The school’s most popular boy shocks everyone by bringing his grandmother as his prom date, but someone at school tells him what he has done is special, and two lives are changed forever that night.
There was a loud gasp, and then the hall fell silent. Mike could feel all eyes on him as he walked into the school auditorium with his grandmother. Gran Alondra looked lovely, and Mike looked dashing in his pressed, pristine suit.
“Wait! Did he bring his old grandmother as his date?” someone behind them chuckled.
Mike took a deep breath and ignored the laughter. However, as he stood with everyone and looked at their pretty, young dates, he felt very embarrassed.
None of the students could believe that Mike, the most popular boy at school, had brought his older grandmother as his date.
“I bet every girl turned him down,” a boy whispered. “Who the hell brings their grandparents to prom?”
“Oh boy!” Gran Alondra told Mike softly. “Are you all right, Mike? You know what, don’t listen to them. We’re going to have a good time. Let’s go down on the dance floor and show them what we can do!”
But Mike couldn’t ignore his classmates’ words. He was upset and frustrated. “I’m sorry, Gran,” he whispered, hiding his tears. “Don’t hate me for this, but I’m sorry. I didn’t want to bring you here. I didn’t. But I didn’t have a choice.”
Making your grandparents happy is the least you can do to appreciate their sacrifices.
Mike turned around and saw the auditorium entrance he’d just walked through with Alondra. Without a second thought, he left his grandmother behind and walked out of the hall, vowing not to return to the prom.
“This was a terrible idea!” he cried as he hurried out of the hall. “It’s all Mom’s fault! I hate her for this!”
Alondra stood behind in the hall, discouraged and perplexed. She didn’t know what to do. Her grandson had left her among these young kids, and she didn’t know what would happen now.
Alondra wanted to avoid coming to the prom with Mike. It was Mike’s mother, Rose, who had persuaded her that it was a fantastic idea and that it would be a great bonding time for Alondra and Mike.
“Come on, Mum,” Rose had said. “Mike would be delighted to have you as his date. In fact, it was entirely his idea! Didn’t you say you wanted to do this for Gran, Mike?”
Mike rolled his eyes. “Erm, yeah,” he said. “Yeah, I wanted to.”
Alondra had no idea Mike was lying to her. It wasn’t his idea to take her to prom; it was entirely Rose’s idea.
Rose had asked Mike to deliver flowers to Alondra two weeks before the prom. “Get her the loveliest bouquet of roses, Mike!” she had reminded him. “And call me once you’re at Gran’s house. She’d love to have you over and receive flowers on Women’s Day! March 8, Mike. Please don’t forget.”
Mike had noted it down in his phone and set a reminder. On the morning of March 8, when his phone beeped with the reminder, he collected cash from Rose and hopped on his bike to his grandmother’s house.
But just as Mike parked his bike outside the florist’s shop, he ran into his friends. “Hey, buddy! Wassup? We’re going to play COD. Wanna join us at Ron’s?” one of his friends asked.
“You guys are going now?” Mike asked. “I had to drop by—”
Ron laughed. “Um, what are you doing outside a flower shop, Mike?” he asked curiously. “Wait, you got a date or something? Woah, dude! That’s crazy! Who’s the lucky girl?”
“No, no, it isn’t!” Mike said reluctantly. “I was, in fact…uhm…really, I was only checking my bike. I thought the tire was flat.”
“So you’re coming with us to Ron’s?”
Mike paused, wondering what to do. If he didn’t deliver the flowers to his grandmother, Rose would be furious. He had previously ignored her requests to phone Alondra and speak with her, saying he didn’t want to do it.
“Mom, please! I can’t! She’ll be talking about the same things again and again, and I just don’t want to,” he’d said.
“Well, Mike,” Rose had said. “It won’t take more than five minutes, and she’d really appreciate it.”
“If you’re so worried about Gran, you can call her! I can’t, Mom… Sorry!”
This time, Mike ignored what Rose had told him yet again and went off with his friends. Either way, he didn’t like spending time with Alondra or even talking to her because she was not fun to be around.
She still considered him a little boy who loved her cookies and casseroles and stories about the village where she’d lived with her parents. Alondra didn’t seem to understand that Mike was a grown-up boy, a teen, who no longer liked those things.
He preferred playing video games and hanging out with his friends to calling Alondra and asking how she was, as his mother nagged him to do.
Later that evening, when Mike returned home, Rose was furious. “Mike, where have you been all day? I spoke with Mum, and she said she didn’t receive any flowers!”
“I’m sorry, Mom,” Mike said. “I… I… I forgot about it.”
“Forgot?” she asked furiously. “How could you forget it, Mike? You even asked me for money when you left home!”
“I had to go to Ron’s for an assignment,” he lied. “It was important, Mom. Sorry.”
“I don’t care, Mike!” Rose exploded. “You will have to make it up to her. And this time, I’m not listening to any of your excuses! I hope you got that, young man!”
A week after this, Rose and Mike had gone to Alondra’s house for lunch. Alondra had prepared the boy’s favorite chicken casserole and apple pie for dessert. And Mike had had it with a dollop of vanilla ice cream, just how he liked it.
“Mike’s prom is approaching, Mum,” Rose had told Alondra. “Do you still have that tailor’s contact who owned that old shop in town? I want to get a suit tailored for Mike.”
“Oh!” Alondra laughed. “I do! I do! So, Mike, who’s going to be your date?” she asked.
“Nobody,” he said bluntly, his gaze fixed on his phone. “I only asked one girl, and she didn’t want to go with me. Well… I like her, but she doesn’t like me, I guess. And the other girls… they’re always following me, and I don’t like them.”
