Today, I decided to go against my gut and keep the kids close to home. Lily wanted to go trick or treating in the next town over - a downtown shop trick or treat.
With a kid getting over a cold and a little girl excited to trick or treat, we went. I also dressed up. I channeled Maleficent as best I could, parking on the top floor of a parking garage that didn't have an elevator. I was sweating, slinging a stroller over my shoulder while holding Niko in one hand and directing Lily with the other. Finally, we got down to the bottom of the complex. That's when I realized I was in a semi Twilight Zone.
First, I had a screaming kid. As parents, we all go through those moments. The attention I received from what appeared to be Straight from a Lovely Catalog sea of parents, was amplified because I was wearing a cape and donned Maleficent horns. It appeared that I was the only adult who dressed up. First, I felt foolish in this sea of puffy vests, coordinating strollers and coffee cups. But then I looked at my little Evil Queen daughter and trekked along.
Here and there, I spotted a an adult wearing a funny hat, but it was far and few between. I ran across an entire family who dressed up, coordinated as super heroes. I wanted to give them a high five, but the vibe wasn't right. Getting over a cold and having a tough time, little Niko wanted OUT of there. I worked every piece of mom magic to keep him occupied. Lily was having a complete ball with her costume, grabbing loot and learning how to go into a store then find me upon door exit.
When I couldn't stop the crying and breakdowns anymore, I reached to Lily and told her we really needed to go and we had to skip the other party. Understandably, Lily was disappointed. As we walked to the care The Evil Queen looked up at me and remarked, 'Mom, I'm glad you dressed up with me.'
It's all I needed to hear. The crying kid, the heavy lifting up and down 5 flights of stairs was worth it. That's what Lily will remember.
So go ahead, put on a costume. Jump in a pile of leaves. Join the kids on the trampoline.
You'll be surprised as to how much you find yourself again through your kids.
Today, my gut was wrong.