Prom Expectation Vs. Reality: How was your Prom?


Photo by Stef Wojcik

AHS students pose for prom pictures during the golden hour.

Ideally, prom should be the most spectacular night of a girl’s high school experience. However, for it to go perfectly, the spray tan needs to be finished with at least eight hours set aside for drying, the restaurant needs to be reserved – hopefully by the date – the rides need to be secured, the dress needs to be altered, the makeup needs to be stocked up, and the corsages need to be refrigerated the night before.

If all of this is taken care of by Friday, then Saturday can be full of Spring Café’s avocado toast, Ink Coffee’s blended chai latte, luxury at the hair salon, and plenty of time to get ready. A Yerba Maté serves as an energizer for girls’ arrival at 4:00 PM. By 5:30 PM they’ll be zipped up and ready to wobble outside for the sunset prom photos. One by one the dates pull in with a bouquet of flowers, slick suits, combed hair, and hopefully brushed teeth. The group twists and turns to get the perfect angles and lighting so by 7:00 PM they’re finally finishing off with the legendary sorority pose. The parents gawk at their “already-grown-up” kids and slowly retreat back to their cars.

8:00 PM arrives quickly as the party of 15 sits down at Brunelleschi. Pizzas are shared between the table and after gossiping about what might go down at prom, it’s already 8:45 PM. Split into three different cars, the group reunites at the doorway and enter dramatically to a room full of Christmas lights and bumpin’ music.

Though they’re fashionably late, a couple of other kids have already arrived and are awkwardly stepping side to side on the dance floor. An uproar is heard from the new crowd as the DJ turns up the bass to start playing…music. The girls migrate towards each other, singing along, while the boys just bob up and down with the occasional emphasis of effort. The crowd starts shoving one way and then the next until all of a sudden a slow, emotional song booms the speakers. The girls mingle back to their dates and as arms lightly rest on shoulders, chaperones peak over the heads to make sure everyone is at least five feet apart.

The song comes to an end and the same repetitive dance moves whip out again. By 11:00 PM kids start going home, or to another party, leaving the Student Senate with the job of cleaning. The girls awkwardly hug their dates goodnight and head to a sleepover party. After gossiping about who had the best dress, or the best hair, or who hooked up with whom, the clock strikes twelve and each of them close their eyes with a dream come true.

Now, in reality,  girls wake up at 11:00 AM, rush to get changed, get their hair done, and return home only to change back into their sweatpants. They missed their spray tan appointment the day prior, so weird tan line it is for the strapless dress.

Leftover cheesecake is munched on all day as she scrolls through Instagram. Finally, the last friend rolls in around 5:00 PM and each of them squeals excitedly to put their dresses on. Unfortunately, in the rush of excitement one dress rips slightly and is in desperate need of a safety pin.

The dresses all fixed and the makeup all oriented, the girls wobble outside for pictures. At least one person in each photo is either sneezing, yawning, hunched, blinking, or laughing too big. The dates roll in an hour late, tie crooked, and hair a little messy but still with smiling faces. Thankfully no one forgot the corsage. At dinner they eat up, everyone paying five bucks for the Dominos, and start heading over to the dance. Awkwardly they are the first ones there, and half an hour later the rest of the school, as well as the DJ, shows up. The party begins with some dancing, but by the end of the night, everyone is sitting lazily in the chairs off to the side. Student Senate starts cleaning up as people leave the party scattered. Everyone makes it home or to someone’s home okay. By the next morning, everyone wakes up groggy with sore feet and loads of homework to finish but good memories from the night prior.