instant the magic of the Easter bunny had been dashed to pieces, her innocence taken away in such a fleeting moment. I couldn't take it anymore!

"Guess what Jayne?"

"What?"

"I was just messing with you. I'm not the Easter bunny. The Easter bunny is real. I'm sorry that I tricked you."

(oh no, what did I just do??)

"Really?!" She perked up, tears stopped, a smile forming on her face.

"Yes, Jayne. Do you really think I would have been able to do all that without you seeing or knowing?? We live in a small house. Where would I even hide all the stuff? How would it all get set up like that while I was asleep? Remember the bunny bites on your notes? How would those get there??"

(Are they technically lies if asked in question form?)

Just like that she was smiling, complete relief written all over her face. She gave me the BIGGEST hug, and skipped out the door to play outside, happily back in her world of real Easter bunnies. 

I felt like the biggest imposter. Dang you, Easter Bunny for getting me caught in a web of lies!

I don't know how I'm gonna keep this up!

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