When you were a kid, odds are you said Halloween was your favourite holiday. If you’re smart like me, it’s still your first choice in adulthood.
Nothing really changes about Halloween over the years, so why would our perception? Take a minute to think of all the things you loved about Halloween as a child, and see if any of them could still be relevant to your adult festivities.
For starters, consider the free candy — the most obvious choice. Even as adults, we encounter free sweets all around our most frequently visited locations: work, school, hairdressers, etc. No, you don’t get as much as you did for trick-or-treating, but you still don’t have to pay for it. Besides, your dentist will thank you for the downsize later.
The next best part of Halloween was the decorations. Fog machines were my main aesthetic before I even knew what an aesthetic was. I looked forward to admiring the decked-out houses all year, wishing that one day, my own home would look like that too. As an adult, I may not own a house, but I sure as shit own a lot of awesome Halloween decorations.
Don’t forget about the parties! Back in school, my class often had an entire afternoon off to throw ourselves a Halloween party. Looking back, it might seem hard to improve on those childhood gatherings, but those of us who enjoy a casual drink or 12 have perfected the art of the holiday party. Halloween bashes are even better for me now that my social anxiety disappears after a glass of beer. Thank you, alcohol!
Now, what is everyone’s least favourite part of holidays as an adult? Family obligations. These can be anything from having to spend money on gifts you don’t want to give, to making sure you’ve visited 37 different relatives over the course of five days. You know what holiday doesn’t involve family unless you want it to? Halloween.
Even as a kid, the most bonding time you generally got was during trick-or-treating, at the moment you emptied your full bag of candy into the empty plastic bag your mom brought as a backup. Family time is important, sure, but it’s nice to give yourself a break once in a while.
Yet ultimately, the part of Halloween which held the most significance for me was the costumes. See, when I was younger, I didn’t always feel super comfortable with who I was, so I always settled for who I thought I should be. A lot of the time, this meant acting and dressing in ways I didn’t really want to.
But even today, I find that my costumes serve as an exception to this: reflections of a version of myself that I wish I was. Halloween was the one day of the year I could wear whatever I wanted, act however I wanted, and just generally be myself.
If you only felt like yourself one day a year, you’d probably learn to love that day, too.