Thursday, October 25, 2012

Halloween Blues

I remember when Kayleigh was 2 and Savanna was 3.  We were at my brother and sister-in-laws house for a Halloween birthday party for my niece Savannah.  All the kids were dressed up in their little costumes, playing party games and looking so adorable... My sister-in-law Krissy's sister Suzy was there for the party, snapping photos like crazy, gushing over how cute all the kids were...  and I remember so vividly, her saying "Halloween isn't fun anymore when your kids grow up".  Hers were teenagers at the time, and she was living vicariously through her sister with her little niece.  Flash Forward 13 years...  I am the Suzy now.  Scouring Pinterest for costume ideas for my niece.  Begging to take her trick or treating.  Wanting to bake treats for her kindergarten class...

Why is it.. when your kids are small... you can't wait for them to grow up and outgrow the baby phases... and then when they are teenagers, you wish all those years back again.  I am feeling so nostalgic for those hectic times of shopping for things to make costumes, the decisions of who would wear what... whipping up something at the last minute for a kid who changes their mind after wearing the costume to school and deciding it was too uncomfortable,  I remember Austin age 3,, wanting to be a fat pumpkin for halloween.  I put Megan's old pumpkin costume on him, and he insisted on me stuffing it until it was really fat... He looked like the kid in Christmas Story, couldn't put his arms down he was stuffed so fat...  We get in the car to go show the grandparents how adorable they are and pre-load up on candy before trick or treating...  and he can't buckle the seatbelt... he is wailing in the back seat... "I'm too FAT,,, I don't WANT to be a fat pumpkin anymore..." He insisted on me taking every single piece of stuffing out of the costume, so he was left with an orange satin sheath that didn't even look like a pumpkin anymore...  Or the time Megan wanted to be an UGLY witch, she was sick of being a princess every year and in 3rd grade decided to be an ugly witch.  I spent almost 2 hours following instructions on how to do the ugly witch makeup.  She sat so patiently while I applied it, not wanting to look in the mirror until I was done...  she turns around to look at the final product and starts sobbing "You made me TOO ugly...  I didn't want to be THIS ugly.."  so we had to take it all off, and make her a beautiful witch instead... At the time... in those moments... I really wanted to wring their necks... those delays caused us to be late to functions, made more work for me, the then so-stressed-out-working-full-time-not-a-minute-to-spare-mommy of four.. that I sometimes screamed in frustration... and here I am now, looking back on those times as some of the best moments I had with my children.    I miss the early years of trick-or-treating when your kids are really little and they hold out the bag and you say to them "What do you say to the lady?" and they respond "gimme candy!"  "No sweetie, we say Trick-or-treat..." and they say "Oh yeah... shrickee shreet, gimme candy"  Or when they are 3 and more discerning, and the person goes to put a candy in their bag and they pipe up loudly "That's ok, you can keep it, I don't like that kind..." as they turn around to walk away... I miss all the lessons about not eating candy until we get home to check it... and the inevitable trades that happen, some fair and some unfair as the older sibling swindles the little one out of the best candies... I can still hear their sweet littly teeny voices saying "Here mommy, you can have this one, I know these are your favorite..."

I want to take those moments and tuck them away in a special pocket in my heart where I can hold them close and pull them out like an old worn photograph, to look at and remember fondly.  Now that my kids are all grown and moved out, they are no longer the cute little trick-or-treaters they once were...  Now there are Frat Parties and Toga parties and Raves and Erotic Exotic Balls for them to attend.  I am waiting for grandkids... but until then, I will be like Suzy, and live vicariously through my little nieces and nephews... while holding on to the fun memories of Halloweens past..

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