April 05

Bunny Prints

At last. Easter. What must it have been like to discover the body of Jesus had disappeared? Although there are so many wonderful writings about that morning, my memories of Easter morning always remind me, oddly, of my late mother in law, Connie Kerr. The first Easter I spent with her Bill and I were caring for her following a long and very serious hospitalization related to emphysema. She had only 16% of her lung capacity left even though she was only 58 at the time. Her bedroom was on the second floor of her old home. She was able to come downstairs once a day, on a good day, but that was it. It wiped her out. Bill and I would typically take her breakfast upstairs each morning because mornings were hard for her breathing.

Connie was raised Catholic but was an atheist when she died. On Easter morning 1996, a few months before we would marry, I was the first one downstairs and wanted to make Connie a nice breakfast before Bill and I left for church. As I turned the corner into the kitchen I noticed little white marks on the floor near the back door. They looked as though a cat had stepped in flour and made prints across the floor. Later I took Connie’s breakfast up to her. She was doing a breathing treatment with her nebulizer so I waited until she was done. I said, “There’s some little white marks on the floor in the kitchen. I’m trying to figure out how they got there.” Still breathless, she uttered, “Bunny prints,” gasped again and then finished her thought. “The Easter Bunny must have come.” Then she smiled. “Did you go downstairs last night by yourself after we went to bed?!” I asked incredulously. She nodded and smiled broadly.

My eyes welled up because I knew how much energy that involved for her and that she had done that for me. I couldn’t believe as frail as she was that she had been able to lean over to make these prints on the floor! She didn’t believe in Easter but she knew I did. Every year since I have sprinkled flour in paw patterns at our back door to remember that morning. Sophie loved them as a little child and enjoys seeing them even as a teen.

Happy Easter my friends. Alleluia.