Skip links

Why Fall Means So Much to Me

“Ah, Lovely October, as you usher in the season that awakens my soul, your awesome beauty compels my spirit to soar like a leaf caught in an autumn breeze and my heart to sing like a heavenly choir.” – Peggy Toney Horton

fall trees

I have an unhealthy obsession with fall.

I’m from Michigan; a state primarily associated with the Rust Belt, Detroit and cars. Truthfully, all of that can be found in the southeast corner. The rest?

Pure bliss.

We’re a very green state. Covered in trees, Native American legends, and over 30,000 inland bodies of water. Come fall, nature turns to fire with the bright yellows, reds and oranges with the change of seasons. Apple orchards and cider mills begin churning out cinnamon donuts and fresh pressed cider. Pumpkin patches have interlopers searching for the best carving surface. Soups are steaming in pots atop an oven housing a warm pie. This is fall and it is glorious.

But you know what else comes with fall?

Halloween: the most wonderful time of the year.

I’ve been a lover of Halloween for a long time. I can’t remember when the obsession started but let’s just say it’s been a minute. I typically will take off the last week of October from work just so I can enjoy the atmosphere and relish in horror movies. This is not a joke. When I told my boss I was saving my vacation time for around Halloween, I said “Because it’s when I come alive.”

emily in skull makeup

Yes, I was being funny but also honest. I feel more creative, I feel more lively and, most importantly, I feel more comfortable physically and mentally. In Michigan, fall is optimal weather in my world; it’s rainy (Yes!), it’s chilly (Yes!) and it’s windy (Holler to all those leafy tornadoes in the road!). Also, as a 21st century goth, it’s nice to be able to find clothing I would actually wear rather than have to skim online retailers for “out-of-season” options.

Let’s take a moment to talk about Halloween costumes because I rock at picking obscure ideas that few will understand and appreciate. Once, way back in high school, I dressed up as Blind Mag from Repo! The Genetic Opera. Last year I was Lup from The Adventure Zone. One year, my Doris Day-like mother and I switched things up and dressed as each other and let me tell you, my nephew was real confused at that one. This year I was Wednesday Addams which hopefully more people recognized but you never know with kids these days. I chose Wednesday because, when mentioning my mom I called her “Doris Day-like”, which is an inside joke between the two of us. I’m Wednesday, she’s Doris. This was the first year I dressed up as my “alter ego.”

This leads me to a very important point: it’s nice being reminded of who I am.

As previously mentioned, I thrive this time of year. I can recognize my own joy at the seasonal festivities and am delighted that I take comfort in the macabre, glory in the weird, and revel in the strange.

Emily Ridener

A few words about me

There are quite a few mottos I like to sling around including but not limited to, “Life is short, eat the cupcake,” “What would Wednesday do?” and perhaps most importantly, “What’s so great about normal?” I don’t approve of people who put others down because society has taught us they are “less” and I choose to use my words to share truth, do no harm, and combat ignorance.