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Prom Fail: Traci Taylor’s Story [With Pictures]

I will never, ever forget my senior prom.  Never.  And not because it was memorable.  I’ll forever remember it because it was horrible.

I only got one shot at prom because my junior year of high school, I doubled up on my classes to graduate early, so I was determined that my one and only prom would be magical.  I was delusional.

The bad news started when my Mom and Dad told me they’d picked May 9th, the day of my prom to get re-married. There was absolutely no talking them out of it and I was bitter.  I thought prom was supposed to be my day, my time of celebration, but instead, my days leading to prom were consumed with helping to get things together and made for my parent’s wedding.

Me and Mom just hours before prom at her and Dad’s wedding.

I didn’t date in high school. It wasn’t that I wasn’t interested in guys, but more so that they saw me as one of them.  I was an outdoorsy chick who could keep up with the guys in sports and other things like that.  I was known to go hiking or canoeing or rock climbing most weekends with the boys.  Come to think of it, I had more guy friends than I did girlfriends.

So because I didn’t date in school, I didn’t have a boyfriend but most of my guy friends had girlfriends.  Except for one. His name will remain a secret, but he was tall and dark and handsome.  And we did everything together.  We’ll call him “Tyler.”  “Tyler” didn’t have a date for prom so asked me to be his date and I was ecstatic.  I couldn’t wait to rush home and tell my parents.  My mom took me out that night and we bought a dress and talked about how I should do my hair and what my makeup should look like.

Me at prom with one of my teachers (who has since become one of my friends), Lexie Marquis.

And then my world fell a part.  At school the day after “Tyler” asked me to prom he stopped me in the hall and told me he’d changed his mind. He decided he didn’t want to go to prom with me.  He’d asked one of my friends instead because he was more into her in “that” way and she’d said yes and he was so glad I was such a cool chick and he knew I’d understand.  I wanted to cry and scream and punch him, but I just smiled and told him I was happy for him that he was happy.  No I wasn’t.  I was seething.

Me and my friend Claire. We lost touch after high school and I don’t know what ever happened to her.

The day of my prom came.  I helped my mom get ready for her wedding and was part of the ceremony.  I went to the reception (where I got yelled at for unintentionally catching mom’s bouquet- but that’s a story for a different day) and watched my parents ride off to their honeymoon.  I was in such a pouty, foul mood because Mom wasn’t going to be able to help me change or get my hair and makeup done.  My Aunt Karen stepped in and helped with that stuff and it was so sweet of her, but I still kind of wish that my mom had been able to share that moment with me.

Mom and Dad walking down the isle after their wedding.

Because my date bailed on me and because my parents were off on their honeymoon and the rest of my family was consumed with looking after my younger siblings, I had to ride to  prom in the church van driven by my youth pastor.  I look back now and realize how kind it was of him to do that for me, but I was mortified at the time. Seriously, what girl wants to show up to her prom in a conversion van with her church’s name splashed on the side?

Me and my youth pastor, Ray who drove me to prom in the church van.

I remember walking in and waiting in line for the official photographer to take pictures of all the couples.  I could have grabbed some dateless friends and had my picture taken with them, but decided to pass on the whole thing.  And then WHAM! Right in front of me was my best guy friend and my friend who was his date.  He asked for a picture of the three of us.  Stupid boy.  He had no idea what that request did to my heart, but I obliged.

Yes, I have a picture of me with “Tyler” and my friend, his date. No, I am not going to share it. Instead I’ll share this photo of the Glen Sanders Mansion where my prom was held.

I don’t remember too much else about my prom. I vaguely remember dinner and dancing, but I didn’t dance. I remember being miserable inside, but pretending on the outside that I was happy.  I remember wishing one of my guy friends would just ask me to dance. None of them did.  I remember it was hot in the room.  I remember our theme song was “Hold Onto The Nights” by Richard Marx and I remember sitting at the table with my other dateless friends and feeling like such a loser as I watched “Tyler” and my friend dance. Maybe that’s why whenever I hear “Hold Onto The Nights” I choke up a little.  Funny how stupid insignificant in the grand scheme of life things really affect a person, isn’t it?

At prom with my friend Heather. I lost track of her too after high school.

Things got a little better at after-prom when we went to the bowling alley and then to my friend Dayna’s house where we had a sleepover and watched ridiculous movies.

After prom bowling.

And that’s the story of my prom.

Several years after prom I attended a prom for adults (where this pic was taken) who wanted a second chance at prom put on by the radio station I worked for at the time. This adult prom was almost as bad as my HS prom and is a story for another time!

What do you remember most about your prom?  Was it amazing or was it a nightmare?  Share your story below- I’d love to know how prom was for you!

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