Miranda’s Halloween – new challenges

Posted by Karen - November 4th, 2017

Hi friends, I’m back again! Sorry, didn’t post anything for a little while there; was intensely busy with a major work project (now finished).

Despite my big work thing going on, I recently enjoyed Halloween with my girl Miranda. At the age of 12, and in grade 7, she figures this will likely be her last year trick-or-treating (age 12 was also her brother’s last year, by his choice). I doubt that this will be her last year coming up with a costume, though – she LOVES figuring out a cool costume and getting all kitted out for it.

This year Miranda kind of hemmed and hawed about what to be. And then, it so happened that about a month ago, she and I were poking around in a second-hand store, and we came across a Star Trek original series uniform minidress. It was obviously home-made, but it was nicely put together and had one very important characteristic Рit was made of very stretchy material. Stretchy is important because the joint limitations caused by Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva make getting into a lot of costumes pretty challenging. Anyway, both being Trek fans, we pretty quickly decided that this would be a great costume for Miranda. Thrown together with some black leggings, black boots, a bit of make-up, and an old black flip-top cell phone to use as a communicator, this would fit the bill very nicely. Yay!

Miranda tried out the costume the first time for her school’s annual “Monster Mash” Halloween family dance. Here’s how she (and I) looked just before the dance…

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The dance was lots of fun. It was a bit of a bummer that Miranda had to use her wheelchair for the first time ever at the Monster Mash, but meh, watcha gonna do? Anyway, as soon as we arrived, Miranda ditched me straightaway in favour of hanging out with her friends. Luckily, I had a nice time socializing with other parents. Caught the odd glimpse of her being pushed across the gym in a little gaggle of pre-teens.

Speaking of the wheelchair, this was also the first time Miranda had to use the wheelchair to go out trick-or-treating… M can still walk, but is somewhat bent over due to a recent left hip ossification and doesn’t have the stamina to walk far. No way would she manage going out for Halloween without her chair.

Also of note is that we moved to a new neighbourhood this year, and Miranda wanted to see what it would be like to trick-or treat near our home. Challengingly, this new area has lots of HILLS. Not just streets on hills, but most of the houses are even located either up or downhill from the street. This was not so good for going out with a wheelchair. I think maybe 1 in 10 houses was actually accessible for Miranda to come up to the front door. The rest of the time I had to park her wheelchair, put on the brakes, and then trudge either up or downhill to the house to trick-or-treat on her behalf (at least it wasn’t raining, thank goodness). I realized pretty quickly that I needed to state right away that I was collecting treats for my daughter, across the yard in her wheelchair, and I would point her out. Most folks just gave me the candy and off I went, but a number of nice people brought the candy bowl across to the sidewalk level and let Miranda choose what she wanted.

Interestingly, we noted that lots of people gave Miranda fairly large handfuls of candy. This was undoubtedly partly because there weren’t many kids trick-or-treating in that neighbourhood – some people said they had only 20 or so – but I think Miranda’s own theory was right as well. Miranda wryly noted that she benefitted from the “aww, you poor child in a wheelchair” factor (M was actually pretty gleeful about that – she was like, no worries, I’ll take it, LOL).

Miranda ended up with quite a bit of candy. Should last her a week or two, ha ha.

Next up? Learning to manoeuvre the Christmas craft fairs in a wheelchair…

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