Winter Ball O’ Fun

Christmas, hands-down, is my favorite time of year. Our family recognizes the religious significance and focuses on that, no matter all the commercialism.

But that aspect of the holiday is fun, too, and we are thankful that our family and friends can enjoy the spirit that goes along with it. For years I’ve been handling the stress like a runner training for the marathon.

Just when I finally think I’ve got a handle on it, something comes along that puts me back at the starting line.

This was the second year that our 15-year-old daughter was going to attend her high school Winter Ball. I had no problem with that until my wife told me that the date conflicted with the Christmas program for the school she works at and has to be there.

Translation: Dad is going to have to tend to all our daughter’s needs, including getting her ready, dropping her off and picking her up after the event. My wife made arrangements to have her hair and makeup done professionally, so I was off the hook – except for the cost, of course.

When you total up that with the cost of her dress, matching shoes, jewelry and the bids, that made the cost of my own wedding look like small change.

As she got dressed, I was tasked as though I were a handmaiden. “Dad, zip me up. Get my shoes. Can you get me Mom’s dressy sweater?”

When she was finally ready and before I could reach for an aspirin, she appeared.

She looked beautiful, and I couldn’t believe I was looking at the same girl who as a first-grader played an angel for the Christmas Nativity scene.

Yes, our baby is growing up, and in a few hours she would be socializing and dancing with boys.

Did I say boys?

Man, where is that aspirin?