It's the day after Halloween. And I have a Halloween hangover. Not literally (I have too many kids and trick-or-treating takes too long for all of that). But the glory, and the business, that is October is over. No more pumpkin patches, no more church trunk-or-treats, no more costumes, no more candy, no more class parties.
And it's fall. I get that it's been "fall" for about six weeks now. But the weather that is fall has settled in. Dreary rainy days or having to basically wear winter in the morning and spring in the afternoon is here. And all of the allergies, sore throats, coughs, and runny noses that accompany that weather are here for the long haul.
Even sports (except, thankfully, college football; because who cares about the NFL?) are in an in-between phase. The fall soccer season is over and we've hung up our cleats. Basketball hasn't started yet. Baseball (tee ball) is not really even a glimmer in our eyes. So now I have to come up with activities to do on the weekend all on my own.
Even school is in a weird hangover phase. This is the longest stretch of days in a row in the fall. The time between Fall break and Thanksgiving stretches endlessly, it seems. It feels like Christmas break will NEVER come.
But perhaps this state of limbo we will be finding ourselves in is a good thing. Maybe it's time we use to our advantage. Instead of worrying about what we should do with our kids after school, or if they're bored, maybe we spend a few extra minutes just hanging out with them. Maybe there's now some extra time to spend with friends and family in their homes around a table instead of on the sidelines of a field. Maybe there's an opportunity to pour that glass of wine while you're making dinner, because you know you don't have to get behind the wheel to take someone to a game or a practice. We can use this "dead time," this season of nothingness, to rest, to recharge for the holiday hustle that we all know is coming. That we're never quite prepared for, no matter how much we try.
In college, we experienced a whole different kind of hangover. You know the one. We mostly remember them by their excruciating headaches and miserable nauseousness. But what we sometimes forget is that those hangovers often came with long afternoons of lounging in our sweats with our best friends watching hours of Friends, or whatever marathon was on TV (where were you, Netflix, when we needed you most?!)
Those hangovers forced us to rest. There wasn't much else we could do in the condition we found ourselves in. Maybe, in a little bit of a different way, we need to let this Halloween hangover do the same thing.