Happy Halloween!

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This is one of my first Halloween costumes.

My favorite part about Halloween has always been getting creative with costume ideas. Well, and... the abundance of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups! I like the sweetness of this holiday, and not so much the spookiness, but I have to admit that half the fun of Halloween is that fearful feeling. I’ve never enjoyed horror movies or haunted hayrides, but today that is exactly what I want to talk about: being scared. Close your eyes and imagine yourself in the creepiest haunted house you’ve ever experienced. Is your stomach clenched? Do you have goose bumps? Are the hairs on the back of your neck standing up? Are your legs twitching and ready to jump at the slightest threatening sound?

I’m thinking back to a haunted house I went to in high school. As I walked into the house, the logical part of my brain understood that I was going to make it out alive, with all of my limbs attached. Why, then, did I scream at the top of my lungs throughout the entire thing? Just because we know we are going to be okay in the end, doesn’t always make the process any less scary.

Darkness plays a huge role in cultivating the fear of a haunted house on Halloween night. I couldn't see what was around the corner or what I might tread on in my next step. The sense of the unknown overwhelmed me and my senses went into overdrive, trying to gather information to help me feel safe. Haunted houses are designed to capitalize on our heightened awareness and sensory panic. Lately I’ve been realizing that when I get that tense feeling in the pit of my stomach as fear manipulates my mind, it is because I am facing an unknown. Knowledge is the kryptonite of fear because once we know what’s around the corner we can make sense of it and keep moving. When we are in the dark, however, there are numerous possible monsters lurking ahead and fear overwhelms us.

The best part about that haunted house was when I found myself at the end, my whole body shaking with relief as I laughed with my friends and ate all of the candy. I remembered how I screamed and truly thought I might die while I was in the house and how those 20 minutes seemed endless, but then I thought to myself, “Eh that was nothing- I could do it again!” All the build up got me buzzing but once I was out of the darkness, that anticipation transformed into pure joy. Is it possible that sometimes getting scared a little bit is just what we need in order to feel an even greater sense of peace and happiness? I know lately I have been feeling kind of scared about what lies ahead (or, more accurately, how little I know about what lies ahead), but I know that as things start to unfold, I will feel that same sense of joy and relief that I felt when I made it out of the haunted house.

Living with diabetes might feel like constantly finding your way through a haunted house. There are many unknowns and attempts to guess what is going to happen next. As you gain knowledge about your body and your diabetes, you will be able to shine a light on the dark corners and in doing so, you will gain confidence and your fears will subside.

Are you navigating your way through a dark haunted house? Do you have any fun plans for Halloween? I'd love to hear in the comments below! Also, check out the recipe for these homemade peanut butter & almond butter cups I made today.

I've been wanting to try to make my favorite candy at home for a long time, so today I finally did it by adapting this recipe from several others I have seen online (check below for links).

Ice cube tray

1 cup dark chocolate chips

*I used unsweetened 90% cacao to minimize the sugar, but you can use any kind of chocolate you prefer.

1 teaspoon coconut oil

1/4 cup PB

1/4 cup AB

optional toppings: gogi berries, pumpkin seeds, shredded coconut

Simply microwave the chocolate chips with the coconut oil, then pour roughly one teaspoon into each cube (you might use more depending on the size of your ice cube tray). Place tray into the freezer and let the chocolate set for 10 minutes. Remove & spoon half a teaspoon of PB or AB on top of each chocolate layer, then pour chocolate on top and sprinkle with optional toppings.

Inspiration for this recipe:

The Chalkboard Magazine

RachLMansfield

init4thelongrun

Next goal: Nutrition Stripped's Twix recipe!