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Halloween is coming up fast, and PJ still does not have a costume.
Choosing a costume for PJ has been one of my favorite parts of parenting. Even though PJ is a little young for Halloween, and still does not connect with the idea of choosing a costume and playing pretend, I love the theatrics and creative spirit of Halloween.
When we celebrated PJ's first Halloween, he was not even a year old. He hadn't taken his first steps and wasn't allowed to eat the few pieces of candy he gathered- he didn't have any teeth yet! In fact, I am pretty sure he fells asleep in his stroller, resplendent in his costume as spaghetti and meatballs. The idea, stolen from a parenting magazine, consumed my evenings in the two weeks before Trick or Treating was upon us. I sewed a little muslin romper and stitched thick, white yarn that resembled spaghetti strands. I am a terrible sewer, but there was something about making my sons first Halloween costume with my own (horrible at sewing) hands that made me feel like a good mom.
Since then, he's been Super Grover, Thomas the Train, and a dinosaur. I made all of his costumes with love...and, more often than not, swear words. This year, I am trying to let go of the expectations I have given myself on Proper Halloween Parenting. I was shooting for handmade, Pinterest-worthy costumes that would only be accentuated by PJ's astounding cuteness. This year, we are all busy, and I think that PJ has outgrown my skill (or, lack of skill) with a needle and thread. Even though, deep down, I feel a little like a failure, PJ and I will sit down in front of the computer (a store would overwhelm him, I think) and pick a costume.
We have it narrowed down to a few choices: any character from Toy Story, Wreck-It Ralph, or Despicable Me (think Gru, not minion). Those are the three Halloween-worthy costume choices that he is the most into, so we're going with that. It will come to our house in a box and the only hand-crafting I will do is to tie a few strings or adjust a mask. All I am going to do is pay for it.
Letting go of this task feels so strange. I know it isn't a big deal for normal mothers, but I set the bar high for myself early and would force myself to clear it no matter how hard it was. Last year, it involved wresting with yards of soft, orange felt and a sewing machine to make a dinosaur costume (that came out pretty well save for a tail whose size I grossly underestimated). I was channeling all of my worth as a mother into that costume. Ridiculous, right?
So, this year, it's store-bought costumes and a more realistic tool to measure my worth as a mother. But, I'm not using housework because...no.
That's just begging for failure.