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I. Am. A. Homecoming. Survivor.

By Lisa Barr

Did you happen to see the woman lying face down, fully clothed (completely disheveled), Hefty bags under her eyes,  cell phone dead … on her driveway Sunday night?

Yeah, that would be me.

I. Am. A. Homecoming. Survivor.

Just Barely.

I won’t get into all the details because I have an almost 16 year old daughter who would truly kill me. Let’s just say that I had the 2 a.m. shift (through 11 a.m. the next morning.) The Sleepover … aka: The All-Nighter.

For those who don’t know The Drill, it goes something like this: There are pictures, then the Homecoming Dance at the High School, then ‘The Group’ goes out for dinner or The Group may go to a fun sports arena (gymnastics, trampoline, etc.), followed by an After Party … and then the SLEEPOVER … and then the Next Day … everyone gets up (figure of speech — no one goes to sleep) and meets up again with their respective dates for brunch.

It’s a lot of fun for the kids, and a lot of preparation — not so fun — especially if you’re a GIRL MOM.

Homecoming in the GIRL WORLD starts at least two months prior to the dance with The Dress Search (note: whenever the word “Dress” is used, substitute “Stress.”)

Boy Moms have it so damn easy in the School Dance Department. Finding a shirt. And that’s it. Unless they grew out of their “good pants” or shoes. Then, that too.

One Boy Mom said to me, “Stress? Not at all. I just remind my son to shave and that’s it.” Another Boy Mom told me, “Stress? My son was actually on the treadmill at 5:30.”  (note: pictures prior to the dance began at 6:30 p.m.).

Ask me where I was … Let’s just say — NOT ON A TREADMILL. Our “Getting Ready” began at 1 p.m.


To add fuel to the fire, one Boy Mom laughed when I described my Homecoming Prepping to her. “My big dilemma,” she said, “was deciding should my son go in stripes or a solid shirt.”

‘Bitch!’ I shouted. “Stripes or Solids — that’s your dilemma?” Just Shoot Me.

You get the picture … If you’ve got a girl getting ready for a dance  — take out your wallet and just hand it over to the Beauty Gods. Your Week Before and/or Day Of includes most of the following: wax (whatever needs to go, goes this week), mani/pedi, pick up dress if altered, HAIR  (in some circles this can be a bigger decision than the dress — up? down? straight? curly? braided? partially up? partially down? flat-ironed? highlighted?), makeup, purse, shoes, jewelry …

Okay, to be fair, a guy may need a hair-cut too.

I’m not asking for a Pity Party here (maybe a little sympathy would be nice) … Let’s just say you happen to have one daughter getting ready for Homecoming — plus TWO other teenage daughters who have their exclusive demands — one has to get ready for a Bat-Mitzvah party; the other has a casual party with “nothing to wear”. And oh, you suddenly have a gas leak on top of it (with the Big Sleepover happening at your house that night). Yes, the picture is now in full-color — GIRL DRAMA goin’ strong... waiting for the Gas Guy (who finally comes, fixes, and leaves) … “fires” are being put out in my house left and right.

Thelma. Louise. Wine.  Those three words kept running through my head all day.

I LOVE MY DAUGHTERS — it’s the prepping that kills me. I know there are Moms Out There with one daughter, and Homecoming and all the girlie touches can indeed be “special time” together. But for me — and I’m just being honest here — it’s stressful; a race to the Finish Line — more like Bondage than Bonding Time.

In the end, like the final swish of a car wash — My Girl comes out looking beautiful. And we have a moment of: Mommy, what do you think?

What do I think? All day I wanted to get into my car, punch it and drive without turning back. But now … now … WOW.

I clasped my hands together. So poised, so together, and so ready for Her Big Night.

Yes, I’m the Driver, I’m the Checkbook, I’m the Punching Bag … but one look at her … and The Day of Drama was gone …

Not forgotten.

As she took pictures with all her friends, and then waved goodbye … I took it all in … and then all I could think about was Next Year when I’d have TWO (of my three) daughters in High School Homecoming Mode.

I kid you not when I say that I already called their Grandma and said, RESERVE  the day NOW! to help divide and conquer.

What I didn’t say, is remember that woman lying on the driveway at the end of Homecoming?  Next year, I swear, I  just know … she will NOT get up.



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