A Date with the Family

by | Feb 1, 2011 | Every Day Life

Our 21-year-old son, Dillon, is our even tempered, mild mannered one. But occasionally, he throws us for a loop. Like the time he brought home the young lady with several fascinating tattoos and the snake-bite piercings.
Now, don’t misunderstand — I am not saying there is anything wrong with tattoos or snake-bite piercings. She was a very pleasant young lady and we enjoyed her company. It was just she fit the style of girl we might have expected our oldest son to bring home.
Well, Dillon has done it again — thrown us for a loop. He may win the prize for most surprising and nerve racking first date. Not only did he put his date into a tailspin but his parents, as well. To fully appreciate this story let me start at the beginning.
One day this past October Dillon called to tell us he was planning a first date with a young lady and wanted to know if we would like to meet her. After I picked my jaw up off the floor I said, “Of course we would.” He then went on to ask if I would be willing to cook dinner for them so we could all four have dinner together. I was floored.
At first I thought maybe he didn’t have money to take her out to eat, but when I offered to give him money so he could take her to a restaurant, he declined our offer. Dillon said he wanted them to eat dinner with us at our house.
As a mother of three boys, I was thrilled. Most of the time we feel like our children would like to stuff us in a closet and pretend we don’t exist when it comes to their dating life. Oh, who am I kidding? It doesn’t stop at their dating life.

Once they reached the teenage years I think they all would like to believe they somehow spontaneously came into existence with no involvement from those weird people called “parents.” No such luck boys; we are here to stay. Anyway, I told Dillon that I would love to cook for them.
Dillon comes home on the appointed day and it is getting close to time for dinner.
I asked him, “Don’t you think you should go get your date?” He then informed me that he had asked her to just come to the house and meet him here. I immediately went into “mother mode” and told him how inappropriate that was for a first date. He should go a pick her up.
It was then that the whole story began to unfold. Dillon explains: his plan is to have her come to the house and them sit on our front porch swing and visit for a while. After about 10 to 15 minutes I was to come to the front door and announce that dinner is ready.
Have ya’ll picked up on this yet? The sweet girl has no idea she is having dinner with her date’s parents! And we didn’t know that she didn’t know!
Where did this child come from? Where in the world did he get the idea that asking a girl out to dinner for a first date and then surprising her with a dinner his momma prepared was a good idea?
The young woman. rightly so, balked at the idea of driving herself to the house and insisted Dillon come pick her up for the date. As he left the house I told him he HAD to tell her they were having dinner at his parent’s house.

Ladies, we can all remember those days of first dates: the nerves, the changing outfits two or three times, the wondering how to act and what to say. My heart went out to her. Who wants to meet the parents on the first date? That would send the nerves into overdrive.
I told Dillon that if, after telling her his plan for the evening, she wanted to change the plan it would be fine with us. Yes, dinner was all prepared but if she just felt too uncomfortable I would understand.
Now, here’s the real kicker. He boldly asserts that if she can’t handle having dinner with his family then she isn’t a girl he should be dating. Any girl that he dates has to fit in with his family or it would never work.

I could have sworn the heavens parted and I heard the Hallelujah Chorus. It was music to a mother’s ear. It gives me hope that my days of being shoved in the closet may soon be over completely.
As he walked out the door, he further informs us that if she balks at the plans he will just pick up one of his guy friends and have a “man date.”
You know girls, they sometimes talk real big when we can’t hear them. I don’t know what he would have really done if she had felt too uncomfortable to follow through with his plan. Fortunately none of us had to find out. She nervously but graciously agreed to join us for dinner.
As soon as she walked in I began apologizing for the surprise and informed her it had been as much a surprise to us as it was to her. She accepted a big hug from me and I knew we were all going to be alright.
She did admit this was a first for her, but she liked the fact that Dillon wanted his family to meet her. After a lovely time at dinner, my son finally gave this girl a break and did something normal. They went to the movies — just the two of them.
I am still learning that old adage, “Never say never.” Your kids will always find ways to surprise you. And young ladies everywhere, ‘don’t say you haven’t been warned.’

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