The day had finally come. Our 16-year-old daughter was going to go to her junior/senior prom. That’s not a bad thing except she was going with a boy. That boy also happens to be her “boyfriend.” When my baby girl was born, I told my wife that I wouldn’t allow her to date until she hit a certain landmark. That being she could date after I was dead.
Our daughter has drawn the attention of many boys from an early age, and for the most part I could shield her from it. But as soon as she entered high school, albeit a parochial one, my attempts at protecting her became futile. I was lucky that my wife and I appear to have raised her right, and she seemed to make the right choices in friends.
But with technology, pop culture and reality television, she suddenly fell into the lifestyle of a “typical” teenager. In other words, she was normal. In her sophomore year, while cheerleading for the school’s football team, she met a boy who at the time happened to be the captain of the football team. It seemed like a natural pairing.
He was a nice guy with a nice family and he treated our daughter with respect, so he had that going for him. It was all good, but I still wouldn’t call him her boyfriend. The word is simply not in my vocabulary.
Well, he asked if he could take her to her prom. She was overjoyed, and she and her mother went into prom preparation mode. That meant getting a gown, matching shoes, accessories and the whole nine yards. I suddenly got really scared, for while it really meant nothing, in my mind I was losing my daughter as she transformed from my little girl into a young woman.
I was reluctant to be involved in this whole prom thing. On the morning of the prom, we had to take her to have her hair and makeup done. Her prom date was going to meet up with her and come back to our house so I could drive them. He walked around the store killing time when a man stopped him.
It was John Fox, head coach of the Denver Broncos. He was on a scouting trip. Since my daughter’s date is 6-foot-2 and about 230 pounds, and wearing a Broncos shirt, he was a natural magnet for the coach. Later when relating the story to some friends, I caught myself calling him my daughter’s boyfriend.
Man, I’m such a sellout.