Welcome October 2020! If you're wondering what's going on in my mind this month, take a look at this photo. It's a perfect depiction of the chaos in my brain: my combined thoughts and emotions, ranging from excitement and happiness to worry and fear, adding in between some of my favourite Funko characters from The Nightmare Before Christmas because I'm always thinking about Funkos - LOL! I'm absolutely thrilled that October as finally arrived, for it is the official month of my most favourite haunting season, with Halloween creeping up only a few weeks away. This October 1st, 2020 also marks the launch date of this website, a significant personal achievement for me. Only a few months ago, my knowledge on how to navigate through files on the computer, let alone design a website or create graphic designs, was extremely limited. I remember feeling so overwhelmed as I watched numerous "How To...." videos on You Tube which focused on graphic and web design tutorials. On top of that, I was trying to figure out how the popular social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram worked, because this was also a new venture I decided to embark on. How many times did I accidently post something that was not intended for public viewing? Too many LOL! Figuring out how to edit and delete posts was one of my big steps of achievement taken along my crazy journey aboard the social media train - ha ha!
Let's start with my happy thoughts and enthusiasm for this wonderful month. First and foremost, we are in the autumn season (my favourite) and I can already see the magic of Mother Nature's paint brush transforming the green leaves of the trees in our neighbourhood into beautiful blazing reds, crimsons, oranges and golds. It's an absolutely breathtaking sight to see these bright colour changes when walking through one of the many hiking trails found in our city. We have also been Halloween decorating since the1st of September and slowly, our spooky home accents are finding cozy spots around the house. This is the month for more fabulous finds, crafting and baking treats as we continue the countdown to Halloween.
The delight of the haunting season is also combined by the joy expressed by my children who started to attend school physically just after the Labor Day long weekend in September. There have been many changes made to this fall's back-to-school experience such as the wearing of masks, diligent sanitizing, new attendance procedures, mandatory COVID-19 assessments before school and physical distancing protocols put into place by the schools. All I have for now, are positive experiences of how welcoming and organized the principals and teachers of my children's schools have been in implementing and coordinating the back-to-school plan in the midst of this devastating global pandemic. This is definitely a challenging time for all but I'm seeing real happiness in my kids who are so thrilled to be physically back in school, being able to learn wonderful things in the company of their friends and teachers. It has been a few weeks since the first day of school, and our weekly routines are sinking in more smoothly now, and so far, things have been going well....for now.
This takes me to my worries for the upcoming events of October 2020. Reports are showing an increase in the number of new COVID-19 cases in our city, with the record case numbers being "unsettling" according to one of the Tweets by our mayor this week. Concerned parents are also starting to pull their children from physically learning at school to virtual learning at home because of the concern over these increasing numbers. I've been trying to go with the flow and take it day by day, being grateful for every moment where I find myself and my family still holding on to good health and so far free from illness. Things appear to be ok for now but who knows how it will be in the weeks to come. I don't know which is more worrisome: being at the foot of a spine-chilling horror house, about to enter at my own risk, or approaching the next few weeks of October in a turmoil of uncertainty. Both experiences ignite a fear of the unknown and can raise my anxieties to an uncomfortable level. The difference is that one is a fun fear and the other....well...sucks.
With Halloween fast approaching in the weeks to come, every member of the Halloween community are wondering: how will be celebrate? Discussions are flip flopping back and forth about the pros and cons of Trick or Treating this year. Who knew that the old fear of dangerous candy that prompted parents to check our kids' collection each Halloween night, would be replaced by the fear of collecting not just candy, but a contagious virus which poses a great risk to the community if it should spread uncontrollably. Just last year, I had my front foyer all set up with fun decorations, dancing lights and foggy mists, with numerous bowls of toys and treats all ready for every adorable little ghoul to help themselves to. Kids would come in big groups, closely huddled together on my porch with their bags wide open, ready to fill up with handfuls of treats and fun. I had glow sticks and stickers and pencils and lollipops. A lot of the kids had ghoulish and gory makeup, but I remember most of them wearing masks....the proper spooky Halloween masks that I prefer way more than the ones I wear to the grocery store.
So much is circulating through my brain as we embark on this new month. But it's my favourite month of the entire year, so despite the uncertainties of the future, I'm excited to live through it. Whatever happens, will happen beyond my control. The best thing I can do now, is to continue doing what we're doing: keeping our social circle small, maintaining our distance if we have to be out running errands, wearing our masks, staying clean and staying home if we have any sign of illness. Halloween in my mind is not cancelled - it can't be. We've been celebrating its arrival since August, LOL! In fact, I know many who will be preparing for the next year of haunting festivities on November 1st - ha ha! We are spooky members and creative witches and warlocks of the Halloween community. If we can create magic on Halloween, we can definitely create new traditions to celebrate. It's only the Trick or Treating part that may be on hold for a bit. I'm sure that community fun will return one day. Healing from a global health crisis will take some time. In the meantime, let the scariest things on Halloween be the ghosts in your closet or the ghouls under your bed, and not the distress of illness. Have a wonderful October ahead. Keep it spooky, but let's keep it safe.