A Tisket, a Tasket, What’s in the Basket?

By Mary Jedlicka Humston © 2012

What would a teenage boy want to find in his Easter basket? More importantly, would he even want one? I didn’t want to cause any embarrassment, but under the circumstances, I thought it might bring him a tiny spot of joy. You see, his father had suddenly died just a week and a half before, shocking him and his seven siblings, as well as his grieving mother Mary, a dear friend of mine for over 25 years.
The dilemma of the Easter basket heightened on the day I planned to drive the three-hour round trip to visit Mary and to have lunch with her at a local tearoom. This would give us some personal time together beyond what the visitation and funeral Mass allowed the week before. Since Easter was only days away, I arranged purple and pink baskets for the three youngest girls still at home. Each one included a fruity lip gloss, funky-colored nail polish, a packet of Easter stickers, headbands, a small chocolate rabbit and, of course, several smaller pieces of candy.
Creating baskets for the girls was easy, but what would their 17-year-old brother like? I debated that issue the entire ten-minute drive from my house to the drugstore. Once at Walgreens, I hurried to the holiday aisle and stood, gaping at the mountains of toys, candy, stuffed animals and game selections and praying to find just the right item. My gaze swiveled back and forth, up and down the shelves.
Suddenly, there it was, a large, colorful box containing an equally large chocolate rabbit. Everyone loved huge hunks of chocolate in colorful boxes, right? I grabbed it and headed for the checkout line. I left Walgreens, satisfied yet hopeful that this Easter basket wouldn’t totally mortify him. I tossed in more candy alongside the bunny and drove to Mary’s home.   
After finally arriving, I hugged my friend, long and hard. Then, I distributed the Easter baskets to her daughters. The youngest immediately put on her headband, used the lip gloss and had one of her sisters apply polish to her toe nails.
When I showed Mary the basket for her son, she gasped. “How wonderful that you brought Matt the only thing he wanted for Easter…a chocolate bunny.”
            God is amazing. He cares about everything, even the smallest things like providing a chocolate Easter bunny for a teenaged boy who’d recently lost his father.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Mary Jedlicka Humston has over 100 publications in newspapers, magazines, books and websites that include Liguorian, Coping with Cancer, Today’s Caregiver Magazine, Cappers, Julien’s Journal, TEA: A Magazine, Farm and Ranch Living, Our Iowa and a cover story for TOPS News. She is a member of the National League of American Pen Women, www.nlapw.org. Besides writing, she loves reading, yoga, drinking tea, walking, and being with friends and family. To contact Mary, email maryjedhum@gmail.com

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