All kids love to trick or treat,
right? Until they don't. This day has been coming for some time for my 12-year-old. And it's probably a good thing. By next fall, he'll likely be one of those
6-foot-tall teens who will get shooed off our neighbors' doorsteps.
But as the mom, I can still be
bittersweet about this. It's one of those thresholds to cross, like when tweens
no longer get excited about writing wish lists for Santa or rush to check under
their pillows to see if the tooth fairy left them any money. It's not like
Halloween is the biggest holiday in our house.
During my son's first Halloween — when he was a 3-month-old baby and I was a sleep-deprived new mom — it
didn't even occur to me to put him in a costume. Until I pushed my stroller to
the park the morning of October 31, and saw all the other newborns bundled up
in their sweet pea swaddling or teddy bear suits that I realized what a big
deal Halloween had become.
The next year, I went all out: I
scoured websites to find the perfect fuzzy monkey costume and hosted the entire
playgroup at my house for a party. Like any overprotective first-time mother,
I didn't let my toddler actually eat any candy. This is the kid who never
acquired a sweet tooth. He'd stick his face into the plastic pumpkin and inhale
the sweetness and proclaim, "It smells so good!" For all he knew, it was just a
giant bowl of milk chocolate scented potpourri.
It's a quiet letting go of the fairy dust of childhood.
Over the years, he figured out
those wrapped goodies were edible and developed a taste for Reese's peanut
butter cups and Kit Kats. During the elementary school years, putting on a
costume and running around the neighborhood at night was a thrill.
This year, my younger son has his
costume all picked out. Or rather, my husband and I have spent hours poring
over websites and driving him to every pop-up Halloween shop in town. The older
one is not ready to give up on Halloween completely, but shrugs and thinks it would
be fine to wear the skeleton suit from last year.