I didn't get to go trick or treating last night. I missed it. I really and truly did. With the exception of one time 9 years ago, I haven't missed a year of wandering the streets of our neighborhood with either one, two, or three kids - gathering candy, checking out the other little goblins and ghouls, and simply enjoying the evening.
I missed the costumes and the mad rush to figure out how best to put on the make up.
I missed the scramble for flashlights and the figuring out whether coats would be needed (and if so ... how to get the coat UNDER the costume).
I missed walking the streets, either joined by a friend or simply me and the girlies.
I missed the decorations, the pumpkins, the jack-o-lanterns and the pleasant shared "Hellos!" with the others out wandering.
Over the years, with flashlight in hand, I have had the joy and pleasure of watching Baby Bop or a dalmation puppy or three M&Ms (plain & peanut) or "Duchess" from The Aristocats & twin "Marie"s or ghosts or princesses or witches or vampires knock on doors and cry out the words ... "Trick or Treat!" Whether neighbors we knew or neighbors we didn't, there has always been a festive joy and an evening of fun for those giving and receiving. Listening for and sometimes admonishing to remember to say "Thank you!" and then wandering on to the next house with a porch light lit. Some years we may have carried umbrellas or worn extra clothing to ward off the chill but spirits were always high and at the end of the journey, the last house was always our own.
Then would come the traditional dumping of the candy to check it out, to keep girlies safe and, for me, a tinge of sorrow would shadow the evening briefly. Each year I would remember my own joyous adventures with/without my little brother and the trust that my parents could feel in the goodies we would gather. However, in the world we have come to live in - it is better to be safe than to be sorry. The girlies have always known that the candy must wait until they got home, that it could not be eaten directly from the bucket, bag, or sack that they carried. A sad reality that they never realized was different.
Then laughter would return as dinner was eaten, stories were told, laughter was shouted at the oddness of make up without costume or simply smudged make up or hair gone every which way and, of course, picking out the best candy to eat first. Of course, for me, that was always the chocolate.
Yes, I missed Trick or Treating this year. It's not that I mind being on the "stay at home and pass out candy" side of it, it's just that I miss the pleasure of watching little girls enjoying the innocent excitement of a fun-filled evening.
I love the girls they have grown to become, I miss the girlies that used to be.