October 29, 2014

Happy Halloween—Candy or No Candy?

carrot on Halloween

Halloween is rapidly approaching.

While others are gallivanting around looking for the best decorations or costumes, I am struggling with the big question—candy or no candy? I am so conflicted by this choice that I have been known in the past, to go out on Halloween rather than address it. Growing up in suburban Philadelphia, the night before Halloween was Mischief Night. Kids would go around the neighborhood throwing eggs or toilet paper on people’s houses, cars and trees. I had a general idea who these kids were, or at least I knew their sharp tongued, world wise younger sisters. I always wondered what motivated them—was it an unintended slight in school, a racial or religious difference? (It was the 70s and our multi-ethnic high school had no shortage of issues). Or was it that last year’s Halloween treats, at these particular houses, were not up to the expected standards? There was a lot of fear mongering in the news about Halloween when we were kids. We were told never to accept an apple—it could have a razor blade in it, never accept a homemade treat—it could be poisoned and there was list of candies never to eat—as it was likely that they had been tampered with. As an adult, I learned that in fact, there was never a problem with tainted Halloween candies. I laugh at my smaller self who hesitated to accept a homemade banana muffin from a family friend (she had saved it just for me as she knew I loved bananas). I am a holistic health coach and offer workshops and coaching on how to give up sugar. I also talk to my clients about finding a rhythm in your life and doing what works for you. Other holidays and events are far less complicated for me than Halloween. My Girls’ Night Out group knows that I will always bring the salad and when friends invite us over for Christmas dinner or Thanksgiving, they ask me to bring the vegetables. In return, I try to never comment on or judge a friend’s food choices. I am pondering Halloween treats.  Do I give out candy, do I give out healthy treats or do I paint my pumpkin teal and follow the gluten free approach of giving out party favors like bubbles or whistles? I am not sure what I will do, but here is what I havedecided.  No more hiding with the lights off, no more worrying about my house getting toilet papered, no more wondering what the neighbors think – whatever I do, I will own it. I will open the door in my witch’s hat and cackle scarily and give with joy and abandon. I hope you find joy in the giving during your Halloween celebration.  


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Author: Wendy Kuhn

Editor: Ashleigh Hitchcock

Photo: courtesy of the author

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