“Never look back. If Cinderella went back for her shoe, she would never have been a princess.”
This past weekend brought a unique experience for this mother of boys. I got to take my Little Sister to Fairy Tale Tea with Cinderella. My Little was so excited that she called me the night before to tell me she couldn’t sleep.
Admittedly, I’ve not been a fan of the Princess movement. I wrote my entire Master’s thesis on the subject. I thought it sent the wrong message to little girls. Too little diversity. Too much emphasis on beauty. Too much shallowness. Too much giving up one’s identity and making sacrifices in order to be rescued by a man. To an extent, I still feel that way.
We sat at a table with a Spanish family with three little girls under the age of five and a Hispanic mother with a three-year old. They all believed they were Princesses. They didn’t care about race. Or Princes. Or being rescued. They were over the moon with giddiness. They felt beautiful. They felt like they could be whatever their imaginations wanted them to be. And my Little couldn’t wait to go to school the next day and tell her friends that she met Cinderella.
Ain’t nothing wrong with that.
Little girls have the rest of their lives to experience self-doubt, self-or society-imposed limitations, and criticism. Maybe if they build a foundation of confidence and creativity as children, they’ll be stronger young women.
Again, many of my initial objections to the Princess movement still stand. But I now see that it has merits, too.
Go on, girls. Have fun. Feel beautiful. Be you. And remember what Cinderella told you: no one can order you to stop dreaming.