Its Halloween, its supposed to be a scary night, right? But its supposed to be the young goblins and spooking characters seeking candy, not the act of getting to the location, right?
Anyone who knows me, knows that I have high anxiety over going anywhere alone. I wasn’t always this way, but over time and especially since my husband’s death, the thought of actually going somewhere alone, terrifies me. Then my son called me a recluse.
I am for what ever reason, terrified of getting lost. I know its partly because I do that so well and easily. I can be driving alone, enjoying the scenery, singing along to the radio and then realize I have no clue where I am. I can be on a trip that only has one turn off, and I’ll manage to miss it. I missed one that had a ginormous billboard sign right before the intersection and I drove right by. If my husband were alive, he would still be reminding me of that one.
I fear getting out on the road somewhere and the car breaking down on me. Nothing like sitting on the side of the road wondering if the next car approaching has a maniac,serial killer, that will dismember me and leave body parts across several states.
I don’t allow my car to get below a half a tank of gas, so if it were a gas issue it would be mechanical. Because this female knows how to pump gas.
I fear being in groups, especially with those who don’t know me well, and making a fool of myself. Once people know me, and know that weird as I may be, I’m actually harmless, then that’s different.
I had said weeks ago that I was going to participate in a Trunk or Treat that the Jeep group I belong to was putting on, and that was this afternoon.I had errands I needed to get done early. I thought while I was out, maybe inspiration would strike. I had participated last night at the church event, but didn’t decorate my jeep. I had no idea what to do with it that would look fun. Then I saw where someone had taken brown paper and made what appeared to be a hunting blind. I walked and looked at other vehicles and how they had been decorated. Some went all out, some kept it simple but clever. None took a great deal of money.
While I was running my errands, I stopped to shop for groceries.While in the store, I passed a display of those inexpensive blanket throws. Camo. Something I could use to decorate with then reuse later. I added a medium size stuff bear dressed in hunter orange, some light up sticks mom gave me several years ago and a set of my solar lights I bought two years ago,, but had put up so well I had forgotten them and never put them outside.Then, back dressed in my camo outfit, I was ready.
I piled everything into the car, I kept making trips back into the house because of this or that I had forgotten but finally, it was time to go. I won’t say my mind was playing tricks on me, trying to find ways to make me give up and not go, but it was frustrating every time I almost got to the car and would suddenly remember something I needed. Finally, I thought I had it all, I was ready, all I had to do was start the car and pull out of the driveway. Suddenly I felt a determination I haven’t felt in a while. I started the car and without looking back, pulled out of the drive and soon, out of our dirt road.
I knew pretty much where I was going. I had been there once before, but James had driven not me. I had left myself plenty of time to get there, even going through the small town between here and there that love to give speeding tickets. I was doing well, until I got behind the vehicle behind the tanker. We did finally get to where the road became two lanes each direction and I was able to slip past. By that time I wasn’t far from where I was going. Seeing the place up ahead I slowed and turned into the parking lot. I pulled into place and began to transform my Jeep Star, into a hunter’s blind. With those few items it really did the trick. It may not have been fully Halloween themed, but the kids didn’t care, all they wanted was to hear the sound of the candy falling into their bags.
But there was this one little girl who looked at my set up, looked back and forth, then in a conspiratorial whisper said, “Don’t tell anyone, but I like yours best.” Yeah, made this heart happy.
There were so many kids that came through we were all working low on candy. I was really wishing I had not given away so much of mine that were in plastic baggies. I was emptying what was left as quickly as I could. I sent my son and emergency s.o.s. begging him to bring candy. Someone who was part of the group, but not in the lineup thankfully had candy to share.
And the kids kept coming.
My son arrived with more candy, then visited with people he knew before telling me he was leaving. He had came up on his motorcycle and it was getting colder than he cared to be driving in. It was also Halloween, kids were out for the events being held everywhere making it hazardous.
Before this night, I would have felt abandoned. I would have wondered what on earth was I doing? But tonight, I was having as much fun as the kids. Tonight I laughed, I talked and I handed out a lot of candy..a lot..of candy. Tonight, I felt braver than I have in a very long time. Even if I was in Camo, completely hidden, hiding in plain sight, I was participating like never before.
Tomorrow, I will give my great nephew his grandpa’s face covering back and thank him for allowing me to use it. Tomorrow, I will look back at the memories of today, because today was for me, an amazing step forward and there is no going back now. Yes, I was scared as I got in the car and started out, but I went anyway. That is one major step toward the positive for me.