I have a history of being sick on major holidays. My mom will tell you about the time a feverish, cranky 18-month-old me was forced to hunt for easter eggs; the time I got a nosebleed all over my grandma’s hand-crocheted pillow during Christmas; and the time the whole family got the flu over Thanksgiving.
What sticks out the most for me is the time I got very, very ill during Halloween. I was probably eight or nine years old and Aladdin was pretty popular, so I decided to be the genie for Halloween. I had a pair of “hammer pants” with a very 90s purple-and-blue print that I called my “Genie pants” and wore all the time anyway; a blue sweatshirt; gold fabric wrist cuffs; and a plastic genie lamp of my brother’s from some Aladdin-themed toy set.
My mom painted my face blue, which was a comedy of errors since she initially applied the face paint very, very liberally and I was upset that the paint was so dark. We tried to figure out how to take most of it off without taking ALL of it off and even though I didn’t love the result, I ran with it anyway. (What could I do? I was eight.)
Since we lived in the country, we’d either decide to start in the city and work our way home, or start in our neighborhood and work our way into the city, finishing with my grandparents and great-grandmother’s house. This particular Halloween we went with the latter.
I started feeling kind of bad when we started trick-or-treating. I thought maybe the paint was making me feel weird, but I soldiered on. About halfway through, I told my mom I didn’t feel very good. My brothers wanted to keep trick-or-treating, and I still seemed mostly okay so we kept going. I kept deteriorating, to the point that my brothers took my candy bag up to the houses for me because I couldn’t leave the van.
By the time we finally reached my great-grandma’s house, I was laid out in the middle seat of the mini-van feeling like I was going to die. I didn’t get out of the car. I didn’t even sit up.
Thus started a multi-day bout of some kind of stomach flu, and while I don’t remember specifics, I do remember how dreadfully awful I felt sitting in the van by myself during what was supposed to be a sugar-filled fun fest.
So it should come as no surprise that Wesley was feverish and sluggish for his first Halloween.
Way to carry on the tradition, little buddy.