Every fall, children glance with expectation at store aisles until, sure enough, they begin to fill with costumes fit for every imagination. Parents buy candy and lawns get adorned with pumpkins. The colors are bright and warm, the air is increasingly cool.
Halloween is a holiday of both excitement and trepidation. Whether it is a worried parent or a person with spiritual concerns, caution with these long-celebrated October festivities is common.
Even more common, maybe, is the issue that we all must deal with concerning Halloween: growing up.
When I was young, the anticipation for Halloween fun grew into a fervor as the end of the month loomed. The memories of that time in my childhood have since taken on a golden hue.
I can't remember with certainty just how many times I dressed as a monkey, I just know it was a lot.
I do remember the struggle each year to garner as many sweets as possible but the painstaking task of going house to house for hours has not stuck in my memory to be as vividly tiresome as it no doubt was for my parents.
This was simply a time in my life that I knew to expect every year. It was an opportunity for freedom, creativity and possibility. Each year, I could venture a little more bravely around a neighborhood. Each year, my costumes became more important in their complexity and each year, I just knew, would be the best year yet.
I should have been forewarned on that Halloween I spent in the north, trying to trick or treat in the snow and tiring out quickly. I insisted on staying committed to the task even as my sister went home early. I loved Halloween without condition.
This is what all children must feel as they participate in this time-honored tradition. I think that loving this event is perhaps in our blood, passed down from deeply superstitious relatives in centuries past.
As children, we are led blindly through the years to count on this holiday to feel a certain way, to yield an expected euphoria. Only, the joke is on us. Time does not continue to bring this holiday in all its glory to our tiny feet.