When is that magic, tragic age when your child is simply too old for trick or treating? I suppose when your son is the only power ranger in the neighbourhood with facial hair, it’s probably time. But how do you gently tell them the sugar shack is closed?
I guess it’s just another in a string of lousy growing pains all kids have to endure. As I watched mine cobweb our front porch today (almost a full, candy-manic month ahead of schedule), I found myself remembering my own bumpy transition out of trick or treating.
I had invited a boy to a Halloween dance the year I turned thirteen. It was the first time I’d ever asked a boy out on a date and my voice was shaking so hard on the phone as I rolled out my alluring invitation that it’s possible I may have been having a grand mal seizure.
“Hi Jacob? It’s Andie.”
“Uh … Andrea?” Breathe, just breathe.
“Oh. Hi Andrea.”
“Hey, hi. Um … I was just, uh … wondering if you’d like toooo … go to The Route with me?
“The Route? It’s my school’s Halloween dance?”
(Whispered to his mother) “No … but I don’t want to hurt her feelings!”
“Uh … sorry, I can’t. Me and a bunch of the guys are actually going trick or treating that night.”
“Really! Okay, well … have fun!” I oozed, sliding down the wall before slumping to the floor in a giant heap of KILL ME NOW.
Alright, I’ll admit my feelings were a tad hurt (cue mushroom cloud explosion), and that any chance of having a happy Halloween had just vanished as quickly as the five Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups I inhaled moments later.
But what bothered me most, beyond the soul-shattering rejection, was the fact that I had been duped into believing that thirteen was too old to go trick or treating, when clearly in some circles, it simply was not.
No doubt about it; aging sucked.
All these years later that memory still bubbles up around Halloween, particularly as I see my eldest getting older. But this year the scene has been softened somewhat, thanks to Facebook. I recently read that after living in Europe for the past decade, Jacob’s now back in Toronto living happily with his partner David and their two Jack Russells.
I’ll bet they give out great treats on Halloween.