Article by Wendy McCance
Halloween is just around the corner. It is a holiday that has always been full of good memories while providing me with a little anxiety at the same time. I don’t enjoy being scared. In fact, it is a component of my personality that has always disappointed me.
I grew up enjoying wearing a costume and going door to door with my friends trick-or -treating. I remember dreading the idea of ending up on a porch with someone else who was trick-or-treating in a scary costume. Worse yet was when the house I went to had spooky music playing, props in the yard and someone in a creepy costume answering the door. There were many times I skipped those homes. I was too chicken.
As an adult, I still get creeped out easily. I can’t go to haunted houses, I get nervous answering the door on Halloween when kids in costumes ring our doorbell and going down the aisle at a store selling Halloween costumes makes me uncomfortable.
I have tried to hide my scaredy-cat ways from my own kids. I wanted them to grow up fearless. I hoped that they would be excited to go to the haunted houses and would laugh at the people in creepy costumes. They are definitely more willing to take part in the scary stuff these days.
When the kids were small, there was a street a few blocks down where a particular house went all out for Halloween. Scary props, spooky music and people in creepy costumes took over the front and side yard of the home. It was an interactive experience with actors who really got into their roles. The home was so popular that television crews would come by to interview the owners.
The first year I took the kids to visit the home, we were trick-or-treating in the neighborhood and you could see the home from the corner of the street we were on. There were people milling around everywhere. You could hear a lot of laughing and a lot of screaming. The kids begged to go over and check it out. I was hesitant to take them because I was afraid they might get too scared. Honestly, I was also afraid that I would get too scared as well.
We ended up going over to the home, but kept our distance across the street. The kids loved the experience. I was not as thrilled. I kept imagining someone coming up behind me. Even so, I was glad I had taken them over there.
To this day, I feel a bit ripped off. I will see people posting comments on Facebook about some of the scary shows on television. They can’t wait to watch a new season of spooky stuff. The last two years I have wanted to see the show American Horror Story. It seems so interesting, except for all of the killing and grisly scenes. I have watched snippets of the show hoping I could get through a full episode, but each time, I end up too overwhelmed and the images stay with me for days and sometimes weeks.
I have often wondered what some people have that makes it easy for them to watch or take part in some scary fun. Actually, I really wonder how being scared is fun at all. So another year of Halloween will have my husband and son going off to a haunted house. There will be disappointment again when I pass on going. Honestly there is nothing worse than having your middle school kid try to talk you into going with reassurances that it won’t be that bad and that I can handle it. I’m just glad my child can handle it.
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