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Trick-or-Treating Teenagers

Updated: Nov 2, 2018

It's Halloween night, your door bell rings, you answer to find an assortment of little kids dressed as super heroes, witches, warlocks, princesses, ballerinas, basketball players, football players, or dressed in any other assortment of various cute kid costumes. Their little voices yell out, "Trick-or-treat." You pass out tiny candy bars, they look in their bag and grin according to the worth the candy you've given them, and they run off the porch yelling, "Thank you" as they head to the next house to collect more loot. In the early evening hours it's the little ones who grace your door step, but it seems the darker it gets the older the age of the trick-or-treaters you find on your front porch. You begin to shake your head each time the door bell rings and you dread opening the door and handing out candy to kids who are clearly too old to be trick-or-treating. You consider turning off the porch light, closing the blinds and hiding in the back room of your house so you do not have to face the teenagers that come out in the Halloween darkness. Then reality hits and you decide it's best to give away all the candy rather than end up eating it yourself. Once again you are summoned to the front door, you find a group of haphazard teenagers, dressed in makeshift costumes, holding plastic grocery bags as they offer the obligatory "trick-or-treat." You look at each of them in the eye as you dole out those little candy bars and you wonder why in the world they still want to go trick-or-treating. They look in their bag and grin according to the worth the candy you've given them, and they run off the porch yelling, "Thank you" as they head to the next house to collect more loot. In that moment you see them as the little kids they once were and you get it; they are at a crossroads, they are embarking on adulthood but inside there is still the desire to be a little kid. In a world where teenagers are often encouraged and expected to grow up quickly, it's nice to have an excuse to be a kid again. Halloween offers this chance! So maybe, just maybe when those teenagers ring your doorbell and stand on your porch with their plastic garbage bags waiting for their "treat" you should smile and be thankful they grasp the opportunity to live once again like little kids. All too soon they will be grown ups with real-world responsibilities; and if we are being honest wouldn't each of us love to have an excuse to be a kid again?


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