It’s Halloween today. Today is my 6th year Trick or Treating. I didn’t Trick or Treat growing up because my parents didn’t allow my brother and I to. So my first year Trick or Treating was when my son was 3 years old.
I grew up in a conservative Christian home, where my parents were the same inside the home that they were in public. I mention this because I know that a lot of people criticize Christians for being hypocrites, and the truth is we all are, Christians or not. I wasn’t allowed to celebrate Halloween because it’s a Pagan holiday. I didn’t Trick or Treat. I didn’t get to participate in Halloween crafts at school that included witches, ghosts, or anything that was more than Fall-themed.
I was asked recently by a friend if I felt left out as a kid. My answer was a surprising “no”. My Mom is a professional artist so when Halloween came around she would volunteer to lead a craft in our classes, which meant it was going to be an alternative to what the teacher had planned, and it was always way cooler. When it came to Trick or Treating we didn’t get to go, but we always attended our church’s “Harvest Party” and played games and won candy. I grew up being apart of an amazing community and didn’t think I was missing out on much.
Then I met Randall. He didn’t grow up like me. His favorite holiday is Halloween-what?!? That didn’t make sense to me. I’m a Christian so my favorite holiday is Christmas, of course. When we started comparing stories of how we grew up I quickly understood why Randall loves Halloween so much. He explained to me that Halloween isn’t a holiday for rich or poor people, it’s doesn’t matter if your parents are married or divorced, what neighborhood you live in or who your friends are. Halloween is for everyone. Every kid can get a costume from what’s lying around their house, grab a bag to put candy in and run from house to house, in whatever neighborhood you wanted, and people were happy to see you and give you candy. Randall is a Christian too. He’s the kind of guy who says what he does and does what he says. He’s real. And he made a good point when he said “You make it what it is”.
So, that’s what we’ve done. We’ve been married for 15 years now and our family loves Halloween. We love to dress up, go to a local Harvest party then Trick or Treat. We love to come home and hand out candy to others. We love to compliment people on their cool costumes and Trick or Treat with lots and lots of friends (too many to be honest but it’s so fun!). We’ve made it about family and community. We have refused to be dark and scary. We refuse to stay home and shut the rest of the world out. We refuse to believe that we are better than anyone else. And I refuse to judge anyone else for the decisions they make about Halloween. Oh, also my son went as Harry Potter (the audience gasps)-that's a whole other subject for a whole other blog!
Happy Halloween everyone!