The Secular Parent at Easter
April 6, 2012 6 Comments
Disclaimer: If frank discussion of my secular life is offensive the delicate reader, turn back now.
The Skeptical Woman clan are not a religious folk. After 14 years of Catholic school I can make this informed statement. I am not into organized religion. I understand Easter is the “holiest” of holy days according to the western calendar. I have vivid memories of 14 years of “Stations of the Cross” every Friday during Lent.
In religion class, I had to draw pictures of what I was giving up for Lent. Then, I had to squeeze into an unseasonably spring, uncomfortable dress, tights, and go to church.
P.S. I’m not Catholic.
Sure, the greeting card companies and big box stores have done a good job of selling Easter under the guise of a “Hop in to Spring” campaign. Pastels and flowers decorate the stores in my area. Even candy is more attractive. Once again, I am faced with the dilemma of being a secularist parent. Do I “celebrate” Easter with my daughter?
Well, after last years great bunny trauma-we are skipping the rabbit. I think my dilemma asks a question that many parents grapple with “Do I want to deprive my child?” No, I don’t. In fact, I want to see her in a pretty dress and holding a basket of goodies. Easter baskets were always a highlight of my childhood. I want her to have that excitement and suspense of waking up and finding a basket of treats. However, as a grown-up, I am less than enthused. Although, I do look forward to dinner. This is the consumer side of holidays. I’m not fan of consumerism but I like it more than religion.
I just want to keep the “Jesus” part of it at bay. The bunny side of Easter is very different than the Jesus side of easter. Christmas is no different. Maybe it’s not the religion that scares me as much as religious parents. Yes, they terrify me. I don’t want to indoctrinate my daughter with patriarchal ideaologies that outline how to look down on people and juge them while playing an obedient role to her male superiors.
A religious life is a dangerous life for a woman. For her body, her mind, and her place as an equal in contemporary society. With every holiday we dance with this danger.
However, this dilemma has a solution. Education. My responsibility as a parent to educate my child about how we celebrate holiays and why in comparison to the opposition. With that, bring on the Peeps.