We took Philip to see the Easter Bunny last Sunday:
Don’t worry. That’s not the only photo. There’s another where we both have our eyes closed.
I posted this on Facebook and a friend remarked, “And they charged you $32.99 for this?” I was happy to report that I did not pay for a professional photo of me with my mouth hanging open. Instead, this photo was courtesy of an autism awareness group in cooperation with our local mall. Just like Sensitive Santa, this “Sensitive Easter Bunny” event took place before the stores opened, when not all the lights are on, the Muzak is turned off, and the only other patrons are mall walkers.
Two children were seated with the Easter Bunny to have their photo taken when we arrived, the youngest wailing.
Poor kid, I thought. In contrast, Philip was happy. A small fountain in the photo area completely held his attention. He was so focused on the running water he had no idea the bunny was there until it was our turn.
Philip legs stiffened and his feet froze as soon as he saw the costumed character. I should have been prepared for this. Just a few weeks before, even someone dressed as Curious George made Philip nervous. Still, I was remembering the day we were at Walmart when they announced free photos with the Easter Bunny. In that instance, Philip gladly sat beside the large rabbit. I think that particular incarnation reminded him of his over-sized teddy bear. We ended up with a cute pic of Philip poking the bunny’s belly.
Philip was having none of that with this Easter Bunny. Fortunately, this event was the perfect opportunity not to force the matter. There were no paying customers waiting behind us in line. The photographer and her assistant had been prepped for this particular crowd. That meant we could take our time.
Deciding to try out one of Philip’s newest skills I urged him, “Give the Easter Bunny a high-five.”
Inching forward, Philip slowly extended his hand before quickly touching palms and pulling his arm back. When nothing dire happened, I was able to convince Philip to stand beside the Easter Bunny. I hadn’t intended on being in the photo, but Philip clung to me.
They snapped a photo and –
– we both had our eyes shut.
Before they could take the next picture, Philip dashed off. Finally, the planets aligned and Philip stayed in place long enough with his eyes open to get an official photo. He was rewarded with a packet of fruit snacks.
Photo op complete, it was time to ride the train. Then there was a craft project and we grabbed a snack on our way out.