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FROM THE

BY SARAH NIGBOR

Halloween curse

I am cursed on Halloween. I believe next year I will wrap myself in bubble wrap and cotton batting, maybe some insulation, and stay securely on my couch.

When my daughter was 3 and we lived in Prescott, she loved to answer the door to trickor- treaters. It has become a Halloween tradition for her to retell the story of how her mommy fell down the stairs. I’m not sure if she actually remembers it, or if she just thinks she does (she’s heard it often enough).

We lived in a two-story house in which the kitchen and living room were on the second floor, but the front door was down a flight of stairs. My little bumblebee was answering the door, and she called up to me that we needed more candy. Apparently an alien and a toilet had cleaned her out (ironic?)

As I was rushing down the 13 carpeted steps, the doorbell was clanging and Carolina was telling me to hurry. My slippery socks were no match for the stairs and my feet sailed out from under me. On my behind I landed and proceeded to bump my way down to the bottom, where I landed in a heap at Carolina’s feet. I surprising didn’t spill the candy, but my pride and tail bone took a beating.

Carolina promptly opened the door as I was lying on the tile floor, primly said “Hello! My name is Carolina and my mommy just fell down the stairs. Would you like some candy?”

Fast forward six years and again I found myself in a heap at her feet.

On Halloween night 2021, it was about 15 minutes before the designated trick-or-treating time ended in our town. My husband and our teenager were waiting in the car while I hustled the younger three down a dark street. The night was black as soot and I was trying to keep up with a sloth witch, Slenderman and the Grim Reaper. We had about three houses to go when my world went black – literally.

Carolina said I stepped in a gigantic crack/pothole, but I don’t know what the heck happened. Before I could blink, my face was smashing into the asphalt and my glasses shattered across my face. That’s right, I hit the road face first. Next my left knee hit and my right wrist buckled. I cried out, because the pain was intense. I thought I broke my nose along with the glasses.

I lay there kissing asphalt, not daring to move because I didn’t know if I was in one piece. My glasses were smashed to smithereens, my cell phone had flown through the air and cracked and my pride had fled faster than Max Grand running for a touchdown. My three children and a random teenager rushed to my side, as my husband pulled the car up behind me. He had no idea what was going on, so the headlights were blinding me like I was in an interrogation room.

I slowly got myself up, testing each limb one at a time. Blind as a bat without my glasses, my little girl led me to the car, holding my hand and comforting me like a little mother hen. My two middle stepsons didn’t seem phased, except to tell me that I was super embarrassing and could we still get Taco Bell? I’ll admit, that didn’t sit too well with me, but at that point, talking wasn’t an option for me. It was all I could do not to curl up in the fetal position in the car. I don’t think my husband knew how bad I’d hit, because he was scolding me for not being more careful, for having to go to one more street even though it was pitch dark. He changed his tune when we got home and he saw the damage in the light.

I have scrapes from my forehead to my chin, my knee looks like raw hamburger and I’m wearing a spare set of glasses that thankfully, my daughter rummaged out of a desk drawer. My palms were bloody, and I can barely grip a pen. Typing has been fun! (insert sarcasm font here) As I maneuvered my throbbing, bleeding body into the hottest shower I could stand, I felt completely silly yet grateful. I berated myself for not having a flashlight, but felt thankful it wasn’t worse. I didn’t break a bone. Scrapes will heal. Phones can be fixed. And I needed a new pair of glasses anyway.

But yes, bubble wrap next year it is. No streets or stairs for me.

November 3, 2021