I have always loved Halloween. When I was young, all my costumes were "home made" - a clown, a hobo, a witch. Back then you could buy a costume in a box- like at K-Mart and it would have some weird mask with a string on the back and some thin nylon outfit that you would wear over your regular clothes. But, in my family, we always made our costumes, so I was always envious of the kids who got those store bought boxes:

Now I'm older and I think back to how amazing my costumes were that my parents would create after I imagined them. My Dad would build race cars out of boxes or my Mom would sew a dress and make me a tin foil crown to go with my cardboard and glitter wings.
My son Chris has had nothing but store bought costumes ever since he was old enough to say NINJA! First he needed to be an all black ninja, then a black and red ninja... I loved how he would move around the house all ninja-like once he put the costume on. I loved that it made him feel so special and his imagination was so vivid. I wanted to create the costume from "scratch" but he needed to be like the other kids, he needed to be the ninja he saw in the store, on the mailers that came to the house, Halloween has always been a blast, but secretly inside me, I wished just once that during the school costume parade, he was not one out of many ninjas- I wished he had the experience of building his own costume, figuring out how to create something of his own.
So this year, I asked him what he wanted to be for Halloween and he said "a NERD". I asked if he saw a picture of a nerd somewhere or an ad for a costume and he said no, he wanted to make it himself.
Oh yippee! Hurray!
He had it all planned out in his mind, and we went to several thrift stores to get the goods. I can't sew, so my friend Vania helped with the hemming and dork-ifying of the pants. She also fixed the suspenders so he could keep his pants up super high. Another friend helped by locating and ordering bow ties and pocket protectors because I wasn't having any luck finding these things at thrift shops or office supply stores. It takes a village to raise a child they say, and it took a village to help me help my son make his costume. Thanks Ladies!
Chris was the only nerd that looked like him at the school parade today. I was happy for him and he was super proud of his outfit. I got teary eyed because this will be my last elementary school costume parade I have a family member in until I have grandchildren. I was also a bit teary eyed because I was reminded of my costumes as a child, and how they were always different than everyone else and how that made me feel uncomfortable. I cried becasue my son felt special and unique because he was different than anyone else.
Happy Halloween everyone!

The cutest dork I've ever seen.


Anonymous said...

I think that we want for our children what we wanted for ourselves as children. And sometimes if we're really lucky they want that too and it's all good! I wanted those store bought costumes too - SO FREAKIN' BAD! Now my kids have them and I feel proud of myself that I am able to provide them with that small luxury...

Anonymous said...

"Great story! You should have a weekly article in the paper."