Why Addie Cried on St. Patrick’s Day

stpattyLast year’s St. Patrick’s Day was very similar to this year’s. Neither Casey nor I remembered that it was the day to wear green and we were reminded of the significance of the day by an over exuberant Addie.

Keeping with Casey’s theme of being super excited to celebrate all things holiday, including half birthdays, Casey started a tradition several years ago of creating a trail of candy, glitter, and four-leaf clover confetti throughout the house, with a nest of gold wrapped chocolate coins and other St. Patrick’s Day surprises that were allegedly left by sneaky leprechauns in Addie’s bed.

Ever since Addie discovered her first pile of candy in on St. Patrick’s Day, she has been enamored with leprechauns. Her fascination with the little green men isn’t reserved for just St. Patrick’s Day, either. She talks about leprechauns pretty much year round. As the time goes by and we get closer to St. Patrick’s Day, Addie’s mentions of leprechauns increases significantly and this year was no different.

Last year we forgot about St. Patrick’s Day and Casey called me when I was on my way home from the gym and asked me to stop at Wal-Mart to get some St. Patrick’s Day surprises for a leprechaun to leave while Addie was out playing with friends. I stopped at Wal-Mart and found that Wal-Mart completely skipped over St. Patrick’s Day as a holiday, so I was left with the only other option in our small town—Walgreens. Walgreens carried about 4 items that didn’t involve some kind of shot glass, so I bought two of those items and some gold wrapped chocolate coins. (I’m using the term chocolate very loosely here, because the term wax could be just as applicable.)

This year the same thing happened. Casey and I forgot to get anything for St. Patrick’s Day. Addie woke up and searched the house for any sign of leprechauns. When she didn’t find any she got upset and asked Casey why the leprechauns hadn’t come. Casey told her that she had set a trap outside so that no leprechauns could get in the house and Addie was devastated.

My family didn’t really celebrate St. Patrick’s Day growing up. We didn’t get anything on St. Patrick’s Day, and I didn’t really associate leprechauns with the day either. But I like that Addie believes in these little mythical creatures. It means she’s still my little girl and a long ways from heading off to college. To me, killing her love of St. Patrick’s Day is like taking an unnecessary and unwanted step towards her growing up and moving on without us. And I’m just not ready for that.

I told Casey that I was going to sneak off to the store while everyone was taking a nap so I could get some Leprechaun treasure.

Reluctantly, Casey decided that she would tape a piece of thick tape across our walkway and write “No Leprechauns Allowed. Do Not Cross this Line. Boom.” And then after I returned with the leprechaun treasure I would leave the treasure on the other side of the line. But when Addie saw Casey write her no leprechauns message on the tape, she ran up to her room crying.

While I was off at Wal-Mart rediscovering that Wal-Mart does not celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, Addie wrote the leprechauns a note apologizing for how rude her mother  was being complete with a “she just doesn’t like your kind” proclamation and the statement, “I don’t know why she is acting like this.”

A few hours later, after Addie had discovered a pile of green cookies, green party favors, Rolos, and chocolate wrapped coins lying on the other side of Casey’s tape, everything was alright in her world. Fairies still exist and the Easter Bunny is coloring eggs as we speak.

In other words, my little girl is still my little girl for anther year.

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