In about September/October of grade eleven, we had the semi-formal. When you're IN grade eleven, that's a really big deal. It's a lot like the formal (aka Prom) that you have in grade 12, but just a tiny bit less fancy: basically, your parents drive you, rather then hiring limos to drive you. Otherwise it's pretty much the same as the formal.
I remember being excited about the semi
(unlike my formal - but that's another story!), and mum sewed me the most
beautiful outfit. It was a long, full, gorgeous black skirt, and a really pretty
midnight blue, fitted silk top. And depending where you were standing in the
light and how you moved, the colours in the top all seemed to change. I really
liked it :)
I'm pretty sure I was sewn into it on the night
though - because we were running really late! (I'll interject here quickly and
assure Mum that I know it was my fault we were running so late, since I
never made decisions about what I wanted until the very last minute, lol!). I
seem to remember that my date was actually in the living room waiting, and mum
and I were rushing frantically around in her bathroom to finish my hair and
makeup. I had really long (gorgeous, full, dark, not-full-of-grey) hair back
then, and we'd decided to wear it out and curly with a dimonti slide I think.
Once that was done, it was just my makeup that needed doing.
remember clearly exactly how what happened next happened, but one minute we were
shaking the liquid foundation bottle (with a finger over the top), and the next
minute, I inexplicably had liquid foundation ALL OVER ME! All over my hair,
sitting perfectly over both shoulders, and all over the front of my beautiful
midnight blue top. In my memory, at that moment, time just hung for a moment, as
we both just stared in horror at my reflection in the mirror. Our eyes widened,
our eyebrows rose, and our jaws dropped.
And then, mum suddenly started
laughing. And I don't just mean a giggle. It was one of those 'I have never
laughed so hard in my life' kind of laughs. I started shreiking and
wailing and panicking and getting into hysterics (naturally!), and that just
seemed to make mum laugh even harder. I actually remember mum dropping to the
floor of the bathroom and sitting there, holding her sides as she laughed! And
everytime she'd look up at me, a whole new round of laughter would start up.
Of course in spite of myself, I started laughing a little bit too (not
too much though - I mean, I was covered in foundation!). And
as Mum finally finished laughing and stood up to 'fix things', I remember her
explaining to me (as I demanded to know WHAT could possibly be so
funny!) that sometimes things just go so terribly wrong that there's
really nothing you can do but laugh (she might not have used those
exact words, but that's the gist of what I remember).
Dad was duly
summoned and dispatched with a message for my date that he'd better make himself
comfortable. The top had to come off, be hand washed and then 'hair drier'
dried, and my hair had to be washed out as best as we could in the sink and then
re-dried and curled. It took a while, but there was no other way around it.
I remember having a good time with mum that night, and that in the end,
it all worked out just fine (my date may not have the same memory, but he's not
the one writing this blog).
I have often thought of that night over the
last several years - especially when things go terribly wrong! I'm really
grateful that laughter was mum's first response. I often remember it when I find
my eyes widening, my eyebrows rising, and my jaw dropping, and it's a lesson
that has served me well on more occassions than I can count.
when it's between laughing and crying, you might as well laugh. In any event,
you'll have a better time cleaning up a mess! :)