Halloween is that special night of the year when children turn into the monsters that scare themselves. Perhaps it’s a way to transform their fears.
Last October, fewer kids haunted the pavement in search of treats. Halloween 2020 was a curious one. Our household didn’t purchase any candy due to the pandemic. The front door was quiet - not a single knock.
The streets were empty with no wind-carried sounds of children going door-to-door. No barking dogs. An eerie stillness.
But this year promises to have more trick-or-treaters patrolling Sarnia’s neighbourhoods. This year will be better.
With Thanksgiving over and October displaying fall colours, residents are placing pumpkins on front porches—some orange, some white. Walking around town, one can see great creativity in the home displays, with each street offering something special. Halloween is once again bringing out our “ghosting” spirit.
I have always loved Halloween. I’m proud to say the last time I went trick-or-treating was at the age of 21. (And no, I did not have kids then).
We love our monsters, and there’s a reward system built into the fabric of the holiday. Kids get candy for dressing up and adults get to go home after watching a scary movie.
Humans seem to have an instinct to embrace what thrills and terrifies. From horror movies to horror novels, we seek out a good scare.
Why? Maybe it wakes us up to life’s fullness. Sometimes it’s simply fun.
This Halloween may be a meaningful one. I expect to see more excited kids widening their bags to receive candy, and more moms and dads dressed up for the occasion.
The only thing better than trick-or-treating is getting home to see what you’d received. I remember that part vividly.
My son is excited. He’s decided to go out as Iron Man. I promised not to go as ”dad,” and am also getting dressed to revive that old Halloween spirit.
It’s that time when parents can relive their own childhood through the excitement of their children. What a wonderful circle.
Watch out for moonlight and bewildering howls in shadowy places. Be leery of children loitering in doors, hungry for candy. Kids, wear your most frightening costumes—this is your night. While our children become the big monsters for one night, their parents can again become the little monsters they once were.
Jason Waddle is a Sarnia resident, author and McMaster University alumnus.