a halloween obsession

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It started in August with anything spooky he could find on TV. Anything that resembled a ghost or a goblin made my son jump up and down with excitement. “More ghosts please. More mummies please.” My two year old told me that he has a ghost in his room. There’s a ghost in the basement too. And he wouldn’t want it any other way.

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Why are children so infatuated with Halloween? Every year competes with the next for the most gory and disgusting decor. Body parts are hung like Christmas lights. The bloodier the better. It seems like Christmas would be the favorite holiday but for a child like mine, and I know he’s not the only one, Halloween is the best day ever.

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Before the warehouse Halloween stores opened, he saw the signs while we were driving and begged me to take him. When we finally found one that was opened (in mid-September), he didn’t know where to look first. We spent a lot of time looking at every spooky and bloody thing we could find.


He was traumatized—not by the bloody severed hands or the ax murderers, but by me. When I said it was time to leave, he went into a panic; like I was taking him away from everything he ever dreamed of.

Although I did trick or treat throughout high school and college, I was never obsessed by the holiday. The candy has nothing to do with his obsession so far. He is focused solely on admiring the haunted atmosphere. We read books about witches. He’s two and he can spell ghost and boo. The party store, or costume shop is on our agenda almost every day. “Wanna look at spooky stuff?” he asks. He radiates with joy, smiles and happiness when he can see the orange signs. My husband and I are forced to push all the buttons as he watches in wonder. He jumps and shivers, puts his hand to his face and says, “I hear something.” Then asks us to push the button again. He tries on zombie baby masks, or pirate hats. He picks the hulk costume off of the shelf to show me.

This week we ended up with Halloween plates, a ghost cup, some skeletons, a ghost candy bucket, candy attached to severed body parts, a spooky sounds CD and a monster in the window that my friend got him. He peruses the costume catalogs while sitting in his car seat, waiting for the next time we’ll go back to see the ghosts, witches, monsters and chainsaws. He can’t get enough of this holiday.

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When we’re not at the Halloween store, we are at the Field Museum looking at the mummy down the hole, and the mummies in the boxes. “There’s a mummy in there, mama!” His curiosity is endless when it comes to the holiday. I can’t wait to see how he reacts this Halloween, given all of his preparations. He decided what he wants to be for Halloween (I’ll keep it a secret), but we got the Hulk costume too, in case he changes his mind!

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Does your child or toddler love Halloween as much as mine does?

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