Happy Halloween. Blessed Samhain. Whatever.
The 31st tends to be a pretty lonely night for me, since I’m usually the only pagan around and I’m surrounded either by people who think Halloween = slutty clothes, alcohol, and loud noises or people who just don’t care to make much effort.
I loved trick-or-treating as a kid. It wasn’t the candy (though that was nice) so much as getting dressed up and running around the neighborhood. I’ve always had a bit of a performer in me (in spite of–or perhaps, because of my introversion), and I loved making a great costume and showing it off. I still do, in fact, despite the fact that it is now much less socially acceptable (sigh.)
This year was my first year participating in trick-or-treating in a long time, albeit on the other side of the door. I got all dressed up BECAUSE I CAN and sat by the door with my knitting waiting for the doorbell to ring. Which it didn’t, much; we live on the border between residential and university student housing, so not that many kids venture out our way. Still, we got about 20 people all told.
Maybe it would have been better with a constant stream of kids in shiny costumes to distract me, but mostly I just felt…sad. Here I was, on what should be the most fun (not to mention most sacred) night of the year, sitting by myself in my parents’ living room, waiting for a four-year-old dressed as a cupcake to come my way and make me feel part of Halloween.
The 31st kind of sucks from the other side of the door.
Okay, a lot of things suck from this side of the door. The whole Halloween thing is emblematic of my entire life right now–lonely, stuck between child and adult, and feeling like neither. I’m tired of feeling powerless and trapped and alone.
Because the truth is, I don’t have to be any of those things. The only one denying me power is me. I’m the one who has trapped myself in this mental prison. And yes, it’s lonely in my head. I suspect it often will be. But I’m not alone. I have peers and friends and family and I don’t need to be alone if I don’t want to. I just need to stop letting myself feel like the external world has so much power over me. I’m an adult now, or as adult as I’ve ever been. Being adult means being responsible, so I’m taking responsibility. There are decisions to be made every day, and I need to make them, not let them flow past me.
I’ve never been much of one for New Year’s resolutions, but somehow this year a Samhain resolution feels right. So here it is. I resolve to take responsibility for myself. I resolve to make decisions. I resolve to be in a better place next year than I am now. And I resolve that next time October 31st rolls around, I will be surrounded by good people in fantastic costumes. BECAUSE WE CAN.
On a less serious note, decorations!
Favorite costume of the night: Tied between the Sneech and the mini-astronaut.
Now, off for some meditation, divination…and candy.