Sacrifice is not always a popular word. As we go into the Easter season I think about Sacrifice more often than I do during the rest of the year because of my faith and spiritual beliefs. I think that there is almost always some kind of Sacrifice involved with love. Whether it is romantic love, parenting love, friendship love….really any kind of love can require a Sacrifice.
Another thing that people think about around Easter is CANDY. One kind of candy in particular stands out in my mind as being very Eastery…and that is PEEPS. I want to share a little family story about Peeps candy and how it taught me about Sacrifice.
If you mention Peeps around my immediate family…as in my parents and brother…you will immediately hear the laughter start-up. We have a little family joke about Peeps candy. This story starts way back in the 80's when I was in elementary school.
I am not sure how I came to believe that my dad loved Peeps. As a child…even as young as late elementary school I was under the impression that my dad adored eating Peeps candy. I would use my own money and buy him packages of Peeps as a gift. My brother joined me in this endeavor and for YEARS we would get my dad packages of Peeps.
I have vivid memories of wrapping the packages of Peeps and being so excited to give him a gift that he would just love to eat. As I got older and had more money from babysitting and jobs I was able to give him even larger quantities of this delightful sugary treat!
One year the truth came out….I wish I could remember when it was…I am thinking I was in college at the time. My dad opened the package of Peeps and just looked at my brother and me and told us that he hated Peeps. What??? We sat there looking at him…thinking it was some kind of joke.
He said that he had always hated Peeps….he said he absolutely cannot stand them. I had seen him eat the candy myself countless times. I asked him why he hadn't told us years before. He said that it was so sweet that we would buy the candy with our own money and we were so excited to give him a gift…he just didn't want to spoil it for us. He said he would just take a deep breath and eat some of the Peeps and pretend to love them.
I was SHOCKED! I can be a very picky eater and I can't imagine eating something I abhorred year after year and pretending to like it.
I was also in AWE of my dad. He had done something he didn't really want to do….for his kids. He made a sacrifice as a parent to allow his children to enjoy the gift of giving.
Now that I am a parent…I GET IT. I can honestly say that I haven't made a sacrifice as long-standing as my dad did. I do the typical things that parents do…buy my kids new shoes and wear my old ones until they fall apart, take my kids to McDonald's for lunch instead of going where I want to go….things like that.
Parenting really is an exercise in sacrifice. I think it is good when our children can see a glimpse of that love and sacrifice the way I did when my dad came clean about his true feelings for Peeps!
I am not sure what the final straw was for my dad…it may have been the fact that Peeps had expanded their candy line so much he knew he was going to be getting Peeps multiple times per year at almost every holiday….it may have been that the thought of eating another Peep was just more than he could bear….or maybe he felt like we were old enough to know the truth! 🙂
Whatever the reason…I am glad he told us! It definitely gives us something to laugh about…and every once in a while a box of Peeps will show up in his stocking just for old times sake! I can honestly say that I will NEVER see a Peep without thinking of my dad!
As we get closer to Easter and this season of Sacrifice…what are some things you have Sacrificed for your children or someone you love?