What happened to Trick or Treating?
Last year my husband and I were completely prepared for Halloween. We had our costumes, we decorated our foyer, bought the candy, played the spooky music, then we waited...and waited. Was our porch light out and we weren't aware of it? No. Had our doorbell gone out? No. Where had all the kids gone? The doorbell didn't ring for hours. Finally, we heard the blissful ding dong and hurried to the door for the crowd of children we expected to find on the otherside of the door. We excitedly threw the door open to find two children in costumes. We scooped out big handfuls of candy and dumped it into their bags and waited for the trail of kids to follow. There were none. Our Halloween ended up being a long, uneventful night filled with my husband and I eating candy on the couch. It was like any other night really, except we were in uncomfortable, itchy costumes. I remember as a kid trick or treating every Halloween and it looked nothing like the Halloween my husband and I had experienced. There were droves of children all over the place as we all traded spots from doorstep to doorstep. What happened? There are many different potential explainations for this. First, there were now tons of Halloween specific events being held at churches, malls, schools and the like. Families could go to one place, park their cars and spend the evening in one location with their kids fully entertained. Next, there is the rising issue of safety. It is getting harder and harder to let our children just run amock in the neighborhood. Finally, the appeal of dropping your kid off at a Halloween party, where they will be looked after by chaparones and stay put in one spot, surely seems like a better alternative. While I understand all of the influences that are causing this radical change in the way our country celebrates Halloween, I still grieve for the experiences my child will miss out on. I grieve for a long lost tradition that I held so dearly as a child. But, mostly I grieve that we all have to be so much more cautious about sharing this fun holiday with our neighbors. No matter what you and your family do this Halloween I sincerely hope you have tons of fun and take a little time to reminisce about the old days of yore.