Why My Daughter Isn’t Wearing a Costume for Halloween this Year

It’s no secret around the Walke house that I love Halloween. Perhaps it’s because it’s the last few days of decent weather, before the stress of the winter holidays sets in, and the last few days of daylight savings time. More likely is that Halloween provides me with an excuse to buy tacos de sesos (tacos made with brain).

In the past few years, my wife and my daughter haven’t really celebrated my enthusiasm for Halloween, but they’ve tolerated it at least. This year is different, though. Boy — is it different.

My daughter, Elena, lives with quadriplegic cerebral palsy and uses an electronic communication device to communicate. I thought that it would be a good idea to ask her school learning specialist and speech pathologist to task Elena with selecting a Halloween costume and writing about it. Perhaps, I’d get responses such as a rock star, a superhero, or a goblin. Who knows?

Elena gave us two options: a cat or myself. Since we weren’t sold on the idea of her going as herself, we thought that cat would suffice and we suggested getting cat ears, painting on whiskers and maybe putting on a tail. No, no, and no, were her responses. We were able to coax her into wearing a cat shirt and pants but that was about it.

So, we’ll probably have the most underwhelming Halloween costume this year, but I have to make peace with that because it’s Elena’s choice. And the more I think about everything, it makes sense. Elena tends to stick out wherever she goes. Even though the looks she gets are never mean spirited, she probably gets sick of it and just wants to go about things normally.

My not-so-little daughter will be turning 9 in a few days and I’m assuming she’s getting to the point in her life where she just wants to blend in a little bit more rather than be such a courageous person. I get that.

So, we’ll still go trick or treating, give out candy, and hang out with cousins, but it’ll be more low-key. It’s what she wants, it’s honestly less work for me and I still get to enjoy my tacos de sesos.


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  1. Gabriel Falcon Says:

    Yup. Sounds like my son. He is 2 and never wants to dress up or be a pumpkin or a superhero. No masks, no make up. So when Comic-Con came this year. Mom and I settled on dressing him up as Chucky. Yeah that Chucky the killer doll from the movie “Child’s Play”. All we did was put on a stripped rainbow shirt, regular overalls and red shoes, and even that was a challenge. Parenting right?
    Class of 07. Cristo Rey Alumni