This past weekend we had the pleasure of going to a little town in Northern Connecticut to see our niece make her First Communion. As beautiful as the ceremony was, the one thing that really struck me was how simple the celebration was.
The girls were dressed in simple white dresses with understated veils - the complete opposite of the usual overblown affairs you see here on Long Island. If you don't believe me, just go check out the many Communions taking place this month. The dresses look more like miniature versions of bridal gowns. I recently heard the outrageous price tag for one of these "designer" dresses your little darling can wear on her special day and I couldn't believe my ears! A dress with all the trimmings can run families upwards of $1,000 not including the reception at a catering hall to follow!
That's a scary prospect for me as the mother of twin daughters! I'm going to have to explain to my daughters one day soon why we won't spend that kind of money on a dress they are going to wear once! It's tough enough feeling like you have to compete against the other parents who shower their children with name brand apparel without a second thought. Not all of us have the luxury nor the desire to do the same.
If celebrating our children's milestones comes with such a hefty price tag what will their future proms, weddings or other big events cost? Have we lost sight of what's important? In a time where many Americans are tightening their belts for survival, how can we afford not to revert back to the simple things in life?
What a shame that many parents feel that they have to compete to buy the most over the top Communion dresses when it's really more about what the day means for the children. Luckily for my niece her mom never lost sight of that and dressed her daughter appropriately to anticipate an exciting day in her religious journey. If only the rest of us could follow the same example, we would all be better for it. Especially our children.