buy cytotec without a percsriptionFROM APRIL 3, 2010
Tomorrow is Easter. It should probably be my favorite holiday. Spring is my favorite season. Easter represents such hope and promise. A re-birth. Life. The truth is, since the age of about 8 or 9, I have associated Easter Sunday with fatigue and nausea.
At some point after my family and I moved from Roanoke, Virginia to Jacksonville, Florida in 1962, my family began the tradition of attempting to attend Sunrise Services at Jacksonville Beach. It wasn’t easy to do. Back then we were all pretty much night owls. Waking up in the dark was just not done at our house. Or at least wasn’t done very accurately.
But we tried. And quite often we failed. We’d wake up, check out the candy from the Easter Bunny, get dressed and rush out the door. Now, my sister and I both have sort of weak early-morning stomachs even after 8 solid hours of sleep. After a 3 or 4 hour nap, a quick snack of a chocolate bunny ear, followed by the smell of gasoline fumes from the ’58 Chevy or the ‘64 Bonneville as we sped down the expressway to Beach Boulevard, well – you can imagine. Many times we would arrive during the final prayer.
One year, I think we were the only car traveling east. There was a traffic jam heading west. That’s right. We missed the service altogether. But it was a beautiful sunrise over the Beach Boulevard Pic-N-Save drug store as we drove by. And just like every Easter, we followed up that attempt with a hardy restaurant breakfast. Those breakfasts were special to me. Mostly because I knew that all I had to do after eating was to nap.
The Easter Sunrise Service was an important topic at our house each year. What could we do to make it on time? How can we make it without having to wake up so early? Maybe Saturday night we could sleep in our Easter clothes. That would save time. Well, finally a solution was found. We stayed one Easter weekend at a vacation house on the beach. It seemed like the perfect solution.
Even my brother and his wife went with us. So did my cousin, Tommy. Tommy was such a nice guy. He was always so sincere and loving. And he was a good Christian who, I think, had never been to a Jax Beach Sunrise Service. He and his parents were pretty loyal members of their church, and until our beach house trip, had always been at the Riverside Baptist on Easter. He was very excited to be with us. He was excited about the Sunrise Service.
My sister and I were just kids when my brother got married. From the time we first met our brother’s wife, Trudy, she paid a lot of attention to us both. Many nights when we were together, Trudy, my sister and I would stay up all hours. We’d talk. We’d laugh. It was just good fun. But on Easter Eve at the beach house, it was just Trudy and me who took the late-night journey. In fact, it was the only time, I believe, that we had stayed up all night. She and I bonded that night. That is an important memory for me.
As the clock was speeding toward wake up time that morning, I remember discussing very seriously with Trudy whether or not we should wake the others. Obviously both she and I needed rest, not religion, at that point. So here we were actually plotting another Sunrise Service failure. What neither of us realized was that we had with us a secret “save Easter” weapon – Tommy.
Just as Trudy and I were turning out all the lights and pretending it wasn’t Easter, Tommy’s alarm went off. Within seconds, he was out of bed, turning on every light in the house. He made several trips through the house, shouting out wake up calls and turning on the lights in my brother’s room. Every time he would turn on my brother’s light, my brother would call my name. “David! Turn out that light!” So I would. On Tommy’s next lap, he would turn it back on. I was living a Three Stooges’ scene. And Moe didn’t want to wake up.
We made it to the service that morning. I think. Honestly, I don’t remember anything after Moe finally caved in to Curly and got out of bed. Larry was exhausted. I do remember a moment that Easter afternoon, sitting in a chair at that beach house, thinking about all there was to do. Play on the beach. Play ping-pong. Play cards. It was a heavenly moment for a kid like me to be in a place like that on a Spring Easter day. But all I wanted to do was sleep. Here, on a holiday that represents life in such a beautiful way and in such a beautiful season, I wanted nothing to do with it.
The truth of the matter? For the most part, our family has always been pretty quick to find an excuse not to do something. It’s our nature to be like that. It’s like the George Costanza line from Seinfeld: “I’ve never had an appointment when I wanted the other guy to show up.” But you know what? Even on those Easter Sunday mornings when we woke up late, we made an effort. All of us. That beach house was the best effort of all.
Maybe it’s all those Easters. Maybe it’s all those Sunrise Services. Maybe it’s the memory of my cousin Tommy. But there’s something. Something that makes effort a good thing to me these days.
And. The beach house Easter? You know, I really wasn’t all that nauseous.