Be a Parent, Not a Friend

There are signs littering our neighborhood that read, “Be a Parent, not a Friend.” It’s all part of a campaign to make safe the High School Spring, specifically Prom and Graduation, which is usually accompanied by a party or twenty. I thought the signs were great but I’m not here to tell you how to raise your kids. They did, however, get me thinking about prom and (natch) what I wore. So yesterday, as I passed said sign, I texted my mom and asked her to send me a photo.

I still remember making the hour long trek to Cleveland to shop for this dress. To a mall that not only had a Saks, but also a Limited Too and Benetton, which in my teenage world was basically as good as Rodeo Drive. Given Benetton didn’t stock dressy dresses, Saks it was. I recall trying on a few other frocks, admittedly pulled down the lace and rhinestone path for which many of my friends had opted, before settling on this strapless floral number.

As I stepped out of the dressing room and twirled for my mom, I asked, “Are you sure its not too garden party? And it’s not long. Everyone wears a floor length dress to prom.” To which she said, “No, it’s a Spring dance, not the Oscars. You look great.” But lets face it, she probably would have bribed me with cold hard cash not to wear the long, aqua sparkly number that I was deciding between.


(I have no idea how to rotate this picture. But maybe just as well that you can’t get a good look.)

Indeed, at prom I was the only gal in a short dress and the only one who had not gotten shoes dyed to match their gown (hopefully a practice that never made it out of Ohio?). But mushroom blow out, braces and what appears to be early onset of my Freshman fifteen aside,  I have #noregrets twenty years later.  How many people can say that? And I’m pretty sure I have only my mom to thank, who’s fashion advice definitely aligned with the “Be a Parent, not a Friend” mantra.

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