The short answer is that I look a little bit like Violet. I have dark brown hair which I can style straight, I’m kind of on the thin side, and I’m short like a teenage girl would be. The costume is also easy to put together since it only requires a red dress, a yellow belt, black boots, an eye mask, and a logo, most of which I can already find in my closet or purchase for less than a dollar at the local craft store. But I’m not dressing like Violet just because it’s easy. I’m paying tribute to her this year because I admire all the qualities that she – and her family – represent.
At the beginning of the film, we’re meant to understand that Violet is stuck at the crossroads between girl and woman. She’s not all grown up yet, but she desperately wants to prove that she is. I, too, find myself at a crossroads this year. Caught between the lifestyles of student and independent adult, I don’t feel as though I have fully embraced either one yet. I have the same concerns I did when I was in college, but also new ones that have developed during my first few months after graduation. Much like Violet, I’m caught between two phases of my life.
Appropriately, Violet’s superpowers reflect another one of her biggest desires: to blend in. She was born with special talents and gifts (literally), and though she appreciates them, her biggest wish is to experience the normality of life. I haven’t quite figured out my superpower yet (though I’m sure that I have one), but the things that I look forward to most in life are the little moments. I love being a part of inside jokes, having heartfelt conversations with my closest friends, and I try to appreciate even the most mundane moments of life as they happen.
Violet’s extreme shyness keeps her from participating in some of these same potential moments in a way that reminds me very much of myself. She turns invisible to hide from uncomfortable or awkward situations, a power which I’ve wished for on more than one occasion. Finding her confidence is a major struggle, something which affects her powers as well as her social life. I, too, can be shy sometimes. I blame nerves and my introverted personality for not following through on all the things that I say that I want to do. I make excuses to avoid doing things and in doing so, hinder my talents (whatever they are) from developing and my social life from flourishing. In this fear, Violet and I are very much the same.
With the help of her mother, Violet sheds her shyness by the end of the movie. She finds the confidence to agree to a date with her crush and trusts her powers enough to save the lives of her whole family. In truth, I haven’t gotten quite that far in my journey of self-discovery. It’s going to take me longer than a two hour Pixar film to get there. But I’m paying tribute to Violet this Halloween in the hopes that her strength will inspire me throughout the rest of the year.
Who or what are you dressing up as this Halloween? Let me know in the comments down below!