There is one event in our social calendar that the Carpenter and I don’t miss: the Monster Mash dance held each year in Elora. It’s the best party of the year. Unfortunately, this time around, plans changed.

I rushed out and bought us the tickets the day they went on sale. The costume planning was immediate – at least for me, because if it is one thing I know for sure it’s this: the Carpenter does not do couple costumes. He won’t have it. I have to think up my own creative attire, because my darling introvert spouse goes way out of his comfort zone to get dressed up in an alter ego for this party. He is very serious about his costume. Despite knowing this, I make couple-costume suggestions just to mess with him.

“Let’s be Sonny and Cher,” I say, swishing back my imaginary long black hair. “We could singI Got You Babe.”

“No,” he says flatly.

“Let’s be Bonnie and Clyde,” I suggest, shooting pretend guns.

“Not going to happen,” he snaps.

“Rocky and Bullwinkle?” I persist, making hand antlers on my head.


I don’t know why I enjoy this banter, but I do. Perhaps it’s because I know that part of the appeal of this man is his silly side and there is no better way for him to show it than on Halloween. Plus, the party was our anniversary celebration. Live music and dancing: check. Childcare arranged: check. Friends in attendance: check. Stay up past midnight: check. Giggle juice: check.

The big reveal of the Carpenter’s Monster Mash costume always takes place mere hours before the dance begins. It’s worth the wait, which is why I was a little suspicious this year when there was no mischief. Sadly, the Carpenter was just too ill to join in the fun. This left me with the awkward dilemma of what to do: stay home or hit the dance floor solo?

Surely, you know me well enough by now. I ditched my man for the lure of the dance floor and some quality time with my friends. What? He was fine. I left him cough syrup, two children and a load of dishes. Cope.

In the spirit of total support, the Carpenter helped decorate my costume. I was a Christmas tree, complete with a goofy holiday sweater, green tights and my Xmas tree’s skirt, wrapped up with strings of battery-operated lights, tinsel, coloured ornaments and a big star on my head. This was the perfect costume: reusable and cheap.

You can bet I put the jingle in the bells that night, out on the dance floor. I needed to get out there and blow off some steam. It felt good to push myself to fly solo, enjoy my own company for a bit. There were moments though, when I would search the crowd, forgetting the Carpenter wasn’t going to be out there, winking at me from across the room or joining me to flail around on the dance floor. Fun is more fun when he is around.

Yet, I am also aware that sometimes couples need to remember that to be good together we need to be okay apart. The extrovert needs to get out; the introvert was healing at home. Besides, our dance floor is in the kitchen every night.

Life is too short not to dance and he is the best partner.