Please Say Yes

    It’s spring prom season—she bought a dress to impress the one she hoped would ask her. But then someone else asked, and she didn’t want to say “yes”.

Kevin was relentless. After every class he was waiting outside the door. His unmistakable scribbles on pleading notes were inside her locker. He’d call each evening after dinner. All he wanted was to go to the prom.

“Can I have your date, Pamela? Please say yes,” he asked sweetly with his halting speech.

What would her friends think if she went to prom with someone like him?

In her heart she knew she should. Down syndrome hadn’t prevented Kevin from loving life, or seeing school, friendships, and even proms as something he also deserved. Why her? Couldn’t someone else go with him? She desperately wished someone else would ask her. But no, this was like a cosmic trap set just for her.

When she couldn’t avoid his pleas any longer, she told him she’d go. The smile that lit Kevin’s face made it impossible not to smile back. She didn’t really know him. He was just a special needs kid she mostly ignored. Now she’d be spending an evening with him, dressed in a gown that she’d bought to impress someone else.

On the evening of prom, Kevin’s parents arrived and followed their exuberant son to the front door. Carefully carrying a beautiful corsage, Kevin couldn’t speak when he saw Pamela come down the stairs. His large eyes took in the beauty of his first date. It was happening; he was going to prom. He was just like the other kids.

Kevin knew he wasn’t normal. But what most kids didn’t know is that he could hear and understand a lot. He could look at someone’s face and see disgust, or pity, and especially rejection. Kevin had felt rejected more than anything else since entering high school. No one had to tell him that he wasn’t really welcome at the prom.

But now Pamela was smiling at him. She looked like Cinderella in her azure-colored gown. He carefully slipped the corsage on her wrist. The rest of the evening was captured in a special place in his mind. He remembered every dance they shared.

It became an unforgettable night for Pamela too. Kevin’s sheer joy made her realize how simple it had been to make someone’s dream come true.

Life brings these opportunities. Reach out and take them and you’ll get the joy of seeing genuine happiness in someone else. And one day as you review your own life, you’ll be especially happy you did. You just need to remember to say “yes”.

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