Aiden is a typical three year old—that is, he toys with my emotions on an hourly basis. “I love you, Nana!” is quickly followed by “I don’t like you, Nana,” especially when I am the food police, urging and encouraging him to take just one more bite. He will run away from my offered goodnight kiss as if I had a needle and was about to vaccinate him, and then, out of the clear blue, he will pronounce me his “best friend!!!” While, at age 60, I have pretty much figured out my interactions with my fellow humans, Aiden always keeps me on my toes.
It’s been a challenging year for #1 Grandson. His baby brother Peter has become a force to be reckoned with, grabbing Aiden’s water bottles, destroying Aiden’s painstakingly built towers, shining his adorably drooly smile on everybody, thus charming them into pardoning his every misdeed. Only Aiden seems immune to those charms. We keep reassuring him that Peter will become his boon companion very soon, but Aiden doesn’t buy it right now.
As we approached Halloween this year. I recalled Aiden on Halloween 2016: a very reluctant pirate, who wouldn’t wear an eyepatch, or a sash (which actually held up the whole getup). His candy was dumped on the dining room table with almost complete disinterest, which suited me fine, because then I could swipe his Almond Joys and Kit Kat bars with no fear of retribution. He was too young to really appreciate the spooky fun, so it was a rather underwhelming experience for him.
What a difference a year makes! From October 1st on, all we heard about was the extravaganza to come on the 31st. Preschool brought an ongoing flood of construction paper jack o’lanterns and ghosts made from cotton balls and glue. Yaj bought some cute decorations for the house--paper lanterns with spiders on them, and outdoor lights shaped like goblins and pumpkins (I recalled the extent of my Halloween decorating when my kids were little: I didn’t clean up the real cobwebs. Ta-da!) Aiden and Peter have a much more fun holiday mama.
For weeks, Aiden had been telling EVERYONE that he was going to be a “scary, scary bat,” which he would say with a growly voice and flapping arms. Sheridan managed to make a great, if minimalist, bat costume with black fabric, and his son was thrilled. Meanwhile, baby Peter wore a sweet peacock outfit, which baby Aiden had also worn back in the day—the difference being that Aiden had hated wearing it and Peter loved it, as Peter tends to love everything.
Well, after the big run up, the night itself was over very quickly. The little trick or treaters were home within an hour, costumes were doffed and candy was consumed and so to bed. Peter will never remember his evening as a peacock, but Aiden genuinely had a very happy Halloween.
I can’t wait for Christmas with my favorite bat (and best friend).