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Let Them Be Little

  • Wednesday, October 16, 2013
  • Andrea
  • I really enjoy Halloween. I have fond memories of watching scary movies with my brother and dressing up in cool costumes pretending to be someone else for a day. One year I was even a witch ((gasp)) because I thought it would be so cool to fly and wear a pretty, sparkly hat. I loved pretending to be someone else and knocking on a stranger's door knowing that one day a year everyone had their doors open to greet each other. Essentially, we were all playing one giant game together- until the porch lights went off. That was the universal sign that we were done playing. (A sign I'm certain people don't remember.)

    This year I'm bummed though. I look around me at terrifying or provocative  'children's costumes'. I see sugary, crap food everywhere that society has been trained to think of as 'normal' for a child to consume. Each and every single one of the ingredients in any candy bar contains high fructose corn syrup. (Go research what that is, what it does to your body, and then you'll understand why I am bothered by giving this to my children.) 

    I have the desire to take my children trick-or-treating because I want them to experience what I experienced at their age. I want them to look back and remember the times we spent together doing things as a family. I want them to be able to hold out their bag and get excited by what is inside at the end of the night, but it is not worth it to risk their health or their lives just to get candy which we all know they would be devastated to receive and not be able to consume.

    Then there is the other reason I'm bummed. The 'fun-suckers' come out. I see social networking sites explode with negative and purposefully nasty, judgmental comments directed at those who 'partake' in Halloween. I still fail to understand how people who claim to have a desire to show Christ can sit around the same table and make such purposely hurtful statements based on no facts to back them up. When it comes right down to it, my reason for 'celebrating' Halloween may be completely different than the couple down the street. Is it true that there are those who 'worship' this 'holiday'? Yes, it is, but to lump everyone into the same basket isn't fair or accurate. We are all different. We have different backgrounds, different beliefs, different reasons for why we do the things we do. The thing that constantly surprises me is adults' desire to turn a child's imagination into more than what it is. 

    I've said this many times, but it's worth saying again. If something is a stumbling block for you-- Stay away from it!!!! Good for you for recognizing a problem in your life and not having a desire to be around it. I sincerely applaud you and am genuinely happy that you are trying to do the right thing by you. But we have got to stop getting so angry and upset at others for doing things that we stumble over. Your situation is not the same as theirs, it's a matter of opinion rather than a matter of salvation, and you have no idea where someone else is at in their journey to criticize something they choose to do. Live your life, tend to your own garden, and let them live theirs. At the very least, be polite when having a disagreement. Not everyone has to think the same way or do the same things, contrary to popular belief. If you're reading this and are completely anti-Halloween... That's ok! I completely respect you and the decision you have made about what you feel is best for your family.

    For me, Halloween wasn't about sitting around in a dark room speaking in unintelligible languages to the dark forces that be. It was about playing dress up and using my imagination to fly or put out a pretend fire like a fire fighter. As an adult, it's about reliving my childhood and seeing a smile light up my son's face as he uses his imagination. Now, to me, it's more of a tribute to fall and a reason to do something we wouldn't normally do. (Plus, I don't think i'll ever grow tired of playing dress up.)

    Let me tell you something that happened a couple days ago. As my husband and I walked our children through Aldi, my son saw all the costumes on the shelf. I asked my husband if he wanted to 'do Halloween this year' but he didn't care one way or another. As we had our own conversation, my three year old points up at one of the costumes and says, 'Mamma, I wanna be buzz lightyear!!!' Seeing his face light up with the uncontainable joy only three year olds possess, we picked through the costumes to find his size and handed him the package. Anyone with a three year old knows what came next... 'Mommy, open it!' followed by daddy saying, 'We have to pay for it first, then you can put it on at home.'

    Fast forward to the very moment we crossed the threshold of our home. Little squeals pierce my eardrum as my toddler begs his daddy to 'Open Buzz!' While my husband unwrapped the millions of layers of packaging with a Swiss Army knife and a crowbar, my son was readily disrobing with the door half open to the world. Eyes still blazing with excitement, my son begins running around the house hitting the 'button on his arm' and saying 'pew, pew!' He dubbed our miniature dachshund 'slinky dog', gave me the title of 'the dinosaur', my daughter was 'bo peep',  my husband became 'woody', and my son made us call him 'buzz lightyear' all within the span of a wardrobe change.

     Isn't it amazing what our little ones come up with when given room to let their imaginations run untamed while they are little? Embrace their precious imaginations. One day you'll look back fondly on all the times you spent together in make believe land. Let them be little. They grow too fast as it is. 



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