Easter is this weekend.
I always feel uneasy about Easter.
Lately I've been feeling uneasy about ALL holidays.
For two main reasons:
1) Insane commercialization
Have you seen the St Patrick's Day swag? IT'S ST PATRICK'S DAY!!! Why do I need to buy gifts and trinkets for people on St Patrick's Day?
All you should have to do is put on something in some shade a green, talk in a terrible fake Irish accent and pinch anyone who isn't wearing green.
Free fun for the whole family!
But that's not what the stores want you to believe.
They want you to believe you need to spend copious amount of money and go ALL OUT for anything even remotely holiday-like.
And I say PHOOEY!
PHOOEY to overpriced, useless junk. And PHOOEY to celebrating EVERYTHING with chocolates and candy. (At least for the boys. I'm okay with eating all the candy and all the chocolate.)
I also say PHOOEY to Christmas stuff going up before Thanksgiving, Valentine's Day before Christmas, St Patty's Day before V-Day, Easter before St Patty's Day and so on and so on.
I smite you retail giants! With the heat of 10,000 suns!
2) We are not religious.
This isn't really an issue I have with holidays. *We* chose to be non-religious and almost all holidays had religious foundations looong before we decided to say a polite 'No, thank you' to religion.
But this certainly makes explaining certain holidays (like Easter) a little difficult.
It's not at all that we don't want the boys to know the religious aspect of Easter or Christmas or Passover or Kwanza or any holiday. In fact, we are happy to expose the boys to all kinds of holidays, religions and people. But let's be honest - most holidays (like Easter and Christmas) are crazy confusing.
Add in how OUR family chooses to celebrate and my kids aren't going to have a clue what's going on.
I know kids understand MUCH more than we adults sometimes give them credit for but it confuses the hell out of ME if I think about it too long.
Explaining the 'Christian version" and then the Easter Bunny AND THEN how we are choosing to celebrate just seems like too much.
It's entirely possible that I'm just being lazy.
However, in my defence, I think the important thing to remember is that we do not shelter our boys from other religions or customs. We just maybe want someone else to teach that stuff to the boys. I mean, isn't that why we send them to school?
Plus sitting Kadyn down to explain something never really works. It doesn't usually work all that well for most kids Kadyn's age. I prefer to wait until he asks questions. I have no problems answering any questions he has honestly and as fully and I can and I always feel that Kadyn learns better when the learning is initiated by him.
Still I wonder - is it wrong of me to not make learning the religious aspects of holidays a top priority?
One could say that by not making it a priority, we are sheltering the boys from it - if they never hear about Buddhism, they will never ask about and, therefore, will never know about it.
I just don't feel like we need to teach our boys EVERYTHING about EVERYTHING.
I feel like that attitude comes from the whole 'Competitive Parenting' movement. And I don't subscribe to that magazine at all.
Ryan and I decided that Easter for us means the beginning of Spring. The Easter Bunny visits and leaves small treats for us because he is just OH SO HAPPY that winter is over.
(Since I will be playing the part of the Easter Bunny, this is actually pretty darn accurate.)
I won't be sitting Kadyn down to explain that some people believe a man named Jesus died and then rose from the dead.
Holy loaded conversation!
But if it comes up or Kadyn asks, I will answer his questions as best I can. As always.
How do you explain holidays and religions to your kids?