Magazine article Working Mother

Blessings in Disguise

Magazine article Working Mother

Blessings in Disguise

Article excerpt

I've loving envied towns that celebrate Halloween on a weekend. It makes so much sense. Parents have jobs, kids need adults to transform them into witches and vampires (or more likely, PAW Patrol characters, Minions, and maybe human fidget spinners), and parents want to hold the hands of their little monsters as they trick-or-treat.

My hometown of Staten Island, NY, made no such accommodations. Halloween was on Halloween. And October 31, 1988, was a gloomy, rainy, windy Monday. My mom thought I'd trick-or-treat with neighborhood kids and their moms while she worked, but

I wanted to go door to door only with my own mommy. Alas, she couldn't leave work early.

So I spent the better part of the afternoon doling out candy with my babysitter, while dressed in my princess costume: a foil-covered dunce hat and recycled flower-girl dress from a cousin's wedding the previous fall. The marriage had already dissolved, but shelling out for a new get-up wasn't an option when my mom could force the zipper up on the one for which she'd already paid $100.

When my mother finally picked me up at 6 p.m., we skipped dinner and went straight out into the Nor'easter. (Talk about sacrifice!) Exhausted, hungry and in desperate need of a bathroom, she took me to 10 houses in the dark before calling it quits.

One neighbor, a real estate agent who was usually home during the week, felt so bad for us, she invited us in from the elements. Upon seeing my mostly empty plastic pumpkin, she insisted that her son, my classmate, share some of his hard-earned candy with me. …

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