At first, I wasn’t sure what a prom was. But I heard words like dress, night, ask, dance paired with the girls all giggly and fussing over their hair in the restroom and I figured it out. It involved boys.

Still, I had no idea how big a deal this was until my American Moma sat me down to explain that we needed to go shopping for a dress; ensuring that I go.

Although I enjoyed the fabrics and the smile on Moma’s face, going to the dance was quite a different experience. All the other girls looked prettier than I did, knew what to do, and had someone to talk to. I was still alone, foreign.

I saw Randy, followed by a bunch of girls whom he didn’t seem to notice, and thought of my Chekav. If he were here, I’d not be alone. If he were here, I would not see the other dancers, nor hear the music, so consumed in him I would be. They would all stare at the true love between us.

This thought made me warm and dizzy. I sat down.

“Ingrid, you look overwhelmed. Is everything okay?”

I thought I was dreaming.

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