As eggs are historically a universal symbol of fertility and rebirth, it was a natural evolution that they’d factor into springtime rites and the celebration of Easter. When my friend V invited me to decorate some eggs this past week, she was flabbergasted when I told her that I’ve never before indulged in egg decorating or Easter egg hunts!
At least I CAN say that I’ve eaten my fair share of chocolate Easter eggs over the years. I am extremely experienced and adept in this area! 🙂 According to this very interesting article about the history of Easter eggs, the first English chocolate egg was sold by Fry’s in 1873: Why do We Eat Eggs at Easter? Chocolate is my kind of egg!
Going into this egg decorating event, I was pretty confident about my abilities. I have considerable history as a fine artist, so I’m therefore capable of very detailed and accurate drawing. I was in the mood for some sparkle, so I was elated when I found some tube sparkle applicators in various rich colors. The applicator tips are fine, so I pictured drawing intricate shimmering designs on the eggs I purchased from The Girl with Green Eggs (last Tuesday’s post).
Wrong! This egg decorating exercise was humbling in so many ways. I did not know the characteristics of any the involved mediums (the eggs as canvas, the dye, the sparkle goo), had not anticipated the messiness factor (and therefore cross-contamination of color), the clumsiness factor (trying to hold on to a slippery egg), or the prolonged drying time required for the sparkle goo. All in all, it quickly began disintegrating into an exercise in frustration.
I was forced to step back and ask myself why. I realized that my end goal of achieving some respectably beautiful eggs (the results) had quickly over-taken my supposed primary goal of having some fun (the process). Once again the “perform and produce” serious side of me had beaten down the part that just wanted to have some fun for a change. Once I realized this and let go of expectation of any certain result, I was able to play.
I stopped fighting against what I viewed as limitations, which opened the door to possibilities. I realized I was going get something very different from what I had pictured in my mind, and that was OKAY. Between the steps involved, the messiness, and the drying factor, it took an excruciating amount of time to produce a few decorated eggs.
But I love them! My Easter eggs represent some lessons in preparedness, expectation, flexibility, creativity, experimentation, patience, and simply allowing myself to relax and have some fun with friends. The eggs are beautiful in a way that I totally had not expected.
That’s a lot of takeaway from one egg decorating afternoon, and I’m grateful for all of it. Thank you, V!
To my readers who celebrate Easter, I’m wishing you a beautiful weekend. As it unfolds, try to make room for the unexpected. You may be astonished at what comes to you when you do!