I am wandering around the house putting away the Halloween decorations today and I’m feeling a little sad. This Halloween was REALLY good. I never really went all out for Halloween before, its always been an okay but not a real stand out holiday for me in any way. Not to mention that for C, October is always a VERY hard month. Lots of trauma anniversaries and upset and school is getting harder and . . . well you get the picture. Add to that the excitement and dysregulation (like the time I had to carry all 50 lbs of him kicking and screaming home about 4 blocks over a misunderstanding) that Trick or Treating brings and usually by October 31st all I want to do is curl up in a fetal position and sleep til New Years.
But I do like to throw parties for my kids. And last year I realized J rarely gets to have friends over because, well, life can be hard in this house of ours. So I pushed aside my own exhaustion and we planned a Halloween party.My long time best friend and her boyfriend came from out of town (they even dressed up!) and everyone had a great time, especially me.
With everything that has gone on in our family this past year I am trying to slow down, take some deep breaths and enjoy life more. So I went all out with the decorations at Halloween and we planned another party. While we were out with the boys Trick or Treating I realized I was very content and relaxed. J was no longer tripping and falling all over the place. They weren’t running off in different directions. C was so calm and regulated that he became an impromptu helper to several children who were younger than him. He held screen doors open for them and knocked for them, he let them go ahead of him, he steadied young costumed children who were jostled by eager counterparts, he reminded other older children to let the little ones go first. He charmed people with his manners, going above and beyond a simple “thank you”. He would give unique and meaningful feedback to people such as “love your jack o lantern” or “awesome decorations”. He gave a heartfelt “Happy Halloween” as a parting comment at each door.
We then came home and he was so exhausted he didn’t want to go back out with his brother. So he sat, all bundled up on the front porch, waiting for Treaters – complimenting costumes, chatting people up while he practically filled their bags with candy from our bowl. He was in seventh heaven. He is such a people person but often is unsure of what to say or do. It was then that I realized Halloween is the perfect holiday for him. He gets to dress up and pretend, he gets to meet new people and be helpful, he gets candy given to him at strangers doors (plus he gets to peek inside their houses. lol) and he gets to reciprocate by handing out candy from his own house. We couldn’t have planned it better if we tried. Too bad Halloween is only once a year.