Tears and Laugher: A changing of the times

What happened to the prom?

Now granted, prior to last Friday night, it had been about 25 years since I last attended a prom, but in what year did they decide it would be a good idea to have their mamas and daddies at the prom with them?

Seriously, when did parents start doing this? Because if you do the prom right the first round, you probably won’t be all that crazy about going again.

Is this just in Wilcox County? And it could be. The river has sometimes divided us from the rest of society through the years. Or has this become the trend everywhere?

I’m not saying it is a bad thing. It’s not a negative thing. I’m just saying maybe the reason it takes them over 26 years to grow up these days is because they are taking their parents to the prom with them!

So, we took a bunch of pictures Friday afternoon at the house before they ever headed out for GainesRidge for dinner. They looked just lovely. And we had already been told on the frontend that, “the parents can’t eat,” and that there would be a professional photographer would be on premises, but it is customary for the parents to go take a few pictures too. In fact, it is frowned upon if you don’t.

As they were leaving I asked Melissa, “Now exactly how much time do I need to give you before we show up?”

She said, “Just let us get out of sight.”

So we watched as they drove away and then followed in close behind asking one another if the other had ever witnessed anything like this before.

His senior prom was in 1977. Mine was in 1990. Yet the details and experiences were similar and neither of our mamas and daddies went along for the festivities.

Mama got a couple of pictures of me out by the azaleas in the front yard and then I saw her again the next afternoon.

At that time, the Chilton County High School’s Junior/Senior prom was held in the ballroom at the Governor’s House Hotel in Montgomery. It allowed for a comfortable full hour of distance. And we always had a photographer too, remember? There would be the arch made out of the balloons. Precious, precious memories.

So after GainesRidge we had to give them time to eat before arriving at the school’s gym for lead out and the chance to take a few pictures.

Some parents went out to eat themselves during this time. A few people went parking, and most took the opportunity to get just tipsy enough to go to the prom with their kid.

They were all dressed to the nines – beautiful young ladies in their sequined gowns with their handsome young men beside them. And afterwards, thank goodness, we finally got the chance to take a few pictures.

I feel a little bad that mama never went to the prom with me, but…nope, wait. On second thought…we’re good. Just don’t tell me times don’t change.

Amanda Walker is a columnist with The West Al. Watchman, Al.com, The Thomasville Times, and The Wilcox Progressive Era – https://www.facebook.com/AmandaWalker.Columnist.