Rethinking the Father Daughter Dance

My two girls, ages nine and four, literally count down the months until the next Father Daughter Dance. They look forward to buttoning up new dresses, buckling on sparkly shoes, and maybe even feeling the softest touch of a make-up brush on their cheeks for just an extra boost of “wow”. My husband is instructed to wait out in the living room as their hair is brushed one last time and fingernail polish dries. He closes his eyes in anticipation of their grand entrance. Finally it’s time. They walk out with shy smiles, but beaming with pride. He opens his eyes and always makes a big show of how beautiful he thinks they look. Then the three, dressed to the nines, click clack their way to the car and head out to the dance.

Several hours later they come home with balloon corsages, full tummies, and hair all out of place. Stories of the night will have to wait until morning, because they are too tired to tell me much of anything.

Little do they know they the dance’s true intention is not merely a new outfit and a night of dancing. It is training. The bar is set high as their daddy treats them with respect and gentleness. Any man in their future who can not match, or surpass, his devotion to them must be cast to the side.

And, of course, each year chisels new memories of a night set aside to just the three of them – just the girls and their daddy.

Many of us had caring, loving dads, but not many had dances where the fathers were called to be anything but chaperons. If you think you’re chance for building these memories with your devoted dad is over then think again! if you’ve always assumed (as I have) that the dance is for little girls and their father then think again!

However, last year Michelle Dauer, of the 18+ (but not by much, of course), joined the throngs of daughters… with her own father. I asked her to share her experience with us.

michelle and her dadFrom Michelle Dauer:

“My husband and daughter had gone to two consecutive father-daughter dances and they ALWAYS have had a wonderful time. This year as my husband ordered the tickets, he suggested I ask my dad to go, and we could just make it a double date!

When he mentioned it, the thought of it made me quite nervous, actually! I had never asked anyone to a dance before! Dad is quite pragmatic, and doesn’t enjoy parties too much, but I thought, he can’t turn me down, I’m his daughter!! So, I told him about the dance, and explained this is a special dance for fathers and daughters to just…enjoy an evening ‘together’…So, would he go? After a few questions and a little hesitation on his part, to my relief, he conceded and said with a smile, said he would go! To my surprise, in the days leading up to the dance, I heard him, on more than one occasion smiling and boasting to friends and family that ” …my daughter and I are going to a Father-Daughter dance…!” I quickly realized asking him was a great idea!!

On the night of the dance, my husband purchased corsages and boutineers for all of us. As I looked at my dad, lovingly pinning it onto my dress, I knew this was going to be a very special night. He was all smiles… we were all dressed up, just for the sake of having a special time together. As we stepped into the car, I paused to think of how thankful I was that our church went to the effort to make this special night for us!

We all had a wonderful evening with great food and conversation, meeting others at our table. It was so very special to have a few dances with my one and only dad…I mean, how many chances did we get to dance with our father? We may have danced together at a few weddings maybe? As we laughed and danced, I felt like daddy’s little girl. No matter how old I am, I truly always will be. I love my dad with all my heart and am so thankful for the memory of that night together.

So, I say, if at all possible, invite your dad to the dance! What do you have to lose? This is such a unique opportunity for you to celebrate the relationship of father and daughter, to celebrate your very FIRST love…your DAD

To register for the father daughter dance go here.

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