Today we have our first post on honesty by someone other than me. Hooray!
Let’s Be Honest: Acting Like A Kid For Halloween
Hi guys! Some of you know me as almostbatten over at “If You Don’t Stand For Something“, but for those that don’t I thought I would introduce myself. My name is Kim, I’m 30 and I’ve been married to my husband Chris for the past 4.5 years. We started trying to build our family just before our wedding and have since been diagnosed with hypothyroidism (for me) and low sperm count (for the hubs, obviously). I’m a crafter, baker, gamer, a Brownie leader affectionately called “Fluffy Owl” and a lover of all things owl and cupcake. I also have a soft spot for just about anything the BBC airs for my viewing pleasure (seriously guys, my ringtone is the Doctor Who theme and my background is Jack and Ianto from Torchwood).
But the thing I wanted to talk about today is the holidays. Halloween in specific. Since this post is all about honesty, I’m just gonna tell you that I’ve been on both sides of the infertile Halloween. I’ve hated the holiday and didn’t want to have anything to do with it, but over the years and as I’ve gradually moved out of the angry infertile stage, I’ve grown to love Halloween again.
Growing up, I was the first of my friends to stop trick or treating. I realized that I loved to pass out the candy and see all the cool costumes. As I grew up, I realized that I wanted somewhere to go where I could dress up. But when we received our infertility diagnosis, I couldn’t really bring myself to enjoy Halloween anymore. Envy and jealousy took over. I helped my mom at Halloween, but it was no longer enjoyable. I wanted to be the one taking my child out for their first Halloween in an adorably nerdy costume.
But over the past 2 years, I found my way back.
Last year was hectic. My parents were building their new house, I was prepping to move into my childhood home. I was ready to be finished with renting and become a home owner. But it was also my first year as a Brownie leader. I got to enjoy Halloween by having fun activities with our girls. And with 20 or so girls ranging in ages 7-9, you can’t help but enjoy it when they are having so much fun. They helped me realize that I could still have fun despite not having children of my own in my life yet.
This year though, was the real changer. We are lucky enough to have another couple locally who are also going through years of infertility. She also happens to be one my oldest friends. Throughout the year, when there would be holidays or events centered around kids and families with young children, we made a plan to do something together and still find some fun. We call them “Kid Free Adventures”. For Canada Day, instead of going to events centered around young families, we left our families behind and the four of us got in a car and played tourist for the day. We drove the Cabot Trail, a gorgeous part of my home province, and just enjoyed our time together as two couples. There was no pressure to put up with kids or pregnant women or inappropriate questions of “Why don’t you have kids yet?” and we laughed, stopped at cute shops and restaurants and explored. It is my all time favorite Canada Day. Some friends have expressed some jealousy towards our plans for the 4 of us, but the rest of our friends have children and spend that day with them, so we are just out finding our own fun because we share the unique experience of wanting kids but being unable to have them.
Since then, myself and my fellow IF’er best friend have made it a goal, along with our husbands, to go out and do stuff together and not wait for kids to be in the picture before we enjoy everything. So this Halloween season, I sewed my own Halloween costume for my Brownie Halloween party. Me and hubs along with our IF couple made the trek out to a local farm and picked our own pumpkins. Then we ran through the corn maze like we were children, fed the animals corn from the maze, and the boys even got on the see-saw together. Were we bombarded by children and families? Sure. It’s called Hanks FAMILY Farm after all, and it was a Sunday. But you know what? Parents were looking at us with envy because we were laughing and joking and clearly having an amazing time together. Kids would stop and laugh at us and we shared our corn with them when they realized they could feed the animals. Then when we came home, we carved our pumpkins together while we laughed and joked.
The day after Halloween, I leave for a guiding conference, but despite that, I’m still going to dress up and pass out the bags of candy. I also decorated our front step, the first time I’ve been able to decorate for Halloween in years. And after trick or treating is over, there will be some fireworks and my best friend and her husband are coming over so that we can watch Halloween movies, play some board games and pig out on the left over candy.
As much as we want children and as much as we are willing to do anything to have children, we learned that we can’t stop our life and wait until the good happens. So we are out there making our own happiness. We are finding fun and we are living our life to the fullest so that when our kids do finally get here, we can tell them how much we lived our life even before they came. That being said, not all days are this good. Do we still have bad days? Yes. Do we still avoid some holidays? You bet. Do I still get depressed, cry and hide away from people? Oh yeah, my mint chocolate ice cream is always waiting for me in the freezer for that special “break glass in case of emergency” situation.
But honestly, the biggest thing I can tell you after 4.5 years of infertility is that it’s OK to not be OK with holidays. It’s OK to say, “I can’t handle this.” It’s OK to say no to invites if its too hard on you mentally. Infertility is a bitch, and she sometimes takes over your life and with little notice. But I’m also here to tell you that it’s OK to also find some fun despite your infertility. It’s OK to go out and act like a kid and do family friendly stuff even if you don’t have children. No one has the right to tell you otherwise. It’s OK if you want to dress up and pass out candy. It’s OK if you want to do something kid free. But most importantly, it’s OK to act like a kid. Because the kids in that corn maze were taking a page from our book that day.
Even though we are working towards creating a family (through ART if necessary), it doesn’t mean that we are automatically excluded from events, holidays or even shows and toys that are directed towards children. I’m not gonna lie, my husband got me into My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic and I’ll watch anything on the Family Channel. It’s up to each of us to make the best of the time we have. We can sit around and mope or we can go out there and find the fun. But no matter what you decide to do this Halloween, whether its leaving a bowl of candy by your door so you don’t have to deal with kids or dressing up and going out for some fun, know that both are perfectly fine options. Now pardon me, hubby wants to have a My Little Pony marathon tonight while I make some pumpkin fudge.
*Thanks to Kim to contributing as my first guest poster! Happily taking other honesty posts. No blog or writing experience necessary. Check out my tab or click here: Guest Posts. All votes for Top Mommy Blogs also appreciated – all you have to do is click the picture on the sidebar. Thanks!