My earliest memory of something atypical of Easter-cliche-happenings was in the year I would turn 8, 1981. It was Easter Sunday morning and my father, mother, brother, and I were gathered in the bright yellow sunroom for breakfast when the phone rang.
It was family back East. Seems my father’s father died that morning. I’d never met him. Phillip. But if he was my father’s father, well, he must’ve been a giant of a man, then.
We lived on opposite coasts of the world’s largest country back when air travel wasn’t exactly a bargain. But that was the summer — we were going back for almost the entire summer, spending it in Prince Edward Island for my mother’s parent’s 50th wedding anniversary and family reunion.
Two months too late to meet the last of my father’s parents.
Ever since, I’ve always found death and rebirth to be synonymous with Easter.
Winter rages, summer bites back. Seasons change. Lethargy bleeds out and enthusiasm rears up.
The romantic in me is enjoying the realization that such a major and untenable lifechange should come for me as Easter dawns.
I wish I could bottle and share this cauldron that bubbles inside me — a (in)toxic(ating) mix of excitement and fear, curiosity and dread, confusion and confidence. I have no idea what to make of it, how to pull it all apart.
It’s like my emotions are fighting like a carload of five-year-olds.
And this week coming up is filled with grey and cold and wind. A batten-your-hatches and clear-your-files sort of week filled with naps, short wet walks, pensive moments, and strategizing.
The weather gods apparently feel next weekend is a good time for Spring to begin her return engagement in the fair city of Vancouver, after peppering us with an ironic blast of late winter and snow after our “warmest Olympics ever” came to an end — and the city’s been in a freeze ever since.
From weather on down, change is coming every which way in my life. From my professional focus to my health attitudes to the time I have to focus on myself to my ability to be out in the world to my back account.
EVERYTHING changes here, now, this very week.
It’s not like this is some happy slow transition. No, dude. I’ve lost my job — I’ve gone from trying to juggle seems-like-60-hour weeks to juggling zilch, nada, zippo. My landscape of my life is like a vast stretch of prairie scrub. Goes for miles and miles and miles.
Its vast emptiness is paralleled only by the expanse of my savings account.
The life I had, overnight, is in cardiac arrest, sustained only by the faint hope that is the three-months-to-hire-me-back open-ended lay-off I’ve been handed. Aside from that?
Well, shit, son. Not every aspiring writer gets her bookwriting ducks in a row then gets her pink slip.*
My whole life’s kinda weird right now. I had a Mystery Mentor step out of the works on Twitter and give me very valuable advice for starting my book. I’m reading How to Write a Book Proposal by Larsen now. Very “start here” positioning when you have a good idea of how your book unfolds. As I’m beginning to.
But I’d been working toward this readying since December — figuring out plot and structure, style and voice, basic timeline. In my head, of course. But sometimes that’s a good start.
Life-wise, I was able to get just a few things in a row — not everything will unfold at once but instead it will unfold over the next few months, slowly making me able to sustain the kind of adversity I have to be ready to face if I’m to use this sudden shifting of worlds to my advantage.
All in all? Easter? What an exciting unexpected scary time for me.
Thank god I believe in myself and have an inkling that, despite this appearing to be “bad” luck, this may actually be the start of something wow for me.
WHAT, exactly, I don’t know.
But isn’t it fun?
Happy Easter, everyone. Save me some ham.**
And avoid the “death” part of Easter. It’s kinda lame. Ham’s better. Not for the pig. But, you know.
*Pink slips are blue, incidentally, in Canada. Get yer passport now. Yer missing the fuck out, people.
**You ever think the Christian tradition of ham at Easter is sort of an ironic slap at Judaism, which kinda started the whole Easter-ball rolling anyhow? I’m more a turkey girl.