by Sara Fisher
If Halloween is any indication of what’s in store, I’m not ready for Holiday season 2007. Between organizing play group parties, wrestling a toddler into a furry costume and celebrating my own entry into a new decade, I’m already exhausted. And it’s only early November.
The holidays have a way of coming at you in untimely waves. When it’s hot out you start thinking about pumpkins and goblins and when the days of playing dress up end, the 24-hour cycle of discounts, deals and steals and loud music begin.
I’ve never been one to embrace this time of year. Growing up in a Jewish household, my brother and I would sneak Christmas into our house by decorating our indoor plants with charm bracelets and leaving cookies and milk out knowing full well ahead of time it was my mother who ate them around midnight. Halloween costumes were slap-dashed together out of things I’d find around the house. It’s not that we couldn’t afford the celebrations; it’s just that I don’t think I was born with that “holiday spirit” gene.
Somehow, being a mom has changed my DNA. Now, more than ever, I feel the need to overcompensate for my apathetic youth. I had my first holidays as a mother last year, but it was different – my son was more apt to eat his fist than a bowl full of M&Ms. I could go to work, come home early, get a professional photo taken of my baby sitting in his Superman costume and feel like we celebrated Halloween in style.
This year, my son could identify his Halloween costume by animal noise and laughed his way through the Dora the Explorer Halloween episode. Complicating my desire to rid myself of the anti-spirit gene was also that Halloween this year was on a Wednesday, smack dab on one of my days in the office. Last time I checked, BlackBerry is not a new flavor of Starburst.
In a spurt of working mommy guilt, I overdid the festivities in the days before the hallowed evening. My son may know how to say “roar,” but he certainly doesn’t know the difference between Halloween and Devil’s Night. After one loud and whiny parade, lots of orange icing and two chaotic kiddy costume parties later, by the time Halloween arrived, my holiday spirit was about as mushy as the inside of the rotting pumpkin sitting on my doorstep. The pumpkin I bought last minute at the supermarket. Somehow, I didn’t think taking a conference call from the pumpkin patch would fly. On the celebrated day itself, all I could muster was a quick walk around the block.
But with Halloween ending, it just means that the fall lineup of holiday madness is beginning. My energy is zapped and I really am not looking forward to using all of my personal, optional, balance and vacation days making dreidels out of clay.