After the Fourth of July and Labor Day holidays pass with summer, it seems like a mad rush to the Christmas season. Christmas lights, ornaments and tinsel start popping up in malls and lawn and garden stores nationwide. Families start planning their Christmas vacations, and many proactive shoppers start tackling their “Dear Santa” lists.
My question is: whatever happened to Halloween and Thanksgiving?
It’s as if Halloween and Thanksgiving have become the metaphorical middle children in the holiday family. They are loved and part of the family, but they are often outshone by Christmas.
It kind of reminds me of how things were in my father’s family. His older brother was the responsible one who was praised for helping out around the house. His younger sister was the adorable, pudgy one who got spoiled and doted on by family members.
And then there was my father.
My dad was the classic middle child who ran rampant, simply due to the fact that no one was paying attention to him. His mom was too busy watching his baby sister, and his older brother was too busy with chores. This was wonderful for my father when he wanted to get away with something and not get caught. But, it also meant that no one really spent much time with him either. He was regularly on his own and overshadowed by his other siblings. That definitely had its drawbacks, especially in moments of crisis. At one point during his childhood, my father’s appendix almost burst as a result of his mom not noticing his complaints of a stomach ache. Poor dad.
I’m not saying Halloween and Thanksgiving have appendixes that are going to rupture. I’m just saying that I think we can all learn a great deal from the story of my dad’s family. It serves as a reminder that we should stop treating Halloween and Thanksgiving like the middle children in the holiday family. Let’s give those amazing holidays the spotlight they deserve.
On that note, let me remind all the shopping retailers and Christmas fanatics, it’s only October. I don’t need stockings, fiber-optic Christmas trees, or Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer yard ornaments in October. Right now, I’m looking for pumpkins, fake vampire blood, and ghoulish eyeballs to float in my slime punch, because I’m going to be spending some quality time with my pal Halloween. After that, I’ll be honoring my buddy Thanksgiving by focusing on turkeys, cornucopias, and for what I’m most thankful.
Don’t worry, I’ll have plenty of time to hang out with Christmas in December.