Been a bit of whirlwind couple of weeks. Hallowe’en has come and gone. And without a doubt as each year passes I get more involved in the holiday. We have gone from super heroes to fruit. Decorated the outside of the house together. Painted a pumpkin teal in case a child with allergies came by, hopefully this will catch on.
Our visit to the neighbourhood transitioned from the first year when I practically had to carry her everywhere, to a up and down the street, to around the block, to if it hadn’t started to rain we might still be knocking on doors. The atmosphere was absolutely wonderful – parents, families, little kids, big kids, and people sharing their candy with the trick-or-treaters – everyone simply added to the fun of the evening. Decorations, well “outstanding” is the only word I can think of! This year Samantha joined us and once again Auntie Di handed out the goodies while we collected treats. The number of visitors hit an all time high. Thought the folks at work would have access to leftovers, hmmmm will have to wait for Leila to tire of her stash.
As much fun as the evening was, what I appreciated most was the time spent with Leila preparing for the day. We sat on the living room floor making the treat bags. We both created the ambience to ensure trick-or-treaters we were ready for them. Setting the stage for open dialogue in the years to come when ‘puberty’ evolves. Now I am consciously looking for the moments to build the foundation, which will encourage her to talk to me about anything, and for me to remain grounded to hear what she is saying.
How do I do that? Lately, my ability to stay grounded seems to be a little tenuous. Is it possible to be totally connected to the person you are meant to be? I get that to grow we evolve, we meet the challenges, we find our place in the world, and we remember we are a part of the whole, yet imperative to create the positive changes required so more individuals can access what is good. Sometimes I just get tired or confused or wish there was a magic wand, if only for a brief moment to get caught up. And all this, with a child who is kind, funny, smart, independent/dependent, well to be honest she is pretty good to have around. I share this today because no matter how fantastic my life is and believe me I am very blessed – I want the reader to know those bumps can shake even the eternal optimist. And the other side of the coin is – the writer knows the bumps are required to move to the next level. Time to shake up the plateau. Drat, that time has come yet again. But boy, when this bump passes watch out world!!
Anna Barsanti is a retired educator who is raising her niece.