In my 36 years, I have no really bad memories of Halloween. I might have a few hazy memories, and some things in my mind were not as they were, but memories thinking back were all good.
Starting about when I was 5, my mom would take me to the fabric store and I would excitedly thumb through pattern books to find that awesome costume that she would make. I had many elaborate ideas that would look nice, but not quite perfect. I held the belief for many years that you were to make a creative costume. I am sure my stepdaughter (who was a vampire every year before Twilight) would agree, I kind of find things around the house and make it work (I think I’m wearing my bathrobe tonight.)
Anyway, when I was young we would go to the mall in Oklahoma City. I am guessing because it was inside, everyone gave out candy, and one stop shopping so to speak. We would go to a McDonald’s that had a playground people advertise as being a death trap these days. I was always excited, and don’t remember this ever being a bad or disappointing experience.
We were not allowed to dress up in elementary school, so I didn’t get that experience until I moved to Tennessee in 5th grade, and by then 11 is too old to dress up, so that was the only year. Still I tried year after year to have a unique awesome costume. Store bought for a long time was a big No No.
Halloween is the beginning of the giving season. I have not always given candy, and I have never had to clean up eggs or toilet paper on November 1st. Some people may give out of fear, but I think those that give candy have fond memories, like to see the costumes, and overall think it’s fun. There are no obligations…knock on a door with a light on get candy. Leave the dark houses alone.
Halloween for me, is better than the two holidays that follow because the pressure is off. I remember tense Thanksgivings where the expectations to travel to family were high. You never have time. People gossiped about who so-and-so brought to dinner, and the food is bland or blah. I had a relative die on Christmas. It made it hard to really get excited about that anniversary. However, on Halloween I get to see littles get candy and get excited like I used to.
Through the years I have heard people say they don’t participate because of the scary premises. Religious groups will have carnivals ect. I say there is not a holiday that expresses more religious values of many religions than the day where you knock on strangers doors and they give you something expecting (maybe some hoping) for nothing in return. Isn’t acceptance about realizing the “scary” is not so bad?
I know this is a bit scatological, but I am trying to write essays for NANAMO.