People who passed my house this Halloween might have left rather offended.
Although there was a large bowl of candy on the doorstep, there were also lights and laughter emanating from the house and I’m sure our apparent refusal to open the door was off-putting.
However, I would like to start by saying it had nothing to do with any anti-trick-or-treater sentiment, rather, we were busy celebrating Christmas.
Yes, as strange as it sounds, Oct. 31 is not filled with black and orange decorations for the Bakers. Instead, it involves peppermint hot chocolate and jingle bells.
Things were not always this way; the decision to switch holidays occurred two or three years ago when I stomped through the front door and declared that I would no longer celebrate Halloween.
My reasons behind the decision were a combination of petulance and determination, having endured 14 years of jumping as I passed every spookily decorated corner and turning down each invitation to watch a horror movie that came my way. I have a tendency towards nightmares, so I avoid ‘scary’ things best I can. This is, obviously, much more difficult around Halloween.
I am not the only one with this problem. People who have experienced horrific events in real life or dreams can have flashbacks caused by blood, screams, etc. (fake or otherwise). As such, these people have to tip-toe around October like it’s some sort of plague.
Over the years, I feel like this problem has increased along with the amount of gore showing up on people’s doorsteps. It might have something to do with the fact that a majority of America celebrates Halloween, so society has latched onto that and turned Halloween into one of the major commercial holidays; filling store shelves with horror movies, ghoulish costumes and overall grim reminders to me and other non-celebrators that the day when they have to squeeze their eyes tight and walk fast is coming.
This, however, isn’t to say that Halloween should be stopped as a whole. I understand that, for most people, it’s a fun, care-free event with free candy (who doesn’t like that?) and the chance to dress up as someone entirely different for a day.
Rather, I would simply like to point out that it’s not a joy-ride for everyone and these non-celebrators shouldn’t be ridiculed for disliking something that honestly terrifies them. Social media likes to make fun of fear a lot (evidenced in the laugh tracks that play whenever anyone hides behind another person or lets out a high-pitched shriek), but it is not so humorous in real life. People have genuine reasons for being scared as well as for not celebrating and I hope that the people who get an adrenaline rush from horror keep that in mind.
At this Pre-Christmas as we have taken to calling it, my house was a delicious-smelling safe haven. Any nervousness was washed away to the tune of “We Wish you a Merry Christmas” and I spent the evening watching holiday classics.
I hope that any trick-or-treaters not greeted at my doorstep do not feel quite so bad anymore. I also invite any fellow “Scaredy-cats” to join in the Christmas celebration next year. For everyone else, I hope you had a fantastic Halloween or simply a great Oct. 31.