It's a beautiful night, not a full moon, but it's getting there. Bright and white. It's one of those nights with clouds that are lit up from above. It's the night before Halloween. At the tail end of my walk, I round back into my neighborhood and I see that almost every house is poised to spring Halloween on any who dare trick-or-treat tomorrow night. I think it's cute I realize--even the ghoulish lawns with plastic, bloody-stump severed limbs scattered on the grass and skeletons leaning up against tree trunks. I'm always amazed at how Snoopy-dog-house-festive some people get (only drape Snoopy's house in Halloween, not Christmas). I admire these Snoopy-decorators for their complete unselfconsciousness and pure verve.
I tend toward the self-conscious, shouldn't it be tasteful? I grudgingly admit I'm a Martha Stewart wannabe even though I can't stand her smug mug and that "Dahh-ling, we simply mu-ssst get together in the Haahhh-mptons" accent. Ok but the woman does everything beautifully. Everything. Beautifully. So I admire her but she freaks me out and plus I hate snobs. Where am I going? .............oh yeah, I'm a self-conscious decorator more or less.
But having kids loosened me up in the decorating department. Over the years we've had giant, black, trash bag-newspaper stuffed spiders on the front lawn with red Solo Cup eyes & white cut-out fangs, and plastic things hanging from trees, and scary frankenstein sounds blaring from the front door.
This year Thing One is at college, and almost sixteen-Thing Two is spending the night with friends tonight and making Halloween plans with said friends tomorrow night. Very normal scenario for an eighteen year-old and a fifteen year-old. It's just, I know when I walk up my driveway tonight I'm not going to see a single visible Halloween decoration. How did I let that happen?? I even wrestled today with whether or not I should go get a pumpkin and I didn't!
It occured to me that becoming a mom is to donn a mom-suit. And at this phase in my life, I'm half in and half out of the mom-suit. Certainly, I know that growing older doesn't mean you don't carve pumpkins or hang fake spiders on fake webs anymore! But I'm in flux. I'm not quite sure of the way. I know I should march confidently ahead but I find myself looking back more than ever before. I don't think I want to find myself scooping out seeds and making ghost marshmallows by myself this year.
I glance up at the sky one more time before I go inside. As I open the door, I decide I'm going to settle down in my comfy leather chair with some herbal tea and watch "It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown". I don't think even Snoopy decorated his place this Halloween .......