Trick or Treat

I have mixed emotions about Halloween. When it comes to that day on the calendar only one thing interests Jacob. CANDY. As a little guy, I’d dress him up and we’d go to a few houses in our neighborhood or maybe hop in the car and go to see what yummy treats (think – chocolate) grandparents might have to drop in his orange jack-o-lantern bucket.

But, how do you explain the concept of trick or treating? Dress up in something fun or weird or scary, carry a bag or bucket, knock on a door, and scream ‘trick or treat’. Seems simple enough. In a twisted sort of way. Jacob either didn’t get it or got it and was much too smart to play along. I’m going with the latter.

We enjoyed a few Fall Festivals when he was young and that was probably more fun for him than the door-to-door aspect. Either way, he got more than his share of candy and didn’t miss out. Unfortunately, I could only find a few pictures of my little cutie.

Now, we pretty much ignore the day. I know. We are such scrooges. We don’t turn on the outside lights. We even try to make it look like we aren’t home. The doorbell ringing constantly, along with the dogs barking nonstop, is too much.

One Halloween, years ago, I dropped him off at his day program. A note had been sent home earlier in the week indicating that everyone could dress up, if they’d like, and there would be trick or treating in the building. Well, I knew Jacob wasn’t interested in wearing anything out of the ordinary. So he went as himself. Best way to go, right? Goodness, some days I can barely get him to wear clothing of his choosing.

It was a rainy, dreary day that set a depressing tone. I dropped him off at the center to greetings of witches at the door and painted faces lurking. And drove away knowing he’d get more than enough candy.

A few hours later as I was on my way to meet a friend for lunch, I got a call, ‘Mrs. Pigford, Jacob is having a really tough day. It might be good if you could come get him.’ I phoned my friend to cancel lunch and headed toward the center. When I got there, he was visibly upset. I could see that he was stressed as he had been biting his hands. I appreciated the call which gave me an opportunity to, hopefully, relieve him of whatever caused his ill mood.

I realized two things that day. First, Jacob is bothered by costumes. Maybe not from a distance but up close he is not having it. And, secondly, Jacob cannot be trusted when candy is being given out freely. He assumes anything in reach is fair game and that he should have it all. There is no reasoning with him that everyone gets a Hershey bar. He doesn’t understand ‘share what you have with others’. Never has and probably never will.

One other thing that I considered afterwards. Barometric pressure. I honestly think it was not what caused his trouble then, but I do believe the weather wasn’t in his favor and added to his anxiety.

Don’t get me wrong. I so wish Jacob could participate in the fun and games. I thoroughly enjoy seeing little ones dressed up as unicorns and bumblebees and super heroes and princesses. Such wonderful memories of those years with our other son.

It’s just one of those days, each fall, that didn’t and doesn’t makes sense to Jacob. Who needs Halloween when he has a stash of all his favorite candy in a drawer at the ready?

And, I’m perfectly okay hanging out with my guy, at home, on October 31st. Letting him sleep late, if he wants, and choose his favorite candy. After breakfast, of course!

Trick or Treat. Sweets can’t be beat. Give me something good to eat! If you don’t, just beware, I’ll show you my underwear.


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