Constance’s first Halloween costume was the classic pumpkin. She really didn’t enjoy eating candy until we started using M&M’s to try to teach her how to swallow pills at age eight. Without candy as a motivator, she wasn’t interested in trick-or-treating. The animatronic flashing, screaming decorations were a major sensory no-no for her.
One year, we went to my mother’s house. In her neighborhood, trick-or-treating is so popular people go through grocery bags of candy. Constance participated by helping to hand out candy. I thought it would be a good way to get her to interact with other children, participate in the festivities, and avoid all the parts she didn’t like. She didn’t seem to enjoy it nearly as much as I enjoyed watching her do it.
Another Halloween, I spent wedding dress money on a mermaid Halloween costume that had a beautiful, wearable fin. Constance hated it. Her friend Ramsey looked adorable in it when she visited to play dress up.
If Constance was here this Halloween, we’d go to the local pumpkin festival. We’d carve a pumpkin together, I’d roast the pumpkin seeds and, as she did every year, Constance would refuse to eat them. Then she’d try a slice of pumpkin pie from Costco and decide she’d rather have chocolate candy. Though traditions may tend to feel like a lot of work, they are what memories are made from.