Writing Prompt: Childhood Memory

So the challenge was simple… to get the juices flowing we were to write on this topic:

“Describe the clearest, most vivid memory you had as a child—a moment that has stayed with you your whole life.”

As I really don’t have many childhood memories, and one of my all time favorite memories was shopping for my senior prom dress here is my tale:

Senior Prom Dress Shopping

It was a shopping trip, a very special one. It was senior prom… I remember like it was yesterday, the trip to Fargo… exploring the mall and all the dresses that I could imagine. They were in every color. My favorite one… it was all the colors of the rainbow. Tulle. Puffy. I HAD to have it… tried it on, but grams… she said, “oh you don’t want that. It’s too puffy. Too many colors. Do you want other girls to laugh at you?” It shaped the rest of my day. Now how could I ever pick the ones that were wild and fae like me?!? None of the other dresses were as pretty to me. They didn’t suit my uniqueness… but then grams, she was a sedate person. Not wanting to be different or stand out.

Yes this is 'The Dress' no it isn't prom, it is a year or so ago...
Yes this is ‘The Dress’ no it isn’t prom, it is a year or so ago… I modeled for my wife’s photography class.

Then, there we were, I have no idea of the store, but the dress… it was perfect!! It still had the puffy skirt that I loved so much, but it was simple!  White elegance with cascading black velvet roses, falling down the skirt. Grams would HAVE to like that right?!? So back to the fitting room I go, it fits beautifully! She has to like this one! what does she say? (I don’t really remember but it could have been along these lines) “what are you going to wear with it? it is spaghetti strap. Looks nice enough if you find something to go with it.” I feel my heart start to sink, there is no way we will ever agree on a dress.  (In all honesty I think she liked the simple elegance of this dress.  Especially after the rather outrageously,  hmm flamboyant?  dresses I had been picking.)  But after I come out we look at the price… I think it was prolly somewhere around one hundred dollars, I can’t believe it, that is rather a lot. She tells me I will have to ask gramps.  How will I ever get this dress, it is the only other dress I have seen that I liked… and grams wasn’t totally against it. It was right around then when gramps finds us. I go back to try it on, again. Palms sweaty, completely nervous. If I can convince gramps I know that dress is mine. I come back out and show him. Watching him… awaiting his judgement and simple little words come out… “why haven’t you gotten it yet? It is beautiful on you” “well gramps, its kinda spendy” I tell him worriedly. I couldn’t tell you what he said then, other than he wanted me to get it, that it looked wonderful on me. I had succeeded… but what was even better… as I moved back to the dressing room to slip out of the dress soon to become mine, for the first time in my life gramps had said I was beautiful! There was something good about me after all. I have never, in all my years since had him compliment me like that… but that one day… that day I hold in my memory as the most precious. That was the first day I knew that he noticed me, that I mattered.


This is the memory of the teen that I was.  Mind you, being raised by your grandparents is a different experience, especially when it comes to things like dating and dress shopping…  Also note that I would not be the person I am today without them *grins* I love them both very much!


I hope you enjoyed this brief glimpse into my youth.  What about you?  What are your stories?  Do you have a childhood memory that will also be with you?  What is your prom dress moment?  Please take a moment and join me down memory lane!  I would love to hear your stories…


10 thoughts on “Writing Prompt: Childhood Memory”

  1. I LOVE that dress!!!! And I love the fact that you searched for a dress “wild and fae” like you! Take that, Grams! I borrowed one of my mom’s dresses. (I know. Weird, huh.) She had a black, spaghetti strap dress with bands of color along the bodice. Go, Mom! Very pretty. Normally my mother and I do not have similar taste. But I loved that dress. As for childhood memories, many of the best ones involved me laughing my head off at something a friend said or I said. Laughter, glorious and full–something I haven’t done like that in awhile.

    1. Thanks, it is one of my favorites! I have always been a bit of a free spirit, and grams didn’t like the dresses I did… so this was a good alternate.
      Actually my sisters borrowed my ma’s clothes all the time, so I don’t find it at all weird. They always said her clothes weren’t cool till they wanted to wear her “cool clothes” **grins**.
      Laughter is always the best memories!!!

  2. I love this dress and the sweet memory you had. Those are the memories you want to remember and don’t you love it when a grumpy old guy shocks you? What a wonderful memory to have and a beautiful dress to remember as well. Love the idea and your writing is beautiful as are you inside and out! 🙂

    1. Thank you so much for the wonderful compliments! Yes, the dress is something I treasure… it is even better that it still fits **grins** it has been well over ten years since prom.

    1. I rarely if ever write on childhood memories (prolly cause mine are not the silly and fun moments to remember, instead they are dark and often depressing)
      I do so love writing prompts though, and can often be pouring through my 3 AM Epiphany book looking for something that jumps out at me to write about. This one however came from a challenge from my Writing Posse! *grins*

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