Months ago, I got it into my head that we should be The Incredibles family for Halloween. Max was obsessed with the movie Incredibles 2. Plus we had the right mix of kids—two boys and a teen girl. I spent entirely too much on the costumes, figuring I'd take a chance. Because I never know how things are going to go on Halloween.
When Max was little, the holiday terrified him: the crowds and the noise at our town's Halloween parade were sensory overload, and costumes scared him. The year Max turned five, he suddenly got into it.
Still, every year we never knew what Max would be up for—would he dress up? Not always. Trick or treat? Maybe. David and I would just conquer and divide, one of us hanging out with Max, the other taking Sabrina trick or treating.
Starting last week, we had Incredibles defectors. Max informed me that he did not want to be Dash. Dave noted that his costume was itchy. Sabrina said she wanted to hang out with her friends. That left just Elastigirl (me) and Jack-Jack (Ben). OK, then.
The day before Halloween, I asked Max and asked what his latest thoughts were on being Dash. He said, "Fire hat!" As in, he wanted to be Dash wearing a firefighter hat. Cool! Yesterday, I ran home from work. Dave put on his itchy costume. Sabrina agreed to be a little late to a party with her friends. She styled Ben's hair so it kind of had that Jack-Jack spike on the top and off we went. It was truly incredible.
We walked around trick-or-treating for a good hour. Ben kept saying "I want more candy!" Max kept saying he would like to go to Disney World for Halloween next year. Sabrina kept saying, "I'M LATE FOR MY PARTY!" Our neighborhood was filled with the spirits of Halloweens past: that time Max was in his purple phase and begged a homeowner to let him have their purple pumpkin in exchange for his orange one (we still have the purple one). Sabrina as Ariel, her tail sweeping the sidewalk. The house where Max first said "Trick or treat!"
After Dave and Max dropped Sabrina off at her party, they headed to Home Depot, Max's home away from home. Me and Jack-Jack hit a bunch more homes before we settled down on our front porch to hand out candy to kids.
The thing about the milestone-like moments is that they are even sweeter because once, you never could have imagined they'd happen. All of us out as a family, in costume, enjoying Halloween. When you're in the thick of helping a child who has sensory issues or other challenges, it's almost impossible to think that life will ever be any different. You learn to make peace with your child (and family) doing holidays, events and whatever their own way.
But what I've also learned is that you never can say never about certain things, because you just don't know. Our children: so incredible.