Ok, confession time – I’m not a Halloween person. That’s not easy to admit considering holidays, parties, entertaining is my world – I’m sure it’s a crime in some states and most definitely an offense with my fellow party planing folk, – but it’s the truth.
Being shaped by our experiences – I know why; I clearly remember the trauma of having to wear the two sizes too small ‘bride’ costume when I was 6 – when I really wanted to be a cowgirl. Then there was the costume parade in elementary school where we all walked around the playground showing off our costumes to our parents on the sidelines – hot, sweaty and visually impaired inside a mask, I struggled to keep moving forward without tripping or stepping on my cape, or veil for that matter – I felt like one of those humiliated little dogs people dress up in silly outfits. In junior high I experienced the loneliest day of my life when I painted my face green for a witch costume and not one person recognized me at school – I spent the entire day saying “hi” to my friends who gave me that ‘do I know you?’ look as they just walked right by me.
Then there was the candy trauma – having to go house to house asking for a “trick-or-treat” at a painstakingly slow pace as we padded down the streets in costumes waiting for little bro and sis to catch up – when all I wanted to do was run at hyper speed to each house, get home and rip off the wrappers of the Snickers and Reeses. But Nooooooooooooo, dad would be there to take our brown paper shopping bags full of loot and dump them upside down on the living room floor for the ceremonial picking out the “poisonous pieces” – which were always Snickers, Milk Duds, Reeses, Milky Ways and Good ‘n Plentys – especially the Good ‘n Plenty’s.
I was stuck with the Sweet Tarts.
Now as a mother I still have a hard time with this crazy tradition – can you even call it a holiday? What exactly are we celebrating? Ooooooooh, oh yeah – it’s the day we celebrate disguising our children, so no one knows who they are, taking them out to the streets in the pitch dark, so no one will be able to find them, encouraging them to collect as much candy as they can possibly carry, allowing them to gorge their faces with a ton of processed sugar and chemicals before bed and then desperately trying to get them to go to sleep, only to then spend the next month trying to connive the halloween booty away from them.
Who’s idea was this?
Here’s what I do like about halloween – it’s funny. I like to watch other people having a good time and find it amusing that the ones who seem the least likely to get “into” it are the ones who do. Like the super serious dad who supervises drop-off at school flamboyantly dressed up as a drag queen (maybe not a halloween costume.) I love driving on the road in the morning, forgetting it’s halloween and seeing a shark driving the car next to me. I like going to the bank and seeing the stoic faces of the tellers dressed in their jail bird costumes, dragging their ball and chain asking if I’d like to know about their special offers. I even like watching the little ones dressed up at the school parade march around for the parents, some looking completely tortured like I did – I get a kick out of them all.
So here’s what I figure: Halloween can be a spectator sport. There are going to be some holidays, or parties for that matter, where maybe it’s not our ‘thing’. Maybe we’re not in the mood, had a rough day or just can’t seem to muster the energy to pull it off authentically. So here’s what we do; connect with the spirit of the day and ride the wave of other people having a good time. Sometimes it’s a nice feeling to sit back, accept who you are and laugh from the sidelines. XO L
If you want to laugh then watch one of the Funniest Halloween Videos ever!