Peeps: you either love them or you hate them. My late husband loved Peeps. Any color, any flavor, any shape-he would eat them. My kids were never excited about receiving them at Easter. He was happy to eat their rejects.
The first spring after Terry’s death, I was in a store and the Easter Peeps were on the shelves. My heart jumped. Like a woman obsessed, I searched the shelves to be sure I had both bunnies and chicks in every color. When I unveiled my Peeps stash to my kids, they were bewildered. None of us ate Peeps. They thought Mom had lost it. Again. I couldn’t explain it. I just “needed” to buy Peeps just like I used to do, one more time.
I continue to buy Peeps at Easter. Not in the volume as that first year, but I still purchase at least a small pack of four. This year, my grandson and I bought purple bunny peeps. I explained to him that his Grandfather Terry loved Peeps. He had great fun stuffing the bunny peeps in plastic eggs. He saved the last one for me.
In the beginning, seeing Easter Peeps reminded how much I missed Terry. They brought me to tears and caused panic feelings. I bought them as a way to reach back and grab the memory of our life together. Gradually, the tears were replaced with smiles.
I still look forward to the Easter Peeps. But now, they bring joyful memories. I buy Peeps to remind me of the gifts of the past and the promise of the future. I can build new traditions with my grandson while honoring my memory of Terry.
Grief never disappears. It will always color everything in my life. Grief taught me about kindness and empathy. Grief opened my eyes to the love of my Heavenly Father in a completely new way. I’ve never been thankful for the pain of grief, but I am grateful for the growth grief forced me to do.
Peeps show up every Easter and remind me that “joy comes in the morning”. Joy and laughter have replaced sadness and sorrow. I think I’ll go enjoy a purple bunny peep. Happy Easter!