Friday, October 26, 2018

Mom, I Don't Want To Go Trick Or Treating This Year

Surprisingly, when my ten year old spoke those words to me, they didn't sting. I was expecting it to, to a certain extent. In previous years, my minis spent an hour trick-or-treating around the neighborhood and spent the last hour handing out candy to other kids. It's something the boys enjoy. It didn't surprise me that he still wanted to dress up, but hand out treats instead. That's so very typical of this kid.

What I was shocked about is his willingness to do other Halloween activities. In the weeks leading up to Halloween, we take advantage of several of the Trunk or Treats around town and other Halloween celebrations at local museums and zoos. By the time trick-or-treat night comes around, my minis have already been to at least half a dozen Halloween events. At ten years old, he's getting to the point  where he's the oldest kid at some of these events.

I thought for sure that since he had declined to go trick-or-treating, he would insist on not going to the other events. That didn't happen this year, but it got me thinking (a lot), "will this be the last year?"

Will this be the last time we can even talk about a family Halloween costume without eye rolls being involved?

Will this be the last time we're all together for this event? Will be even do it next year?

Will this be the last time he even wants to wear a costume?

Will this be the last time that he experiences Halloween with the carefree happiness only children can have?

With the holiday season underway (let's be real, the holiday season starts with Halloween in our house), I can't help but project these thoughts onto Christmas. Will this be the last year of Santa? Will they still want to do all of the cutesy tradition that makes Christmas time so magical?

There's so many questions while raising kids. Many of these questions I pose I won't get the answer to until the time has passed. I'll never know as I'm filling buckets with Halloween candy or ordering costumes if this will be the last time. I won't know until the next Halloween, or event, or whatever it is that seems so insignificant but in reality makes everything so special. I can only enjoy the now. As I look at my growing children, I know the lasts are coming. They fill in every so often when I'm not expecting it.

Lasts can be so depressing, but remembering that the lasts just keep coming, helps me to live in the now. To enjoy each little moment, even the tough ones. Even the indecision of Halloween costumes, as we searched through three stores and uncountable aisles just for costume ideas. Maybe next year there will be no more costume searches. Maybe this was the last. And that's what surprises me. The quiet sadness in the lasts. The sadness that won't hit until much later when the last is realized.