What is Halloween? To a child, it is a line up of the Usual Suspects: Witches & Vampires. Superheroes, classic (Spiderman) and recently popular (Captain Underpants). And what little girl doesn’t want to be a Princess for a day? We’re talking scepters, tiaras and frilly pink skirts!
This morning as I drove the kids to school I asked a question of my daughters, ages 10 & 13. “Do you think I have deprived you kids over the years with my ‘We don’t celebrate Halloween’ nonchalant attitude?” One daughter replied ‘yes’ and the other ‘no’.
As a kid, we didn’t celebrate Halloween. Money was always tied up in bills and there was never any leftover for frivolous items such as costumes. As a teenager, we lived in such a rural environment, the miles and miles between the few neighbors was hardly worth the trip. As a parent, I’ve allowed the grandparents the liberties they deem fit for this day for my offspring. Their paternal grandparents (a.k.a the kiddos dad’s parents) opt to attend Church, almost in a defiant stand against Halloween! My parents (mother and stepfather) load the children up with so much candy that the children make themselves sick!
So back to the question that I’ve asked my daughters, just this morning. I always ask for an argument to assist each case. Sp I asked, “Why yes and why no?” Ashley Vanique believes that ‘Yes!’ they have been deprived of Halloween year after year after year. She wants to dress up, go door to door, “Trick or Treat”… although no kid wants the ‘Trick’! Treats please… Ashley is my 10 year old. The youngest of her siblings. Adventure excites her. Now the ‘No!’ and it’s argument! Kailyn Elise, my middle child and eldest daughter sees the World through slightly different eyes. She’s all too content to spend her weekends curled up on a couch with a book and a ball of yarn and knitting needles as her companions. She’s my terrified of all things insect child. Outside does not thrill her in the least. “Halloween can be dangerous. Knocking on stranger’s doors. Asking for candy. People can do anything to that candy, or you. And you probably won’t even get the kinda candy you like! Nope Ma. I’d rather hang out with Nama (her maternal grandmother) and eat all the candies that we like.”
My resolve? Parents no matter what your preference, to celebrate or not to celebrate All Hallow’s Eve, is truly a personal choice. One that could have carried over from your own childhood. A choice that no matter what, bystanders and even your own kids may not understand. Do what makes you happy and instill in your children that as adults, as parents, it’s okay to do the same!
Halloween is adventure, dress up, play and imagination at it’s finest. Halloween is candy and lots of it. Why did I have to become an adult, a parent, with children almost too big to celebrate this festivity of ghosts and ghouls and goblins, to realize this? My youngest daughter states, “If I could go Trick or Treating this year, I’d be a cat. Meow!” Awww how cute. I think we’ll celebrate next year…
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