My most profound Easter memory is one that runs deep and that you would probably appreciate me sharing with you. You'll probably say you've learned something at the end of this article. I learn something and remind myself about what I have learned, every time that I recall this single Easter memory. It is definitely worth the share.
It was an Easter egg hunt at church. All of us Sunday School kids needed to find the hidden Easter eggs, tucked away in secret by our Sunday School teacher. Now listen closely here... while I was excited to begin the egg hunt, I was also mortified. I wanted to be just happy; but I couldn't be. And then everything around me seemed to turn to slow mo. Slow motion. The laughter of my classmates, the excitement all around— there was a sick feeling in my stomach. I somehow knew that I would find all the eggs immediately, leaving nothing at all for any of my classmates. That knowledge alone, for some reason, made me feel almost guilty! Like I was about to do something very wrong because I knew that they would all end up feeling very disappointed if all the eggs happened to go to me!
"On your mark! Get set! Go!" And everyone ran screaming around the church grounds! I just began to walk slowly, picking up the eggs around, it was way too easy for me and I really didn't even have to look for them, at all! So I walked very slowly, while everyone else ran around frantically! Then it happened! I saw the most beautiful Easter egg, EVER! It was pink and covered in pink glitters! It was right there in front of me! Right there, just right there in front of me! It was too easy! And I stood there and I wanted it so bad! But I wouldn't reach out for it! As I was just about to reach out for it— BAM! A screaming, giggling girl came hurdling by, snatched it up and it was gone forever! Then everything turned to slow mo all over again. Now I felt sick for cheating my own self out of what could have been mine!
I feel like Elijah Mikaelson in Vampire Diaries, in that scene where he tells his brother Klaus, "If insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting a different result each time, then I, in my 1000 years of trying to redeem you, have been insane! But from now on, I am putting an end to this. From now on, I take what is mine. I take what I want." (Something like that) Because really, all I have been doing is the same thing over and over again, expecting something different every time. Expecting people to be kinder next time, expecting them to understand next time, expecting them to not be so selfish, to not be such liars! But of course, I always get the same result from people. At the end of the day— the person I should be redeeming from this world is myself. I wasn't born for the benefit of everyone around me.
It was the same story in sports as I was growing up. I could always run faster and jump farther. I thought I was weird. So I always stopped on the tracks and waited for the others to catch their breath so we could begin running again, altogether this time. I wouldn't jump as far as I could so that my reach wouldn't be too obvious. I wouldn't read in public (but that was because of a different reason; that was because I was just really shy). But the bottom line is: I conformed to everyone around me. I mindfully and purposefully conformed. And that is my biggest mistake in life. Because when you are given a gift, you are supposed to be thankful for it and use it. You're not supposed to hide it under the bed and think that it's weird.
I hope that this Easter story of mine will hit somewhere close to home, in your mind and heart, serve as a source of inspiration and courage for you, and maybe (just maybe) I can stop any other child out there, who is just like how I was, from making the same mistake that I did that Easter Sunday (and again and again after that.) Don't make my mistake. Be what you are.