What’s Wrong With Halloween?

Halloween pumpkins

Maybe it’s that I’m sick of the sexy nurse costumes, completely demeaning my profession. 

Maybe it’s that I think making a “sexy Olaf” costume, sexualizing a little snowman from the movie Frozen is despicable.

Or perhaps it’s that Halloween is a six billion dollar, yes – six billion dollar – industry. 

But what really pushed me over the edge is the cute baby in the marijuana costume. For a mere $29.99, you too can dress your cuddly, darling to look like a pot plant. So let’s get this straight: Refugee moms are fighting to keep their babies alive, free from dysentery, scabies, upper respiratory infections, and numerous other diseases that one has to fight against in resource poor settings while moms in North America are purchasing costumes that resemble marijuana. 

If I thought I couldn’t go farther over the edge, I was mistaken.I became incensed when I found out that people are actually planning on dressing up as sexy Ebola workers. Yup. You read that correctly. A disease that has claimed countless lives, that has family and community members weeping at graves where they aren’t even allowed to wash the bodies of their loved ones, the spoiled West decides this is funny. So they decide that going as a Sexy Ebola Worker is a good idea? On what planet is this a good idea? I wouldn’t wish Ebola on anyone…but I’d like them to see the disease up close. Maybe it would change them. One can hope.

And that’s what’s wrong with Halloween. At some point Halloween stopped being about kids and cupcakes, about jack-o-lanterns and Trick or Treat, about dress up and bobbing for apples. It ceased being about children and it became about spoiled adults. Adults who evidently think it’s funny to sexualize a profession that they will cry out to at many times in their lives. Adults who want to party hard and drink harder. Adults who haven’t grown up, instead foisting their pitiful excuses for fun onto children who should be able to be pirates and ghosts and cowgirls. Adults who are callous to addiction, pain, and suffering.

So what’s wrong with Halloween? It’s been co-opted by spoiled grown ups – that’s what’s wrong with Halloween. 

You’re Welcome.

P.S – “The UN health agency said that 4,555 people had died from Ebola out of a total of 9,216 cases registered in seven countries, as of October 14. A toll dated just two days earlier had put the death toll at 4,493 out of8,997 cases.” See Source

Oh Yeah! That’s Sexy….!

Picture Credit: http://pixabay.com/en/pumpkins-hokkaido-autumn-october-469641/

Ages and Stages – Wishing Their Lives Away

A pumpkin carved into a jack-o'-lantern for Ha...

This year for Halloween my youngest daughter, Bronwynn dressed up like a pumpkin. She put on an orange shirt of her dad’s over her coat and added a green flower to her hair. She was a pumpkin.

But she was a pumpkin with a twist.

In her hand, she had a bicycle pump. Attached to the pump with duct tape was a Ken doll. She was a Pump Ken! We thought it was incredibly clever!

Her middle school sister, however, did not! It was the most ridiculous embarrassing costume ever! Surely I wasn’t going to let her go in that!

One of our shopping areas, down near campus, had an afternoon Halloween event. The shops all had candy and the children could parade from vendor to vendor trick or treating. It was a fun afternoon. Pirates, Zombies, Princesses, Angry Birds all marched from shop to shop.

Our middle schooler is in the KState theater production of The Music Man. They were running a booth in the heart of the area to hand out candy and promote the show.

As we were walking the streets, asking for treats, Bronwynn and I ran into a young family from our church. We waited together in the waning autumn sunshine for the homecoming parade to start. They have three little people in their family. They youngest, dressed like a little cow, is only 18 months old. He ran out into the street and back again. He dropped his lollipop. His mom tried to get it before he could pop it back into his mouth. He had snot running from his nose. His mom ran after him trying to wipe his nose. He approached strangers and tried to take their candy. He tripped in the gutter. His mom, managed to nearly keep up with him and have a conversation with me at the same time. It was very impressive!

At one point, she looked at me and smiled, “I bet you don’t miss this stage of parenting!”

At that exact moment, I got a text message from my Mortified Middle School Music Man daughter. The text read, Please don’t come to my booth!” She meant, please don’t bring my Pump-Ken sister to the booth and embarrass me in front of my peers.

I smiled back at my friend and handed her my phone, “I bet you can hardly wait for this stage of parenting!”

Being a parent seems to be a thousand moments of longing, a long string of wishing. We wish our way out of the stage we’re in until we’re in the next one. When they are just potty trained…. Once I get them all into school….. Once they can all cut their own meat….as soon as they are old enough to stay on their own… once they leave for college…

I’ll miss out on so much if I spend my mothering years wishing it was all over…. I’m wishing their lives away!

Admittedly, I don’t have what it takes to go back and do those toddler years over again. But I’m determined to live in the moments with my kids; live where they are right now. I will laugh at their jokes. I will endure the count down until Halo 4 comes out. I will try to be patient with their fits. I will not roll my eyes when we’ve tried on all the shirts we own and still have nothing to wear. I will listen to the earnest pleas for the latest things they need!

There will be times when I will fail, when I will begin to wish their lives (and mine) away. But my hope, my goal is to enjoy the moments we’re in – the moments that make childhood just what it is – childhood.