Written By:  Tiffany Verzal @ Stand with Faith

About a month ago we had a wonderful dining experience at Fireworks in Lincoln. We have ate there several times before, but that night it was special. Alexis had decided that she was a mom, and she brought her daughter Wendy with her to eat. Wendy is the plush doll from the Disney Store from the movie Peter Pan, in case anyone was wondering.

So the wonderful waiter noticed that Wendy was sitting in her own seat at our table of four. So when he brought out our appetizer plates, he added an extra one to the mix for Wendy. He even let Alexis order for Wendy! Alexis was so excited that there was someone playing along with her imagination, she could hardly take it.

It made our dinner really special, because she was so happy. At the end of the night, we gave him a good-sized tip and left happy and full. Fast forward a few weeks, and we decided it was time for another visit to our favorite restaurant. Alexis heard us talking about where we were going, and she wanted to bring her doll again. I spent 10 minutes talking her out of the idea, because I knew that the odds of having the same waiter were pretty slim…and the odds of someone special enough to play along were even fewer. I spent another 10 minutes talking her out of needing to wear a princess dress. I know…squashing her dreams.

Sure enough, we get the same waiter and he asked where Wendy was. Alexis gave me a dirty look, and then said, with her head hanging and lip pouting, “Mom wouldn’t let me bring her.”  We recover from that, and then she needs to go to the bathroom. No problem. Until we open the door.

It’s prom night in Lincoln. Beautiful girls, are glittered up, lovely shoes, and gorgeous dresses standing in front of the mirror. UGH. I get another dirty look, and she says, “I thought you said I couldn’t dress up for dinner tonight.”

She chats it up with the girls, and then with tears in her eyes, tells them that her mom wouldn’t let her wear a beautiful dress tonight. By the time that we are back to the table, she is in a spiral, and the tears are flowing! Brandon’s first instinct is, “Alexis, I’ll take you to prom.”  Tears…instantly gone! She went into full-on prom planning mode.

We went to target, she shopped the girls section for 30 minutes examining all of the dresses. She decided to try on 3 long ones. One of which she declared in the dressing room, “NO! I look like a grandma!”  But she modeled all of them for Brandon. Asked him which one he liked, and then she picked the opposite one. She’s going to make a good wife someday!

Saturday night I was gone, so they went on their date. Brandon’s cousin Kelsey came over and got Alexis ready to go. She wore makeup and had her hair done. Alexis asked to bring her money from her piggy bank so she could pay for dinner. Then they went to HuHot, and then came back and danced to 4 songs, 3 bible songs & Folsom Prison Blues. Then watched the movie Night at the Museum.

Yes, she has a wonderful daddy. Both of us are very lucky. All and all, I think it was worth the double disappointment at the restaurant. They had a wonderful time and when I got home Saturday night, she asked me if I could go to prom with her too next time.


Tiffany Verzal

Tiffany Verzal was raised in rural Nebraska, and now lives in Lincoln, Nebraska with her husband Brandon and daughter Alexis (9) and Abby (2). In 2008, Alexis (then 14-months-old) was the victim of shaken baby syndrome at the hands of her daycare provider in Texas. Alexis suffered severe brain damage and has spent over 2000 hours in rehabilitation since her injury. Tiffany continues to raise awareness for traumatic brain injury, shaken baby syndrome and child abuse. Brandon and Tiffany serve as members on Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital’s Board of Trustees. Brandon is currently the Chairman of the Nebraska Child Abuse Prevention Fund Board.