Monday, October 31, 2016

Trick or Treat

So, I spent the morning running around getting last minute finishing touches for our Halloween costumes, including everything I need to make the dog's. I also bought some special stuff for our Halloween dinner, excited to set the table with our sugar skull china and ouija board platter.

I got home and put it all away and received a text from the 13-year-old.

"Mom, can I go trick or treating with Nate? In his neighborhood? At 6?"

I sat and stared at it for a few seconds, happy for him. My favorite Halloween memories happened around his age.

"Yeah! Sounds fun! Definitely yes."


And then I called Mr. Ashley.

"Well, yeah, this is what we want for him. He's 13, Ashley!"

"I know! I want that too! But he's our Willy Wonka, and the dog is the Oompa Loompa, and I bought his favorite drink for the dinner and was gonna set the table with the Halloween china and he has to be there at 6 and," I stopped and took a deep breath as I stifled sob, "it's one of the last times!"

Ugh. It's not the Willy Wonka-less Chocolate Factory family costumes or the special dinner or his lone Oompa Loompa of a brother (who has the dog, I guess).

It's that it's all kind of winding down -- his childhood, or at least the part where we play the starring roles -- and how did that happen?

The other day I casually reminded my childhood best friend that they'd be in middle and high school next year and she replied, "He'll be a freshman?!" and I briefly thought, no, that's impossible, before realizing that yeah...that's exactly what that means. I just hadn't considered him in that context. Ever.

Not even five full years until he's a legal adult. I remember five years ago like it was yesterday.

(I'll be lobbying to change that, by the way, you're not an adult until you're 25.)

As a mom it might be one of my scariest Halloweens ever -- standing at this parenting precipice and seeing what comes next more clearly than I have before. Ugh.

And part of what comes next is no more family costumes. Dammit.

Life makes no sense without a Willy Wonka.

The idea is going to take some getting used to.


TH said...

Wow. You have no idea how close to home this hit. Tonight was the first time in TWENTY-FOUR YEARS of parenting, that I have not taken a child trick or treating. I sat in my front yard with some friends, a small bonfire, and a bucket of candy (and a cauldron of mini liquor bottles for the adults ;-) ). It was so, so strange. My kids all had groups of friends they wanted to hang with, so my services were no longer needed.

Melanie said...

Oh. This hurts like a punch to the gut. My big will be there very soon (next year?) and it's so hard to contemplate. But good on you for saying yes to him going. I'm damn sure that I would've said no. You're already doing better than so many of us.

Julie H said...

My oldest is gone to the other side of the country, my middle is a senior and my "baby" is in 8th grade. This is the first year no one went anywhere on Halloween. So weird. I didn't plan anything special but I think I'll have to come up with something for next year just in case that happens again.