As parents, we understand that our children don’t always tell the complete truth. As compassionate people, we don’t always call them on it. Whether or not that is wise, I don’t know. I do know that a lot of times the truth is stranger than the exaggeration or the outright fiction.
Which is what happened a few weeks ago: my daughter had gone out of town to find shoes for Sweethearts. Her date was taller than her and she was hoping, just this once, to be able to wear heels to a dance. And since women’s shoes in her size are difficult to find, the search, of necessity, expanded beyond the confines of Moses Lake.
The dress was a knee-length green with a purple-sequined waistband — that her grandmother had helped her modify to cover rather more skin than its designers had originally intended. Said grandmother also took her shopping. Else it had been a serious stretch to believe the text conversation I had with her that afternoon, after she’d been gone most of the day, in the midst of what turned out to be something like a 16 hour shopping trip. For one pair of shoes:
Me: Did you find any shoes yet?
Daughter: No. Not one pair in my size.
Daughter: But I ran into Michael.
Daughter: He was at Orange Julius here.
Daughter: He wants to wear his purple Converse, so I’m thinking I might, too.
Me: You have purple Converse?
Daughter: We found a pair at Fred Meyers. Purple sequins.
Me: Your size?
Aside from the unreal chances of a grocery store carrying purple sequined converse in my daughter’s size (really big for a girl), what are the chances your daughter and her date just “happen” to meet up out of town? And that a shopping trip for one pair of shoes can last until after my bedtime? If she hadn’t been with her grandmother and he hadn’t been with his entire family, I’d have been a little skeptical–not that I would have voiced my suspicions, but I’d have assumed the rendezvous was somewhat planned and involved significantly more varied activities than shoe shopping. Which just goes to show how fallible our parental truth meters can be. (Which I could have told you when I was a kid, but which I tend to forget as I age.)
At any rate, yes, she wore purple sequined Converse athletic shoes to the Sweethearts dance. So did her date, in his tux. They were subjected to a breathalyser when they came in the door; whether or not that had to do with their choice in footwear, we’ll never know. I’d post a picture, but I didn’t take one. I heard that another mother did, and I’ve been meaning to pick them up from her for several weeks now. Maybe I’ll share.