I remember when I was little, about four or five, I would sneak into my mom’s closet and steal her shiny, nude heels and scurry back to my room. There I’d fit my tiny feet into those stolen shoes, put on a pink tutu, and place my heart-jeweled, plastic crown on my unbrushed hair. I proceeded to strut my stuff back and forth on my bedroom’s hardwood floor, until my mom would hear the clanking of her shoes and come running to get them back.
Although dress-up was a favorite pastime of mine, that’s not the reason I did this. I made my room my training ground for being a princess. My ultimate goal in life was to be a princess. Beautiful and graceful, just like Cinderella. Now I’m ten years wiser, however, some of my childhood dream hasn’t changed.
My mother never believed in CD’s, so my entire Disney princess collection was on VHS. I would pop in the cassette, 9 out of 10 times it would be that of Cinderella, and rewind it to the beginning. I’d press play and watch and watch until I needed to eat or get a drink of water then I’d pause it. Whenever there was a scary part of the movie, remember I was only four, I would hide behind my black leather couch while my mom fast forwarded the movie to the next scene. I would also have my mom rewind the ballroom dance scene, as it was my favorite.
I wish I could live the life of my VHS Disney princesses. I wish I could wake up wanting nothing but to dance around in big, bellowing ball gowns. The only pain I feel is the night after wearing those unbearably slick glass slippers. To have heartbreak only last half an hour. To fast forward on the tough times. To rewind my greatest memories. To take a minute to pause my life.
Unfortunately, I can’t live in that world. In fact, no one can. If it were possible, then I’d say there would be a severe shortage in pumpkins.
Even the lives of real-life royalty are far from perfect. I mean, they have a kingdom full of people to run. Plus, most are seen constantly by the public eye. I would have people look up to me and have a society who sees me as perfect when I’m far from it.
Now, when I’m asked what I want to be when I grow up, I’ll say something completely different than I would’ve thought a decade ago. However, little me would see the magic in pretty ball gowns and tiaras and say, through the cracks of her crooked teeth, “A princess!”