I was a very tiny child, so young, I don’t even remember the events of this story happening to me. I only know what happened because my parents repeated the story throughout my childhood until it became part of our family folklore.
It was Easter. My sibling either hadn’t been born or was too little to play with the gang of cousins, which means I couldn’t have been more than four. We were at the home of my godmother, my mother’s eldest sister. My godmother had six children, and her home was one of my favorite places in my small world. The house was full of kids and excitement. There was always someone around to play with or at least give me some attention. I particularly enjoyed being with my girl cousins who are a year and a half and three years older than I am. The three of us rocked girl power before the media gave the phenomenon a name.
My dad didn’t much like for me to visit at my godmother’s house. I suppose being there gave me what he considered a bad attitude. My cousins were living a rather free-range childhood; they have no supervision, my dad once said. I suppose after being unsupervised with my cousins, I desired less supervision when I went home, but my parents weren’t standing for that. I was an over-supervised child, and my parents had no intention of loosening their hold.
So it was Easter. The kids were going in and out of the house to hide Easter eggs in the large yard. My mom had added the brightly colored eggs she and I had dyed together to the pile of brightly colored eggs her sister had dyed with my cousins. There were a lot of eggs to hide and seek.
Long after the other kids had grown bored with Easter eggs and moved on to other activities, my cousin Sherry and I were still at it. Sherry was the cousin closest to me in age, just a year and a few months my senior, so she was often stuck playing with me. I think I was probably a little too young to hide eggs, so that task fell on Sherry. After she hid all the eggs, we went outside to together so I could find them. Sherry had to stay with me to make sure I didn’t hurt myself and to provide clues on where to find the eggs she had hidden a little too well.
The adults must have noticed the lapse of time between my going out to find the eggs and coming inside to announce they had all been found was growing increasingly shorter. When my mom peeked into my Easter basket, she noticed the supply of eggs had also diminished.
Sherry, go outside and help Blaize find the rest of the eggs, my cousin was encouraged.
I suppose the adults wanted to be alone so they could gossip about other family members and the state of the world outside the earshot of children who might repeat what had been said.
Sherry and I went outside, but it wasn’t long before we were inside again with no additional eggs in the basket. In fact, we now seemed to possess fewer eggs than we’d had the last time we’d come inside.
Sherry, why didn’t y’all find all the eggs? one of the adults complained.
We did find them all, Sherry burst our miserably. Blaize ate most of the eggs she found!
Mystery solved. I was a tiny girl who loved hard boiled eggs, and I’d eaten most of our bounty. My cousin either couldn’t stop me or (more likely) hadn’t even bothered to try. Thankfully, neither salmonella nor high cholesterol took me out on that holiest of days.
Photo courtesy of https://www.pexels.com/photo/bright-colorful-colourful-decorate-356339/.