Monday, April 5, 2010

Easter Beginnings

I’m a little fuzzy on the religious meaning of Easter. Plus, with a mom that’s a recent Jewish convert, a dad who still holds some comfort in Catholicism, a brother who’s Agnostic, a grandmother who prays to that we won’t forget her See’s candy, aunts, uncles, and cousins who reside somewhere between Christianity, Catholicism, Baptist, and one that I assume to be Atheist (?), it’s passable to say that we don’t bask in the religious facet of the holiday. Nonetheless, we all agree that Easter includes family, baskets of chocolate with shiny plastic grass, Peeps, the hard-boiling, dying, hiding, and hunting of eggs, Peeps, an Encinitas family brunch, the ending of whatever we unsuccessfully gave up for Lent (which knowing my family, was probably sugar), Peeps, fresh flowers, and new beginnings…And did I mention the Peeps?

Oh, right, new beginnings. Winter is over, Spring is here, new flowers are blossoming, and is it just me or does the air just seem fresher? Out with the old, in with the new, and it’s sufficed to say that I’m not the only one with new beginnings in line. I have a friend moving from Arizona to start a new life, a friend moving to Arizona to start grad school, a friend awaiting the purchase of a new home, a dad with a newly remodeled old home, a friend starting a new job, a friend planning a new vacation, and a grandmother who I assume is sitting with a new box of See’s chocolate on her lap. As Bob Dylan would say, “The times, they are a-changin’.” Yes, Bob, yes they are.

And for me, well, I couldn’t be more pleased and excited about the new beginnings that are literally just around the corner (across the street, down the road, through the gated community, and less than a mile away). By this time next week, I will be writing on this blog from a new location, in a new bedroom, with a new family, as a new Au Pair to three fantastic kids that I fell in love with my first week here in Lyon. They’re American, they’re here for the same reason I am (to experience the French culture), their son has play-dates with my current host-family’s son, which is how I met them, they’re my new family until July, they’re my saving grace from the dark days my current status-quo, and they’re extraordinary.

Though the doors to winter are being shut and the pea-coats and snow boots are being put away, the lessons I’ve learned during those three bleak months have revealed. It’s been a relentless pattern of reflecting, rediscovering, and even regretting at times, but I’ve learned. I’ve learned that putting something off (like quitting) makes something instantly harder and scarier, that wishing things were different is a great way to torment yourself, that there’s splendor in the monotonous 8-to-5 job, because when you quit, you don’t have to still see the employers at the breakfast table. I’ve learned it’s true about little boys being made of snips, snails and puppy-dog tails, but unfortunately there are some girls who are made of sugar, spite, and everything that makes one want to run for the hills. I’ve confirmed the importance of being earnest, honest, and a good B-Complex vitamin. I’ve learned that I’m strong, I can endure, and I have the most incredible support system back home that would make any onlooker green with envy. I’ve learned that doors will close, hopes will fall, relationships will end, but dreams will prevail. Life, well, it rarely turns out the way you plan… I just didn’t realize that it applied to my life.

And lastly (for now), I’ve learned how great friends can take the place when family is absent, that when you’re a tidbit homesick for the familiarity of an Encinitas Easter brunch (and Peeps, of course), a brunch with a new generous host-family and a post-office delivered Easter “basket” from your best friend will certainly make you smile.

Thank you, Courtney, for my amazing care-package Easter basket! (not photographed: Aleve pills)

The kids of my new host-family, on search for Easter eggs!

The backyard view of my new home

He found the golden bunny! The girl was not happy at all!

Posted by Picasa
Gratitude (this will be easy):
  • Change (yes I know, I really did admit that)
  • Incredible friends
  • Eating Sour Patch Easter Bunnies while wearing new Easter socks and starting a new book
  • An Easter brunch that included roasted chicken, deviled eggs, asparagus, tomato and mozzarella salad, and yes, mimosas :)
  • One week left....


  1. i am so happy you have a bright future, new family and will be refreshed with the new season!!! the easter gift was adorable, as are the new kids youll be caring for! this looks like a good one and i hop eyou move, settle and enjoy!!

  2. I'm so happy for you! And you quoted Bob Dylan! Be still my heart. Your new family sounds fantastic...and their house ain't so bad either. Ha. The kids are so lucky to have you. You sound so much less stressed and weighed down! I hope we can catch up soon! They let me out of work early today (woot!) but it'll probably be hard for me to chat online during the day for a while. I'm thinking of you! Email when you can :)

  3. Yay! I'm so excited for you Lauren! :)
    It sounds like this family will be a much better fit for you, and they already acknowledge the wonderful, smart, sincere person that you are. I wish you the best! What are your plans after July? Traveling through Europe?

  4. I´m so happy for you, girl :)

  5. yayyyyyyy!!!!! thats awesome! im glad you have found plan B! (or C whatever this one
    it sounds like these kids are much better suited for you and i really hope it works out!!

  6. You are so strong, Laur! I'm so excited for you, and can't wait to see your experiences take a turn for the better. And long live the B-Complex vitamin, Aleve liquid-gels (need your new address for when you're ready to re-up; love playing pharamacist!), oh! and Acidophilus!

  7. gostariamos de conhecer a frança!