“Wow!” Alondra gasped, then chuckled. “You kids are so lucky to have the prom and everything. Nobody ever asked me to be their date back then, so I couldn’t go!”
“Really, Mum?” Rose asked.
“Well, we used to have the school ball,” Alondra said. “Your father asked another girl out, and they went together. He didn’t even know I existed until… But that’s an old, old story! Let’s not go there. The thing is, it’s a big day for you, Mike. And you should definitely go and have a good time. If you don’t have a date, that’s alright, boy. Why don’t you go with a friend?” she suggested.
It was then Rose had an idea. She had told Mike he would have to make it up to Alondra for not delivering her the roses on Women’s Day, and this seemed like the perfect opportunity.
So she asked Mike to take Alondra as his date to the school prom. Mike hated the idea and wanted to argue, but he couldn’t because he didn’t have a way out.
So on the afternoon of prom day, Mike and Rose drove to Alondra’s house. When the older woman opened her door to Mike in a suit, she grinned. “Oh! Look how beautiful you look, darling!” she said.
Rose nudged Mike. “Thank—thanks, Gran,” he said. “I… I wanted to ask if you’d like to be my date tonight?”
“What?” Alondra gasped. “Date? Me?”
“Yes, Mom!” Rose chimed in. “Yes! Wouldn’t that be lovely?”
“Mike…” Rose whispered and nudged him again.
Mike sighed. “Yeah, Gran,” he said. “Will you, um, be my date tonight? I want to make your dream come true…I want to, like, really take you to the prom.”
Alondra was both surprised and excited. While she didn’t want to go, Rose persuaded her it would be great. So Alondra donned a gorgeous gown she’d worn on her wedding anniversary years ago while Mike’s grandfather was still alive, and she accompanied Mike.
Poor her. She had never imagined she’d be alone in a hall full of young children. But it happened. Mike just walked out of the hall and slumped on the basketball court stairs, thinking about how bringing Alondra along was a horrible decision.
Suddenly, a familiar voice from behind distracted his racing thoughts. “Your grandmother needs you,” it said. “It was very rude of you to leave her alone!”
Don’t be afraid to stand out.
“It’s none of your business, OK? Stay out—” Mike turned around to confront whoever it was, but he couldn’t utter another word and froze in place. Looking behind him, Mike saw Lily, the girl who had rejected him when he asked her to be his prom date.
He suddenly calmed down. “Oh, sorry…” he said. “Didn’t know it was you.”
She approached him and sat down on the stairs next to him. “You need to be sorry to your Gran,” she said. “Not me. I thought what you did was very cool, Mike. I mean, bringing your Gran as a date. That was very lovely.”
Mike was shocked. “You think so?” he asked. “But everyone else…they were laughing and made me look like the odd one out, like a fool, a freak. I thought what I did was very stupid.”
Lily nodded. “Yep!” she said. “Yes, it was. Leaving your Gran alone was very stupid of you! Mike, she’s really cool. You should go back there and see what she’s up to. You’re missing out on some fantastic stuff by sitting here alone, Mr. Henson!” she giggled.
“By the way, are you offended I said no when you asked me to be your date? I think I did an excellent job by turning you down, Mike. You truly have the best date ever! If you think I’m speaking rubbish, just follow me to see what I mean…”
Mike genuinely didn’t understand what Lily meant. Mike had left Alondra looking extremely sad and distraught, and he thought he’d been quite rude and harsh on her and that she’d be crying alone.
When he returned to the auditorium, he couldn’t believe what he saw. Alondra was having fun with his classmates, and they were all cheering for her.
“Wow!” he laughed through tears. “I can’t believe this!”
“You don’t have to,” Lily nudged him gently. “All you have to do is have fun! And by the way, it looks like she needs company. There are two players against her. Why don’t you go join her? Come on, let’s go!”
Lily held Mike’s hand and took him to Alondra. “Gran!” he cried, his voice loud enough to pierce the loud music around them. “I’m sorry! I wasn’t thinking straight! Thanks for being my date, and well… she is Lily,” he said, introducing them. “Remember the girl who turned me down?”
“Oh!” Alondra laughed. “I’m so glad you’re back, Mike. Nice to meet you, darling,” she told Lily. “This is so much fun, Mike! Thanks for bringing me here. It’s the best, best day of my life!”
And Alondra wasn’t lying when she said it was the best day of her life. She gave the young teens a run for their money on the dance floor, and she and Mike teamed up for the fun games, defeating everyone!
Then came the time for the couple’s dance. While Alondra and the school director danced together, Mike and Lily moved gently to the slow music, their arms locked and eyes not darting away from one another, occasionally blushing and smiling.
Years later, Mike and Lily would recall the evening, unable to believe how it brought them together. They began dating after prom, and a few years down the line, when they were both well-settled with decent careers, Mike proposed to her, and she said yes without a second thought!
On his and Lily’s wedding day, Mike walked down the aisle with his arms around Alondra’s, much like he’d walked with her into the high school auditorium on prom night. And it was the best, best day of their lives.
What can we learn from this story?
Making your grandparents happy is the least you can do to appreciate their sacrifices. Alondra had never been to a prom before and enjoyed every minute when her grandson chose her as his date.
Don’t be afraid to walk alone in a crowd and stand out. Mike was initially ashamed to bring Alondra to the prom, but when he saw his grandmother’s beaming smile, he realized he’d done the right thing.
Share this story with your friends. It might brighten their day and inspire them.